Turkey

Latest update

This Advice was last issued on Saturday, 01 August 2015.   We now advise you to reconsider your need to travel to a wider area in southeastern Turkey due to the current unpredictable security situation (see Safety and security). We continue to advise against all travel within 10 kilometres of the border with Syria. The overall level of advice has not changed. We continue to advise Australians to exercise a high degree of caution in Turkey.

Turkey overall

All areas within the provinces of Batman, Bingol, Bitlis, Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Hakkari, Hatay, Kilis, Mardin and Mus

All areas within the provinces of Sanliurfa, Siirt, Sirnak, Tunceli and Van

Areas within 10 kilometres of the border with Syria

Summary

  • We advise you to exercise a high degree of caution in Turkey because of the high threat of terrorist attack. Pay close attention to your personal security at all times. Monitor the media and other sources about possible new security risks.
  • On 27 July 2015, Turkish authorities warned of possible threats to public transport in Istanbul, particularly metro stations along the Yanikapi-Taksim route, and stops on the Metrobus line. Authorities are reportedly searching for a number of vehicles laden with explosives. Travellers should expect heightened security measures in Istanbul at this time.
  • Terrorist attacks can occur anywhere at any time in Turkey. In recent years, terrorist attacks have occurred in tourist areas and locations frequented by foreigners. See Safety and security.
  • We advise you to reconsider your need to travel to any area within 50 kilometres of Turkey’s border with Syria and not to travel within 10 kilometres of the border with Syria due to the threat of terrorist attack and kidnapping associated with the ongoing conflict in Syria. Turkish security forces have a strong presence in these border areas.
  • There is an increased threat of terrorist attack throughout Turkey as a result of the conflict in Syria and Iraq. The threat is highest along Turkey’s long and porous border with Syria. However, attacks are possible elsewhere in Turkey including in major centres of Ankara and Istanbul.
  • On 20 July 2015 a suicide bomb attack in Suruc (near Sanliurfa), close to the Syrian border, killed 32 people and injured many more. There has been a spike in violent incidents involving Kurdish militants in border areas in the wake of this bombing.
  • There is an increased threat of kidnapping in the regions bordering Syria. Terrorist groups operating in Syria and Iraq have demonstrated their capability and inclination to kidnap and murder westerners. These groups have the capability to extend their operations across the border into Turkey.
  • There has been a significant influx of refugees into Turkey from Syria and Iraq. There are currently an estimated two million refugees in Turkey. You should be aware of the potential for conflict between refugees and locals throughout Turkey and exercise particular caution at times of heightened tensions.
  • We advise you to reconsider your need to travel to all areas within the southeastern provinces of Batman, Bingol, Bitlis, Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Hakkari, Hatay, Kilis, Mardin, Mus, Sanliurfa, Siirt, Sirnak, Tunceli and Van, due to the unpredictable security situation. The situation is more dangerous at night and in rural areas.
  • A commemorative service to mark the 100th anniversary of the August Offensive will be held on 6 August 2015 at the Lone Pine Cemetery on the Gallipoli Peninsula. See our Lone Pine bulletin for further information.
  • Protests have occurred sporadically in major cities in Turkey since May 2013. There were several violent attacks on the offices of political parties during the lead up to the 7 June 2015 elections. Further disturbances are possible in response to political developments. These may form without warning and quickly turn violent. Australians should avoid all protests and demonstrations throughout Turkey.
  • There has been an increase in the number of violent sexual assaults against female tourists travelling alone or in small groups in popular tourist areas of Turkey, including in Istanbul and coastal resort areas such as Antalya.
  • The unauthorised sale and exportation of antiquities is prohibited and carries long jail sentences. You need a receipt and an official certificate to export these items legally.
  • See Travel Smart for general advice for all travellers.
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Entry and exit

Visa and other entry and exit conditions (such as currency, customs and quarantine regulations) can change at short notice. Contact the nearest Embassy or Consulate of Turkey, or visit the Turkish government website for the most up-to-date information.

