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Istanbul to Fethiye Bus

Our travel tips and experience on catching the 12 hour Istanbul to Fethiye overnight bus.

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Fethiye Panorama

Any travel where you are stuck in a small seat in an upright position sucks. Whether it is the dreaded long haul flight from New Zealand to the United Kingdom or an overnight bus between cities there are usually no comforts to be found. So with some hesitation we booked ourselves on the Istanbul to Fethiye bus.

Blue Mosque Istanbul

Don’t get me wrong, there are some fantastic reasons why you should catch overnight buses. I won’t go into the debate of overland versus air travel in terms of environmental issues as that is a totally different kettle of fish that warrants multiple posts.

But other reasons that matter to most travellers is that firstly, you usually leave late at night and arrive early in the morning which gives you at least an extra day or two of sightseeing rather than having to transfer and wait at airports. Secondly, the majority of overland travel including trains and buses can be cheaper than flying. Once you add transfer costs to/from the airport plus the flight then overland travel is cheaper. Although I will concede that in Europe it is hit or miss with so many cheap flights available with budget airlines.

Finally overnight buses are a great way to save on accommodation. We hate forking out an additional $50 for a late night accommodation so every penny saved means we can indulge our passion for adventure travel or local food at a later date.

Istanbul to Fethiye bus pre-departure

The first thing to note is that there is not really any way to pre-purchase your Istanbul to Fethiye bus tickets prior to your arrival in Turkey. We googled every option looking for help but came up drawing a blank. Doing what we do best, we left it to chance and knew that it would sort itself out once we were on the ground in Istanbul.

No surprises it was incredibly easy to book our trip. We found out that Metro Turizm bus (one of the largest in Turkey) travels overnight from Istanbul to Fethiye every day from 9pm so it was a matter of showing up at the Taksim Square Metro Turizm office (map here) and buying our bus tickets for 60 TL (approximately US$30) on the morning of our departure.

We were even given a free shuttle from the Taksim Square office to the main Istanbul Otogar (bus station) outside the city centre an hour before our overnight bus left.

The Journey

Our tickets said the Istanbul to Fethiye bus would take 12 hours. Factoring in Turkish time we calculated more like 13 – 14 hours in total. Having resigned myself to the fact that I was going to get, at most, an hour or two of sleep we settled in for the long haul.

Immediately we were impressed by the service on the overnight bus to Fethiye. Our seats reclined more than most economy seats on airlines. And the back of each seat was fitted with a small TV screen. Unfortunately my Turkish consists of about 10 sayings to get me by so it was pretty hard to follow what I think was the Turkish version of Days of our lives.

Istanbul to Fethiye bus

Once seated we were offered traditional Cay Tea (pronounced Chai) and Turkish coffee plus a range of snacks. This continued throughout the night whenever we stopped. Which turned out to be about every hour.

We had hoped that would have toilets onboard but no luck there. But thanks to all the frequent stops this isn’t a problem.

Settling in with my book while Adela slept like a log. She has that wonderful gift of being able to sleep anywhere! While the majority of Turkish drivers are have feet made of lead with heavy acceleration and braking our driver was smooth as silk. So believe it or not I even managed about 4 hours of sleep.

I love travelling overland as you do get to see the countryside at it’s best. Waking as the dawn broke high in some mountains still covered in snow is a great way to start any day. We have fallen in love with Turkey and are already trying to plan how we could work here for a few months sometime.

Fethiye Panorama

We have fallen in love with Fethiye

Arrival in Fethiye

Turns out that we were spot on and our overnight bus pulled into the main Fethiye bus station at about 10am. Only an hour behind schedule which is early in our opinion.

We were quickly greeted with smiles and handshakes as seems traditional in Turkey. Everyone is so friendly and just wants to have a chat. And once they found out where we were staying it was a matter of grabbing a lift with a local to our accommodation on the waterfront.

If you want any help sorting out your journey on the Istanbul to Fethiye bus then get in touch and hopefully we can help you out!

