Republic Day in Istanbul: the end of tourism for another year

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This weekend (29th Oct) was Turkish Republic day. It is a celebration of the anniversary of the founding of the Turkish republic, in 1923. It is a public holiday in Turkey, although since it fell this year on a Saturday it’s a bit of a cheat really; they give you a day off that you (probably) would have had anyway.

Most years there are parades and fireworks, although this year was a little low-key. We’re still under a state of emergency (whatever that means) after the attempted ‘coup’ last summer, the American embassy is warning its people not to travel to Turkey and is ordering the family of its diplomatic staff to leave.   Tourism (unsurprisingly) is severely down, so maybe fireworks didn’t seem appropriate. There was a lot of flag-waving going on, but not much else.

Republic day normally signifies the end of the tourist season, although many would argue that this year the season never really began.

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Flags are everywhere in Turkey anyway

My whole Turkish adventure started as a four day trip to give me a bit of a break from Bulgaria. Somehow, four days became 54 and I never did get back to Bulgaria. Ah well.

I have a little more time on my tourist stamp, but the weather is turning wet and cold and that normally prompts me to move on. I now have less than a week left here before I change countries (and continents) yet again.

4 replies »

  1. Hello Sarah Yes I heard on the news the other night that the US embassy have pulled their non-essential staff out. Probably need them at home for the Trump horror slowly evolving. It is a shame that their tourism has been hit and you can see why there were no fireworks. It is a shame, as you your blog and photos has shown me how lovely this country looks (well apart from the men mauling over you lol). If only we lived in a safe and happy world. See you soon my friend xx

    • There were some people on an ex-pat forum saying how everyone knows where the compounds are where embassy staff live and where the kids go to school and that is why this happened. I don’t think it’s any more dangerous than before. I think it’s all political; the Turkish want the Americans to hand over some bloke they say is responsible for the coup and so it’s more to do with a diplomatic row. I’m not sorry to be moving on though.
      btw, did u see Trump is ahead in the polls again? A-maz-ing.
      xx

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