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Travelling to Turkey

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Winter voyage :)
(20 Messages in 2 pages - View all)
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10.       lady in red
6947 posts
 19 Sep 2008 Fri 06:36 pm

 

Quoting catwoman

Carla, I don´t know Altinkum, so I can´t help you with any specific advice... but in terms of general information - I think you will be fine. Do stay on the safe side and arrange things ahead of time - both plan A and plan B. Find out how you can get where you need to get in case your friend doesn´t pick you up, so that you are not stranded and unable to communicate and not know what you are looking for - that´s a recipe for trouble! There may be lots of over-friendly people who might try to take advantage of you in such a situation. So learn about everything you need to learn ahead of time - the travel from airport to the final destination, where you will stay, who you will stay with - if you are going into unknown places, always have someone with you who knows the area, always have a cell phone and a number you can call if you need help... And such. If you stay on the safe side, I think you will be fine And try to not look like you need help

 

 I would think that Altinkum would be quite quiet in November if its anything like here - most of the bars and restaurants will be closed.  Apart from cat´s advice perhaps you could ask in the forums for translation of a few useful phrases which you could write down and take with you - easier to show someone something in writing sometimes.  I think the most important thing is to get safely from Izmir Airport to your apartment in Izmir.

11.       catwoman
8933 posts
 19 Sep 2008 Fri 06:41 pm

 

Quoting lady in red

 I would think that Altinkum would be quite quiet in November if its anything like here - most of the bars and restaurants will be closed.  Apart from cat´s advice perhaps you could ask in the forums for translation of a few useful phrases which you could write down and take with you - easier to show someone something in writing sometimes.  I think the most important thing is to get safely from Izmir Airport to your apartment in Izmir.

 

I completely agree! Great tips...

12.       *Carla Louise*
207 posts
 20 Sep 2008 Sat 01:32 am

Yardımınız için çok teşekkür ederim

I think I will do that certainly, and tomorrow I plan to study hard. I have found some numbers for airport transfers from Izmir airport to my apartment complex in Altinkum, so if my friend doesn´t show up I can call the other company. But I feel safer with my friend (even though it´s been 3 years since we´ve met) than with a complete stranger. So here´s hoping he´ll get there. He has a key, but not a car. Not very reliable, ha?

You´ve helped reassure me a bit, now I can try to be excited again for my adventure.

13.       catwoman
8933 posts
 20 Sep 2008 Sat 03:51 am

Have a great trip Carla and let us know how it went.

14.       armegon
1872 posts
 20 Sep 2008 Sat 04:02 am

 

Quoting *Carla Louise*

 

He has a key, but not a car. Not very reliable, ha?

 

  lol, take care of yourself.

If you cant find any services to reach Didim, you can use Havaş services to reach otogar when you land to İzmir(as far as i know they have), then take a bus to Didim, prefer firms like Kamilkoç, Pamukkale or Varan but check the time, i think they lessen the number of buses in autumn. 

15.       *Carla Louise*
207 posts
 22 Oct 2008 Wed 07:23 pm

Thank you to everyone who has replied here.

I must admit I´m pretty worried now, my friend told me that there is a lot of trouble in Turkiye (esp. Southwest) at present and that maybe it´s dangerous to go there? I think he´s actually Kurdish and he tells me there are some troubles? Plus I hear it is illegal for people to collect people from the airport now? And that I will be questioned on entry to Turkiye? Please help! Any advice appreciated. Bearing in mind I land at Izmir and will go to Altinkum...

16.       Deli_kizin
6376 posts
 22 Oct 2008 Wed 07:38 pm

 

Quote:

:: When meeting family members, is there a certain phrase or tradition when first meeting? I´ve been told to kiss the hand of his mother, which I will do, though very nervous. I´ve been to Turkiye before as a tourist, and fell in love with the country, but in Winter I am worried that I will be an outsider.

 

The ´traditional´ greeting, is to kiss the hands of the parents and bring that kissed hand to your forehead. There are families who actually dont do such things anymore, my bfs family to take an example, but they will always appreciate yout ook time to learn this, and next time you may jsut kiss them once on each cheek.

You won´t be an outsider, there are maybe few tourists, but there still will be, and there always are foreigners living there.

 

 

:: What are Ýzmir and Aydin like in the Winter? Many places open? To visit? And is it expensive to eat/drink there? I don´t drink alcohol, I´m talking about basic drinks like milk, cola, water, juice etc.

Yes many places are open. As Trudy said, the touristic sights such as Efes, Bergama and Meryems house are opened. Also general cafes, restaurants etc, they are all open. Prices vary. In Ýzmir city, it is pretty cheap to eat and drink, also alcoholic beverages are at reasonable prices. This is ofcourse different if you take a drink at a restaurant that belongs to a touristic sight such as Efes. For example, a regular water costs 50 kuruþ, but in touristic sights you can pay 2 to 4 liras just for water. Normal price for ´us´ though

 

 

:: I have to travel alone, bearing in mind I am only 18 years old, to Ýzmir airport, is it safe to travel alone? And are there English speaking people in the airport so that if there is a problem I can communicate (my Turkish is not so good)?

