Recent trip to Turkey

Old Jul 2nd, 2004, 05:55 PM
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Recent trip to Turkey

I just wanted to let everyone know what a great place Turkey was to visit. My husband, two teens and I went June 5-20 on a tour with Outer Edge Expeditions/Runner that ended up just being our family. It was geared toward adventure travelers - whitewater rafting, kayaking, lots of hiking, etc. -in addition to all the wonders of the history and culture of the area.

We started out for a day and a half in Istanbul (we know, too short a time for that great city), then two days in Cappadocia and it's lunar landscape (the hot air balloon ride was fantastic), then driving through Konya and the Taurus Mountains to Antalya, where we picked up a gulet cruise of the Med. for 6 days. The highlight was Ephesus, then back to Istanbul for our departure to Detroit.

The people were great, the sites amazing (there are ruins everywhere!), the landscape ever-changing and beautiful. Though I have to admit I'm glad we were out of there before the NATO summit, we felt safe and welcome the whole time.

Anyone thinking of going - go and enjoy! We'll definitely visit Turkey again someday.
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Old Jul 2nd, 2004, 06:16 PM
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Glad you enjoyed Turkey so much. I was there in 1996 and Turkey still remains on the top of my list of most amazing trips. Cappadocia stands out as the most interesting area I've ever seen. I'm hoping to return with a longer stay in Istanbul, again Cappadocia and that cruise you took. Couldn't squeeze the cruise into my trip. I, too, thought the landscape amazing.
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Old Jul 3rd, 2004, 09:51 AM
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It is good to hear from someone who has been to Turkey so recently. Do we need to be concerned about being American?? I am thinking about learning the Canadian national anthem to hum along the way.
We leave Minnesota on the 17th and arrive in Istanbul on the 18th. We will be there until that Wednesday when we take a bus to Izmir. That is where we will meet up with our exchange sutdent who spent the past school year with us. She is responsible for us until the 29th when we bus back to Istanbul for a 5:55 am flight back home.
We are very excited and welcome any advice anyone can offer. We are very glad the NATO summit is over, the news about rioting was disturbing.
WE are not as adventuresome as rickandpat, looking forward to just relaxing and enjoying the Agean when we get to Kusadasi.
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Old Jul 3rd, 2004, 06:04 PM
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We felt absolutely no anti-Americanism. In fact, there are so few of us, everyone was thrilled to find out we were from the States.

A friend who had been to Cairo recently pointed out that the last thing the Egyptians wanted was for Americans to be hurt or feel threatened. Tourists dollars are important in these countries. And Turkish culture values hospitality very highly. (It may be the same in Egypt, I don't know.)

So go and have the time of your life.

Pat (of rickandpat)
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Old Jul 4th, 2004, 01:28 AM
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Hi Jo_Mike,

I live both country (USA and Turkey, Kusadasi) We as Turkish people are welcome to every one in the world. Especially American and you don't need to learn the Canadian national anthem to hum along the way. I would like to invite you to my house in Kusadasi with your Turkish friend. Please feel free to send me an e-mail. I and your Turkish friend would like you feel SAFE in Turkey and I am sure you WILL BE.

Have a nice holiday in Turkey

Sinan Akdeniz
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Old Jul 4th, 2004, 09:33 PM
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Hi Rickandpat, I'm glad to hear you felt welcome and safe and had a wonderful time. We were there in June 2001 and did pretty much what you did. Its the most fun I have ever had on vacation. Our gulet was only for 4 days from Antalya to Kas. We booked a cabin before we left with Pascha Tours. I am curious as to who you booked with, when and about how much. We really want to do it again someday.
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Old Jul 8th, 2004, 02:36 PM
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Glad you had such a wonderful trip.My husband and I were 3 weeks in Turkey in June 2002 and are planning to return in 2006 for another extended stay.
For the person going to meet their exchange student you are in for a real treat!!! We visited with our exchange student while in Turkey and they made our stay absolutely incredible. You do not have to worry about your safety. You will be well taken care of.
We had total strangers invite us to their home for dinner when we were in Bodrum. The Turkish people on the whole are extremely friendly and gracious.
Have a super time and enjoy one of the loveliest countries in the world.
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Old Jul 11th, 2004, 02:27 PM
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I already feel welcomed to Turkey and we do not arrive for a week. We have gotten an invitation from a fellow respondant to visit his home in Kusadasi!!! Most people who we tell about our trip ask us quot;Why Turkey?"
I know I will be able to tell them because it is one of the most welcoming and beautiful countries in the world.
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Old Jul 14th, 2004, 01:54 PM
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Well done, you got it Jo_Mike....

Rickandpat, Glad to hear about your successful trip in Turkey.
Being a Cappadocian feells good to hear your comments. ( I was on a balloon just two days ago
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Old Jul 15th, 2004, 02:27 PM
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I've been to Turkey twice in the last year and a half and can say without doubt that Turks are very fond of Americans. That said, when trying to purchase something you're better off saying you're from Canada - that way the starting price will be lower.
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Old Jul 15th, 2004, 02:59 PM
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For booking gulet cruises, I don't know anything. It was all part of our tour, and the guide took care of that. He did mention that he never booked a gulet not captained by an owner or a relative, since there's less incentive to keep the gulet in good shape. Ours was cleaned constantly - cleaner than my home! Our guide was Cemil, Runner Tours, out of Antalya.

Pat
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Old Jul 30th, 2004, 12:37 PM
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I have to agree with the wonderful hospitality of the Turks. I never felt any anti-American sentiment. Everybody was welcoming, inviting us to their houses for tea and coffee and hugging and kissing me as if I was their daughter. Family and friends tried to dissuade me from going but I'm glad I didn't listen.
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Old Jul 31st, 2004, 05:26 PM
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We just returned from a two week trip to Turkey in June. We were also a little worried about anti-American sentiments, especially since we were in Istanbul for the beginning of the NATO Summit (lucky us!). Ironically, we were invited to participate in the rallies by the Turkish woman sitting next to me on our flight (an offer which we declined). People were so nice to us throughout the entire trip. We were a little worried about saying that we were American, because they will ask you all the time. It was funny because they were really intrigued by the fact that we were American and wanted to ask us questions, or tell us how their cousin was in San Diego in '92 (we live in Chicago). Pat is right - they appreciate the tourist dollars and go out of their way to make you feel welcome. Anytime those fears creeped into my brain, I realized that it was the typical hype given to us by our media. Case in point - the NATO Summit. According to my parents, the news in Chicago was showing riots all over Istanbul, when in reality the rallies were kept to the outlying areas and we never saw a single thing. So my point is have a great time and don't worry! This trip to Turkey has been our favorite trip so far and I'd go back in a heartbeat!! We're not all that adventurous either but had a wonderful time relaxing on the coast, hiking in Cappadocia and checking out Istanbul.
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