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Appropriate clothing for women in Istanbul

Appropriate clothing for women in Istanbul

Sep 23rd, 2007, 11:40 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 1
Appropriate clothing for women in Istanbul

We are leaving for Istanbul soon and I would like suggestions on packing for my husband's business trip in Istanbul. Is it appropriate to wear dresses with short sleeves or bare calfs in hotels or restaurants for dinner. What do women in the city typically wear--are skirts or short sleeves ok? Do they dress in dark jeans/pants and tunic tops? I prefer to dress like a local when siteseeing. thanks AV
AV23 is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2007, 12:02 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 24,615
Depends on which locals you'd like to blend with. You'll see everything from burkhas to shorts and skimpy tops. Wear what you'd wear at home.
thursdaysd is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2007, 12:56 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,336
We visited Istanbul in July. I wore a lot of capris or skirts, both of which were fine. You will see many styles of dress in Istanbul, but most women did wear more conservative clothes than in other European countries that we've visited.
Weadles is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2007, 01:09 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Turkey is a secular country. You can wear anything you want, BUT, if you want to visit mosques then it's a whole different story.
AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2007, 03:21 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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It's true that you can't visit the mosques with bare arms or legs. However, when we visited, there were young men posted outside the mosques who covered up our arms and legs with long scarves.
Weadles is offline  
Sep 26th, 2007, 04:35 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 183
Will I have to wear a scarf to cover my head?
do they provide something for you?
wlbox is offline  
Sep 26th, 2007, 05:47 PM
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I'm having a senior moment! I honestly can't remember whether my daughter and I had to wear head scarves at the mosques! I don't think we did though.
Weadles is offline  
Sep 26th, 2007, 06:07 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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You don't need to cover your head in a mosque. Some people do wear a scarf but it's optional.

However, you must either take off your shoes and leave them on a rack or in the larger mosques you are given plastic slippers that go over your shoes.

I loved the small mosques in Istanbul as they were mostly empty of people and you could get close to the tiles and admire them easily.

I went in May and people wore anything they wanted including shorts. I think most of the people in the tourist areas were tourists rather than locals (except people in museums, shops, etc.). The people working in Istanbul wore what people at home wore, pants and a top (short sleeve was fine). Some women also wore scarves. I saw very few women in central Istanbul wearing skirts or dresses.

What was interesting is there were groups of young women, some of whom wore scarves and some did not. I was surprised to see the young women wearing scarves.

Don't miss the whirling dervishes - it was one of the most moving things I did in Turkey. We also were able to speak with a dervish after the ceremony.
adrienne is offline  

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