Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

proper mosque etiquette while in Istanbul

proper mosque etiquette while in Istanbul

Apr 13th, 2003, 12:20 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 457
proper mosque etiquette while in Istanbul

(I can't believe I'm asking this - mea culpa)

I know that Muslims wash their arms up to their elbows, their face and their legs up to the knees before enetering a mosque. I also know I must remove my shoes before enetring a mosque but what about my socks? Should I wash my feet also?

I'm beginning to do research for my trip to Istanbul (October)

I am amazed at how much architecture and history is in Istanbul - I almost overwhelmed.
marktynernyc is offline  
Apr 13th, 2003, 02:44 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,319
Hi

I haven't been to Turkey.

In Morrocco, none muslims are prohibited from entering mosques.

We did sneak in for a look around, though !

Peter
http://tlp.netfirms.com
mpprh is offline  
Apr 13th, 2003, 03:19 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 184
Keep your socks on!! You will just have to remove your shoes!! You will love Istanbul. It is one of the most amazing places we have been to!
lindam is offline  
Apr 13th, 2003, 09:54 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,525
On our trip to Turkey we only had to remove our shoes(no feet washing or sock removal). My daughter and I wore scarfs on our heads and we kept to the area where you see non muslims(read tourists) congregate. Do go to the Blue Mosque in Istanbul some night before 10pm-we stopped in on our way back to the hotel from dinner and it was magical. It was very quiet and there were very few people-the sounds, smells and atmosphere made you appreciate where you were. Enjoy Istanbul and the rest of Turkey....it is still one of our most favorite vacations as a family!
dutyfree is offline  
Apr 14th, 2003, 01:56 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 938
With the exception of removing shoes, the dress code and etiquette in the major mosques in Istanbul is about the same as in the Vatican, actually even alittle bit less strict. Just stay away from the areas of the mosques where the faithful pray to avoid disturbing them and behave as you would while visiting a church.
Hans is offline  
Apr 14th, 2003, 04:49 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 300
In Istanbul, the major mosques are "touristic" areas and some of them are even considered as "museums", so you will just have to take off your shoes, not wear a short or sleeveless shirts, and remain in the "visiting" area. No scarves required for ladies either.
Joelle is offline  
Apr 15th, 2003, 10:47 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 2
Hi,
Muslims wash some specific parts of their bodies(lika arms...) before praying.So,you do not need to do the same.You'll just visit mosques.You just need to take your shoes off(not socks).And keep in mind that Turkey is not a Muslim country,it's secular one.Just the religious choice of the people is Islam(like me).I'm sure that you'll like here.
Have a nice trip in Turkey.
For further questions,please do not hesitate to contact me.
e-mail:[email protected]
umit is offline  
Apr 15th, 2003, 12:07 PM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 457
thanks for the answers. Are shoes checked with an attendant or are they just left outside?
marktynernyc is offline  
Apr 15th, 2003, 01:01 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 330
I was planning a trip to Turkey in October, too, but now have concerns. Have you read the travel advisory?
http://travel.state.gov/turkey_warning.html
evelyntrav is offline  
Apr 15th, 2003, 01:30 PM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 457
That warning was issued on March 19 - just before the Iraq-US war /conflict / invasion (however you want to see it as). Also, I'm only going to Istanbul - not the Turkey/Iraq border. Of course now there's Syria but I'm still not worried.

One of my co-workers mother (expat American) is currently living in Istanbul and she has had no problems or difficulties.
marktynernyc is offline  
Apr 15th, 2003, 02:08 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,131
Shoes are just left outside in a heap. I always carried a plastic bag into which I put our shoes and carried the bag into the Mosque. Simplified the shoe thing considerably. Particulary nice since you don't have to go back to the entrance to look for your shoes.
Marija is online now  
Apr 15th, 2003, 02:33 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 330
marktynernyc: I hope the travel warning is updated by the summer and is taken off the "hot" list. We are currently keeping our plans, too.
evelyntrav is offline  
Apr 15th, 2003, 04:53 PM
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 457
Thanks Marija - that's the information I was looking for.

Evelyntrav-
Where are you going in Turkey?
marktynernyc is offline  
Apr 16th, 2003, 06:39 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 330
Unless I can find a friend who wants to go to Turkey and share the driving, I will go with a tour company. The itinerary is: Arrive Istanbul, drive to Cappadocia area, Konya Antalya, Perge, Aspendos, Aprodisias, Pamukkale, Ephesus, Kusadasi and fly back to Istanbul. If we drive, I would probably follow the same route except spend an extra day in Capadocia.

evelyntrav is offline  
Apr 16th, 2003, 06:50 AM
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 457
Evelyntrav -
I just picked up the Nelles Guide to Turkey - which I think is quite good - as is the Nelles Guide to Croatia.
marktynernyc is offline  
Apr 17th, 2003, 09:09 AM
  #16  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 457
I remember when I was in Rome in the Pantheon - I sat down against the wall to get a better perspective of the interior architectural space - within a minute a guard motioned me to stand up. I had forgotten that than Pantheon is still a church. I know that I'll want to do something similar at the mosques in Istanbul - to just sit within the space, to listen to the muezzin if possible - to immerse myself in the space, to admire the space. I could see myself making the mistake of sitting. Yes peterabbit was a bit blunt/direct but I understood very clearly why sitting on rugs would be wrong.
marktynernyc is offline  
Apr 19th, 2003, 05:49 AM
  #17  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 457
Now I'm a bit confused - I was just re-watching a segment of Globetrekkers (love that show) about Istanbul and noticed worshippers in a mosque sitting cross legged on the rugs whi ch they prayed on. All I'm intersted in is being able to sit inthe main space (not during prayer time), get a feel for the space, possibly sketch (if that's allowable). I doubt photographing is allowed inside - is it?

Sinan - can you give an answer?

Also - I'll be in Istanbul during Ramadan. Being that Istanbul is cosmopolitan there will still be plenty of restaurants open during the day (from what I've read) but what about the food markets and street vendors? Open after sunset?
marktynernyc is offline  
Apr 19th, 2003, 06:57 AM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 587
Dear marktynernyc,

You can stay in the mosque anytime and anywhere BUT PRAY TIME and also take a photograph inside in Istanbul. If you are in the small town outside of Istanbul you have to ask if you can take a photo to Hoca (Hodja, Prayer)

If you are staying in the Touristic area in Istanbul you will see many restaurants and all kind of market open.

Have a nice trip in Turkey

Sinan Akdeniz
[email protected]
sinan is offline  
Apr 19th, 2003, 07:11 AM
  #19  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 457
Thanks Sinan.

Reading 'The Companion Guide to Istanbul' by John Freedy - if you're an architecture buff (exonarthex, narthex, etc) this is a great book - extremely detailed coupled with historical information.

marktynernyc is offline  
May 12th, 2003, 06:23 AM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 281
You need not worry about anything in Turkey. They are undoubtedly, the most hospitable of any people I have met. The food is delicious (using fresh ingredients only) and the scenery is magnificent. We hated to leave!

Enjoy!
Jean
pumpkin is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 07:50 AM.