Travelling Essentials to Pack for a Holiday in Turkey
While everyone looks forward to their holidays, a certain sense of dread creeps in when deciding what to put in our suitcase. So, we’ve put together a handy packing list for Turkey, that considers local dress practices, the weather and climate and making the most of airline suitcase allowances. But first, let’s answer common questions.
Can I Wear a Bikini in Turkey?
You can. Every summer, beaches of Turkey are lined with women in bikinis. They swim side by side with women wearing the full body Islamic swimming costumes. Be discreet and courteous though, by wearing a cover-up, away from the beach or pool.
Can I Wear Leggings in Turkey?
Leggings are fashionable and practical to wear while in Turkey. The lightweight, cotton feel is ideal for summer, and they look fantastic when worn with a pair of flip-flops in summer or boots in winter. Inline with international fashion trends, most women team the leggings with tunic tops or thigh length shirts.
Do I Need to Pack a Sweatshirt or Jacket?
This depends on when you plan to visit and where you are going. From late September to early May, evening times are chilly. However, in high altitude places like Ayder plateau in June or July, warm clothing is needed in the evening. The coldest months in Turkey are from December to March and some places like Cappadocia and Istanbul, experience snowfall, so pack warm clothing including scarf and gloves for the day and evening.
What to Wear When Visiting Mosques
Certain mosques like Sultanahmet in Istanbul are top tourist attractions, and out of respect, adhere to dress standards. Men should wear trousers and shirts that cover their upper arms. Women should wear clothing that covers their legs, cleavage, midriff and upper arms. Also, pack a thin scarf to cover your hair.
Toiletries and Self Grooming
Hot days and sometimes sticky evenings mean a change to self-grooming routines. Pack the much-needed deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrush, brush, comb, hair styling creams and sunscreen, but the weather, and high concentration of calcium in Turkey’s water, dries skin out, so also pack moisturisers.
Leave in hair conditioner is a lifesaver if you are in and out of the pool or sea every day. It’s handy for detangling and also stops hair from drying out. Ladies visiting during summer should change their foundation to a lightweight version suitable for intense heat. While men should always visit a Turkish barber when here, for a traditional shave and face grooming session. We promise a pleasant surprise awaits you.
5 Handy Tips for Easy Packing
- To save on weight allowance, many hotels offer laundry services. Some travellers buy washing powder and rinse items like underwear in the sink.
- Avoid dark clothing during summer because the colours absorb the heat.
- Cotton and linen clothes are lightweight and great for keeping cool although the latter is prone to creasing.
- If visiting in summer, forget about denim. It's too heavy for hot climates.
- To create extra space in your suitcase, roll don’t fold.
More Items to Add to a Packing List for Turkey
- Underwear including pants, bra, socks.
- Swim gear including costume, a towel, a coverup for ladies and a beach bag
- Summer shoes including flip-flops and sandals or boots for winter, and evening footwear.
- Daytime wear including t-shirts, tank tops, trousers, shorts, and skirts
- Evening wear
- Summer hat
- Books, magazines or travel games for moments when there is nothing to do.
- Two prong plugs for electrical items
Last, don’t forget to…
- Make sure your passport has 6 months validity in it.
- Buy an e-visa from the official website before you get on the flight.
- For security, tell your bank you will use your card in a different country.
- Buy a small amount of Turkish lira to last the first day. Change the rest of your money, in Turkey for a better exchange rate.
- Check roaming charges with your mobile provider.
More Articles to Help Plan a Trip to Turkey
Apps for Travelling: Check on transport timetables, converse with locals by using a translator, convert money into your home currency, and much more.
Guide to Using Turkish Money: Using a foreign currency for the first time is a daunting process, but our money guide helps you to spend and save money like a Turk.