10 Travel Tips for Your First Trip to Turkey
Turkey is country with diverse landscapes, amazing culture, traditions that dates back to yesteryears, and boundless opportunities for travelers. It won’t be wrong to say that there is no other destination that infuses east with the west so perfectly like Turkey. So, if you are planning a trip to this part of the world, then here are some of the travel tips just in case you are heading towards Turkey for the very first time.
Let’s dive deep:
You Need a Visa
Nationals from many countries across the globe have to obtain visas to enter Turkey. To check whether you need one or not, you can check the official website of the Turkey’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs to avoid any inconvenience.
Estimate a budget and stick to it.
Well! This might surprise you, but traveling within Turkey can cost you more than a Euro trip, unless you have set a budget for your trip. Also, it is cheaper to pay in Turkish Liras than in Euros. So, just stick to a budget and plan your tour accordingly. Don’t visit every single tourist attraction, because everyone else does, instead treasure experience that can last a lifetime. Enjoy a Turkish bath at a Hamam, have a nice meal at a seaside café, stay at a nice B&Bs, go local, and try to be more than just a tourist.
Know a Little Turkish
Most of the Turkish residents, especially those outside the big cities can’t speak English. But, the great news is that Turkish is not that much hard to learn and even a few Turkish words can get you far. Most of the Turkish letters are similar to Roman alphabets and words are also said as they are spelled.
Choose your accommodation wisely
Even though you are on a budget, this does not mean that you will have to half way house with your comfort. You can find a good range of budget hotels in Istanbul and apartments to consider for you stay.
The strategic location of Turkey, in both Europe and Asia, creates a confusion where east meets the west. While the cities are quite cosmopolitan, the rural communities still retain their old traditions and customs. So, before planning a visit learn about the proper dress etiquette of the country. Especially if you are a woman traveler try to dress subtle to avoid unwanted attention.
Revel in Turkish vegetarian food
Turkey is a heaven for non-vegetarians, however, if you are vegan you may anticipate a tough time. The truth is that Turkish people love to garnish even their vegetarian dishes with meat and the concept of vegetarian is simply alien. So, the best thing is to learn a few Turkish words of the vegetarian dishes and ask for them to be cooked without meat, to save yourself from surviving on just cheese toast (tost), soup, and just salad. There are many local vegetarian dishes with similarities to Indian delicacies like kuru fasuliye (chickpeas, french beans, kidney beans), pilaf (pulao), and gozleme patata (aloo paranthas). Go ahead and try them out.
Get Out of the Cities… explore beyond Istanbul
Turkey is dotted with amazing cities and many great regions that will simply bewitch you. While Istanbul is famous for its old world, Izmir draws in visitors for its Greek influence, and Ankara is renowned for its bureaucracy. However, there are also other places like Mardin and Hatay, which will offer a great insight into the country life of Turkey as well as how things were in the olden ages. So, get out of your comfort zone and go with Turkey tour packages and be ready to explore everything Turkey has to offer.
Get to know the locals
The locals in Turkey are truly very kind hearted and you will surely be touched by their warm welcoming. Being a country socially restricted by the lack of a common language with the majority of the world, you will discover the most cordial reception in Turkey. Try to befriend some locals, get to know about Turkey through their eyes, and return home with the most amazing experience.
Beware of scams in Istanbul
While traveling in Istanbul, try to be wary of scams. You might come across people asking for money for their ailing parents or relatives. Some might even convince you to a great level, but then you might end up finding them at a supper joint. Especially tourists are the target of such scams. So, try to be alert and beware of scams to avoid being caught into any unwanted situation.
Use public transport across Turkey
Using a public transport during your sojourn in Turkey is one of the best ways to get around the city and explore it quite conveniently. Most of the towns and cities in Turkey are connected with each other via active private buses services, tram and even metro. Also, cabs are easily available, which makes traveling within city super comfy. This not only offers you a whole new experience, but also gives you a control over the way you wish to move within the country, and don’t have to stick to a planned itinerary.
So, if you are planning to visit this wonderful landscape, then have a look at these travel tips by Simons Holidays and make your tour to Turkey truly unforgettable.