Turkey is a great option whether you’re traveling alone or in the company of the people that matter in your life. It is a perfect blend of the East and West culture. Apart from that, it has many stunning beaches and the locals are friendly. Each tourist is bound to have an exciting experience regardless of their personal interests and budget size. This is because there are lots of activities to choose from.
You can decide to book your tours or explore the country without a guide. A significant percentage of travelers prefer to discover the city with local insiders. They rarely have any regret at the end of the day. Check out some of the top fun things to do once you arrive in Turkey.
1. Spice Bazaar
The Spice Bazaar has been existing since the mid-1600s and currently comprises of over 85 shops. It is the largest of its kind in the entire Istanbul. Tourists can buy aromatic spices for cooking their dishes back home at very cheap prices. Other items that will be on sale include Turkish coffee, jewelry, sweets, and dried fruits. The Bazaar is often open from 8:00 am to 7:00 pm each day but closes at 6:00 pm on Sundays.
2. Ephesus Ancient Ruins
This area is one of the top tourist attractions in Turkey. Historical landmarks are scattered all over this location. It’s the home to the Virgin Mary’s home and attracts several Muslims and Catholics due to the calming atmosphere. Remember to stop at the Celsius library and ancient Roman houses.
Cappadocia is popular for hot air balloon trips. It’s advisable to book tickets in advance because this is one of the highlights of visiting Turkey. You will be able to view the beautiful landscape as the balloon floats in the air. Tourists can enjoy champagne breakfasts too.
Ensure that you explore the underground cities, especially Derinkuyu while you’re still in Cappadocia. It is located in Central Anatolia, Turkey and has many historical landmarks and rich culture. Derinkuyu is made up of 4 cities which include Nevsehir, Aksaray, Nigde, and Kayseri. Each city has outstanding geological structures.
4. Ankara Castle
Ankara Castle is also referred to as the Ankara Kalesi and dates back to the 7th century AD. According to history, the castle was formerly used by the Crusaders, Roman Empire, Ottoman Empire, and Seljuq Turks. Make sure that you visit the mosques and old houses within the castle. This will expose you to the décor and architectural style of the Turkish medieval era.
5. Temple of Artemis
The Temple of Artemis is among the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. It is consecrated to Artemis, the goddess of hunting, wild animals and the wilderness. A model of the temple and some of its ruins are still at the Miniaturk Park in Istanbul. The model looks like the original temple.
6. Eat delicious meals
Turkey offers a wide variety of dishes to tourists at budget-friendly prices. Each meal will boost your appetite as you savor the flavor, just make sure you don’t overeat. Vegans, vegetarians and people with other special nutritional needs have nothing to worry about. In case you love seafood, you can rest assured that your needs will be met. Street food is inexpensive and fresh juices are everywhere. You can’t eat pork in Turkey due to the fact that it’s a Muslim nation.
The ruins of Olympos lie in Cirali and it’s a part of the Olympos Beydaglari National Park. It can be traced back to the 4th Century BC. Olympos is flanked by Yanartas and a beach. Booking for guided tours is the best way to enjoy a first-hand experience.
8. Grand Bazaar
The Grand Bazaar is one of the largest shopping centers worldwide. It has been existing since 1455 and now has over 4,000 shops. Millions of tourists visit the Grand Bazaar every year. You’re free to haggle with traders as you buy jewelry, dried nuts, ingenious décor, clothes, carpet, gold, and souvenirs. It’s impossible to explore the entire market within a day due to its size.
9. Turkey travel tips
Many tourists have no idea of what to expect as they plan their trip to Turkey. The country has certain rules and locals expect you to respect their culture and customs. The following suggestions will ensure that you have a stress free and exciting adventure throughout your holiday.
Make sure that you schedule an appointment with your doctor before traveling internationally. You need to take vaccination for diphtheria, tetanus and hepatitis A. It’s imperative to pack your prescription drugs and eyewear during the preparation process. However, you will enjoy excellent services in the pharmacies if you forget them.
Turkey has affordable and high-quality medical care. It’s possible to have access to free consultations in certain resorts as long as you travel with valid travel insurance. Tourists rarely wait for too long before receiving treatment in hospitals.
Turkey is a Muslim nation and locals find indecent dressing offensive. Contrary to popular opinion, most Turkish women are fashion enthusiasts. Limit your beachwear to the beach. The ideal thing is to pack conservative clothing to avoid unnecessary attention. That doesn’t mean you can’t dress tastefully and express your personality, just do everything in moderation. Females should wear clothes that cover their arms and legs without exposing any skin. It’s a must to cover your head with a scarf or shawl if you’re visiting a mosque.
Learning the history of Turkey can help you to plan your itinerary. Another thing is to learn some Turkish words and phrases that are part of everyday conversation. This will help you to make friends easily and find your way around. Few locals speak English but they will be ready to help if you’re polite and can speak a few Turkish words.
Most of them are eager to improve their English, so it’s a win-win for everyone. Explore other regions like Hatay and Mardin apart from the major cities to see the beauty of simple living and broaden your perspective.