Hello, You’ve heard about the endless glasses of tea, the kebabs and how to haggle in the bazaar. But here are seven less commonly known things about life and culture in Turkey.
1) Before you visit
First of all, before anything else… check your passport to insure that it is valid for at least 3 months from date of arrival into the country. Your stay in Turkey as a tourist is limited up to 90 days.
You will need to pay an exact amount of 10 GBP for an entry visa. This can be paid at the aiport on arrival. see also Flights
2) Money – Turkish Lira
Turkish Lira is available in the following denominations:
Banknotes: 5, 10, 20, 50 & 100 TL
Coins: 1, 5, 10, 25 & 50 Kurus and 1 TL
(average exchange rate 2.5)
3) Turkish people are extremely hospitable
If a Turkish person invites you to their house after you’ve known them for half an hour, don’t panic. Turks are incredibly friendly and hospitable and many will consider it an honor if you accept an invitation to visit them. Once inside, you will be plied with food and Turkish çay (TEA) OR strong black coffee. see also Hotels
4) Turkish people are also very inquisitive
A typical conversation with a Turkish person you’ve just met might go something like this: “What country are you from?… Are you married?… Is your husband / wife Turkish?… Do you have children?… How old are you?”
If you come from a different culture these might seem like very personal questions. Compared to people in U.K., the Turkish people I know are much more comfortable talking freely about personal details, even with someone they don’t know well.
5) Leave your Mobile Phone at home!
The cheapest way to make domestic calls is from a public phone using a phone card bought at the post office (PTT). If the PTT is closed, you can usually find local entrepreneurs selling cards at a slight mark up near the public phones.
To make a long distance international call you will need at least one 100 unit phone card.
6) There aren’t any camels
In Turkish holiday resorts it’s not unusual to see a couple of camels lined up strategically outside the tourist attractions, waiting to be photographed. Like apple tea, someone discovered that tourists like them. Turkey doesn’t have a desert, and it doesn’t have any (native) camels either.
7) Don’t mention Midnight Express
Turkish people are sometimes asked about the questions and stereotypes they encounter most when they travel outside Turkey, and this is possibly the one that makes them cringe the most. The screenwriter of Midnight Express has apologized for the film’s negative portrayal of the Turkish people, but Turks feel they have to explain to the world that you shouldn’t believe everything you see at the movies.