Turkey in December - itinerary help!

Jun 23rd, 2008, 09:41 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 86
Turkey in December - itinerary help!

I will be in Turkey for 7 1/2 days in December (over Christmas break).

I understand that there is not much of a tourist season at this time, it is quite cold and snowy, many hotels shut down, attractions close early etc ... my main questions are:

1) Where should I go, considering the weather/time of year? I'm assuming I'll be spending some time in Istanbul - but are there other towns I should visit?
2) What towns should I avoid at this time of year?
3) Any suggested itineraries?
4) Things I should do (again, considering the weather)?

I know very little about Turkey right now - e.g. regions, towns, etc - so any help is appreciated. When travelling, I enjoy good, local cuisine and cultural experiences. Not a huge fan of museums but will go to 1 or 2 if they're really good.

tjhsu is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 10:00 AM
Join Date: Jun 2008
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Hi there,
I'm not sure whether these overlap with the preferences you mentioned, but I'm writing whatever crosses my mind when I think of a week in turkey.

As the weather is too cold, I won't recommend the lifestyle-tours of turkey (beaches of budrum, antalia, etc.)
You could:
(a) enjoy the overwhelming atmosphere of Istanbul (don't forget to eat shawarma - the street food of turkey)
(b) have a 4x4 tour or trek at the Kachkar Mountains.
(c) raft the Coruh River - very good rafting opportunities are in turkey - but check about the right season to do them, before.


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rafi972 is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 03:01 PM
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should I book my entire hotel stay in istanbul? or should I leave a couple nights to go to a different town? I understand that certain towns will not be good to visit in Dec, but I'm not sure which ones (or which ones I should even consider in the first place!)

tjhsu is offline  
Jun 24th, 2008, 06:25 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,337
Hi thsu,

Istanbul and Cappadocia combination is good despite the fact of cold. Its cold in Istanbul so is in Cappadocia.

If you have right cloathing and choose the right hotels I see no reason why you should not visit both places. Both locations are 12 months destinations. If you come to Cappadocia stay in Urgup insteda of smaller towns like Goreme.

You can almost do all the tours and visit must seen sites as well. Daytime is pleasent and nights are colder ofcourse.

Happy travelling,

propertravel is offline  
Jun 24th, 2008, 06:32 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Hi Rafi,
Your suggestions Rafting at Coruh and 4x4 at Kackars are great but not for December

Also the food you try to describe is not Shawarma neither Gyros, thats called Doner Kebab....I am a bit touchy nowadays with these mixed food name issue

Anyalya has milder weather in winter and even some great sunny days and all shops restaurants are open in the city center of Antalya.

Kas, Kalkan, Fethiye ( a bit) Marmaris ( a bit) Bodrum ( a bit) goes dead in winter but there are still hotels open and restaurants serves food. One can as well have very quiet and relaxing holiday and visit sites nearby.

Have a nice day,

propertravel is offline  
Jun 25th, 2008, 06:42 AM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 237
It depends on your definition of cold. I was there in Feburary with a rather sever winter storm and it was still better than Chicago. So cold is relative.

Depending on what you enojoy Turkey has a wonderful variety.

If you love cities and nightlife then Istanbul will be better. You can have as much history as you'd like, go shopping, eat amazing food and dance the night away.

If you love ancient civilizations going down from Istanbul to Troy (outside canakkala) to Ephesis with side trips to Pergamum and Pamukkala is great.

If you love geology Pamukkala and Cappadocia are natural wonders to behold.

I don't think you can really get more than 2 or 3 cities in 7 1/2 days. Rember you have to include jet lag and travel time in your choices. Turkey is not a small country.
Diane60030 is offline  
Jul 5th, 2008, 07:52 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 49
My family and I were in Turkey last December. The climate is different in Istanbul and the western coastal towns (not as cold and we encountered no snow) vs. further east you go into the mountains where temperatures can be quite cold (Pammukkale was the coldest for us) and you can encounter more snow during late fall/and winter. We brought our wool coats and an umbrella which came in handy on our visits to Troy, Pergamum, and Ephesus (rained on us at these sites). The climate is bearable and should not spoil your siteseeing. Unlike winters in midwest or Dakotas. As to the food, you will have ample oportunity to try local cuisine. Istanbul has some great restaurants and our favorite places along our trip were small eateries. Try some Turkish coffee or the most popular non-alchoholic drink Chai (Tea) served in small clear glasses. And of course Turkish Delight for snack.
neejas is offline  
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