Ramadan in Turkey can be daunting to any traveler or tourist who has not been to Turkey during this holy month. They may be apprehensive about how it will affect their plans. Otherwise known as the Muslim fasting month, Ramadan involves abstaining from all food and drink during the hours of daylight. You may also hear it referred to as Ramazan and how it will affect your traveling plans will purely depend on where you are.
Day to Day During Ramadan in Turkey
I live on the Aegean coast of Turkey in a town known as Altinkum. It is a holiday resort that bears all the hallmarks of foreign influence. Most of the time, when Ramadan in Turkey has started, I never notice a difference in day-to-day life. Restaurants are open and bars serve beer. I have to ask people whether they are fasting and most of the Turks here do not. I would have to venture into smaller business off the beaten track to notice any significant difference.
A Different Time Every Year
Now nine years ago when Ramadan in Turkey was in the winter months ( It moves forward by 10 days every year) it seemed like every one was fasting, but the resort was quiet then and many people were not working. Reasons for not fasting will vary, depending on who you speak to and where they work.
With temperatures hitting the 40’s, this is a major concern and most of the people in this town work in the tourism industry, driving coaches, guiding boat trips or serving hungry tourists that want to be waited on hand and foot with a smile.
So for any tourist or traveler that is spending time in a Turkish holiday resort during Ramadan in Turkey, chances are you won’t notice that Ramadan in Turkey has started. You might though be woken up by a loud drumming sound before sun rise, this is only the drummer boys going around reminding everyone to eat now, or wait until dusk.
I do set my alarm clock every morning to wake up and get a picture of the drummer boys for my readers, however I am ashamed to admit that I have always snuggled back under the sheets.
If you are going more into the rural and traditional areas, then you will probably met a lot more people who are fasting.
What can you expect when you meet them? Someone who is tired and has no energy. They may be very quiet as they focus on their life in general and then an hour before dusk they will start rushing around in preparation for the upcoming meal. They may shut their shops to go to the mosque or excuse themselves from company to go and pray in another room.They may spend more time than normal reading the Quran.
The last three days of Ramadan is the Turkish national holiday of Seker Bayram. Many offices, workplaces and small shops will be shut but restaurants and bars will still stay open. Have you been to Turkey or anyone else in the world when it was the holy month of Ramadan. If so let me know if it affected your traveling plans and what you experienced?