 

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33 Comments

33 Comments

  1. TravelEater

    May 1, 2012 at 5:34 AM

    Love Turkish buses (and I hate bus trips)! I especially love the lemon scented hand wash they give out. Turkey is such an amazing country with incredible history, sites, food and some of the kindest people anywhere. Enjoy your trip!!

    • Cole Burmester

      May 6, 2012 at 4:00 PM

      Just got back to Edinburgh and we just want to go back to Turkey so badly! Agree with you on the food and people. Both amazing!

      • mabel

        May 5, 2014 at 9:19 AM

        I lived in Istanbul for 1 year and traveled all around Turkey. It’s lovely

  2. Spencer

    May 16, 2012 at 4:16 AM

    I so want to go to Turkey! I have been there for a day trip and loved what I saw. I can’t wait to get there. It is top of my wishlist!

    • Cole Burmester

      May 16, 2012 at 9:12 AM

      What did you do when you only had one day there?!

      • Spencer

        May 16, 2012 at 9:19 AM

        We went there on a day trip from Lesbos about 25 years ago. I was only 15 and it was a family holiday. From memory I think we just wandered around the old town of Ankarra for a while.

  3. southern travels

    May 30, 2012 at 6:54 AM

    Major thankies for the article.Really thank you! Really Cool.

  4. Caro from Passport and a Toothbrush

    June 16, 2012 at 2:12 AM

    Great post, very useful! Will definitely keep it in mind when we do that leg of the trip ourselves!

    • Cole Burmester

      June 18, 2012 at 8:04 AM

      When are you going Caro? You will LOVE Turkey 🙂

  5. Kelly

    June 18, 2012 at 5:52 PM

    Yaaayyyyim so excited to travel around turkey! Thanks for the post it was really great info! We’ve heard some amazing things about Turkish buses 🙂

    • Cole Burmester

      June 23, 2012 at 6:54 AM

      I only wish we knew a little more Turkish so we could have chatted with everyone 🙂

  6. erin

    June 24, 2012 at 3:07 PM

    hey there! we’re currently in Montenegro for a month but trying to plan our next step. We were thinking of a week or 2 in the Fethiye area before going on to Armenia. Would you recommend that area? Is 1 week enough or are there 2 weeks worth of seeing to be done? Also, I’m just looking into travel options but your review of the bus made me a little less wary of going that route! -Erin

    • Cole Burmester

      June 24, 2012 at 3:42 PM

      Hey Erin thanks for stopping by! The bus to Fethiye was fine. Although if you want to fly then there are lots and lots of cheap flight options too. It just saves you a nights accommodation and you arrive direct into Fethiye.
      A week would be fine there. Would you consider doing a Sail Turkey trip or something? Fethiye is not too big but a great base and lots of day trips could be taken from there. Are you spending longer in Turkey?

  7. erin

    June 24, 2012 at 4:29 PM

    Thanks Cole! Right now we don’t have any definite plans but I think we’ll only spend a short time in Turkey. We want a few weeks in Armenia and have to meet up with some friends in Italy at the end of August. We’re definitely doing budget travel, so I don’t think we’ll do a sailing trip, but we’ve found a great rental in the Fethiye region which we’re thinking might be nice for day trips, relaxing, experiencing the country a little bit. We’re in Montenegro right now, which is beautiful but HOT so the weather might influence our next move 🙂 I don’t know yet how we’ll get to Istanbul but probably bus and train from here.

    • Cole Burmester

      June 25, 2012 at 3:59 PM

      Wow Armenia would be really cool! Just slightly jealous 🙂 If you want any other tips please get in touch with us any time and let us know your plans. Always love to share other travellers tips with our readers.

