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About Ankara

Ankara is the artistic capital city of Turkey. With a population of 4.5 million people, it is the cultural hub of Turkey. Ankara is a dream come true to lovers of theatre and ballet, and its rich history adds to its splendour too. Famous tourist attractions include the State Opera Ballet, Goksu Park and Atatürk Mausoleum.

Cheap flights to Ankara are now available, so get ready to fall in love with this enchanted city! Ankara is home to the Ankara Esenboğa International Airport (ESB), which is located on a 35-minute drive from the city centre. Ankara Esenboğa International Airport (ESB) serves a multitude of airlines, including Turkish Airlines, Qatar Airways and Lufthansa. Non-stop flights depart from Johannesburg. Flight duration from Johannesburg to Ankara is approximately 12 hours and 35 minutes.

Why visit Ankara

ankara-food-delights

Cafes and Street Life

Ankara is a foodie’s delight, from little cafes serving Turkish favourites like ‘baklava’ and ‘ayran’, to coffee merchants selling unique blends and flavours.

ankara-museum-landmark

Historical Landmarks

Wander the great walls of the Ankara Castle on the top of a hill and delve deep into Turkish history at the Ataturk Museum.

ankara-ballet-theatre

Theatre and Ballet

International productions such as Hamlet and Madame Butterfly have been known to amaze audiences at the State Opera and Ballet in Ankara.

General information

Essential details you need to know before your trip

Country Turkey
Currency Turkish Lira (TRY)
Exchange Rate 1 ZAR = 0.29 TRY
Language Turkish
Hub Airport Ankara Esenboğa International Airport (ESB)
Airline Turkish Airlines
Time Zone GMT+ 3
Travel Adaptor Type F

Best time to visit Ankara

Many tourists prefer warm, non-rainy weather when visiting a new city, however, there is something truly magical about waking up to snow, and piling on layers of clothing before you venture out for your day of sightseeing. Add a steaming cup of Turkish Apple tea to that and you’re good to go! The snowy cold seasons in Ankara falls over the months of December and January. That said, the most popular time to visit this beautiful city is over the warmer, dry months of the year. In Ankara, this is between May and October. During this time the temperatures average between 22 and 27 degrees Celsius, and there are plenty of activities to do. Consider a walking tour of the city with an English tour guide, or hiring a bicycle for a ride in Eymir Park.

Weather & Climate in Ankara

Average temperature (°C) & rainfall levels (mm) per month

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Low °C -5°C -4°C -2°C 3°C 6°C 9°C 12°C 12°C 8°C 3°C 1°C -3°C
High °C 3°C 5°C 11°C 16°C 20°C 25°C 28°C 28°C 25°C 18°C 11°C 5°C
Rainfall (mm) 60 40 30 50 60 40 120 10 20 30 40 50

Overview

Ankara is the largest city in Turkey, and is a great combination of old and new. It has a strong and rich story to tell visitors about the foundations of the country, and yet also offers a free-spirited, youthful outlook on life.

Ankara’s ties go back as far as the 20th century, with the Ottoman leader at the time, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk naming Ankara its capital in 1923. So, it is this city that the Turkey that we know today was built from. Locals recommend that you visit the Ataturk Mausoleum and get a glimpse of the history surrounding this great city.

On the other hand, Ankara is also well known for being a city with many university students walking around and having casual, liberal conversations in the famous Kizilay street cafes, restaurants and night clubs.

Visa & Customs

South Africans who wish to visit Turkey do need a visa to enter the country. Luckily, this visa is easily obtained online and you will be issued an eVisa which you can then just print out. The visa is only valid for one month, and your passport will need to show that you have at least six months left of travel on it.

For more information you can contact the Turkish Embassy:

1067 Stanza Bopape Street, Hatfield 0083 Pretoria South Africa Tel: +27 12 342 6055/56

Health & Safety

It is recommended that your vaccinations are up to date before your trip to Ankara, Turkey. If you are planning on visiting smaller, more rural areas in the country then it would be a good idea to get a vaccination for Hepatitis A and Typhoid.

Ankara is considered to be a very safe city that is accommodating to its visitors. As always, just try to be aware of your surroundings and keep your personal belongings in sight at all times.

Cost of Living

ITEM JOHANNESBURG Cape Town ANKARA
Meal inexpensive restaurant R90.00 R100.00 R59.00
Domestic beer (0.5 litre draught) R22.00 R20.00 R40.00
Cappuccino (Regular) R19.00 R20.00 R25.50
Taxi 1km (Normal tariff) R10.00 R12.00 R9.50
Pack of cigarettes (Marlboro) R35.00 R35.00 R42.00
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