Skirt Length in Turkey

Jul 21st, 2005, 08:40 AM
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Skirt Length in Turkey

Well, this one is for my wife! We will be heading to Turkey next month for a 2 week road trip. My wife wanted to know what the proper length for a skirt would be to be within the norms of respectability throughout Turkey. Now the answer is not what kind of skirts we would like, but if lengths are acceptable just above the knee, just below the knee or longer. Not the most important forum inquiry, but.......
jrlaw10 is offline  
Jul 21st, 2005, 08:44 AM
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I think how you should dress may depend somewhat on where you're going in Turkey. In some parts of eastern Turkey, it'll be more conservative than a resort area (which aren't conservative at all). Where are you travelling?
SusanInToronto is offline  
Jul 21st, 2005, 11:05 AM
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Itinerary: Istanbul, Iznik, Bursa, Selcuk, Pammukale, Konya, Cappadocia, Ankara.

jrlaw10 is offline  
Jul 21st, 2005, 11:15 AM
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I've been to Western Turkey, including Istanbul, Kusadasi and Izmir with my husband in 2003.

We found Istanbul to be surprisingly European...Skirts of every length on schoolgirls and women were seen pretty much anywhere we went. Still, there were a lot of women wearing the head scarves and full-length coats in Istanbul.

The farther out you go, the more conservative it gets. I'd suggest sticking to capri pants and skirts that hit well below the knee anywhere outside of Selcuk (many many tourists there) and Istanbul.

As a gesture of respect (and it will be required in some mosques) I would take a scarf so she can easily cover her head before going in.

The Turks are OUTSTANDINGLY friendly, and aside from getting stared at, she won't likely encounter any flak about what she's wearing in most areas. I consider more conservative dress to be a matter of showing respect for the culture I'm visiting.

Happy travels,

jules4je7 is offline  
Jul 21st, 2005, 11:46 AM
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Thanks Jules. The last time we were in Turkey was in 1983. The place was literally empty due to "Midnight Express" syndrome. We were treated with a lot of curiosity and found the people to be phenomenally friendly. All we had to do was take out a map and people would come over to give directions (this is NON tourist areas). We both dressed extreemely conservatively on that trip with my wife making frequent use of a head scarf. Of course it is 22 years later so we wanted to see how dressing (for women) had changed. Back then women wore long dresses and jeans were nowhere to be seen.
jrlaw10 is offline  
Jul 21st, 2005, 12:03 PM
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I was in Turkey last month. I found that in Istanbul, I realy wished I had brought pants. I only had a few capris and all skirts. I got a lot of stares wearing skirts, even though they fell at the knee.

In Kalkan, Bodrum & the Kusadsi area I wore tank tops and skirts without drawing a second glance.
AP6380 is offline  
Jul 21st, 2005, 05:35 PM
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Jeans are ubiquitous in Istanbul now. But in August, it might be very hot for that. If I were to go in August, I'd probably stick with long skirts (linen maybe?), capris, and khaki pants. I wouldn't wear shorts in Turkey, but our day at Ephasus was a hot one and I paid dearly for not having them, and that was in October.

Funny you should mention the Midnight Express syndrome. Plenty of people are avoiding Turkey now because on its eastern borders are Iran, Iraq and Syria (tough neighborhood, huh?) and a lot of tourists -- including cruise lines were staying away from Kusadasi even due to the war.

We had a Romanian woman, Isabel, who is married to a Turk and has lived in Istanbul for 15 years or so...she came out of her restaurant and asked to help us since we were clearly lost, and chatted with us -- including thanking us for coming to Turkey. She was so kind, helped us find our laundromat, and we went back for dinner at her place the next night, and she sat with us, bought us a bottle of wine and we talked for some time. For me, it was very interesting to get a foreigner's view of a woman's life in Istanbul, married to a Turk and living among the people. She was a great lady and gave me a lot of insight. I suspect she doesn't have a lot of friends since she's so forward-thinking and non-Muslim.

If you're in Sultanahmet and run into a fish restaurant, head on in. She's just a few blocks downhill towards the water from The Blue Mosque heading away from the Grand Bazaar.

Happy travels,

jules4je7 is offline  
Jul 25th, 2005, 06:23 AM
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Well there is no official requirement of lenght of skirt in Turkey. She should wear what she likes to wear. Please no hot pants in Konya only being a religious area.No long skirts please, you are not going to Iran or UAE, but to Turkey.
I was in Bodrum at weekend and there people are hardly wearing anything during day time....

Happy travelling,
propertravel is offline  
Jul 25th, 2005, 08:38 AM
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I just returned from Istanbul last night. Istanbul is a large metropolitan city like New York or London. You can basically wear what you like. However, I wouldn't wear very short skirts or shorts if you are going to a religious site like the Blue Mosque. I did notice that pretty women who wore revealing clothing received much attention from men on the streets. For this reason I would cover up.

A word of advice: if you don't want attention from waiters trying to pull you into their restaurants or from rug salesmen, don't wear expensive shoes, clothing or jewelry. I noticed that I was hassled when I was dressed up, but when wearing a t-shirt and shorts, no one bothered me. DO NOT WEAR A ROLEX WATCH TO THE GRAND BAZAAR. You will have salemen swarming all over you like a plague of locust. I am not using hyperbole here, folks.
ThinGorjus is offline  
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