female tourists in Turkey

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Feb 5th, 2001, 08:24 AM
  #1
cp
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female tourists in Turkey

I am considering a vacation (1 or 2 weeks) to Turkey in September. I am an American female, traveling alone, perhaps with another girl. Is this wise? As much as I don't want to take a tour bus everywhere, I am concerned about personal safety, since I know nothing of Turkey or its attitude towards women. Any advice?
 
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Feb 5th, 2001, 08:32 AM
  #2
Susan
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I was in Turkey in September. Granted, I was with my husband, but I never felt that it was unsafe. I guess it would depend on where you go, but Turkey seemed very safe to me. I was surprised at how there was toplessness on the beaches (mostly tourists), but also noticed several younger Turkish women wearing 'skimpier' bathing suits. (Also noticed one or two women fully dressed going into the water.)

I absoluately loved our week in Turkey - it definitely wasn't enough and we'll go back again.
 
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Feb 24th, 2001, 08:04 AM
  #3
Leann
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I ventured away from our tour group and my husand while in Turky and found myself the object of stares and curiosity. Turky is a predominately Islamic country, so if you are going along, respect the culture and dress conservatively in public. Short sleeve tees are fine but do not attract attention to yourself with thin strapped tanks or halters and short shorts or skirts. If you choose to visit the mosques take a scarf for covering your hair and remove your shoes before going inside. Turky is full of wonderful archaeological sites. Don't miss Ephesus. It is truly a treasure. The Bazaar in Istanbul is a must see. Considering the current Middle East situation travelling alone may not be a good choice. But then there is an argument for being in large tour groups as well. We toured with Trafalgar and had a wonderful time. It was stress free as far as the driving, finding accomodations and lugging suitcases in and out of hotels. That was all done for us so all we had to do was enjoy the people, sights,and sounds of a marvelous country. Best of luck to you and enjoy the marvels ot Turky.
 
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Feb 25th, 2001, 09:17 AM
  #4
karen
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I spent 2 wks in Turkey Oct 2000. I feel it is one of the safest places I have ever been. I traveled throughout the entire country with no hassels or surprises, I always dress modestly and respect other cultures. You will love Turkey.
 
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Feb 28th, 2001, 06:42 AM
  #5
G W Biemuller
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Hi Cp
My daughter and I traveled to Turkey last summer for a three week stay. We had some interesting experiences and since she is a college student I know she will share with you some of her insights and concerns. I was offered a goodly number of camels for her on the street but being a good father I had to turn this gentleman down. You can contact her a [email protected] We are off to Africa this year!
 
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Mar 2nd, 2001, 12:56 PM
  #6
Ariel
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Hi - I am a Canadian married to a Turkish guy; we live here in Toronto. We visit Turkey every year - so I have been there 6 or 7 times now.

Where you go in Turkey can determine the reacitons you get from people. For instance, in Bodrum there are so many British people that you will be very common place and treated like any other tourist - everyone will bug you to come into their restuarant. In Istanbul you can experience a complete spectrum of reactions from people ignoring you in the well to do areas to men staring at you as you walk along the Bosphorous at dusk. I always feel safe in Turkey and have been out and about on my own in a number of different places.

Are you blond, young? You will get more attention, but I have never had any man approach me, do or say anything to me while I was on my own.

Learning a bit of the language (basic words like please and thank you) will endear you to the people and get you better help and service.

I find their attitude towards women to be very liberal. One poster said that Turkey is an Islamic country - this is true and it is not ture. Most of the people are Islamic, but it is against the law for the state (government) to be run by Islamic law. You will find Istanbul to be very Eurpoean - they dress well - better than North Americans, and lots of women can be seen walking the streets by themselves - going off to work, in groups shopping, groups of young teenage girls coming and going from school.

Many women in the large cities of Turkey work and thus play an important role in their households. In fact, women in Turkey were given the right to vote before their got it in Canada.

I guess this is starting to sound a bit defensive or something like that, so I will get to my advice:

1. Do be a bit modest in your dress in the citiy (i.e. Istanbul) as suggested in the above posts.

2. Do pack your bikini and head down to Bodrum for the sun.

3. Don't take chances you wouldn't take at home (i.e. walking aruond downtown alone in a large city).

Enjoy - it really is wonderful, and the people are so friendly that you can't feel too alone.
 
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