This post was most recently updated on May 16th, 2023
Turkey is one of the best places for European vacation deals. It’s a country of ancient history, stunning natural beauty and endless cultural riches. It’s also one of the continent’s cheapest destinations and offers a broad range of affordable activities. Budget Turkey travel doesn’t mean missing out on the country’s top sights; in fact, you can still see some of the most iconic sites without breaking the bank. Here we reveal how to visit Turkey on a budget while still seeing as many sights as possible in the process
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Be flexible and spontaneous
If you’re determined to visit Turkey on a budget, then you need to be flexible, both with your plans and your budget. Why? Because Turkey is a very cheap place to visit, meaning you can visit some of the country’s top sights for as little as €10 a day.
But this doesn’t mean you need to visit Turkey when no-one else is. Turkey is a busy country, with a busy tourist season, meaning you might get the best visit in the winter or the summer months.
If you’re flexible, you can also visit Turkey in the low season, when prices are lower and visiting doesn’t feel like a struggle. And, of course, you can visit in the off-season (late autumn, winter and spring), when temperatures are cooler, crowds are fewer and prices are lower.
Eat local and try the cuisine
When it comes to visiting Turkey on a budget, the best way to save money is to eat local and try the cuisine. This is easier than you might think.
First, try eating local. Many of Turkey’s cheapest restaurants are in towns and cities, rather than in the hostel-strewn beaches and resorts that are the focus of most tourists’ visits. You can get a delicious meal in these cheap places, and they’re a great place to try Turkish cuisine.
There are also street food stalls in many of the country’s bigger cities and towns – just look out for the signs that say “taksis” (turn into a restaurant) and you can try the local cuisine for next to nothing.
Next, try the cuisine. The dishes that tourists think of as Turkish are soups, mezes and Turkish pizzas. But, surprisingly, Turkish cuisine is also very affordable, with many of the cheapest places in the country offering Turkish and Mediterranean food for under €10 a meal.
Sample Turkish hospitality
When you visit a country, the first thing you should do is get to know the locals. This is the best way to experience the country and to sample the hospitality.
And what better way to do this than by visiting Turkey where you can experience authentic Turkish hospitality at its most authentic – in a Turkish guesthouse.
These are traditionally run family businesses, and they offer guests a wide range of services, from Turkish meals and tours to a roof over your head and a friendly local to chat to.
If you want to experience the real Turkey, a Turkish guesthouse is one of the best ways to do this. Not only do they allow you to experience authentic Turkish culture and food, they’re also a great way to save money while you’re at it.
Dine out for breakfast, lunch and dinner
Dining out is one of the best ways to save money when visiting any country. And when visiting Turkey on a budget, it’s also one of the best ways to experience the country and sample the cuisine.
The cheapest Turkish restaurants are found in towns and cities. These are often located in the old town or in the city centre, and you’ll find them serving the same cheap Turkish and Mediterranean dishes as the more expensive restaurants.
You can save a lot of money by dining out at one of these cheaper places. Plus, these restaurants are often very social, which is great if you want to experience the country while still getting a taste of local life.
If you want to eat Turkish food, but don’t want to spend a fortune, you can eat at Turkish eateries that serve Turkish food for under €10 a meal. This is often possible at these restaurants, which are usually located on the coast or near a town or city centre.
Grab a Morning Coffee Snack
Coffee is a Turkish addiction, and it’s served at every meal. So, if you want to save money while in Turkey, you can’t do better than brewing up a pot of Turkish coffee at home.
This is one of the cheapest drinks in the country, and it costs as little as €2 for a large pot at a street stall. You can brew up a pot at home for less than €1, and Turkish coffee is served at breakfast, lunch and dinner.
So, if you want to save money while in Turkey, you can’t do better than brewing up a pot of Turkish coffee at home. And, it’s also a great way to get to know the local culture and taste authentic Turkish cuisine.
Take The Kids – And Pack Dry Shampoo
If you’re visiting Turkey on a budget, one of the best things you can do is take the kids. It’s a country full of family-friendly activities that are also great for children, and it’s a country where it’s easy and cheap to travel with young children.
If you want to experience Turkey with the kids, you can visit many of the country’s top sights without spending a fortune. And you can experience the country with the kids at many of the activities that don’t cost a cent.
Take the kids to one of the beaches that are dotted all along the coast for free; take the kids to one of the parks that are dotted all across the country, from Istanbul to Cappadocia; and take the kids to many of the museums, such as the Topkapi Palace, that are free.
If you want to experience Turkey with the kids on a budget, you can’t do better than visiting the country with the kids on a budget. And, you can pack dry shampoo to get the hair of the kids back in shape when they come back from the beach and parks, free of charge.