Australians visiting Turkey for tourism or business purposes, for less than 90 days in a 180 day period, are required to obtain an e-visa. Apply online at the Turkish government’s e-visa website.

Diplomatic and official passport holders must obtain a visa from a Turkish embassy or consulate before arriving in Turkey. Failure to do so is likely to result in refusal of entry.

If you plan to stay for longer than 90 days within a 180 day period, you must arrange a long-stay visa through a Turkish embassy or consulate before you travel, or apply for a Turkish residence permit. For more information on residency permits, visit the Turkish government webpage.

Australians who enter or depart Turkey by land or sea borders, including those who make short trips to the Greek islands and then return to Turkey, should ensure that they are correctly processed by Turkish immigration and that their passports are stamped for all exits and arrivals. Failure to do so may result in difficulties when departing Turkey, including the prospect of fines, detention and/or deportation.

Failure to comply with Turkish visa regulations may result in fines, detention, deportation and a ban on future travel to Turkey for a period of time.

If travelling with children aged under 18 years, you may be asked to provide documentation proving you are the legal parent or guardian of the children.

Make sure your passport has at least six months’ validity from your planned date of return to Australia. The Turkish Government has advised that from 1 January 2015, foreigners entering Turkey must carry a passport with at least 60 days validity beyond the expiry date of their visa or residence permit.

Safety and security

Terrorism

There is a high threat of terrorist attack in Turkey. Terrorist attacks can occur anywhere at any time in Turkey. Pay close attention to your personal security at all times and monitor the media for information about possible new safety or security risks.

There is an increased threat of terrorist attack throughout Turkey as a result of the conflict in Syria and Iraq. The threat is highest along Turkey’s long and porous border with Syria.

On 27 July 2015, Turkish authorities warned of possible threats to public transport in Istanbul, particularly metro stations along the Yanikapi-Taksim route, and stops on the Metrobus line. Authorities are reportedly searching for a number of vehicles laden with explosives. Travellers should expect heightened security measures in Istanbul at this time.

Terrorist attacks have occurred in recent years in tourist areas and against western government interests, including diplomatic premises. Foreigners have been killed and injured. Terrorist attacks have also targeted symbols, buildings and sites associated with the Turkish security forces (such as military barracks and police vehicles), government, judiciary and political parties, businesses, places of worship, banks, financial institutions and automatic teller machines.

Attacks have occurred in Ankara, Istanbul, Izmir, Marmaris, Antalya, Mersin, Kuşadası, Çeşme, Muğla, Manavgat, Gaziantep and Adana. Further attacks could occur in major cities, including Ankara and Istanbul, regional centres and tourist destinations, such as those in the Aegean and Mediterranean regions.

Significant dates and anniversaries are symbolic and terrorists have in the past used such occasions to mount attacks. You should exercise particular care in the period surrounding significant dates and anniversaries including: 15 February (anniversary of Abdullah Öcalan's capture), 21 March (Nevruz, Persian New Year celebrations), 30 March (founding of Revolutionary People’s Liberation Front (DHKP/C)), 4 April (Abdullah Öcalan's birthday), 1 May (May Day), 15 August (anniversary of Kurdistan Workers' Party's first attack), 27 November (anniversary of the founding of the Kurdish independence group, PKK) and 19 December (also a significant date for DHKP/C).

Turkish authorities regularly arrest individuals suspected of planning terrorist activities, which demonstrates an ongoing threat of attack in Turkey.

