We've compiled some of our clients' most frequent questions (and added a couple of our own).
It depends on where you're traveling, but most regions in Turkey are safe and tourist-friendly. Many governments advise avoiding travel to provinces and areas within 6 miles (10 kilometers) of the Syrian border. As with any destination, it pays to stay vigilant and follow the latest travel advice from your government officials as well as advice issued by authorities on the ground.
Enjoy Tours is in direct contact with the US Consular General, and we keep a careful eye on any situations that may affect our clients.
Generally speaking, we recommend consuming bottled water on our tours. This is due to the high mineral content of tap water, not because of any risk of disease. Accordingly, feel free to wash your hands and brush your teeth at the sink—no bottles necessary.
Most of our Western clients find that exchange rates and differences in cost of living make shopping locally relatively inexpensive. Turkey produces many of its own goods, and it hosts a number of extraordinary artisans who make their crafts at often-reasonable prices.
Turkey has its own language, known as Turkish. Descended from Ottoman Turkish, the modern Turkish language has a 1,000+ year history and is related to other languages spoken throughout Eastern Europe as well as North and Central Asia. Roughly 80 million people worldwide speak Turkish as their mother tongue.
In Turkey, the clothes and styles you'll see on the street will look much like what you'd expect in any Western country. As a rule, Turkish people tend to dress nicely but casually. Jeans and t-shirts are common, as are shorts in warmer weather.
Generally speaking, the farther east you travel, the more conservatively you'll want to dress. In the eastern provinces, it would be wise to wear pants rather than shorts, and to wear shirts that cover the shoulders.
While on a tour, we recommend a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen, along with a sturdy pair of walking shoes.
In a word, delicious. Turkish cuisine includes a variety of beef, poultry, fish, and vegetarian dishes. Locals enjoy seasonal fruits and vegetables from local farms, including such delights as olives, pistachios, hazlenuts, cauliflower, okra, spinach, grapes, oranges, tea, and much more. The challenge will be choosing which dish to pair with which local wine from the fertile Aegean coast.
Turkey's region is difficult to define. Turkey is situated at the crossroads of the Balkans, Caucasus, Middle East, and eastern Mediterranean. The country (and the city of Istanbul itself) spans the European and Asian continents. Some look at geography and include Turkey as part of the Middle East. Others look more closely at language and culture and include it as part of Europe or Asia. Turkish people tend to enjoy not quite fitting anyone's list. As the remnant of the Ottoman Empire, with a heritage going back much farther, Turkey is perhaps best described on its own terms.
Enrich your insight. Enjoy your tour.