Traveling with a child/children in Turkey?
They’ll be smothered with love!
Here are some kid-friendly destinations:
—Istanbul, with its castles, palaces, and ferryboats
—Cappadocia, a fairyland of rock pinnacles, caves and even real labyrinths, not to mention hot-air balloon flights
—Bodrum, with a real Crusader castle and lots of gulet sailing yachts for cruises and swimming
—Any of Turkey’s beautiful beaches
Everyone in Turkey will do their best to help with any challenges to travel with a child (çocuk, choh-JOOK) or children (çocuklar, choh-jook-LAHR).
I’d recommend daily yogurt for digestion if your child has no sensitivity to milk products. Here’s info on food allergies.
If you need medical help, ask for a doktor specializing in çocuk hastalıkları (choh-JOOK hass-tah-luk-lah-ruh, pediatric illness).
Virtually all hotels, large and small, can accommodate children of any age in cribs, cots or rollaway beds. Many lodgings have several family-friendly rooms with one large double bed and one single bed. Family suites are also becoming popular: adjoining bedrooms with kitchenette and perhaps two bathrooms. Here’s an example.
When you travel as a family, ask specifically about family-friendly sleeping arrangements. A family suite may be more comfortable, and may cost no more than two separate guest rooms.
Disposable diapers (bebek bezi) are easy to find in pharmacies (eczane), grocery shops (bakkal) and supermarkets. Prima is a prominent brand.
Look in the same places for jars of baby food. Hotels may be helpful in preparing simple cereals, pureéd fruits and vegetables. Ultra-pasteurized milk is sold in every local grocery shop (bakkal).
Public toilets rarely have changing tables (as in the USA), so you may have to improvise, but Turks will go out of their way to help in any situation.
Cities have a few playgrounds, but they may not be convenient to where you’re staying. Still, ask about çocukbahçesi (cho-JOOK bahh-cheh-see, “child[ren]’s garden”).
School children will find lots to entertain them: fortresses to explore, towers to climb, ferryboats to cruise on, lots of fine beaches, trams, sleeper trains, a few cable cars, palaces,caves, spooky underground cisterns (even whole underground cities), and—perhaps the supreme delight—hot-air balloon flights straight out of the Wizard of Oz.
Besides the attractions listed above, teenagers may be interested in Turkey’s excellent windsurfing opportunities,yachting, hiking, and the various historical and archeological sites.
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