homeTurkey travel guide > Turkey getting aroud - internal travel
Turkey guide
Regions
Traveler café 
Travel directory
 
Last updated : Nov 2009
Turkey Getting Aroud - Internal Travel
Turkey Internal Travel - Getting Around Bahamas - TravelPuppy.com
Note

Road conditions and driving standards in Turkey can be poor. Serious road accidents are common. All visitors should be extra cautious when travelling around Turkey's road network.

Air

Turkish Airlines provides an essential network of internal flights from Istanbul, Antalya, Ankara, Adana, Dalaman, Izmir and Trabzan to all of the major Turkish cities.

The airline (tel (UK office): (020) 7766 9300; fax: (020) 7976 1738) offers reductions of 60 per cent on international flights (with the exception of Middle Eastern destinations) and 10 % on domestic flights to

Sea

Turkish Maritime Lines offers numerous coastal services with their Adriatic Line subsidiary, providing excellent opportunities for sightseeing; they also operate a car ferry between Mersin and Magosa. There are also services between Istanbul and Izmir, with overnight accommodation and ferry routes along Turkey's northern Black Sea coast. A recurrent car ferry crosses the Dardenelles at Gallipoli, from Canakkale to Eceabat and Gelibolu to Lapseki. There are frequent seabus services from Bostanci, Kartal, Kadiköy, Yalova and Büyükada Island to Auça, Bakirköy, Yenikapi and Karaköy. Turkish Maritime Lines offers discounts of 15 % on single and 25 % on return passages for international routes and 50 % for domestic routes to holders of ISTC cards.

Rail

Fares are somewhat low. Many trains of the Turkish Railways (TCDD) have sleeping cars, couchettes and restaurant cars, but there is no air-conditioned accommodation. Fares are more costly for express and mail trains, even though express trains are relatively slow, and some routes are indirect. Steam engines, such as the Anatolia Express, which traverses eastern Turkey, are retained for tourist trains on some routes.

Tickets can be bought at TCDD offices at railway stations and TCDD-appointed agents. TCDD offers discounts of 20 % to holders of ISTC cards. Children under seven travel free; children aged between seven and 11 pay half fare. Discount fares are available for students, groups, roundtrips and sports teams.

Road

There is extensive road maintenance and building programme; 1400km (900 miles) of motorway is under construction.

Traffic drives on the right. In case of an accident, contact the Turkish Touring and Automobile Club (Turkiye Turing ve Otomobil Kurumu), Head Office, Sanayi Sitesi Yani, Fort Levent, Istanbul (tel: (212) 282 8140; fax: (212) 282 8042).

Coach

Many private companies provide frequent day and night services between all Turkish cities. Services are often faster than trains and rivalry between operators has led to lower fares. Tickets are sold at the bus or coach companies' branch offices either at stations or in town centres. One should shop around for the best prices. Coaches depart from the bus stations (otogar) in large towns and from the town centre in small towns.

Car hire

Both chauffeur-driven and self-drive cars are available in all large towns. All international companies are represented.

Documentation

An International Driving Permit is required for visits of over three months. Green Card International Insurance, endorsed for Turkish territory in both Europe and Asia, and Turkish third-party insurance (obtainable from insurance agencies at frontier posts) are also required. Cars can be brought into Turkey for a maximum of six months in one year. On entering, an entry-exit form is filled out. For longer stays, it is necessary to apply to either the Ministry of Finance and Customs or the Turkish Touring and Automobile Club.

Urban

Bus and trolleybus

Wide-ranging conventional bus (and some trolleybus) services operate in Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir. There are buses in all other large towns. These are generally dependable, modern and easy to use, although publicity is non-existent. Tickets are bought in advance from kiosks and dropped into a box by the driver.

Taxi

There are many types of taxi, share-taxi and minibus in operation. Taxis are numerous in all Turkish cities and towns and are recognisable by their chequered black and yellow bands. Metered taxis are available. For longer journeys, the fare should be agreed beforehand. A dolmus is a collective taxi which follows specific routes and is recognisable by its yellow band. Each passenger pays according to the distance travelled to specific stops. The fares are preset by the municipality. The dolmus provides services within large cities to suburbs, airports and often to neighbouring towns. This is a very practical means of transport and costs less than a taxi. Taxis may turn into a dolmus and vice versa according to demand.

Ferry

There are wide-ranging cross-Bosphorus and short-hop ferries between the parts of Istanbul.

Metro

There are plans to construct a metro system in Ankara.

Travel times

The following chart gives approximate travel times (in hours and minutes) from Ankara to other major cities/towns in Turkey.
  Air Road Rail
 Istanbul
45 minutes 6 hours 7 hours
 Izmir
50 minutes 7 hours 10hours
 Antalya
1 hour 8hours -
 Adana
55 minutes 6 hours 13 hours
 Erzurum
1 hour 15 minutes 11hours 18hours
 Van
1 hour 15 minutes 15 hours 23
 Trabzon
1 hour 40 minutes 3hours -
 Mugla
1 hour 25 minutes 10 hours -
Useful travel links
Transportation information on transportation in Turkey