Turkish pharmacies are great. They go out of their way to help travelers. Many medicines usually only available on prescription in the UK are available over the counter. The pharmacist often being in a role more akin to that of the UK General Practitioner. Also (may you guys never need it) the quality of medical care in Turkey is high. Not only is the Turkish medical care excellent it is also very cheap. In some resort areas there are clinics were basic assessment and investigations wil be provided free of charge on production of a valid travel insurance certificate. The private hospitals are excellent. Usually you will be provided with an English speaker to accompany on your appointment. The wait is generally minimal and then medicines purchased on prescription from the pharmacy. A consultation, investigation costing around 30GBP.
Dentists are also much less expensive than in the UK. It’s often best to find a recommendation but most are very accommodating and no long waits for treatment. A replacement filling cost around 20GBP.
There have been some posts where women traveling in coastal regions have been hassled. This might have something to do with attire. Try to avoid beachwear while visiting places other than the beach. In cities remember that while Turkey is a secular culture it is wise to dress like you’re in a big city. For visiting religious sites women should wear a long sleeved tops, long skirt or pants and cover their heads with a scarf or hat. This type of respect for the religion and culture in Turkey is ALWAYS greatly appreciated. Going about alone in Turkey is fine (in East Turkey, it is wise to travel with a group), people have walked about alone all over Turkey day or night and have never had a problem but common sense should prevail in any foreign place.
Be careful of anyone who offers to take you to a great place with drinks, ladies, disco, etc. If you find yourself there and feel uncomfortable, LEAVE, don’t be embarassed, if you find you have been victimized report it to the Tourist Police and local police, again don’t be embarassed. If you feel uncomfortble in any situation not just the one mentioned above, just leave. Avoiding excessive alcohol consumption is also a good idea. You’re on holiday but use your good sense. Avoid places where there is no menu or where prices are not clearly posted. If in doubt about meal or drink price, simply ask! And also bear in mind that the legislation in touristic areas forbids sales persons to “touch” or “hassle” tourists. If you are asked to buy stuff and you will be asked for sure, just say “no thank you” and keep moving. Just be polite and you won’t have a problem. “Hasslers” are also not supposed to hassle you in the street. They should remain on their own premises – can be worth pointing this out!
When you leave your hotel during your stay always tell the staff where you are going. Take along the number of the consular office for your country just in case you encounter a problem and need some help. Keep your money in a safe place, not in your suitcase or backpack. Use the convenient ATMs and be careful when using them just like you would do in your home country. You need a 4 digit pin number to use ATMs in Turkey. The Turkish people are friendly and helpful, they will help you get where you are going. Don’t confine yourself to tourist sites, you’ll be surprised at what’s off the beaten path, some of the best experiences in Turkey have come from just walking around the various districts and talking to people. Go to the local stores, you’d be surprised what you find. Migros, a big shopping center, they are in lots of Turkish cities.
In the summer, it is wise to bring along a hat and drink plenty of bottled water. Water is sold everywhere. Perhaps the most important: open yourself to the friendliness and culture of Turkey, talk to people, learn a few phrases, hello, please, thank you. Also take the time to talk to people. Their outlook on life is fascinating and you’ll learn so much more about the country, its culture and customs. In most of the tourist areas the waiters, barmen etc are a long way from their homes as well as they’ve travelled to work for the season. They appreciate some time out and enjoy a chat. They love to improve their English and take every opportunity.