Best currency for Turkey?

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  • edited November -1
    Hi Clare cg,
    In response to your genius idea of taking ones favourite cereal in ones luggage and being the Antalya expert I wonder if you could suggest anywhere my partner and I could breakfast in replacement of the hotel? We are due to stay at the Crowne Plaza Antalya and opted out of breakfast as generally we are early starters and would prefer to sample the local cuisine. Generally,what could we expect from a breakfast menu (similar to British breakfasts?) and if there are any restaurants that you could suggest that are within walking/short bus distance from that hotel then that would be truely fab.
    I must note that having read through many of your previous posts,they are so informative and helpful. A big thank you for your comments so far! A huge help to people such as myself
  • edited November -1
    Hi Tig
    Thank you very much for your kind words :o) I try to give an honest answer and do not have a business to promote to people, although I will recommend local places that I have experienced and enjoyed. I just want to promote this wonderful country.

    Turkish breakfast (kahvalti in Turkish) is very different to English breakfast! Breakfast is quite a meal and enjoyed at leisure. A standard breakfast is usually white cheese, tomatoes, cucumber, fruit, olives, an egg, salami and bread with jam or honey. Although there are a lot of different dishes menemen is tomatoes, onion and green pepper cooked in scrambled egg. Obviously bacon doesn't appear on many menus although you may find pastrami which is thinly sliced cured beef (sometimes turkey) and sausages are more of the frankfurter hot dog sausage type. For a breakfast on the go you can pick up many bread based products from local shops and bakeries. One of my favourite is simit with peynir. These are sesame seeded bread rings with cream cheese.
    Ideal to pick up and take back to your hotel room to eat on the balcony. Also you can try Pogaca - hese are lovely bread buns baked with different fillings such as olives, cheese, potato......
    From the Crowne Plaza you have quite a few choices. There is the Shakespeare Bistro (behind Sea Life Hotel) that offers a breakfast - I can't honestly say i've ever had it. Not sure how cheap this is or what time they start serving either, Their other meals are fairly good though.
    Along Konyaalti beach there are a number of small beach bars that more than likely offer breakfast. On the road between Sea Life and the Crowne Plaza is the Turkish Cafe as well. There's one small place right next door to the Sea Life that has nice meals in nice surroundings but at the moment it's name escapes me!
    Walk at a right angle away from the beach (at Sea Life) towards a crossroads where there is a Garanti Bank on the opposite corner. Along this road is Mado which is wonderful for afternoon tea - lots of ice creams, baklava and different cakes. If you carry on to the crossroads then turn right there are a number of small eating places. On this corner is a Kunefe place. Kunefe is a dessert made from baklava type pastry like shredded whaet and cream cheese served hot.
    If you are looking for a special evening meal there is a wonderful fish restaurant on the opposite corner to Sea Life called Lara Balik Evi http://www.larabalikevi.com.tr/en/index.php
    It's easy to get the dolmus into Antalya centrum from the sea front. Here you have an amazing choice of restaurants. We often wander around Kaleci (the old town) and have had some wonderful reasonably priced meals. The bus fare is on all Antalya local buses is 1.75 lira each, one way.
    When are you coming to Antalya?
  • edited November -1
    Wow, thanks very much for a very descriptive and varied answer. I am glad that I asked you! Lots of ideas, and plenty of choices on the menu. I should be well versed in local cusine by the time I return. We are due to stay at the end of June for 10 days. So looking forward to visiting Turkey as it is somewhere we have both wished to explore, and I am lead to believe that we have chosen a good first time location too. I certainly plan to look into the venues you have suggested, it is nice not to be restricted to the hotel facilities. It sounds like there is much to see and lots to do (too much infact), and the vast archaeological history there is to capture really interests me. I take it you know this particular area well?
  • edited November -1
    I live just 3km away!!! Well I say I but it is me, my husband, 2 dogs, several budgies and pigeons!!! The Crowne Plaza is qute a new hotel and there isn't too much in the immediate area but this area is really up and coming. It means you have a nice quiet location which is a real plus in high season.

    Do take the time to go to Antalya Museum. 15 lira entrance each but so worth it. Gives you a wonderful history of the Antalya province in air conditioned halls plus a nice little cafe/gift shop!

    I forgot to say if you can't live without your favourite cup of tea bring some tea bags and a travel kettle! The nearest to English tea here is Liptons Yellow Label. Turkish tea or cay (pronounced chay) is drunk without milk in tulip shaped glasses. I love it but some cannot get used to it! You can buy small cartons of milk from any small shop that would be enough for 2 of you for a few cups. Most milk in cartons is UHT so no worries about a fridge if yuo buy it the evening before for your morning cuppa.

