Turkey Destination Guide

By Jade Hindley

Cities, beaches, mountains, rock formations, ancient ruins and so much more make up Turkey’s impressive landscape. Cappadocia’s “fairy chimneys” that appear to be from another world, Pamukkale’s beautiful travertine terraces flowing with thermal waters, and the wonderfully preserved, 12-mile Patara beach are some highlights that will leave you stunned. This diversity, as well as being breathtaking, means that the activities you can get involved with are endless. The coast offers water sports galore or try canyoning in the mountain ranges. Take a hot air balloon ride over Cappadocia or a soak in a tradition Turkish Hammam. In the towns, experience a culinary tour or course and discover the delicious flavours Turkey has to offer.

 

 

Weather

Turkey generally has a Mediterranean climate with hot summers and cool, rainy winters. December has the most rainfall so avoid this time, unless you’re looking for a ski holiday in which case the low season becomes the high seasons in these resorts. July and August are the hottest months of the year, however expect crowds and higher prices. Spring and autumn are ideal warm temperatures and are a lot less busy, particularly in the southwest of the country.

High Season – June to August (Average 28˚C)

Shoulder Season – May and September (Average 23˚C)

Low Season – October to April (Average 14˚C)

 

 

Budgeting

The currency in Turkey is Turkish lira ₺. You can arrange a currency exchange before you travel, or exchange money once you have arrived. You will find cash machines quite regularly in bigger towns and cities, but villages probably won’t have them so having some cash with you is recommended.

We have included below some average costs to help you budget for your trip.

 

Accommodation

1 Night in a Hostel dorm: £5 - £20

1 Night in a Double Room: £50 - £150

1 Night in a Luxury Double Room - £200+

 

Food

Beer: £2+

Kebap: £1.50+

Restaurant Meal: £10+

 

Extras

Return İstanbul - Cappadocia flights: £70+

Boat Trip: £40+

Cappadocia Balloon Flight : £150+

Car hire per day: £20+

 

Tipping in Turkey is quite similar to here in the UK. It is appreciated in restaurants, taxis and hotels but optional anywhere else.

 

 

Food

Eating well is an important part of life in Turkey. Families and friends often get together for meals so that it becomes an event. With so many beautiful local ingredients to choose from, dishes are never short of flavour and nutrition, the combinations alone are reason to visit this magnificent country. On weekend nights it’s recommended to book in advance at restaurants (which is usually excellent value), especially in the summer as Turks love to eat out!

 

Meze –  Turkish cuisine is known for it’s vast selection of appetizers and meze is the king of these. Served as an individual, tapas-style dish or on a large platter for a group to share, it usually includes either meat or seafood with cheeses and vegetable dishes.

Baklava – Pronounced “Back-la-var”. Try this gorgeous sweet pastry dessert of filo pastry with nuts and covered in syrup or honey in Turkish bakeries and on the dessert menus of most restaurants.

Kebap – Look for Kebapçıs in Turkey and you will find roasted or grilled and seasoned meats such as lamb, beef or chicken served in a variety of ways depending on the region you are in. This could be with rice or potatoes and a salad, or in a pitta or pide with yoghurt and salad. Discovering the variations and trying different things is part of the experience!

Pide –  This cheap and cheerful staple is basically the Turkish twist on pizza which you can find in restaurants and Pidecis  all over the country. Toppings traditionally include lamb, mince, spicy salami and/or vegetables and cheese. Try it for yourself here.

 

 

Phrases

You will often find people who can speak English in Turkey, particularly in the touristy areas. However, it is much appreciated and seen as polite to try and use some Turkish in conversation.

 

Merhaba

(Mur-Ha-Bah)

Hello

 

Nasilsiniz?

(Nah-suhl-suh-nuhz)

How are you?

 

Hoşçakalin  / Güle güle

(Hosh-cha-kaluhn / Guele guele )

Goodbye (Person leaving) / Goodbye (Person staying)

 

Hesap lütfen

(Heh-sap Loot-fen)

Bill Please

 

Teşekkürler

(Tesh-eh-kur-Ler)

Thank you

 

 

Interesting Facts

1. The Black Sea coastline of Turkey is the same distance from Paris to Berlin. That's 1650km!

2. The only city in the world to span two continents (Europe and Asia) is Istanbul. Only 5% of Turkey is in Europe.

3. The second oldest underground railway - after London Underground - is Tünel in Istanbul which opening in 1875. It was powered by horses until 1910.        

4. Turkish Airlines can get you to almost anywhere in the world from Istanbul airport with 260 (and counting) destinations on offer! They have been voted Best Airline in Europe 4 years running. 

 

 

Call 0161 85 07034 to explore Turkey for yourself!