Help a Reader Travel: Turkey

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Welcome to another post of helping a reader travel! This weekly post is to help readers get a slew of travel advice from thousand of Deals We Like blog readers. Thus far, we’ve been able to help other readers travel to MauiThe Greek IslandsPacific Coast HighwayArgentina /Buenos AiresCosta RicaCape Cod & The IslandsIcelandGenevaCanadian RockiesIsraelPeru / Inca Trail StockholmChicagoParisHanoiAustinPuerto RicoBrugesSalzburgIstanbulLas VegasJamaica, India/Golden TriangleAucklandSingapore, Moscow, The Oregon CoastSeattlePortlandHawaii IslandsAlaska SkiingBrazilPragueBudapestParaguayCabo San LucasEdinburghSan DiegoHilton HeadDubrovnik, TanzaniaThe SeychellesBelize, MiamiViennaLondonTahitiMt. KilimanjaroBurgundyCharlestonSavannah, and Italy (including RomeVeniceFlorenceMilanBologna, Sicily)

This week includes Turkey as a whole. I’ve already hit on Istanbul, but I received an email from reader Paul wondering how to spread out a vacation all around Turkey. The email stated: ”

“Turkey seems to be a good country to visit these days; their history, Roman ruins, beaches and islands; it’s an Islamic country that is relatively safe and secular and uses our alphabet, and the US dollar is worth more in Turkey than it has in over 10 years. I see you’ve done Istanbul, but we’re looking to travel in September all around Western Turkey for a couple of weeks. We want to see Cappadocia, Ephesus, and other historic sites, plus spend some time on the southwestern coast, islands/beaches, etc. I wonder what your readers have found as “must see” and “must avoid”, for a retired but active couple. Also, whether a tour or do-it-yourself plan is best.”

So let’s start out with a recommended two week itinerary of Turkey and then I will hit on all the major cities in the following weeks. If you’ve ever been to Turkey, let’s help out Paul and many Deals We Like readers who are probably interested as well!

Also, if you have any upcoming travel where you need some help, feel free to email me at to be a featured “Help a Reader Travel” Monday special. Thanks!

The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.


  1. Paul:

    My wife and I visited Turkey for 10 days total a few years ago…we Loved it so much, we are heading back next month for 10 more days. On our first trip, here’s what we did:

    3 Days 2 Nights in Istanbul.

    From Istanbul, we did a tour of Galipoli and spent a night in Cannakale.

    Early the following morning, we started another tour and visited Troy and Pergamon…the latter was amazing. We ended that day in Kusadasi…where we spent two consecutive nights.

    The following day we (after our first night in Kusadasi), we visited Ephesus and Virgin Mother Mary House…both pretty amazing sights.

    From Kusadasi, we ended up taking a bus to Antalya on the south central coast of the Med. The buses in Turkey are all very nice and quite competitive in price. They serve you drinks and snacks on the buses, just like on a plane but they don’t charge you for it! The buses were all Very clean and they either had personal TVs or main TVs.

    On the way to Antalya, we stopped off at one of the most impressive sights in Turkey for a few hours, Pamukkale. Definitely worth the stop.

    Due to us not getting into Antalya until after sundown, we stayed two full days there and two nights. On the third night, we took an overnight bus to Goreme…which is a town in Cappadocia…where we stayed two days/one night.

    On our day of arrival we did an ancient underground city tour and some tours of some ancient Christian sites…

    The next morning we did the hot air balloon ride…followed by another tour. We ended up departing Goreme on another overnight bus back to Istanbul. We had the opportunity to stop in Ankara but didn’t have any more time in our schedule.

    The upcoming trip in February, we plan on just doing Istanbul and a town called Bodrum for some R and R.

    Enjoy…let me know what you plan on doing!

    Dereck Robinson

  2. Hi there! We went to Turkey (Istanbul and Cappadoccia) in 2011 and had an absolutely wonderful time. I usually plan and book all of our trips myself, but decided to work with a local travel agent for this trip. It was definitely the right decision, as they were able to organize a number of very special activities on the ground that I wouldn’t have been able to do myself. (It was Argeus Travel, if you’re wondering.)
    Istanbul is pretty straightforward, just don’t make the mistake of only staying in the touristy areas. It’s very easy to get around the city with public transportation – including lovely ferry rides to the Asian side. We were cheated EVERY time we tried to take a taxi (and we knew where we were going)…
    We did a Turkish cooking course in Istanbul called Turkish Flavors that I highly recommend if you’re into food and conversation.
    Cappadoccia was also fabulous. We flew to Nevsehir from Istanbul – it was a lovely, short flight. From there our travel agent organized a transfer to the cave hotel in Ürgüp. Göreme also has many nice hotels, but we found the town to be too touristy for our taste. Ürgüp was a nice mix. In Cappadoccia we did a cooking course with a local family (wonderful experience), visiting local vineyards (winemaking in a Muslim country can be a pretty political issue) and toured the underground city. The highlight of our trip was the hot air balloon ride. This is a tourist trap that IS all that it is cracked up to be! But there are major differences between operators – another reason I was happy to have the guidance of our fantastic agent who made sure we had a great pilot and a small basket so we could see more. Truly unforgettable. Hope this helps…please enjoy your trip!

  3. Schmerj
    Would love to know who you used for a travel
    Agent! Going in August, don’t feel like we need a travel agent, but sounds like it would be worth it to help with some parts of The trip.

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