Recent attacks in Turkey, including Istanbul and Ankara, include:

  • On 5 June 2015, two people were killed and many injured by an explosion during a political rally in Diyarbakir.
  • On 1 April 2015, two armed individuals attacked a police station in Fatih district, Istanbul. One attacker was killed, and the other detained.
  • On 31 March 2015, two DHKP/C members held hostage a prosecutor in a courthouse in Istanbul. The gunmen and hostage were killed.
  • On 30 January 2015, a DHKP/C member fired a machine gun at police in Taksim Square in Istanbul (nobody was injured).
  • On 6 January 2015, a police building in Istanbul’s main tourist district, Sultanahmet, was attacked by a suicide bomber killing a police officer and the assailant, a foreigner who was possibly connected to the Syrian conflict.
  • On 1 January 2015, a suspected DHKP/C member attempted to attack the Turkish Prime Minister’s office in Istanbul with hand grenades.

Areas bordering Syria: We advise you to reconsider your need to travel to any area within 50 kilometres of Turkey’s border with Syria and not to travel within 10 kilometres of the border due to the high threat of terrorist attack and the potential for the spill-over of violence associated with the ongoing conflict in Syria. Turkish security forces’ presence in these border areas has been strengthened.

Turkish nationals have been injured and killed in Akçakale, Sanliurfa and other areas near the Syrian border. Cross-border attacks against Syria could occur at any time and without warning.

Recent incidents near the Syrian border include:

  • On 20 July 2015 a suicide bomb attack in Suruc (near Sanliurfa), close to the Syrian border, killed 32 people and injured many more. There has been a spike in violent incidents involving Kurdish militants in border areas in the wake of this bombing.
  • On 13 February 2015, an explosion occurred in a rubbish bin near a police check point in Sanliurfa’s Suruc district near the Syrian border, injuring two people and a policeman.
  • In July 2014, three Turkish soldiers and six opponents were killed in a clash near the border in Ceylanpinar district, Sanliurfa.
  • In May 2014, a major attack on the Syrian side of the Oncupinar border crossing in Kilis killed around 50 people.
  • In February 2014, a car bomb attack near the Oncupinar border crossing in Kilis province killed more than 20 people and injured a number of others on the Syrian side of the border.
  • In January 2014, a car bomb attack on the Syrian side of the border across from the Turkish town of Reyhanli in Hatay province killed at least 15 people.
  • In May 2013, car bombings in Reyhanli killed at least 50 people and injured more than 100 others.

Southeastern Turkey: We advise you to reconsider your need to travel to all areas within the provinces of Batman, Bingol, Bitlis, Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Hakkari, Hatay, Kilis, Mardin, Mus, Sanliurfa, Siirt, Sirnak, Tunceli and Van. The situation is more dangerous at night and in rural areas. Tensions are high and further clashes are likely.

Kidnapping: As a result of the ongoing conflict in Syria, there is an increased threat of kidnapping in the regions bordering Syria. Terrorist groups operating in Syria and Iraq have demonstrated their capability and inclination to kidnap and murder westerners. These groups have the capability to extend their operations across the border into Turkey. We advise you to reconsider your need to travel to any area within 50 kilometres of Turkey’s border with Syria due to the threat of kidnapping.

The Australian Government's longstanding policy is that it does not make payments or concessions to kidnappers. The Australian Government considers that paying a ransom increases the risk of further kidnappings, including of other Australians. If you do decide to travel to an area where there is a particular threat of kidnapping, you should seek professional security advice and have effective personal security measures in place. See our Kidnapping threat travel bulletin.

Terrorism is a threat throughout the world. See our Terrorist Threat Overseas bulletin.

Civil unrest/political tension

Anti-Chinese demonstrations occurred in July 2015 over the treatment of the Turkish-speaking Muslim minority in China’s northwest. People of east Asian appearance, including tourists from Korea, in Istanbul and Ankara were attacked during the demonstrations.

In October 2014, a number of deaths were reported during violent protests in cities across Turkey in response to the situation in Syria. Further such protests are possible. Turkish authorities imposed night curfews in a number of provinces in southern Turkey. You should follow local sources of information on curfews. Obey all curfews and other instructions from local authorities and be aware that curfews can be imposed or extended without warning. Domestic and international events and political developments, particularly developments in Syria, may prompt demonstrations.