    You never know I may bump into you on the beach!!!
  • edited November -1
    Hi Clare,

    What a coincedence, you are so nearby. Its nice to hear it will be quiet as I could do with a touch of peace.
    Antalya museum is absolutely on my list, I have heard many wonderful things about it.

    Cheers for the heads up on the Tea situation. I am just a tad fond of my Earl Grey so they will be coming along too!

    Thanks very much again for your comments, it makes such a difference to gain some 'intelligence' prior to going to a foreign place. I may well come back again with another query but in the meanwhile thanks a lot, and you never know I may well see you about.
  • edited November -1
    Hi Tig
    Earl Grey is sold here but tends mainly to be loose tea rather than bags! The hotel may well have the bags though.

    I'd like to add one bit of advice. Many tourists moan and gripe about the "unwanted attention" from some Turkish men. This is predominantly a Muslim country. Whilst not a "dark" centre of Islam certain modes of dress are seen as a come on to some men (the same the world over actually). I have heard many gripes from ladies that the approaches were unsuitable. Well when i look at what they are wearing in a city centre it makes me wonder!!! Beach clothes are really a no no for wandering about town. I have seen people shopping in the big supermarkets in not much more than 4 (small) triangles of lycra and a pair of flip flops!!! Would they do this in their home town? That having been said most Turks just want to chat, learn a little about you and your country, improve their language skills even if sometimes, due to the language barrier, their approach is a little clumsy. Take the time to chat - you learn such a lot from them. Often they are working here for the season and come from very different places. I have learnt a lot over a glass of cay or a beer.
    The archaelogical sites are so worth visiting and there are many areas of natural beauty. One is Goynuk canyon. You can get the bus from the Garanti bank that goes to Kemer and ask to be put off at Goynuk Canyon. Otherwise it is worth hiring a car to drive along the coast. Goynuk Canyon reminds me of a fairy grotto. Lots of mountain stream fed pools that you can swim in and a really lovely place to contemplate life the universe and nothing!!! It's one of my favourite places here and still not over run with tourists. It costs about 5 lira entrance. There is a small cafe and some beautiful walks.
    Please feel free to ask anything :o) I will do my best to answer for you.
  • edited November -1
    Hi. Im going on holiday at the end of June to Kestel Kasabasy in Alanya. We are staying at the Sunshine Hotel. People are saying its quite far from Alanya...is this right? Also whats the best way to get into Alanya...taxi? If so, do you know how much this will roughly cost and how long it will take? Sorry for all the questions. Another one thing im really unsure about, what is the best currency to take? Sterling, lira or euros?
    If you could try answer my questions, that would be much appreciated. Thank you.
  • edited November -1
    As suggested before change about £100 each to lira before you come. Then you haveto buy a drink/snack on your transfer and have time to get your bearings before needing to change.Then bring GBP if you're from the UK. Don't bother changing from GBP to Euro. Prices are displayed in Euro as that is one of the commonest currencies amongst tourists here. Changing money here is always slightly better as the rate of exchange is generally very favourable (especially mid to end week for some reason!!) Also you can use the ATMs but check what charges your bank makes for this.

    Sorry I don't know your hotel but check if there is a local bus into Alanya. This is by far the cheapest way to travel. The hotel may run a service as well.

    Hopefully someone more au fait with yuor hotel will answer the hotel questions.
  • edited November -1
    Hi,
    Me and hubby are going to side in 10 days time - never been before and are staying at Lavita's Hotel which I belive is near or in the Kumkoy area. Is there much to do around here and side. Don't want it to be raving but not like a morgue either. We uasually go to Greece and are keen on boat trips. Are there any around. On the picture when booking with thomas cook there are a few boats but i think this is the local area rather than the main town of Side.
    Would be very grateful of any info about this place - so thanks in advance.
    Gill
  • edited November -1
    Thank you Clare, your feedback is much apprciated. Is there many places to go out to party in Alanya? There is a group of 4 of us aged around 20. Thanks Luciana.
  • edited May 2011
    There's lots of lovely strolling and bars/cafes to visit in Side! A peaceful yet happening place at the same time :o) Quite a hippyish feel to it for want of a better description plus all the ancient sites to wander around.
  • edited November -1
    Sorry Luciana am not very familiar with Alanya having only visited briefly on a couple of occasions - My husband's uncle lives just outside! But on the whiz through we did there did seem to be some lively clubs, bars etc
  • edited November -1
    Hi I am travelling to Belek on 1st July staying at the riu kaya belek. We have never been to turkey before but have been told Belek is a lovely resort! can you tell me is it far from the town and I am also taking two 17yr olds does it have much nightlife, not that I want too much off it myself!!!!
  • edited November -1
    hi clare we r coming to antalya next week and staying at the sea life resort hotel, have we made a good choice?
  • edited November -1
    Sea Life is just down the road to me (so to speak!) It is opposite Konyaalti Beach and on a good crossroads to a lot of places. The beach is not sandy but has reasonable facilities - showers, changing cabins, toilets and several nice bars. We use the beach a lot.
    I have never stayed at the hotel so can't comment at all - sorry. You are on a good bus route into Antalya itself, plus the Kemer bus route. You have lots of little eateries within very easy walking distance plus a very nice fish restaurant across the road. If you look a bit earlier in this forum I have detailed a lot of places to someone asking about the Crowne Plaza and this is in the same area.
    Weather is picking up nicely so have a great time :o)
  • edited June 2011
    Hi,

