5 Important Things I Learned As A Solo Female Traveler In Turkey

5 Important Things I Learned As A Solo Female Traveler In Turkey

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I had a crush on Turkey from the second I arrived bleary-eyed on the in a single day prepare from Bulgaria. A number of hours later, I’d completed my first Turkish breakfast, and rapidly realized I used to be in love.

After 5 years and 40 international locations of full-time worldwide journey, Turkey ranks in my high 10 locations for solo feminine vacationers.

Right here’s why:

woman smiling cappadocia turkey

1. It’s Safer Than You Assume.

A traveler is 8 occasions safer from violent crime in Turkey than within the U.S., even in large cities like Istanbul and Izmir. 

Primarily based on my private expertise touring throughout Turkey, I’d say you’re extra in peril from kofte kebab meals coma or kitten cuteness publicity than any road crime right here. 

Earlier than coming to Turkey, I’d been cautioned time and time once more with imprecise fear-mongering: “You recognize what they are saying about Turkish males.” Let me inform you: nothing might have been farther from the reality. 

These widespread ‘warnings’ are discriminatory, inaccurate, and may stop you from experiencing a few of the greatest hospitality on the earth. 

woman in istanbul

I’ve felt safer strolling down the road alone in Turkey day or evening than in Italy, Spain, or Greece. There have been precisely two gentle road harassment incidents in my 5 months touring in Turkey over the previous yr – each by foreigners, with Turkish males who didn’t even know me stepping in to assist.

In fact, vacationers ought to take cheap security precautions in every single place they go. The few issues I wouldn’t advise whereas touring in Turkey proper now are:

  • Visiting Istanbul’s Taksim space alone after 10 pm on weekends
  • Leaving your valuables susceptible to simple pickpocketing
  • Taking drinks from strangers in bars or golf equipment
  • Public shows of affection in LGBTQIA+ relationships outdoors of main chain inns
  • Visiting sure elements of southeastern Turkey close to the Syrian border area (because of the presence of terrorist teams and earthquake devastation)
woman in front of mosque in turkey

2. Ladies Are Welcome And Protected In Turkish Mosques.

In case you do end up strolling alone at evening and feeling uncertain or unsafe for no matter purpose, the abundance of mosques in Turkey give you a tremendous secure haven. 

Many massive mosques stay open by the evening. So long as you’re dressed modestly, take away your sneakers, and have a shawl useful, you may respectfully duck into certainly one of these well-lit homes of worship to make sure of your security at virtually any hour. 

To be clear: I don’t advocate treating a holy masjid as a substitute for a police station. Vacationers in apparent hazard ought to name emergency companies. However for these all-too-familiar grey zone conditions that merely give solo feminine vacationers a foul intestine feeling, it’s good to know that you’ve secure locations to show to with out ringing any alarm bells. 

woman in hagia sofia istanbul turkey mosque

3. You Don’t Want To Select Between Tea And Espresso.

It’s no shock that Turkey is a rustic of tea lovers. The typical Turk drinks 1,300 cups of tea every year. Turkey is even house to a tea museum within the form of a 7-story tea glass within the ‘tea capital’ of Rize. It ought to then come as no shock that vacationers will discover themselves provided a heat welcome tea in every single place they go. 

The attractive factor about Turkey is that this nation embraces each tea and low. No have to take sides. Merely get pleasure from each! 

From iconic Turkish espresso in an Izmir antique shop to artisan roast flat whites in Moda’s plentiful third wave espresso outlets, there’s some java right here for each sort of traveler.

woman drinking turkish tea in cafe

4. Multicultural Turkish Cities Provide A Protected Manner To Discover Syrian Tradition.

Whereas Syria isn’t a beneficial vacation spot for solo feminine vacationers in the meanwhile, multicultural cities in Turkey actually are. They provide a secure and interesting alternative to attempt Syrian meals, have conversations with Syrian refugees and immigrants, and study extra in regards to the Syrian diaspora. 

Really useful actions embrace:

syrian food fattet hummus

There are about 4 million Syrians dwelling in Turkey, creating a tremendous multicultural alternative for vacationers. Nevertheless, it’s essential to notice that many Turks will nonetheless make detrimental feedback to guests about Syrians of their nation. 

“Turkish society’s acceptance of Syrians has largely been reworked into ‘toleration’ slightly than an understanding of building a apply of dwelling collectively,” defined a study from UNHCR.

When touring in Istanbul, you might hear locals inform you that Fatih, a predominantly Arab and Syrian neighborhood, is ‘probably not Turkey’ or isn’t ‘what it was.’ Some Turks will voice issues about Syrians placing strain on social companies or job markets or bringing what they understand as an incompatibly conservative tradition to their metropolis.

Attempt to not let this stress stop you from having fun with two superb cultures in a single journey. 

Aerial view of antalya turkey

5. Turkey Is So A lot Extra Than Istanbul.

Many vacationers don’t notice simply how large Turkey is. With almost 800 sq. kilometers of historic cities, surreal moonscapes, and extra seashores than you could possibly depend, this nation has a lot extra to supply than its standard capital Istanbul. 

Nice locations for solo feminine vacationers embrace:

  • Bursa
  • Fethiye
  • Izmir
  • Bodrum
  • Kars
  • Antalya
  • Cappadocia
  • Pamukkale
  • Amasra
  • Gaziantep
  • Ankara
  • Mardin

Let the protection and hospitality of Turkey encourage your subsequent nice solo journey!

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