Since May 2013, demonstrations have occurred sporadically in major cities in Turkey. There were several violent attacks on the offices of political parties during the lead up to the June 2015 elections. Further disturbances are possible in response to political developments. These may form without warning and quickly intensify into violent clashes between protestors and police.

Tourists in the vicinity of protests may be affected by violent clashes. A number of people have died and many have been injured in demonstrations or related activity since May 2013. Australians should avoid all protests and demonstrations throughout Turkey.

Other recent protests in Turkey resulting in deaths or serious injuries include:

  • In a series of incidents in December 2014 and January 2015, five people died and others were injured during Kurdish protests in south-east Turkey.
  • In October 2014, dozens died and hundreds were injured during protests – mainly clashes between different Kurdish groups – in south-east Turkey.
  • Following the 13 May 2014 Soma mining disaster, which killed 301 miners, protests around Turkey resulted in several injuries.
  • In May 2014 dozens of protestors and some police were injured and two people were killed in protests in Istanbul.
  • In March 2014, during protests across Turkey one person died in Istanbul and a police officer died in Tunceli.

Police have regularly used tear gas, water cannons and plastic bullets to disperse gathered crowds. The effects of tear gas may be felt in surrounding areas.

Past protests in Istanbul have centred around Taksim Square and Istiklal Street (including streets surrounding Istikal as far as the Galata Tower and down to Kameralti Street, Karakoy) and in Besiktas and in the Kizilay and Tunali areas of Ankara. Protests may also occur in other districts of Istanbul , in Ankara and other cities , including but not limited to Adana, Antalya, Hatay and Izmir.

Violence has occurred regularly during May Day rallies on 1 May in Istanbul's Taksim Square. The Persian New Year (20-21 March), celebrated by Turkey's Kurdish communities as "Nevruz", has also been accompanied by unrest.

Tensions associated with Syrian refugee communities: Heavy fighting in northern Syria can lead to surges of refugees into Turkey, as happened in Sanliurfa province in September 2014. There are an estimated two million Syrian and Iraqi refugees in Turkey. As well as large refugee communities in the southeast of Turkey, there are also Syrian refugees living in Istanbul, Ankara and other major cities. Recently, Syrian refugees have clashed with locals in a number of Turkish cities. You should be aware of the potential for conflict between refugees and locals throughout Turkey and exercise particular caution at times of heightened tensions.

Crime

Muggings, assaults, pickpocketing and bag snatching occur in Turkey, especially in Istanbul in areas where tourists congregate including Taksim Square, Sultanahmet, the Grand Bazaar and the Spice Bazaar.

Foreigners, including Australians, have been drugged and had their passports and other personal effects stolen after being befriended by English-speaking strangers. Drugs may be administered through drinks, food, chewing gum or confectionery. The victim becomes disorientated and compliant and may even become unconscious.

Tourists may be befriended by English-speaking locals, taken to a bar for food or drinks and then expected to pay an inflated bill, often thousands of dollars for a few drinks. Violence is threatened with the demand for payment. These scams are common, particularly in Istanbul. See International Scams.

Tourists should be alert for scams when purchasing carpets in Turkey. Be particularly wary of purchasing agreements involving carpets purchased in Turkey and delivered by post.

Sexual Assault: There has been an increase in the number of violent sexual assaults against female tourists travelling alone or in small groups in popular tourist areas of Turkey, including in Istanbul and coastal resort areas such as Antalya.

Assaults are often committed by someone the victim has recently met. Women travelling alone should be particularly cautious. Female travellers are advised to avoid isolated locations and travelling alone after dark. See our travel information for Women and advice on Sexual Assault Overseas.

There have been reports that minors visiting toilet facilities alone have been sexually assaulted.

