The Turkish Enchantment
It has been a year since we started Travel Diaries Pakistan and believe me out of one ninety freaking five countries in the world, never did I expect to receive the majority number of posts and queries on the group regarding one specific country only i.e Turkey. Lol
After answering at least a few dozen questions and long before I started working on the blog, I already knew my first destination blog will be about Turkish lamps, baklava and tea.
Initially I planned to put together my ten day trip to the country into one article but soon I felt my writing skills were being challenged while struggling to keep the content interesting and not willing to skip on minor details.
So trying not to be all over the place I have put together a brief record of our experience along with a few tips that I found useful while exploring the country.My husband and I started planning this particular vacation and had our tickets booked on a budget flight in March 2016 with flyDubai. Lookout for their offers, it’s a steal.
We were quiet excited for the holiday up until June 2016 before we lost our daughter. As expected life completely changed after that and we were striving to bring things back to normal. It was not until August 2016 that my husband and I spoke to one another about the trip for the very first time and were obviously more inclined towards cancelling it. But being adults we knew that life had thrown lemons at us and we could at least try to make a lemonade 🙂
Unfortunately at that particular point in time Turkey wasn’t going through a good time either and their tourism had fallen victim to terrorism and their internal political unrest. Given the situation while the rest of the world had started exploring other options for holidays the plummeting hotel rates, relaxed visa policies and airline fares were hard to resist for a very resilient nation called the Pakistanis who were ready to make the most of the opportunity, hence proving we are a nation that cannot be intimidated easily 😉
The Turks, a nation not very far behind when it comes to resilience proved to be an extremely warm and high spirited host to us. From the hotel staff to the general public on the streets, the locals are mostly friendly, very helpful and wait for the best part, “Pakistan-loving” people.
Especially in Istanbul people would genuinely be happy to know that we are from Pakistan. Wait! I also have proof .
The rich and diverse history influences Turkey’s culture and you get to experience a variety of lifestyles in different parts of the country.
We were able to visit three cities in 10 days basically. Here you can a find a more detailed itinerary.
Starting with Istanbul of course, the city boasts the lifestyle of a typical metropolis. Noisy and crowded streets, no communication barrier, reasonably fashionable and culturally diverse population.
Fairy ChimneysContrary to Istanbul, Cappadocia is only a historic region and not a business hub with a considerably smaller population. People are progressive when it comes to tourism but much more disciplined and uptight in their daily routines. You would not want to be in Cappadocia if you are looking for an active night life but the famous hot air balloon ride might change your mind.
Strangely I have not come across anyone who has chosen Bodrum to satisfy their longing for the beach while visiting Turkey except a few celebrities. Maybe Mahira Khan’s viral image on Instagram from last year would ring some bells.
Let me give you a heads up, when in Bodrum dress fashionably or you might feel a little under dressed at times. Unlike me who did not have this kind of information and does not have a great fashion sense either, you can save yourself the embarrassment by packing your best tops and the pair of denims that fit you perfectly for Bodrum. Psstt…throw in a pair of heels also in case you are lured into a night club.
Also do not forget to pack your beach shorts and towel when headed to the hot water springs in Pammukale.
Pammukale and the Heirapolis museum are an approximately three hour long “comfortable” drive from Bodrum and the experience is highly recommened.
Turkey did not disappoint us one bit, in fact we did go to Turkey as grieving parents but returned knowing that some damages and losses in life are irreplaceable but you can let your mind and soul compensate by making better memories.