Turkey is the coming together of Eastern and Western geographies, a place where cultures from vast ends of the world come together to celebrate unity and strength. The history is a reflection of multiculturalism and the food scene doesn’t shy away from bringing cuisines from all traditional backgrounds to one table. From remains of the Byzantine era to tours that take you through the Ottoman empire, there’s an air of serenity and old-world charm that will serenade you wherever you are in this country. Read below for a detailed post-Covid travel guide to Turkey for your post-pandemic travel planning.
Turkey Covid Advisory During Covid-19
If you are planning to travel to Turkey in the upcoming weeks or months, there are no country-specific restrictions and international tourism is resuming slowly. There are currently a few guidelines that are in place to ensure safe travel within the country. Please read below to learn more.
- As of March 15, (except the transit passengers) need to fill out Travel Entry Form within the last 72 hours before their flights.
- If you have received two doses of a World Health Organization-approved vaccine or a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine at least 14 days before you are planning to travel, you can enter the country hassle-free.
- You can also enter if you have proof of recovery within the last six months.
- If you are unvaccinated, you have to provide a negative RT-PCR test not taken 72 hours before your arrival or a negative antigen test taken no longer than 48 hours before.
- Travellers under the age of 12 are exempt from the above-mentioned rules.
- Turkey has declared that fully vaccinated travellers from India will no longer be subjected to a mandatory 14-day quarantine rule, with effect from September 4, the Turkish Embassy in New Delhi informed on Saturday. The announcement will ease the travel restrictions for fully vaccinated passengers 12 years of age and older, travelling from India or those who stayed in India in the last 14 days.
Best Time To Visit
Turkey sees the highest number of travellers during the spring and fall seasons, as the weather during these months is cool and dry and outdoor activities can be enjoyed easily. It is an ideal time to visit Turkey. The country experiences a subtropical climate.
How To Reach
With air connectivity, the best answer in regard to how to reach Turkey from India is via flights. There are numerous options for flights that one can choose from to get to Turkey. One can board a flight to the Istanbul Atatürk Airport (IST) from Ahmedabad, Mumbai, and Delhi, and reach Turkey in 9 to 13 hours, depending on the airline. A direct India to Turkey flight takes less time while connecting flight delays by 2 or 3 hours. With a variety of options, one can find flights offered by Oman Air, Air Astana, Aeroflot, and many others to cover the distance for an amazing experience.
From long-distance buses to ferries to mini-buses and domestic flights, travelling inside Turkey is a hassle-free experience and there are plenty of options to choose from. The buses and trains are particularly preferred by international travellers for a seamless and budget-friendly journey as they are well-connected to almost all parts of the country.
Places To Visit In Turkey
Where the western landscapes seamlessly blend into eastern cultures, Turkey’s storied history is the perfect spot for a long vacation. Cosy up with a picnic near the Aegean olive groves or drive down to the Mediterranean coastline of Asian Anatolia for dinners against the starlit sky and you will find yourself drifting in a utopian world. Photograph Cappadocia’s chimney rock tunnels and walk along the mile-long beaches in Patara, slowing down only to feast on local delicacies followed by the classic baklava for dessert.
Things To Do In Turkey
A vast country with an amalgamation of traditions, communities and cuisines, Turkey is a dream destination for travellers who want to be out and about for adventure. Whether you want to trek across snow-laden valleys in Anatolia or escape reality in Istanbul’s fairytale markets, there’s always something to do no matter where you are or how many days you plan to stay.
If you are planning a trip in the upcoming months or maybe in the next year, here’s a list of some of the best things to do in Turkey:
- Hike the Lycian Way
- Enjoy hot-air ballooning over Cappadocia
- Unwind in a Turkish bath
- Luxuriate in thermal hot springs in Pamukkale
- Visit the Hagia Sophia Museum
If you are looking to book a hotel or Airbnb during your travels in the country of Turkey, make sure you get your room in advance and fill out the mandatory documentation like any contact tracing forms or checks if you may require. All hotels are now open and offer a deep sanitization process during and after every guest, and community areas like pools are open again for visitors.
The hospitality industry in Turkey is reopening but the safety of the travellers and staff remains a key priority. While all restaurants are back to normal functioning at full capacity, many of the food outlets also provide delivery or takeaway services. Food franchises are also operational and open to customers.
What To Pack
If you are planning a trip to Turkey soon, you will need to pack a few extra items in your backpack considering the new scene of post-pandemic travel. The most important thing during your travel is to minimize the risk of becoming unwell as well as keeping others around you safe. Here’s Travel Triangle’s comprehensive list of things to pack:
1. Comfortable cotton clothing for sightseeing and beachwear.
2. A pack of disposable face masks or 2-3 reusable face masks.
3. Sanitiser for personal and a solution for outdoor/surface use.
4. A personal PPE kit that will include a face shield, sanitiser sachets, and a pair of disposable gloves for flight, train, or any kind of commute.
Further Travel Tips
1. Travellers must wear a mask wherever required or requested in public places or during their commute. Most places such as restaurants and shopping centres can still have this restriction and charge you a fine for not following this guideline.
2. Make sure you carry your sanitiser and some disinfectant wipes if you are planning to participate in adventurous activities.
3. People over the age of 65 or children under the age of 10 are advised to practice precautions before planning an international trip.
From the postcard scenes of hot-air balloons over Cappadocia to touring through the backroads of the country to explore underrated destinations like Konya, Antalya, Marmaris and Side, an adventure across this country can transport you to a world of fascinating cultures. Whether you want to learn about the European influences that are showcased boldly or dig deep into the origins of Turkish coffee, learn more about our Turkey tour packages to plan a memorable international trip.
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Cover Image Credit: Darren Lee for Unsplash
Frequently Asked Questions about Post-Covid Guide for Turkey
Is it safe to visit Turkey for non-essential travel in the upcoming months?
Yes, starting from June, it is safe to travel to the country of Turkey as the government has removed all Covid-19 related restrictions and resumed tourism activities.
Is it mandatory to self-isolate upon arrival in Turkey?
No, it is no longer mandatory to self-isolate if you do not present with symptoms during arrival and has a negative Covid-19 test or certificate of vaccination. If you do get tested positive, isolation will be mandatory. It is a precautionary measure taken by the government to avoid community transmission for incoming travellers.
Can I travel to Turkey for a short stay and avoid the mandatory quarantine?
According to the current guidelines, you do not need to quarantine if you are coming on short-stay visas which are also commonly dubbed tourist visas or e-visas. The minimum duration of the general visa is 60 days which can be extended to 90 days with the special visa.
Can I get a visa on arrival in Turkey?
If you are an Indian passport holder, it is mandatory to obtain an e-visa sticker in order to enter Turkey. There’s a small fee and it is a fairly simple procedure online to apply for it.
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