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Where to travel? Istanbul and somewhere else? - Page 2

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Where to travel? Istanbul and somewhere else?

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  • zagubovzagubov Forumite
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    Not really a big deal: it just means that you cannot use an ESTA and would need a US visa. Some of my family friends (UK passports) have been through this: they had a very good reason for visiting Iran which they explained to the US consul and their visas were issued without any problems.

    Good to know the details. The more complete the info we give to posters, the better decisions they can make.:beer:

    Anyhoo, if I was visiting Turkey, I'd be tempted to see Georgia. Belgrade's an other place I've travelled through but not stopped in.
    There is no honour to be had in not knowing a thing that can be known - Danny Baker
  • PompeyPetePompeyPete Forumite
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    I reckon there's plenty of good advice and ideas so far.

    A week in Istanbul should be a minimum, and you'll only skim the surface of one of the World's great destinations. Easy to get around by tram and public ferry. Base yourself in Sultanahmet, touristy, but also a great area. Make sure you visit Kadikoy on the Asian side by public ferry, and also have a ferry ride out to Princes Islands.

    We've also been to Cappadocia, which is a wonderful one-off area. Got there by overnight sleeper train to Ankara. A couple of nights in Ankara, then bus to Goreme in Cappadocia. Ankara, the Capital City of Turkey is well worth dipping into, and a visit to the Ataturk Mausoleum is a must.

    Also look at the Bodrum Peninsula, which is a beautiful area and very easy to navigate by Dolmus from Bodrum Town.

    Two other ideas outside of Turkey are Romania. Was in Transylvania for 3 weeks in June this year. Fabulous region, clean and green, easy to get around by train. We started with a Tarom Air flight to Bucharest. Then by train we stayed for a few nights in Sinaia, Sighisoara, Sibiu and Brasov.

    Bosnia & Herzegovina. We had just under two weeks last October, staying in Mostar and Sarajevo. Both are hauntingly atmospheric places, with plenty of evidence of the recent bloody conflict of the early 1990s. We got into B & H by flying with EJ to Split in Croatia, stayed a couple of nights in Split, then got a bus [3.5] hours to Mostar. From Mostar to Sarajevo was a 2.5 hour rail journey, one of the best we've ever done.
  • PompeyPetePompeyPete Forumite
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    Note that Istanbul has two international airports, which are quite a distance apart. Ataturk Airport, which is massive, and not far from the Centre on the 'European' side, and Sabiha Gokcen Airport which is the best part of an hour outside the city on the Asian side. So make sure it you have connecting flights from different airports that you allow plenty of time for transit.
  • buglawtonbuglawton Forumite
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    I had a great 2 day trip to Istanbul, arriving and departing on sleeper trains so 1 night in a hotel. Rooftop breakfast terrace with view of grand mosque. 2 issues, no mobile internet for navigation and tourist info as roaming punitively expensive, and taxis. Apart from the taxi called by our hotel, they consistently played a sleight of hand trick note-swapping trick, very practiced, that left us seriously out of pocket. The alarm signal is that instead of dropping you at the proper destination they have an excuse to stop at a busy intersection instead, where a noisy queue of drivers behind will fluster you into a rushed transaction. It's a pity as I'd like to visit again and can't think how I'd get about. Uber us now banned in Turkey due to pressure from cab drivers association.
  • RHemmingsRHemmings Forumite
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    Not really a big deal: it just means that you cannot use an ESTA and would need a US visa. Some of my family friends (UK passports) have been through this: they had a very good reason for visiting Iran which they explained to the US consul and their visas were issued without any problems.

    Yes. The report I've heard is that the interviews are very easy. In the cases I"ve heard of, the interviewer asked why the applicant needed a visa, the applicant replied that they'd been in Iran, then the interviewer asked why the applicant had been in Iran, to which the applicant replied that they had been there for tourism. To which the interviewer replied that's OK, and approved the visa.
  • Voyager2002Voyager2002 Forumite
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    buglawton wrote: »
    I had a great 2 day trip to Istanbul, arriving and departing on sleeper trains so 1 night in a hotel. Rooftop breakfast terrace with view of grand mosque. 2 issues, no mobile internet for navigation and tourist info as roaming punitively expensive, and taxis. Apart from the taxi called by our hotel, they consistently played a sleight of hand trick note-swapping trick, very practiced, that left us seriously out of pocket. The alarm signal is that instead of dropping you at the proper destination they have an excuse to stop at a busy intersection instead, where a noisy queue of drivers behind will fluster you into a rushed transaction. It's a pity as I'd like to visit again and can't think how I'd get about. Uber us now banned in Turkey due to pressure from cab drivers association.


    Fortunately Istanbul has good public transport, and a half-decent guide book means that mobile internet is not really necessary.
  • Voyager2002Voyager2002 Forumite
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    zagubov wrote: »

    Anyhoo, if I was visiting Turkey, I'd be tempted to see Georgia. Belgrade's an other place I've travelled through but not stopped in.


    I agree that Georgia is well worth visiting, and probably deserves a trip to itself. Georgia is a very long way from Istanbul, and visiting all the worthwhile attractions in between Istanbul and the border would probably take far more time than the OP can spare.
  • RHemmingsRHemmings Forumite
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    RHemmings wrote: »
    There are huge numbers of trip reports online, on youtube, etc. By people who have actually been there.

    Less than a month until I'm there in person. I'll report back.

    I see that I said that I would report back after being there, then forgot.

    I went there. It was great. It's a safe country to visit with the main problem being road/traffic safety. I have a video of me crossing the road in Tehran holding a go pro in my hand. Squeezing through cars. Etc. But, there is one heck of a lot to see in Iran, and the people are very friendly and welcoming.

    I see I mentioned Iraqi Kurdistan further up this thread. A month and a week until I'm there in person. I won't promise to report back in case I forget again.
  • koalakoalakoalakoala Forumite
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    I would go with Pompey Pete's suggestions for somewhere different
  • edited 23 November 2019 at 7:44PM
    RHemmingsRHemmings Forumite
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    edited 23 November 2019 at 7:44PM
    koalakoala wrote: »
    I would go with Pompey Pete's suggestions for somewhere different

    This thread is over a year old. I only posted to follow up something I said I would post when the thread was active.
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