    Not sure if it's okay to add onto this but here goes. :o/

    We're going to Side at the end of June, staying at the Merve Park Apts. Least I think they're in Side, that's all the search comes up with and the destination is Antalya so I'm assuming it's the same ones. (My other half booked the hol but didn't see any pics.)

    What's the best currency to take to this destination (I know the first post asks about currency but they were going somewhere else.) If the answer's the same, sorry, lol.

    Also wondered if anyone knows of these apartments. I've done a search and read some reviews. One says the pool is rather small, not bothered about that, but some of the pictures show a large pool.
    I guess when it comes down to it we'll have to wait and see.

    About the Visa into Turkey. I've read this should be in cash, which currency though?

    Thanks for any help.. Lindyyy
  • edited November -1
    Hi Lindyyy

    Visa cash is a good old English tenner (each). Make sure the note isn't torn or defaced - sometimes they can be a bit sniffy!!! Or it's 15 Euro depending where you're from of course.

    Sorry don't know your accommodation but Side is lovely. Also one man's tiny pool is another man's ocean!! Some people expect everywhere to have slides, flumes etc and apartment accomodation doesn't have these - Personally as long as I can cool off in the pool the size really doeasn't matter.

    Currency is the same as in earlier posts. Good rates of exchange here at the moment.

    Side is in Antalya province so that's probably why you're confused! The whole coast tends to be called Antalya!!!

    Weather is heating up now - 36degC today!!!! Lovely for those on holiday not so nice to be working in it!

    Most of all have a great time :o)
  • edited November -1
    Ahhh thanks Claire, I really appreciate your help.

    Have to say I've read the whole thread so didn't really need to ask, sorry.. lol.

    I'm not bothered about the size of the pool either, just the pictures I saw differed. We've got this holiday for next to nothing so if the place is clean and the staff are nice I'll be well happy. It's my first visit to Turkey and after reading this thread I'm even more excited.

    36 degrees? Crikey!! I'm from the UK so not used to that, hope it'll not be too hot for us. Air con at the ready.. :o)

    Just one more thing. You mentioned in an earlier post about people receiving unwanted attention from the local men but that some of them wear next to nothing to go shopping. I'd never dream of going shopping in my bikini but would shorts and t-shirt be acceptable?

    Thanks again for all the invaluable advice you've given, over the whole thread; and to all the others. Roll on 27th June.

    Regards, Lindyyy
  • edited November -1
    Hi Lindyyy

    Apartments in Turkey are generally basic but clean. Usually a kitchen/sitting room and one bedroom. The kitchen genrally consists of a 2 ring electric hob, fridge, utensils, fridge and a kettle. it's well worth loading up the fridge with drinks and snacks. OK you may not be allowed to bring your own drinks etc around the pool but you can always nip back to the apartment for one - really saves the money to spend outside!!

    Air con usually isn't included in the package but payable locally as is a safe. If you're here for 2 weeks worth trying to get a reduction on the weekly price!!! I can't stress the importance of a safe especially if you are bringing cash with you. Also saves the last minute scramble of trying to remember the safe place you put your passports, tickets etc.

    Yep 36deg today so make sure you drink plenty of water. Worth bringing some lira with you to buy it as soon as you get here. Oh and sun cream is expensive here so bring it with you but remember to put it in your hold baggage unlike one poor lady I saw who had to dump all hers at the security check in the UK.

    T shirt and shorts are fine as long as your bottom isn't hanging out the shorts lol or the t shirt so small it should really be called a bra!! Lots of girls go out and about in such skimpy clothes they may as well not bother. Beleive you I have seen things only their doctors should see lol!!

