Turkey is a vast country, with a dramatic landscape. Turkey is roughly rectangular and has an area of 314,510 square miles, approximately 3.5 times the size of the UK. It is situated on two continents – 3% in Europe and the remainder in Asia – which are separated by the Bosphorus, which runs from the Black Sea through Istanbul, and the inland Sea of Marmara which flows through the Dardanelles and out to the Aegean. It has a coastline of 8333 kms or 5178 miles in length, and is bordered by the Black Sea to the north, the Sea of Marmara and the Aegean to the west and the Mediterranean to the south. Turkey is an extremely mountainous country with an average altitude of 1,132 metres. The North Anatolian mountains run along the north of the country, parallel to the Black Sea, with the Taurus Mountains sweeping along the Mediterranean in the south. Turkey’s highest mountain peak at 16,946 feet is MountArarat, situated in the north east. Mount Ararat is a snow-capped inactive volcano, which rises above the surrounding plains. It is said to have been the resting place for Noah’s Ark. There are a large number of lakes in Turkey, some such as Lake Van, which is the largest natural lake at 3,713 square kms, covering as much area as an inland sea.Anumber of dams have been constructed during the past thirty years, which have resulted in the formation of several large dam lakes including the Atatürk Dam lake which started to collect water in January 1990.