Money and valuables

Turkey introduced new banknotes and coins around a decade ago. The new currency is equal in value to the notes and coins being replaced. Banknotes in the E-7 and E-8 series can be exchanged until the end of 2015 and 2019, respectively, at branches of the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey and TC Ziraat Bankasi.

Your passport is a valuable document that is attractive to criminals who may try to use your identity to commit crimes. It should always be kept in a safe place. You are required by Australian law to report a lost or stolen passport online or contact the nearest Australian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate as soon as possible.

Local travel

Australians should take extra care when driving in Turkey. With the exception of major freeways and arterial roads, the standard of road construction is generally poor. Travel at night on most country roads can be very hazardous due to inadequate lighting and local driving practices. For further advice, see our road travel page.

In recent years, train accidents and derailments have resulted in deaths and injuries.

It is illegal not to carry photographic identification with you in Turkey. You should carry a photocopy of your passport with you at all times.

When travelling to the Gallipoli Peninsula Peace Park, be prepared for the variable climatic conditions.You should strictly obey safety signage and directions; and not wander off marked roads and tracks within the Park. If travelling as part of a tour group do not separate from the group and wander the park alone.

A commemorative service to mark the 100th anniversary of the August Offensive will be held on 6 August 2015 at the Lone Pine Cemetery on the Gallipoli Peninsula. See our Lone Pine bulletin for further information.

Visitors should also be aware that winter storms and the heavy volume of traffic seriously affect many coastal roads around Gallipoli, including those in the park. Traffic restrictions may apply to the Anzac Cove road. However, pedestrians will still be able to access places of interest in the park.

The safety standards you might expect of transport and tour operators, including adventure activities such as diving and ballooning, may not be of the same level as in Australia. Sufficient safety equipment may not be provided and recommended maintenance standards and safety precautions may not be observed. Always use available safety equipment, such as lifejackets or seatbelts, even if others don't. If appropriate safety equipment is not available, you should use another provider.

Airline safety

Hijackings have occurred on commercial aircraft in Turkey in recent years.

The Australian Government does not provide information on the safety of individual commercial airlines or flight paths. See instead the Aviation Safety Network website for information on aviation safety in Turkey.

Please also refer to our general air travel page for information on aviation safety and security.

Laws

You are subject to the local laws of Turkey, including ones that appear harsh by Australian standards. If you’re arrested or jailed, the Australian Government will do what it can to help you under our Consular Services Charter. But we can't get you out of trouble or out of jail. Research laws before travelling, especially for an extended stay.

The Turkish government prohibits Australian consular officials providing assistance to Australian/Turkish dual nationals who are arrested or detained. Information on what Australian consular officers can and cannot do to help Australians in trouble overseas is available from the Consular Services Charter.

Foreign nationals involved in any judicial process which results in their arrest or detention may be deported from Turkey after finalisation of court hearings or completion of their sentence.

Penalties for drug offences in Turkey are severe and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences. See our Drugs page.

Drink driving carries a minimum penalty of an on-the-spot fine and confiscation of your driver's licence.

It is illegal to photograph military installations in Turkey.

Mount Ararat, in the east of Turkey, is a special military zone. You need permission from the Turkish government to visit.

The unauthorised sale and exportation of antiquities is prohibited and carries long jail sentences. You need a receipt and an official certificate to export these items legally. Failure to do so could result in your arrest, detention or deportation.

The use of metal detectors to search for historical artefacts is illegal.

Homosexuality is not illegal, however it is not widely accepted. See our LGBTI travellers page.

Public displays of affection could result in prosecution for public order offences.

It is illegal to insult the Turkish nation, the national flag and the name and image of the founder of the Republic of Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.

It is illegal to deface or destroy currency.

It is illegal not to carry photographic identification with you in Turkey. You should carry a photocopy of your passport with you at all times.

Some Australian criminal laws, such as those relating to money laundering, bribery of foreign public officials, terrorism, forced marriage, female genital mutilation, child pornography, and child sex tourism, apply to Australians overseas. Australians who commit these offences while overseas may be prosecuted in Australia.

