This week is Let’s Talk Turkey Week here at Chasing La Bella Vita. I have been super fortunate to have two lovely ladies from the UK ask me to accept their guest blogs about visiting Turkey. Since Turkey has been a country I have wanted to visit for a long time, I happily accepted.
During the editing process, I included some informational links which are in blue in the article. These can be clicked on for more information about the place or subject listed. Check them out.
Turkey is an amazing place and after scooting around researching these links, I am more on fire than ever to go visit!
Here is the first article by Ruth Anoya from Evisa.org
What Americans Should Know About Traveling in Turkey
Turkey. There is something about the name that evokes romantic images of a Sexy Rudolph Valentino on horseback, riding to the rescue of his lady in distress. Desert sands, wild oases, beautiful bazaars mixed with the magic of Hollywood give us a packaged idea of what Turkey is all about. But, is it true?
Turkey spans two continents and serves as a bridge that unites the Middle East and Europe, separating the Black Sea from the Mediterranean Sea. Turkey shares borders with Georgia, Iran, Iraq, Syria and Bulgaria and Armenia.
It is a short plane ride from Many European countries.
Turkey is a beautiful country that has a vast history and rich culture. While it is a beautiful and interesting place to visit, there are some practical things you need to know before you go to make your trip run smoothly.
Ataturk International Airport In Istanbul
Ataturk International Airport is located in Istanbul, Turkey. Istanbul was formerly known as Constantinople and is the largest city in Turkey as well as its cultural, historical and economic heart. Istanbul was one of the main cities on the ancient trade routes of the Mediterranean Sea.
Ataturk International (Named for Mustafa Kemel Ataturk, the first president of Turkey) is a great landing point because it is clean, spacious, and easy to maneuver. It has many friendly staff members who speak English.
Istanbul itself is a fantastic destination for history buffs and lovers of art and culture. However if you are using Istanbul as a connecting point, don’t be lured into thinking that all of Turkey is as easy to navigate.
Be aware when you take a connecting flight to another Turkish city from Ataturk’s domestic terminal. The language barrier and the cultural difference between domestic and international terminals have shocked many foreigners once they leave the international zone.
Do not depend on English speaking staff to assist you. Be sure about your departure time, gate and destination, and have your boarding passes or tickets ready.
How To Travel Within Turkey
Most Americans hire guides (Check with a travel agent who specializes in trips to Turkey or the Middle East) while they are visiting Turkey but is important to know some basic travel techniques that could save time, money and frustration.
The charter bus system of the Turkey is one of the best developed charter bus systems in the world. It is even more comfortable than those in the US and many other European cities. A Charter bus will also allow you to feel the natural beauty of Turkey. Getting a ticket is easy. The average ticket costs about 28 Turkish Lira or about $13.50 in American dollars. (Check with your hotel. They should be able to advise you on how to get your tickets.)
Places to visit in Turkey
There are many places in Turkey that Americans can visit without fear. Turkey is Islamic and the locals love to see the Americans visiting their country.
The people of Ankara, the capital of Turkey and people of Mardin always welcome Americans with arms wide open.
The places Americans should visit are Bodrum, The ancient Greek city of Ephesus, Cappadocia, a historical region in Anatolia, Marmaris,The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, Goreme National Park, a UNESCO site featuring amazing scenery and magnificent rock formations, Pamukkale ,which means “Cotton Castle” and features sweeping vistas of white carbonite mineral desposits, Nemrut Dagi, Antalya a Mediterranean coastal city, and Kusadasi
The Turkish provinces or states bordering Syria are not safe places to travel at all.
Do not visit these places as they are severely affected by terrorism. These include the provinces of Hatay, Gaziantep, Sanliurfa and Mardin.
Americans travelling to Turkey should also know that the towns of Akḉakale and Ceylanpinar are not safe, especially for Americans as there are many terrorist groups in these areas. It is therefore strongly advised not to visit these places.
When travelling to a place where you are unsure of the political climate, health issues or any other issues that might affect your health or safety, visit this site for up to the minute information.
What To Wear In Turkey
Turkey is an overwhelmingly Muslim country but many Jewish and Christian people call Turkey their home as well.
Before going to Turkey or any foreign country, do your homework and familiarize yourself with the local customs. For example, if you are a woman and you want to visit any of the Turkish Mosques, you should cover yourself completely including your head. Having a scarf with you at all times is an excellent travel policy in general as many Christian churches require you to cover your shoulders before entering and some, including the Vatican require your knees to be covered as well.
If a scarf is not available at a Mosque, you can ask for one at the entrance. Men should wear long pants before entering a Mosque.
Silence is necessary when you are inside the Mosque so you should not laugh or talk loudly as it may offend the people who are praying. Again, this is good policy to follow when visiting any church in nay country. The churches are places of worship and the parishioners and directors of these beautiful churches have graciously opened them to us so that we can see their treasures.
Local stores provide 99% of the things that you need ranging from cleaning supplies, fashion accessories to personal hygiene products.
While this is true, if you are new to travel to different countries and new cultures, be aware that life is different there and you may not find the things that you feel you need to be comfortable. Do some basic research before you go so that you are not surprised when you get there.
If you have read this article, checked out the links and are on fire to visit Turkey, get your visa at Turkey visa so that you can visit this breathtaking country as soon as possible and enjoy all that it has to offer.
Ruth Anoya is a passionate blogger, living in UK. She writes on behalf of Turkey Visa. She loves to write as a guest blogger on the subjects of Travel, Health and Automotive. You can contact Ruth on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chris Ellis here. I want to let you know that I have not personally used any of the products or services listed in guest contributor’s articles and therefore cannot personally recommend them. Please do your research before you buy.