Yes, Ýzmir airport is safe. It is small and enough security. There arent too many english speaking staff there, but they will bring you to the ones who do speak English Anyway all signs are in english as well and it is so small you can barely miss it! 

Quoting *Carla Louise*

Thank you to everyone who has replied here.

I must admit I´m pretty worried now, my friend told me that there is a lot of trouble in Turkiye (esp. Southwest) at present and that maybe it´s dangerous to go there? I think he´s actually Kurdish and he tells me there are some troubles? Plus I hear it is illegal for people to collect people from the airport now? And that I will be questioned on entry to Turkiye? Please help! Any advice appreciated. Bearing in mind I land at Izmir and will go to Altinkum...

 

 

It is not illegal to collect people from the airport as far as Im aware. I picked up my girlfriends from Ýzmir airport last summer, so at least then it wasnt illegal. After picking up your luggage you just go through one door and tehre the people are waiting for you. I dont think his  being Kurdish would cause you any problems there, and I dont know what trouble you are refering to? I didnt notice much last 2 months in summer that would have made me feel uncomfortable being a young foreign girl there.

 

I have never been questioned in Turkey, they might just go through your luggage. And dont forgot to bring money for a visa as there is no chance to get money from an atm before you go through customs, and they dont always have money back. I think it is 10 pounds for an English passport, and 10 euros for a european one.

 

 

There are busservices to the main busstation, but I cant recall what they cost. I think around 7,5-10 liras. If I were you I would take a taxi. It is a little more expensive (from airport to city centre is about 20 minutes and costs around 40 lira. to the busstation must be less than that.) but it saves you all the trouble.

 

For a bus company I suggest Kamýlkoç and Varan. In case you go by Kamilkoç, see if they have ´Rahat Hat´ bus tickets to Didim. They are around 10 liras more expensive, but you get a bigger seat, you can take a single seat (no person next to you) and you get to keep your phone switched on during the trip so you can stay in touch with your hosting family (other bus companies dont allow you to have your phone switched on so you can only make calls and sms in the break).

 

 

 

 

17.       Deli_kizin
6376 posts
 22 Oct 2008 Wed 07:43 pm

 

Quoting *Carla Louise*

. But after reading so much I am very scared to even leave my apartment now. -

Any suggestions or advice? I hate to sound so pessimistic, it´s just unfortunate that there are so many sites full of people creating controversy and worry out there

 

 One small tip on this one: never look any males in the eyes. I have noticed htat when you stare around smilingly like a tourist, you are definitely being commented on or disturbed. Since I adopted Turkish girls´ look (straight ahead, no smiles, no eyecontact and a little arrogant ) I havent been commented on ever since!

 

You seem very responsible in the way you handle your things before you leave, I dont think your preparation leaves much for you to worry about! Don´t worry too much, there is a lot of controversy but Ive never come accross it and I was 17 when I went there alone first time (I hadnt even gone there before that with my family). I dont mean to make a too rosey picture for you, but no need for all these worries!

18.       *Carla Louise*
207 posts
 23 Oct 2008 Thu 01:53 am

Aww Deli_kizin , thank you so much for all your help, I feel a lot more at ease now. I sound as if I´m scared and the truth is I am frightened because so many people told me it is not safe to travel alone as a female bla bla, and that there is a lot of tension in Turkiye at the moment between the Kurdish and Turkish, and so my parents are worried, and also someone told me because I´m blonde too I should wear a headscarf because there will be hardly any tourists in Altinkum in November and I will stand out in a bad way. Your words have helped me a lot, I´m going to try and just look forward to my time and stop worrying so much

19.       Deli_kizin
6376 posts
 23 Oct 2008 Thu 01:58 am

 

Quoting *Carla Louise*

 someone told me because I´m blonde too I should wear a headscarf because there will be hardly any tourists in Altinkum in November and I will stand out in a bad way. 

 

 This is almost hilarious Rather few people in that area wear headscarves as far as Ive noticed (but ofcourse I was there in summer season and it was the only time ive been to altýnkum. and when I was there I felt as if I was dressing conservative with a skirt and sleevless top ). You have blue eyes, wearing a headscarf in Altýnkum in that case will make you stand out Besides, I dont know if you know but Altýnkum-Didim is inhabited more by British than by Turks, so you will probably be more home there than a Turk lol

 

20.       Henry
2604 posts
 23 Oct 2008 Thu 02:09 am

Hi Carla Louise, you could also try this useful Turkish language web-site run by Ruth in England, who goes to Altýnkum regularly.

 

http://totally-turkish.com/

 

There is also a forum on her web-site for questions.

Good luck with your trip!

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