Australian authorities are committed to combating sexual exploitation of children by Australians overseas. Australians may be prosecuted at home under Australian child sex tourism and child pornography laws. These laws provide severe penalties of up to 25 years’ imprisonment for Australians who engage in child sexual exploitation while outside of Australia.

Local customs

The Islamic holy month of Ramadan will begin in early-June 2016. During Ramadan, Australians travelling to countries with significant Muslim communities should take care to respect religious and cultural sensitivities, rules and customs. In particular, people who are not fasting are advised to avoid eating, drinking and smoking in public and in the presence of people who are fasting. While some parts of Turkey are very familiar with tourists and/or have many locals who don’t fast, other areas are more conservative. For more information see our Ramadan travel bulletin.

There are conservative standards of dress and behaviour in parts of Turkey. Some regions are more conservative than others. You should respect religious and social traditions to avoid offending local sensitivities. If in doubt, seek local advice.

Visitors should dress modestly, particularly at mosques and religious shrines.

Information for dual nationals

Australian males who hold Turkish citizenship may be required to undertake military service upon their return to Turkey. Prior to travel, Turkish/Australian dual nationals should seek advice from the nearest Embassy or Consulate of Turkey.

While Turkey recognises dual nationality, it prohibits Australian consular officials providing assistance to Australian/Turkish dual nationals who are arrested or detained.

If you are travelling or relocating to Turkey please assess your welfare requirements as the services you receive in Australia may not be available in Turkey.

Our Dual nationals page provides further information.

Health

We strongly recommend that you take out comprehensive travel insurance that will cover any overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation, before you depart. Confirm that your insurance covers you for the whole time you'll be away and check what circumstances and activities are not included in your policy. Remember, regardless of how healthy and fit you are, if you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel. The Australian Government will not pay for a traveller's medical expenses overseas or medical evacuation costs.

It is important to consider your physical and mental health before travelling overseas. We encourage you to consider having vaccinations before you travel. At least eight weeks before you depart, make an appointment with your doctor or travel clinic for a basic health check-up, and to discuss your travel plans and any implications for your health, particularly if you have an existing medical condition. The World Health Organization (WHO) provides information for travellers and our health page also provides useful information for travellers on staying healthy.

The standard of medical facilities throughout Turkey varies. While private hospitals with international standard facilities can be found in major cities, services can be limited elsewhere. Private hospitals generally require confirmation of insurance or a guarantee of payment before admitting a patient. Costs can be high. Generally, serious illnesses and accidents can be treated at private or teaching hospitals in Ankara and Istanbul. However, medical evacuation, at considerable cost, may be necessary in some serious cases.

Australians who reside in Turkey for more than 12 months may have access to Turkey’s Universal Health Insurance (UHI). Information on this can be found on the Australian Embassy in Ankara website.

Decompression chambers are located near popular dive sites throughout Turkey in Çubuklu, Izmir, Bodrum, Oludeniz, and Eceabat.

Malaria is a risk from May to October mainly in the south-eastern part of the country, and in Amikova and Çukurova Plain. There is no malaria risk in the main tourist areas in the west and south-west of the country. Other insect-borne diseases (such as leishmaniasis and Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever, CCHF) also occur. CCHF is prevalent in central Anatolia to the north and east of Ankara. Seasonal outbreaks (from early summer) of CCHF have been fatal. We encourage you to consider taking prophylaxis against malaria, and to take measures to avoid insect bites including using insect repellent at all times, wearing long, loose-fitting, light-coloured clothing, and ensuring your accommodation is mosquito proof.

Water-borne, food-borne, and other infectious diseases (including tuberculosis, typhoid, hepatitis, measles and rabies) occur with more serious outbreaks occurring from time to time. We advise you to boil all drinking water or drink bottled water, avoid ice cubes and raw and undercooked food, and avoid unpasteurised dairy products.

