Should You Sunbathe Topless in Turkey?

Every year, thousands of women rush to the beaches and swimming pools of Turkey. The first day is consumed with thoughts of getting a golden sun kissed tan. Towels are laid on sunbeds, the oil is rubbed into pearly white skin, then the bikini top comes off and they lie back to relax while the world passes them by.

Sunbathing without a bikini top is rarely discussed in public. Women who do not agree with it keep their thoughts to themselves for fear of being called a prude.  Women, who do agree with it, insist the world has moved on and it is just a pair of t****. Whichever camp you are sitting in, does not bother me however I firmly believe that women should not sunbathe without a bikini top when they come to Turkey.

Sunbathing Topless in Turkey

Now, if you are a woman that does this, I am already hearing you cussing and screaming at me. It is your right to get a gorgeous tan without horrendous white strap marks making you commit the most outrageous fashion faux pas known to man.

I hear you girl, I used to do exactly the same thing. However in my nine years in Turkey, I have been fortunate enough to see life from the tourist’s points of view but even more so the local’s point of view. As a tourist in Turkey, you may assume that no one bats an eye lid when a woman sunbaths without a bikini top  but behind the scenes opinions are being formed of you and for two reasons, those opinions will not be that you have a fantastic sun tan.

sunbathing topless in turkey

Typically taking your bikini top off is done in the tourist resorts that adorn the Aegean and Mediterranean coasts. Anyone could argue that these tourist resorts are man-made money making machines that are designed to keep holiday makers happy while they take your money.  They will cater for your every need and let you do what you want, even if it goes against their principals and upbringing.

However remember that Turkey is a Muslim country, and while that young fit Turkish man walking around in Nike shoes and singing like a rap star may seem modern and westernised, the thoughts going round in his head are the complete opposite. These young lads generally come from small villages where a girl showing her assets in public is likely to get her thrown out of the village or committed to mental health therapy for the rest of her life.

So imagine a young naïve lad, leaving his home village to find work in the coastal resorts. He finds a job in a hotel and on his first day, a women laying on a sun bed orders a coke.  He struggles to write down the word on his order pad, as  he cannot take his eyes off her assets. He is embarrassed and he is shy. This goes against every principle that he was bought up with.

Sunbathing

Now this young lad will get used to it. By the end of the summer, he won’t even give a second glance.  What will not change though is his opinion that western women are easy. There is a meeting here of two different cultures that 99% of the time are so different and any attempt to justify  sunbathing without your upper half covered  will be meet with a brick wall.

Even the young naïve lad who is so used to it by the end of season, will tell you in private that no wife or sister of his will ever be seen in public showing off her assets.  The women that do that are easy and cannot complain when men hassle them. So, if you want to be respectful to local cultures, and if you don’t want to be thought of as an easy western woman, then the best advice I can give you is to buy a strapless bikini top and never take it off.

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Natalie

Hi. My name is Natalie Sayin and I am the author of The Turkish Travel Blog. I am an eccentric,Internet addict with a passion for history.

I really shouldn't travel because I can not read maps and always lose my way! But hey, that never stops me and it is part of the fun! Leave a comment below to join the discussions.
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Comments

  1. says

    I’m surprised you didn’t post pictures Natalie…lol. Totally great post. I agree completely – when a lot of Turks and Arabs (and even Hawaiians) see women sunbathing topless it makes them think that all western women are whores. Probably not what the women are intending. I’m no prude, but the place to be topless is probably not in a conservative Muslim country.

  2. says

    Absolute agree Natalie. After almost 13 years living here, it’s something that really annoys me. It’s just a complete lack of respect. Taking it one step further I also get annoyed and embarrassed to see women on holiday here wandering around the shops in bikinis, swisuits and very skimpy shorts. How much effort does it take to cover up?

    • al schroeder says

      You don’t believe that as years pass religion will have less and less influence on how women dress? I see the world becoming more secular and accepting of what was considered blasphemous in earlier times–even in Islamic nations. Tourists will always stretch local morals and customs, but we are learning that taking personal offense tp that is futile.

  3. says

    @Vago. LOL, I had to even change the words Vago because some of them flagged the post up as adult.

