2 weeks in Turkey - last minute

May 5th, 2006, 10:52 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 258
2 weeks in Turkey - last minute

My apologies in advance for such a lame posting - bothers me when people don't do their own research but I'm afraid this is me this time! I just got a new job starting in 2 weeks so suddenly have 2 weeks off.

I have found decent last minute airfare to both Hong Kong and Istanbul. I have been to both places although not for 10 years so would love to return. HK does not require 2 weeks though so I would hope to go from there to someplace else in the region but all of those airfares are very expensive so does not make sense.

That leaves Turkey and I need some advice. It's 2:30AM and I'm reading the guidebook and trying to make a plan. I've been to Istanbul a number of times so would like to leave that for the end of the trip depending on how much time I want to spend at other locations. I would like to see several of the major ancient sites, spend about 2 days at a nice beach area (my guide book seems to dislike all beach areas saying that are overdeveloped and filled with tour groups), maybe do something on a boat, go to Cappadocia, and hit some cities. Things I'm considering: Izmir, Ephesus, Priene, Bafa Golu and Heracleia, beach (suggestions?), Fethiye, Cappadocia.

I would be a woman traveling alone. I can't drive a standard transmission so not sure if I will be able to rent a car which could make some areas difficult to access. I generally don't like tour groups but am open to joining one for 1-3 day excursions. I would like to hike in Cappadocia but not sure if I should do it alone.

Any advice would be helpful! Thanks.
SusanC is offline  
May 6th, 2006, 06:38 AM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 79
I'm leaving for Turkey next week and have travelled most of the world by myself. However, Turkey is just not somewhere I would enjoy by myself. That being said, I think you should consider somewhere easier to navigate without much planning. Southeast Asia is safe, inexpensive and relatively easy to get around. There are beautiful beaches in Thailand. You could explore Cambodia, Laos or Vietnam without much trouble.

However, if you are set on Turkey, I suggest a few days in Cappadocia and a gulet cruise. You will meet other people on the cruise.

Whatever you decide have an mazing time.
landini is offline  
May 6th, 2006, 06:47 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 258

I'm curious why you think I would not like Turkey in particular on my own. Is it b/c I am a woman? Or something else?

Re your other suggestions, I looked into Vietnam and Thailand but I'm not up for a $4000 airfare! Remember I'm going on 24-48 hours notice! Also I think I need a visa for Vietnam?

Since I can get to HK, I may see if I could get to Bangkok from there.

Back to Turkey, I have another question for the group: it looks as if I would not to need to fly between these destinations but rather could take trains/buses?

landini - enjoy your visit to Turkey!
SusanC is offline  
May 6th, 2006, 07:25 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,288
Hi Susan - I am surprised you are not getting tons of replies to your request! The collective knowlege here is unbelievable.

Ok, I had a trip planned we never did take, but this is what I was going to do - 5 days Istanbul, staying at Empress Zoe. Now, of course, you can fill as many days there as you have just by reading guidebooks on the way over.

From Istanbul we were flying to Cappadocia region and staying at Esbelli Evi. As I recall the fights were fairly inexpensive (Turkish Air) and saved a lot of time. There is a great travel agency in Urgup - Argeus -and they can get those tix for you. They also had nice one day and multi day tours in the Capaddocia region. I really wanted to do a hot air ballon ride there!


From there we were driving to and along the coast, Antalya to Ephesus. You probably do not want to do that, so the gulet would be perfect. I think lots of them start in Antalya but only go so far. You might need to use the bus for sections of travel. We were going to fly from the coast back up to Istanbul and then home.

Exactly when are you talking about leaving?
HappyCheesehead is offline  
May 6th, 2006, 07:29 AM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 21,901
If you are a US citizen you will need a visa for Vietnam. I spent two weeks in Turkey last year and see no problem at all for a single woman traveling in all but the far eastern regions. Buses are great. Roads are very good and you could consider driving yourself, too...not sure about automatic, though. You can see my trip report by clicking on my name..we were in Istanbul and along the north Aegean shore as far south as Efes/Sirince with overnights in Assos and Foca. Although I was with friends, I spent lots of time exploring alone with no problem.
ekscrunchy is offline  
May 6th, 2006, 02:57 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 258
Thanks for all of your help but I bailed and took another option (Hong Kong and from there Bangkok). For Turkey, the fare under $1000 was only available Sunday - tomorrow!! I really needed the extra day here to do things plus needed a little time to plan. HK and Bangkok require less work and I get the extra day here. I will probably be posting some questions on the Thailand site later today......

Thanks again. I will keep your suggestions for when I do make it to Turkey!
SusanC is offline  
May 6th, 2006, 06:53 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 79
You will love Thailand. Try to get out of Bangkok, at least to northern Thailand or down to one of the beaches. If possible visit Luang Prubang, LAOS or Siem Reap CAMBODIA. You can get your visa upon arrival. If you want to go to VIETNAM, I believe you can get a visa in Bangkok. A cruise on Halong Bay was one of my favorite trips.

There are travel agencies everywhere that can help you book as you go.

Have a great trip.
landini is offline  

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