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Is Tourism Still Down In Turkey? Several more questions as well...

Is Tourism Still Down In Turkey? Several more questions as well...

Nov 18th, 2004, 12:10 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jul 2003
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Is Tourism Still Down In Turkey? Several more questions as well...

I have a few reasons for asking this.

We will be taking a trip in May and Turkey is at the top of our list, however, we are traveling on a buddy pass so we are flying standby. If flights are full we won't be able to get there. We are flying from Portland, OR into JFK and then to Istanbul. If you have flown the leg from JFK to Istanbul I would like to know how full the flight was.

Also, I tend to fly by the seat of my pants when I travel so I would like to know if you think there would be any problem not booking our accomodations in advance. We usually book our first night in a nice hotel so we can relax away our jet lag and then wing it from there.

We are thinking of flying into Kayseri and renting a car for several days, exploring Cappadocia and then heading south along the coast westward. Will we need to book the car in advance or do you think we can find one when we arrive?

We prefer to stay in budget accomodations in order to be able to afford to stay in a country for 2+ weeks. Requirements are clean rooms with a toilet ensuite and a comfortable bed. Any recommendations for Istanbul, Cappadocia (not sure what town), and near Ephesus?

Is food reasonably priced? Once again, fancy isn't necessary.

I know this is a bit vague but I am just trying to get an idea of what our budget will be per day.

Thanks in advance!

Cheers!
eurotraveller is offline  
Nov 18th, 2004, 01:21 PM
  #2  
mjz
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Who are you flying from JFK - Delta or Turkish? I'm flying this route next week via Delta Business Elite. I'll pay attention to availability on the way over and back and post a follow up when I return.

I've heard from friends that have been to Turkey that it's very affordable and of course the Dollar is strong when compared to the Turkish Lira.
mjz is offline  
Nov 19th, 2004, 03:57 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Hi Eurotraveller ;
I do remember if I am not mistaken you were planning a trip to Turkey last year?
To answer some of the questions in brief;
May is a good month and high season at some parts of the country. Book one or two hotels beforehand. There will be always places available but why not have the best within your budget.
Organisisng rent a car before at Kayseri is recommended. Or take a transfer first and hire a car afterwards. Perhaps you want to join a tour so your car will be staying at your hotel !
Food is very reasonably priced. Even fancy, nowadays in a good restaurant of Cappadocia you can have a'la carte menu with a bottle of wine for 40 or 50 Usd. ( Usd is low at the moment )
If you take one main dish than you can go out with 20/ 30 Usd. Well you can always have a doner kebab for 3 or 4 Usd. and you are really saving money than
What is budget for you as accomodation is concerned. If you have a price range in mind I might help.

All the best

Murat
propertravel is offline  
Nov 19th, 2004, 04:28 AM
  #4  
cmt
 
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Yes, tourism is still down in Turkey. Many Turks were telling us that. I think there are some heavy discounts because of it on everything from hotels to carpets.

I flew Turkish Air from and to JFK. I thought it was one of the best, if not the best airline I've ever taken. Security checks were very thorough but polite on departure from Istanbul, flights were good with smooth landings, the plane seemed good and footroom in economy was less terrible than in most, and even the food was more like normal food than the usual strange airplane fare.

It is possible to eat cheply and well in Turkey. In some places along the road we ate at places that looked like nothing, e.g., roadside restaurants with just three choices of menu, or restaurants attacked to gas stations. The food at these places range from good to great, and it was always cheap. By cheap, I mean maybe a nice little eggplant salad, a bowl of lentil soup, and a can of cherry juice, or maybe a cucumber and tomato salad, some excellent grilled vegetables to share for the table, very good fresh pan bread, and little freshly made lamb meat balls for about $3 to $5.

I loved Cappadocia. It just amazed me. I was on a tour, so I can't give you hotel prices or ease of booking, but if you're interested, I'll give you the name of the place where we stayed in Uchisar. It was built into the rock, the rooms wer comfortable, the views great from the patio, and the staff very hospitable in an old fashioned way. Meals there were really interesting. Instead of meals being made in some hotel kitchen, various village families contributed specialties, so dinner was a series of many many delicious well flavored items (mostly not "main dishes"). At breakfast a local woman made a pan bread on a grill on the floor, and we waited to get each one while hot.I saw some areas with very tourist-tacky hotels in Cappadocia, and you shoukd try to avoid those. The hotel was very small, and simple, and plumbing was maybe not what you're used to. Hot water was tuend on only at certain times of day (or by special request), and the pipes cannot accommodate toilet paper being flushed down, so we put it in a trash can (this ws true everywhere we went in Turkey, by the way, except in the hotel in Istanbul). Take shoes with soles with good traction for Cappadocia. The paths can be steep, but slippery because there's just a gradual slant without steps on some trails. For the underground city, be prepared to have to walk through tunnels in a bending position--strange, but worth it.