    I'm sure you'll have a great time :o)
  • edited November -1
    Thanks Claire,

    We'll definitely be investing in air con. and a safe (we always get a safe)

    Thanks for the info on the suntan lotion. I used to put mine in my hand luggage but I guess with all those erm, security threats it's not allowed any more.

    As for clothing, I'm not one for flaunting myself though I have to say I've seen some sites in my time, lol, and I wouldn't look half as bad as those.. :P

    Many thanks again..

    Take care.. :o)
  • edited November -1
    Hi Claire,

    Glad to hear that the weather is nice and hot, makes me long for my trip to come around much sooner!

    I hear that the Ziraat bank is generally good for exchanging currency.
    I have found an address of a Ziraat bank in Antalya. Could you please tell me if this would be the old town Kaleci? and is it easy to find once one is there?
    Regards
  • edited November -1
    Hi Tig

    I wouldn't worry too much about looking for that exact bank - most banks offer very much the same rate. There are plenty of exchange offices dotted around as well. All these display the rate for that day. Exchange offices have the rates in lights in the window. Most banks have a screen inside so you can check. Look for Satis which means sell. Quite often the PTT gives a very favourable rate - look for the yellow PTT signs.
  • edited November -1
    I was going to splash out on some new adidas trainers for my holiday and somebody told me the markets sell fake ones,has anybody bought any? Are they any good and how much?
    thanks
  • edited November -1
    I haven't tried the fakes but at the moment there are loads of good deals on the real things here! I got Converse on buy one get one free but they had to be the same size. A decent pair of trainers here are around 100lira at teh moment in some places. Worth shopping around. If the market ones are cheap enough buy a pair at the start of your holiday and give them a good testing. Then you'll know if they are worth buying.
  • edited November -1
    hi,i am going turkey bodrum from 23rd til 30th june. i am converting £100 and taking a further £200. is that going to last me a week? i will be site seeing, doing excursions, and enjoying the nigth life. i will be eating out, my apartment is self catered which is paid for! any advice would be good. reading the last few pages means i will convert the rest of my pounds in to liras in turkey!
  • edited November -1
    Good idea to exchange about £100 before you go - it saves you looking for somewhere the first few days. Many of the shops that sell excursions in Gumbet also offer money exchange services. I do recommend though that you take an ATM card or credit card in case you run short of money.
    I know a boat trip costs around £10-12 for the day. Lunch is included but not drinks which you settle up for at the end of the trip. Not sure of prices this year in Gumbet for food and drinks. A useful tip is to walk up the road past the Windmill at the main crossroads as though you are heading out of Gumbet towards the main road. There are lots of cheap very good local restaurants along here. Much cheaper than eating in the main tourist area of Gumbet.
    I would also suggest catching the dolmus up to carrefour to stock your fridge in the apartment with juices, soft drinks and snacks. I have always found that the couple of drinks by the pool in the morning, then a couple more in the afternoon soon add up! Much cheaper to nip back to your apartment and have a drink from a litre bottle that's cost less than the price of one drink at the bar.
    What sight seeing do you intend doing? I think a trip to Ephesus is around £30 a head but please don't quote me on that. Otherwise there's lots to see in and around Bodrum using local dolmus (buses).
    If you could scrape together a little more it may be worth it especially as air conditioning and safes are payable locally. Usually around £25 a week for the aircon although it depends on your accomodation.
    There are several easily accesible ATMs in Gumbet and banks up on the main road or in Bodrum.
    Have a great time :o)
  • edited November -1
    im budgeting £40 a day which is around 99 liras a day. i can strech all the way to £300 but have read that ATM machines are unsafe and chew the card!!! air conditioning i will have to see once im there!! as i will be out enjoying the lovely country! all in i think an excursion, boat trip, 3 meals and enjoying the nigth life is what i will be doing. thanks for the quick reponse!
  • edited November -1
    You can live on that much but maybe consider th odd meal in your apartment. I personally never have problems witht he ATMs - if you do need to use one and are worried head into Bodrum and use one attached to a bank during opening hours then if there is a problem you can get it sorted then and there.
    Maybe take a bottle with you duty free and enjoy a sundowner or 2 before hitting the town!!!
  • edited November -1
    Hello, I'm going to alanya on the 2nd of june. I am going with 15 people which 8 of us are lads and we wanted to know if there was any night clubs there, were staying at the tuna apartments if that helps. Thanks jake
  • edited November -1
    Hello, I'm going to alanya on the 2nd of june. I am going with 15 people which 8 of us are lads and we wanted to know if there was any night clubs there, were staying at the tuna apartments if that helps. Thanks jake
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