  8. Ada

    August 18, 2012 at 3:49 AM

    Hi cole wondering if you have any tips and prices for accomodation in fethiye. Thanks in advance

    • Cole Burmester

      August 19, 2012 at 9:55 AM

      Hi Ada,
      Thanks for dropping by the blog. Definitely recommend checking out Fethiye Guest House. Run by some awesome people and the breakfast is one of the best we have ever had for a hostel. They have private and dorm rooms.
      We did a Sail Turkey cruise from Fethiye. Might be worthwhile checking it out – http://www.fourjandals.com/europe/busabout-sail-turkey-review/

  9. Ada

    August 19, 2012 at 12:14 PM

    Thanks for the response Cole.Love the blog by the way.

  10. Lisa

    January 10, 2013 at 4:22 PM

    Hi,

    Asking for some advice! I am looking into traveling to Turkey this year for a cruise with Topdeck that departs and ends in Fethiye. Once my cruise ends on Saturday, I plan to take the bus back to Istanbul for a flight that leaves Sunday at 12:15pm. Do you think that is cutting it too close? Are their cabs from where the bus drops you off?

    Thank you!!

    • Cole Burmester

      January 13, 2013 at 9:23 AM

      Hi Lisa,
      Thanks for your message! The overnight bus for us was fine on time and worked out cheaper than flying. There are plenty of taxis around the area that the bus arrives in Istanbul. I am sure you could probably book one as well although not sure who to contact on that sorry.
      Cheers,
      Cole

    • Oktay

      March 21, 2013 at 9:08 PM

      Hi Lisa

      There is also a metro line under otogar if u wanna go to airport. Just take metro line and stop in zeytinburnu and change the line from there to the airport it takes appromixately 20 minutes otogar-airport. . Of course there is a taxi stop there as well, but ask the price first.have a nice journey

      • Cole Burmester

        March 22, 2013 at 9:56 AM

        Thanks so much for your extra tips Oktay! Much appreciated 😉

        • Oktay

          March 22, 2013 at 10:05 AM

          You are welcome Cole, u have a wicked blog. very informative. Have a nice day.:)

  11. Nádia Pontes

    March 16, 2013 at 7:31 PM

    Hi! Your post really encouraged me. We shall do that on May. Would you have tips about Fethiye? Thanks!

  12. Vanessa

    July 26, 2013 at 12:10 PM

    I am planning a trip to Turkey at them moment and I leave next week. You guys seem experienced in the matter so I was wondering if I could ask a few questions? Your help would be greatly appreciated.

    • Cole Burmester

      July 27, 2013 at 8:34 AM

      Send us an email on our contact page or ask on here Vanessa 🙂

  13. Kim

    February 22, 2014 at 5:41 AM

    Hi Cole, my son is booked on Turkey Sailing in May, 2014 and will take the Metro Turizm solo from Bayrampasa to Fethiye the night before sailing. An email yesterday from Smarttraveller.gov.au advised Australians to reconsider their need to travel to any area within 10kms of the Turkish border with Syria. Wondering what the general consensus is amongst travelers heading south at present.

    • Cole Burmester

      March 4, 2014 at 1:31 AM

      Hey Kim,
      Yes there are dangers when you travel but usually it’s the wrong place at the wrong time. Fortunately the places your son is travelling is not close to the Syrian border. Have a chat with the Sail Turkey team as they are the ones on the ground though so can let you know what the current situation is.
      He will love it!
      Thanks,
      Cole

  14. Michael

    March 3, 2014 at 2:37 PM

    Unfortunately, we are impatient so spend a lot of time taking internal flights. However the bus system in Turkey, from what I read has improved. You made a good schedule though. Traveling overnight to arrive 10am so free to start the day. Good thinking

  15. hagar

    May 4, 2015 at 12:09 AM

    hii you didnt mention how much did the bus ticket from istanbul to fethiye costed you? and from where can i acess the buss?

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Europe

Tips for Making Any Overseas Trip a Romantic One

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Vacations are a great way to leave our everyday lives behind to spend some stress free time with the one we love. Travel in itself can be quite romantic but there are definitely ways you can spice up your holidays even more.

Follow these helpful tips to make sure your romantic holiday gets off on the right foot and continues to head down the tunnel of love and passion. You can easily turn any part of your travels into a special romantic affair.

