You may be amazed to know that a little soap shop in 1960 transformed itself into what we now refer to as Turkey's first olive oil museum!
Big ‘olive’ boost for Turkey tourism! Imagine this – a little soap shop showcasing handmade olive oil products – transforms itself into a first-of-its-kind olive oil museum! Most of you are aware of olive oil uses. You may already be using olive oil for cooking. But you may never before have heard of a museum dedicated to it!
Now this is not a slice of fiction or a figment of anyone’s imagination. You may be amazed to know that a little soap shop in 1960 transformed itself into what we now refer to as Turkey’s first olive oil museum! Many of the objects that you can observe at this museum date back to ancient times as well as the Ottoman period.
For travelers to Turkey, a visit to the country’s first olive oil museum founded in July 2001, in the northwestern province of Canakalle is bound to offer a fantastic experience of the country’s rich historical connect and ‘agri-heritage’ in promoting the benefits of olive oil. A perusal of the maps, images and texts on display at the museum will bring to life the adventure-filled journeys from Middle East to Europe,
The other silver lining is that you also don’t have to worry about shelling out more to visit the museum as the entry is free of cost.
Interesting facts come to light as you are taken through the cultural significance of olive oil, not only as a staple of Turkish cuisine and a key ingredient in the country’s most renowned handmade product, namely, the olive soap.
For this rare and fulfilling experience of understanding how olive oil has been an integral part of the Turkish way of live, the first of its kind Olive Oil Museum displays more than 200 olive oil products that can be traced back to over two centuries ago! Notably, the museum busts popular myths and misconceptions and promotes olive oil health benefits through its visual and cultural representation of it.
From an Indian perspective, the use of nut-based oils such as groundnut oil and coconut oil and other oils such as mustard oil can receive a big boost in terms of a more amplified exposure through such a tourism thrust, if a similar initiative in the form of a museum dedicated to a visual and cultural celebration of cooking oil, specific and local to the place, is implemented.
If you have a keen shopper’s eye and want to buy something authentic from Turkey, you can also check out the museum’s gift shop which offers bottles of olive oil smartly packaged in ceramic bottles, handmade olive oil soaps, local artisan products and some cosmetic offerings that are made from olive oil. So, enjoy your trip to the country’s first olive oil museum and make sure that you get some samples to bring back home!