Museum helps to oil Turkey's tourism coffers

12th Aug 2013

As food-based museums go, Turkey offers few more unusual cultural sites than the one in the district of Ayvacık.

Holidaymakers on group tours who are captivated by Turkey's culinary traditional can enjoy a museum devoted to olive oil.

Adatepe Olive Oil Museum pays homage to the liquid that has held the region's cuisine and economy together - 90% of employees in the area work with olives.

The 13-year-old private museum features displays that demonstrate how olive oil was produced with traditional techniques and also show historic wood clamps, oil lamps and amphoras.

Museum founder Haluk Yurtkuran and three fellow olive oil-producing friends established the museum after showcasing production techniques to visitors.

They continue production of olive oil using ancient methods on the museum's lower floor.

Old storage areas and modern stainless steel containers are shown together, enabling tourists to contrast old and new.

The building's second floor is the museum, displaying wood clamps, pressers, amphoras and olive oil containers, old oil lamps and written documents such as invoices and dispatch notes.

Yurtkuran said they were trying to acquire more olive oil-related objects, adding: "Olive oil used to be kept in amphoras in the Byzantine and Roman periods. One of our diver friends gifted us an amphora found in a shipwreck. They are probably 2,000 years old."

If olive oil museums aren't your bag during your Ayvacık holiday, then there's always the Temple of Athena in the town of Assos.

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