Choosing the Right Destination

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Couples should pick a destination which they both will enjoy as this will of course make it far easier to express their love for each other.

Choosing the Right Time

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You may also want to research when the best time is to visit your chosen destination so as to avoid peak crowds or unideal weather conditions.

Choosing a romantic date to travel such as an anniversary, honeymoon, or birthday can also turn any holiday into one filled with more passion. Travelling during Valentine’s Day can make for an especially romantic holiday of which there are many perfect Valentine’s Day destinations.

Fly Business Class

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As a bonus you can many times be granted access to luxurious airport lounges when flying business class which makes waiting for your flight much easier as you are treated to free food and drinks along with clean bathrooms and seating areas.

Private Transportation

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Choose a Nice Hotel

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Eating Out

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Get Dressed Up

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Log Off and Put the Phone Away

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Don’t try to overload your itinerary with too much and avoid setting too rigid of a timeline. Prior planning is important to avoid any unwanted surprises or disappointments when it comes to securing reservations for flights, hotels, or activities.

Should anything go wrong during your travels, you want to have the peace of mind you are protected by travel insurance from InsureandGo. Travel Insurance can help when the unforseen happens while you are overseas.

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How to Plan a Trip to Iceland

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If you have ever heard the amazing stories about Iceland, they are all true!  If you’ve come this far into doing research about how to plan a trip to Iceland, I’m here to help you cross the bridge and fill in gaps so you can make your dream a reality.

As someone who has done this trip, I’m able to assist in every step of the journey.  I’ve boiled this down into cliff notes so you can do your own research after reading them and dig deeper into tours that will fit your personal preferences and budget.

First off, you are going to need to trust the Internet.  It’s a big place with a lot of information that can help you get there in one piece and not be stressed out.  Long gone are the days of visiting a travel agency and having someone plan everything for you – for a fee!  It’s your adventure, and you can know that every item is covered online, you just need to know how to look for it.

The best tip I can give you is to leverage the various Facebook Groups about Iceland.

Resource:  When In Iceland Facebook Group.

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The winter months will allow you to have more freedom as the tourism numbers are down.  However, this comes with the caveat that it will be below freezing and there will be very little sunlight!  The sun is only out for approximately six hours during the month of December!

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Lastly, there are the Summer months.  While you will see a greener country and experience a lot of beauty on that end of the spectrum, it does come with a much higher price tag.  Be prepared to spend more money if you choose to visit Iceland in the Summer.

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You can of course, do public transportation in Iceland.  It’s entirely safe and used by many people.

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Here’s a quick list of places to possibly include in your next European itinerary. 2018 is the year of the underrated vacation spot in our humble opinions, and we want to honor it.

Basque Country:

This place is in this author’s humble opinion easily and hands-down the most underrated little corner of Europe.

And honestly, between the two, the Spanish side of Basque country is going to cost you probably around 50% what the French side will, and most people in the know will agree that the Spanish side is at least 100% more fun!

 

Canary Islands:

There are two ways to do the Canaries: simply fly in and enjoy them, or treat yourself and a loved one to a romantic Canary Island cruise.

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Siena, Italy:

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Brussels:

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Istria, Croatia:

This is one of the world’s best summer beach destinations. It’s incredibly beautiful, and by Western European standards, almost outrageously cheap.

Hipster tourists are starting to come in and drive prices up, but it still remains a great bargain by any standards, and most importantly, it’s a bargain without really having to give up any of our beloved amenities.

 

Budapest:

Budapest could be called the poor man’s Prague, but in reality that name isn’t very fair. For one thing, Hungarian culture and Czech culture are actually extremely different (for one thing, the Hungarian language isn’t in the same family as the rest of Europe, it’s its own thing completely, like the Basque language).

Prague is gorgeous, but it’s getting almost as expensive as the rest of Europe too, and honestly Budapest’s history and culture is much more interesting, especially for the seasoned traveller.

 

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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