I also enjoyed the coast, from Antalya westward toward Marmaris. Part of the time I was in Antalya, with day trips from there, and part of the time on a gult, with stops for archeological sites and for hikes and for a trip to the Dalyan River.
cmt is offline  
Nov 19th, 2004, 04:32 AM
  #5  
 
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Please note there is new airline atlas air flying to nevsehir besides Kayseri just closer to Cappodocia.
regards
Nejat incedogan
nnincedogan is offline  
Nov 19th, 2004, 05:52 AM
  #6  
 
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Nejat, I'd appreciate it if you could provide a website for Atlas Air's schedule and reservations, if they have one. I haven't been able to find it.

Also, when flying to Cappadoccia, do you recommend flying into Kayseri or Neveshire and what is your reasoning?

Many thanks in advance.
MikeBuckley is offline  
Nov 19th, 2004, 03:30 PM
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Is tourism down because of fears about their safety from US tourists? I ask this becasue this is a country I really want to visit, and my husband thinks it is an unsafe place to visit. We've been arguing aobut this for a while. The funny part is that we are usually pretty intrepid travellers and have visited rural Romania, Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic on our own--all places that a lot of people would be very apprehensive about visiting. I know his apprehensions are because of the way the US is currently viewed overseas due to the current administration's foreign policies. I think he is worried that this would make us targets for terrorism even though we are very low key travellers who are usually (at sight) taken for Germans.
julies is offline  
Nov 19th, 2004, 05:09 PM
  #8  
cmt
 
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I found the info on the interesting small hotel where I stayed in Cappadocia. Here it is.

Name of hotel: Ahbab Konagi
It's in Uchisar-Nevsehir.
Tel: 90-384-219-3020
Fax: 90-384-219-3021
cmt is offline  
Nov 19th, 2004, 05:27 PM
  #9  
 
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Turkey is wonderful, one of our favourite countries. We ALWAYS stay in small pensions, particularily when we are on the Med. coast. We found the small pensions to be the best and quite often we just asked some of the locals. I would tend to identifiy a place in Istanbul prior to going. Reduces the hassle after a long flight. IMHO, May/June is the absolute perfect time to go. The food is wonderful and you can find many inexpensive restaurants. We like the kebobs, with a great big salad/cheese.
We spent two wonderful days in Dalyan. You should have no problem whatsoever at that time of year. If you get to Marmaris, consider a day trip to Rhodes-worth the visit.
allanc is offline  
Nov 19th, 2004, 05:55 PM
  #10  
 
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julies, it was my impression from talking with people in the hospitality industry in Istanbul that U.S. tourism is down because of the types of fears that your husband expresses. The great majority of Turks are Moslems, but it is a secular democracy. There have been some isolated incidents over the past several years, but I didn't consider it to be an unsafe place when we visited earlier this year. The people were exceedingly friendly.
Flyboy is offline  
Nov 20th, 2004, 08:26 AM
  #11  
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mjz, I will be flying on Delta and most likely bumped to business class since I am on a Delta employees buddy pass so I would really be interested in knowing if biz class is full when you travel so I will look for your report when you return. Thanks!

propertravel, we were planning a trip to Turkey for May/June of this year but a couple of months before we were to leave my boyfriend decided he didn't want to go due to the bombings in Istanbul last year so we went to Croatia instead (amazing country!!).

Thanks to everyone else for the info. I would like to hear recommendations for accomodations in Istanbul, Cappadocia and near Ephesus that would be $50-80 per night. I will also make a separate post for this.
eurotraveller is offline  
Nov 21st, 2004, 02:24 AM
  #12  
 
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Just Go !!! Don't think about it just go !
Marko is offline  
Nov 23rd, 2004, 03:24 AM
  #13  
 
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Atlas air;

www.atlasjet.com/eng
aysh566 is offline  
Nov 23rd, 2004, 07:52 AM
  #14  
 
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Thank you for that URL, aysh.
MikeBuckley is offline  
Nov 30th, 2004, 06:54 AM
  #15  
mjz
 
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eurotraveller - Business Elite was full from JFK to IST, but from IST to JFK there were 11 open seats. Enjoy your trip!
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Dec 18th, 2005, 03:56 PM
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ttt
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