Dress Sense in Istanbul

Old Feb 25th, 2010, 03:28 PM
  #1  
Jog
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Dress Sense in Istanbul

What is the correct mode of dress for a female visiting tourist attractions in Istanbul? I do not wish to offend anyone. I usually travel in jeans and T-shirt.
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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 03:50 PM
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P_M
 
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Jeans and T-shirt are fine. In Muslim countries I never show show cleavage, knees or shoulders. (not that I show cleavage in any country) But having said that I noticed that Turkey is more Westernized than most Muslim countries. Just dress conservatively and you will be fine.
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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 05:01 PM
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I agree with P_M. I was there in the fall. The weather was was both warm and cold. I wore jeans (black, mainly) and long-sleeved t-shirts and it was fine. I dressed up a little more for the Dervishes ceremony in Cappadocia, but I wouldn't have had to.

Ellen
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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 06:08 PM
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You might want to pack a pashima or long scarf so that you can drape it around your shoulders when you visit the mosques. If you don't have one with you, you will be "wrapped" by an attendant outside the mosques with scarves that cover bare arms and knees before entering.
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Old Feb 25th, 2010, 07:26 PM
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Jog
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Tku all for your advice.
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 04:22 AM
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Posts like this display as astonishing degree of self centeredness. You really think that that that anyone there really cares about you enough to be offended by what you wear? Wear whatever you want. You owe them nothing beyond the normal courtesy that you'd display at home.
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 05:37 AM
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I don't think it is self centered to want to be respectful of another culture's norms. What is ok in La Jolla may not be ok in Marakesh.
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 05:46 AM
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Imhornet,

You sound like you haven't visited Istanbul. Either that, or you have an astonishing disrespect for other people's cultures.
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 07:18 AM
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Since acceptable dress for women is different in Muslim countries I think this is a fair question.
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 08:12 AM
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Turkey is not a Muslim country. It is a secular republic with people of many different religions even if the government sometimes classifies some of the other religions as 'Moslem".

however, if the present trends continue, Turkey will become a Muslim country after the next general election, if the current moderate islamic (undeclared coalition of conservatives and fundamentalists) party manages to change the constitution and the judicial system to abandon even the presently existing weak checks and balances.

At this time, you do not need to worry about what to wear except in Central and Eastern Turkey (with the exception of Cappadocia)

You can sunbathe topless in many beaches on the Mediterranean and the Aegean (but you should not swim topless)

you can wear mini shorts, and a swim top at all the resorts in the daytime.

men and women should wear t-shirts or tank tops when entering shops and restaurants, unless eating outside.

you should not drink liquor in the streets.

istanbul is a very cosmopolitan metropolis like new York, London and paris. So you should act and dress as you would at those cities unless you like people sneering at you for being a hick.

If you go for a night out to one of the famous Bosphorus night clubs like Reina, Sortie, etc. you should dress very smartly, and if wearing jeans, you should have a designer something on you also, and not a fake one.
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 08:14 AM
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Istanbul is a modern city and you will see a variety of cothing styles, but you're right to ask about mosque etiquette. P_M's advice is spot on.
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 08:27 AM
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You will see everything worn on the streets of Istanbul. You will see Arab women in black burqas and you will see women in tight t-shirts and mini-skirts.

However, if you are a woman and YOU DON'T WANT the attention of strange men on the streets, you will dress conservatively.

When I was in Istanbul, I noticed a lot of young Turkish men hanging around tourists spots like the Hagia Sophia looking to pick up pretty foreign women. They could be very aggressive.

Thin
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 10:17 AM
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otherchelebi,

I know you live in Turkey so I trust your expertise in saying Turkey is not a Muslim country. Would it be more accurate if I were to say the poplulation of Turkey is predominately Muslim? I am only asking in order not to misspeak again. Thanks.
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Old Feb 26th, 2010, 11:56 AM
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P_M,

The official line is just that, "the population of Turkey is 98% moslem"

However, there is a large group of Alevites, who do not follow islamic rituals, and the prophet mohammed, although they seem to accept the Koran to a certain extent. they do not consider themselves as a sect of Islam. There are anywhere from ten to eighteen million alevites. There are also other groups such as Zoroastrians and yezidis, etc,. in addition to the minority and converted christians and jews, as well as agnostics and atheists.

according to various polls, fully practicing moslems are about 30%, partially practicing ones are another 25-30%. There are also some non-practicing believers of maybe 10-15%.

But, polls usually reflect not only the correspondents' views but those of the interviewer and also of the people who prepared the questions. So, just name your own figures.
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Old Feb 27th, 2010, 09:56 AM
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>

I hope this does not happen. What a setback that would be.
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