Avian influenza: The World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed human deaths from avian influenza in Turkey. See our health page and Avian Influenza bulletin for further information.

Where to get help

Depending on the nature of your enquiry, your best option may be to contact your family, friends, airline, travel agent, tour operator, employer or travel insurance provider. Your travel insurer should have a 24 hour emergency number.

For criminal issues in major cities, contact the local police on 155 (English speakers are not always available). In rural areas, the Jandarma can be contacted on 156. The Police departments of Ankara, Antalya, Istanbul and Izmir have dedicated tourism police units. The Istanbul Tourist Police can be contacted on +90 212 527 4503.You should also obtain a police report when reporting a crime.

To complain about tourism services, contact the service provider directly. If you are not satisfied with their response, you may contact the tourism police on 155 (within city limits) for more advice.

The Consular Services Charter explains what the Australian Government can and cannot do to assist Australians overseas. For consular assistance, see contact details below:

Australian Embassy, Ankara

88 Uğur Mumcu Caddesi
Gaziosmanpaşa Ankara TURKEY
Telephone: (90 312) 459 9500
Facsimile: (90 312) 446 4827
Website: www.turkey.embassy.gov.au

See the Embassy Embassy website for information about opening hours and temporary closures that may affect service provision.

or

Australian Consulate-General, Istanbul

16th Floor, Süzer Plaza (Ritz Carlton Hotel),
Askerocaĝı Caddesi No. 15, Elmadağ
Istanbul TURKEY
Telephone: (90 212) 393 8542
Facsimile: (90 212) 243 1332

or

Australian Consulate, Çanakkale

Kolin Hotel
Kepez 17100
Çanakkale TURKEY
Telephone: (90 286) 218 1721
Facsimile: (90 286) 218 1724

If you are travelling to Turkey, whatever the reason and however long you'll be there, we encourage you to register with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. You can register online or in person at any Australian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate. The information you provide will help us to contact you in an emergency – whether it is a natural disaster, civil disturbance or a family issue.

In a consular emergency if you are unable to contact the missions, you can contact the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on +61 2 6261 3305 or 1300 555 135 within Australia.

Additional information

Natural disasters, severe weather and climate

Severe drought conditions can affect water supply to a number of cities in Turkey. Running water may not be available in many places, including in hotels and other forms of accommodation. You should take additional care to guard against water-borne, food-borne and other infectious diseases (see health for more information).

Bush and forest fires often occur during the summer months (usually June to September), particularly in heavily forested areas and during periods of high temperatures and low rainfall. In the past, fires have burned close to holiday areas on the Aegean and Mediterranean coasts and in the Gallipoli Peninsula.

Turkey is in an active earthquake zone. Our Earthquakes bulletin provides further information on travel in earthquake prone areas.

On 24 May 2014, an earthquake measuring 6.9 on the Richter scale occurred around 25 km north west of Anzac Cove in Canakkale, injuring 90 people. On 28 December 2013, a 6.0 magnitude earthquake occurred in Antalya in southern Turkey. On 30 July 2013, a 5.3 magnitude earthquake occurred in Canakkale. On 23 October 2011, a 7.2 magnitude earthquake occurred near the city of Van in eastern Turkey, killing hundreds and injuring thousands. Many buildings collapsed and infrastructure was damaged.

Information on natural disasters can be obtained from the Humanitarian Early Warning Service. If you are in an area affected by a natural disaster, you should monitor the media and follow the advice of authorities.

Additional Resources

For additional information to assist travelling in this country, see the following links:



While every care has been taken in preparing this information, neither the Australian Government nor its agents or employees, including any member of Australia's diplomatic and consular staff abroad, can accept liability for any injury, loss or damage arising in respect of any statement contained herein.

Maps are presented for information only. The department accepts no responsibility for errors or omission of any geographic feature. Nomenclature and territorial boundaries may not necessarily reflect Australian Government policy.