Turks living in European countries have begun to hit the roads to spend summer holidays in their hometowns in Turkey.
Turkish expatriates spend 3-4 days on the road from their homes in European cities and cross into Turkey through the İpsala Border Gate on the Turkey-Greece border or the Kapıkule Border Gate, which is on the Turkey-Bulgaria border.
Last year, more than 720,000 Turkish expatriates, who get 6 to 8 weeks of vacation, drove to Turkey from Europe.
Zekiye Akkoç, who came from Germany with her husband, told Anadolu Agency (AA) that they would spend their summer vacation in the capital Ankara and Trabzon province in the Black Sea region.
"Longing for our homeland never ends. We will go to Ankara and then to Trabzon. We will meet our elders and spend time with them. No matter how long the distance is, missing home does not makes you go out of your way," she said.
Burak Ünlü, who will spend his summer in western Denizli province, said they go this lengthy distance every year, but coming back home is worth the travel.
As a result of many choosing to use their own vehicles to come to Turkey, both border gates see a large number of crossings, particularly in early summer, causing long lineups. The long hours of waiting at the border gates also triggers impatience among travelers when coupled with temperatures above 30 degrees.
About 6 million Turkish citizens live in European countries. As a result of labor agreements signed with various European countries in the 1960s, Turkish immigrants who began to live in these countries have become an important part of the communities where they live in many parts of the world.