Group of tourists on a Gallipoli Tour from Istanbul, standing at historical battlefields and memorials, reflecting on World War I history.

The Gallipoli Campaign: A Defining Moment in Turkey’s History


The Gallipoli Campaign is one of the most significant events in Turkey’s modern history. Also known as the Dardanelles Campaign, it took place during World War I and was a failed attempt by the Allies to control the sea route from Europe to Russia. The campaign has great importance not only for Turkey but also for other countries like Australia, New Zealand, and the UK, whose troops were heavily involved. In this blog post, we will delve into the key aspects of the Gallipoli Campaign and its impact on Turkey.


The Gallipoli Peninsula, located in northwestern Turkey, was a strategic location during World War I. The Ottoman Empire, which controlled the region, was allied with the Central Powers, making it a target for the Allies. Their primary objective was to capture the Dardanelles Strait, providing a sea route to their ally, Russia. The campaign was initiated by Winston Churchill, then First Lord of the Admiralty.

The Campaign

The Gallipoli Campaign started on April 25, 1915, with the landing of British, Australian, and New Zealand troops on the peninsula. The Ottomans, led by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, put up fierce resistance. Despite the bravery shown by troops on both sides, the campaign turned into a stalemate with heavy casualties.

Outcome and Impact

The campaign ended in defeat for the Allies, who withdrew in January 1916. The failure had profound implications, including political repercussions in Britain and a change in strategy for the war. In Turkey, the campaign is considered a defining moment in the nation’s history, contributing to the end of the Ottoman Empire and the rise of modern Turkey under Atatürk.

Significance for Turkey

The Gallipoli Campaign is commemorated annually in Turkey on April 25, known as “Anzac Day.” It serves as a reminder of the heroism and sacrifice that shaped modern Turkey. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, who rose to prominence during this campaign, later founded the Republic of Turkey, making significant reforms that modernized the country.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. When did the Gallipoli Campaign take place?

The Gallipoli Campaign took place from April 25, 1915, to January 9, 1916.

2. Who were the key figures in the Gallipoli Campaign?

Mustafa Kemal Atatürk led the Ottoman forces, while Winston Churchill was a key figure for the Allies.

3. Why did the Allies want to capture the Gallipoli Peninsula?

The primary objective was to control the Dardanelles Strait and establish a sea route to Russia.

4. What were the casualties?

Approximately 250,000 casualties were suffered on each side, including both deaths and injuries.

5. How is the Gallipoli Campaign commemorated in Turkey?

The campaign is commemorated annually on April 25, known as Anzac Day, with various ceremonies and events.

6. How did the campaign impact Turkey’s history?

The Gallipoli Campaign is considered a defining moment that contributed to the end of the Ottoman Empire and the rise of modern Turkey under Atatürk.


The Gallipoli Campaign holds a special place in Turkey’s history, shaping its modern identity and symbolizing resilience and heroism. The legacy of this campaign remains alive, commemorated every year, and continues to be a subject of study and reflection.

If you’re interested in visiting Gallipoli and other historically significant locations in Turkey, One Nation Travel offers specialized Gallipoli tours that bring these important events to life.

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