Andy & Bev Fraser's Travel World

34 years of our "UnTour" Adventures
Fairy Chimney in Cappadocia
Our journeys are as close as we can come to a good old fashioned no rushing, relaxed time with good companions. This is our 35th year of doing it our way. Hope you can join us. Andy & Bev
14th century decor on Grand Bazaar
Jesse James in a book shop in the Grand Bazaar

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Turkey tour CANCELLED


Population: 83 million Size: 779,452 square kilometers

Capital: Ankara (pop. 3.2 million). Istanbul has a population of about 16 million.

Languages: Turkish Religion: Muslim (99%)

People: Turks (95%), Armenians &vJewish make up most of the rest.

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Geography: About 97% of Turkey lies on the Asian continent. The city of Istanbul straddles Europe and Asia, divided by the Bosphorus Strait. The land encompasses many different geological features: rocky coasts, mountains, rolling steppe, fertile valleys, rushing rivers, and swarming forests. The Mediterranean Sea, the Black Sea, and the Aegean Sea lap the coasts. Our tour goes nowhere near the Eastern part of the country.

Climate: The coasts have mild, damp winters and hot, dry summers. The southeast has dry winters and very hot summers. The Anatolian plateau is cooler, while the eastern mountainous region is much colder. September and October are considered ‘ideal’ months.

Culture: Turkey's 5,000-year history has left a dizzying abundance of cultural relics and imprints. For sixteen centuries Istanbul was the capital of the "civilized" world: both the Roman Empire and the Ottoman Empire had their headquarters there. Decorative arts have flourished: tiles, carvings, vases, jewelry, and colorful woven carpets are some specialties. Remember that pointing directly at someone and blowing your nose in public are considered highly rude.

Government: Turkey's War of Independence against Greece ended in 1922 with the abolition of the sultanate. By 1938 a constitution had been adopted, polygamy abolished, Islam was removed as the state religion, and Constantinople became Istanbul. Turkey is now a parliamentary democracy.

Food: For breakfast, Turks favor sourdough bread with sheep cheese and olives, jam and honey. Meals often start with a meze (vegetable appetizers), and eggplant is the staple vegetable. Salads served with eggplant dip, beans or red caviar are very common. Tuna, turbot, and sardines are readily available on the coast, and lamb kebabs originated here. The national drink is tea, which is served in little glasses and comes in many flavors. Turkish coffee is very strong.

Clothing: Light, loose-fitting layers with lightweight, comfortable walking shoes are recommended. A lightweight jacket and emergency rainwear are also advised. Remember not to visit mosques or other religious sites with bare legs or shoulders as entrance may be denied. Ladies should have a scarf for head covering in mosques.

Shopping: Alabaster carvings, brightly glazed ceramics, gold, silver, leather goods and carpets are the most sought-after goods in Turkey. The established method of shopping in the bazaars is by haggling. (Bear in mind that if you haggle and the trader agrees to your price, then you are expected to buy). Regular shops do not haggle. Just like at home.

Health: Consult your doctor about appropriate vaccinations such as tetanus, typhoid, and hepatitis. Be sure to see your doctor several weeks prior to departure as some medications must be taken in advance of your trip.

Money: Turkey's currency is the Türk Liras which comes in notes of five, 10, 20, 50, 100 and 200, and coins of one, five, 10, 25 and 50 kuruş and one lira. ATMs are widely available. Credit and debit cards are accepted by most businesses in cities and tourist areas. A simple exchange: One Canadian Dollar = 4.5 Turkish Lira. One US Dollar = 6 Turkish Lira as of Mid February.

Tipping: Rounding up the bill for a tip is sufficient. It is customary to give a token of appreciation to your Tour Director and driver at the end of the tour. We recommend 2 EURO per person per day for your driver and 4 EURO per person per day for your Guide.

Passport/visa: USA and Canadian citizens entering Turkey need a valid passport and visa ( is required. The Visa can be acquired online.

Time: Turkey is 8 hours ahead of Washington, DC and 11 hours ahead of West Coast

Electricity: Turkey operates on 220 volts, 50 Hz, with round-prong European-style plugs that fit into recessed wall sockets /points

The Mosques of Istanbul
Inside the 14th Century Grand Bazaar
One of the 4,000 shops in the Grand Bazaar w