Turkey lies at the crossroads between East and West. For centuries, it has been a place where people, cultures, religions and ideas collide. You can see it from the faces of it’s people to the architecture of it’s cities. And it’s because of this unique past that Turkey remains one of the best countries for world travelers.
The Turkish are some of the friendliest and most welcoming I’ve ever met. Although it’s true that most people around the world are fairly friendly, there is really something to be said about those Turks. It’s no wonder their known for their “Turkish Hospitality.”
In addition, Turkey is relatively cheap. Although it’s not as cheap as neighboring Syria or Bulgaria, it’s still cheap enough for backpacking on a budget.
Finally, from exploring the ancient catacombs of Istanbul to lounging on the Lycian Coast there’s a heck of a lot to do.
With cheap prices, friendly people, a remarkable history and a diverse landscape it’s no wonder that Turkey ranks as one of the best countries for budget backpacking.
Getting To Turkey
Turkey is fairly close to Europe. It’s relatively easy and cheap to get to. Flights from London can often be found for as little as 30$ dollars on some low cost airlines. However, if flying isn’t your forte, you can always train it to Istanbul. Although it takes a few transfers, and will definitely cost more than a flight, it’s another option. Whether you go by train or plane, the low cost makes it easy to take budget trips to Turkey.
What To Do In Turkey
When you arrive in Istanbul, the only thing you are going to want to do is stare in awe at this city. The city is perched somewhat precariously on the banks of the Strait of Marmarus. It’s filled with countless churches and mosques, a reminder of the cities rich and divisive history.
One of the cheapest ways to see the city is by boat. Hop on a local ferry for just a few dollars and head to Asia. There’s nothing like seeing the city the way ancient mariners used to. And nothing beats the awe inspiring echo of the call to prayer that echoes across the strait.
One of the most famous and largest mosques in Istanbul is the Blue Mosque. It was built during the reign of Ahmed the first and houses his tomb. For many muslims and orthodox christians it is considered on of the worlds holiest sites.
The night life of Istanbul is another attraction not to be missed, especially for the backpacker. Considered one of the best nightlifes in Europe, the downtown district is filled with a collection of bars as diverse as the international crowed that visits them. The best strategy if you’re on a low budget is always to buy buys at the convenience stores before hand.
Where to Stay
One of the most picturesque districts of the city, ideal fro both holiday makers and budget backpackers is Sultan ahmet street. Here will find quaint affordable hotels with views of the sea or a variety of backpacker hostels and great bars. Prices for hostels generally start at 20$ a night for a dorm.
What to Eat
Istanbul offers a great selection for Mediterranean food lovers. You can find an abundance of traditional Kebabs and Turkish salads. However, the most delicious food is Istanbul’s street food. From special Turkish style sloppy joes to baked potatoes, it’s a street food lovers paradise.
Turkey is cheap, it’s people are friendly, it’s night life is hopping, and there’s so much to do that you could easily a few years discovering this country.Whether you’re a hardened backpacker or a beginner nomad, Turkey is an ideal destination for all types of backpackers.