Hailed as one of the top destinations around the world, Turkey has more to offer than what we see or read – from its sumptuous food to its rich culture, the country is present on every vacationer’s list.

However, because travel information in Turkey is very limited online, most people end up rather unprepared when visiting this highly recommended place. Moreover, like any other place in the world, Turkey has some room for improvement when it comes to the tourist experience they offer to visitors.

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If you are one of those frequent travelers who want to tick this country off their list, here is everything you need to know before you plan to take a trip to Turkey.

Check if You Need to Get an e-Visa

Before you leave your country, it would be best to get some information on whether you need an e-Visa to enter Turkey. You can go to the Republic of Turkey’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs website to check if your country is among the list that Turkey requires to have an electronic visa (e-Visa) to enter or if you can simply travel using your country’s national ID.

The process of acquiring the entry pass above is quite simple – all you need to do is fill out the required information including travel dates and pay the fees. Their e-Visa service is available 24/7 and is only issued to persons whose purpose in visiting is business or leisure (rather than work or study).

Certain Websites are not Accessible in Turkey

Yes, you heard that right – some sites are restricted in the country, and the more notable ones are related to travel such as:

  • Bookingcom – yes, this popular travel site is banned in the country. So, the best thing to do is make a plan, especially when it comes to accommodations. Before you leave for Turkey, make a list of alternative hotels or establishments where you can stay in case a problem arises with your booking reservations
  • PayPal – This site, which is mostly used for online and international payments, is also banned in Turkey. The weird thing is, when you have the PayPal app on your mobile phone, you can access it there. So, if you are the type who relies on this site heavily, it is recommended that you install this app before you go.

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Bring Pocket Money

We all know that nowadays, everything is done online and cashless payments are the new norm. While the major cities of Turkey accept credit cards or other cashless payment methods, small towns in the country require cash payments. Likewise, you also need those bills and coins when riding taxi cabs and tipping waiters.

If you are the type of person who relies on the internet heavily for a lot of stuff like directions, restaurants to eat in, places to visit, and the like, you might want to go old school and make a list before venturing out on the streets of Turkey. This is because they have bad Wi-Fi connections – not only in public places but also in hotels.

Forget the slow connections, as some hotels require a lot of information before they give you access to their free Wi-Fi. They’ll want to know things like your passport number, hotel room number, etc. So, plan accordingly, bring travel guides and maps with you.

Turkish Food Caters to Vegans Too

Food in Turkey may tilt in favor of meat lovers but be assured that Vegan travelers have options as well. Most restaurants in the country carry several variants of vegetarian-friendly food in their menu, especially the kebab restaurants.

Google Translate will be your lifesaver, not only in Turkey but in every country you plan to travel to. Remember, not all restaurants have English menus and not all locals know how to speak English, so it is better to get Google Translate downloaded to your phone and keep it handy.

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Consider the Weather

When talking about the weather, Turkey is always connected to tropical climates and beaches. But you might be surprised to hear that you can experience all of the four seasons in the country. So, depending on your preference and your itinerary, it will be beneficial to get enough research regarding Turkey’s seasons and what kind of weather to expect.

This might be a turn-off to all fur parents but wandering cats and dogs are, believe it or not, part of Turkey’s attractions. Whether on the busy streets or by the seaside, you will see them roaming the area. Nearby residents take care of the homeless animals so you do not have to worry about them being aggressive or malnourished.

And as an added testament to this unique environment, a popular stray cat named Tombili crossed the rainbow bridge in 2016 and now you’ll find a statue of Tombili in Istanbul.

No Museum Mondays

Again, planning is key if you are to make the most out of your time in Turkey. Save some time in your itinerary to include Mondays to wander because most of the popular museums in the country are not open on Mondays. As part of your itinerary list, try to visit the websites of the museums and tourist attractions that you are going to visit to take note of their operating hours.

Squat Toilets Are Plentiful

Admit it or not, the best part of every trip is not just going to the popular cities of a particular country but also visiting small towns to fully immerse yourself in their culture. And in some parts of Turkey, these old-fashioned toilets still exist.

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