    @Ayak. Totally agree on being covered up in shops and restaurants. I know one restaurant here that refuses to allow people in if they are in swimwear.

  4. says

    Well, it looks like I’ve been living in the world of faux pas. I can’t believe that some people wouldn’t take into consideration the religious atmosphere and culture of a country they are partaking in.

    /facepalm

  5. says

    I know that Western Turkey is very European and that it seems like anything goes in some areas, but that’s not really the case. A woman should think twice about sunbathing topless there for a few reasons, but mostly out of respect for the religion/culture.

    And if someone opts to do that, then they shouldn’t be upset if hassled because of it.

  6. says

    @Erica. Hi Erica. I think some people assume that because the western coast has become some modernized that topless sunbathing is acceptable. Plus the Turks do not say anything, instead they see it and then just tut and say “see I told your western women were easy”

    @Lisa. You are right. Even in the most modern of tourist resorts, it can sometimes cause a problem. Mainly because the workers come from the small villages.

  7. turkey's for life says

    With you all the way on this one, Natalie. There’s a hotel near us and the owners have told us they don’t like it. If it was my hotel, I’d put a sign up. If people aren’t happy with it, tough.

  8. says

    This is a great article, Natalie! I was very surprised when a journalist I was escorting in Turkey travelled everywhere with a halter-neck top and a mini-skirt. She was a really nice woman and was not on the hunt, per se, but seemed oblivious to the fact that exposing body parts that are usually covered in Muslim countries is unwise – until a visit to the Fatih market, when a young veiled woman pushed her aside as she shopped! Ladies, be respectful to yourselves and to your hosts, please!

  9. says

    I had no idea that visiting women do this there. Even though Turkey is a westernized country, it surprises me that women wouldn’t question doing this in a Muslim country. I can see how this would bother the people working there.

  10. says

    @TFL’s I agree with you Julia. If it was my hotel, I too would put a sign up.

    @Brenda Farrell.Altinkum where I love is quite westernised but the women will get hassle if wearing little clothing.

    @steve. To be honest Steve, I full believe that a lot of people visit here without knowing it is a Muslim country. For example in most coastal resorts, they serve bacon and sausages with a English breakfast. At times, it would hard to spot signs that is predominately Muslim.

  11. says

    Do you think, as a guy, I need to buy a bikini bottom to fit in? Is that what they are called? The thing swimmers wear? Not sure, but I think I will stick to my baggy surf shorts and am glad to see Turks starting to move that way as well.

    • says

      LOl – I think you are talking about Speedos Aaron. They are a definitely a crime against humanity!!

    • al schroeder says

      It’s going he OTHER way, Aaron. American men are considered backward by wearing baggies and board shorts, and standard boxer-length is taking over from them. It doesn’t look like we will EVER return to our speedo-wearing days, and after seeing middle-aged European men wearing them I sure hope not!

  12. Laurie leverton says

    Nice to see all the comments ref to us respecting the cultures showing respect for their way of life and religeon. Shame that you forget to mention when visiting or absconding to our country as illegal immegrants that they do exactly what you say we shouldn’t do. They drive illegally cos they don’t believe in insurance or licences etc, they think they know best and it is their right to sponge off of our state. It is simple if it offends them then they should make it illegal to do so and punishable by immediate expulsion from the country, but they won’t because it would seriously effect tourism which is a massive part of their economy. So you are saying we should still go there, give them our hard earned dole money and sit on the beach fully covered, as females, to comply with Shiriah law. You need to take a large dose of reality medicine and realise if you want the dosh you have to accept the dross that comes with it. I lived in Saudi Arabia for 21 years and never saw a Muslim woman in a swimming suit let alone a bikini, nor could you even consider going topless even on the private westerner beach areas. They did not sell their religeous principles for the tourist dollar, instead they opted to maintain an attitude of visit us if you wish but our way is the way, if you don’t want our rules and policies then don’t come here. Maybe what we need in the UK is a policy like this, but then we would be mistaken as Australians i guess or classed as racists because we dared to express an opinion. Love and peace to you all, regardless of race, creed, colour or relegion, but remember in our christian heaven, woman are allowed?

  13. says

    Natalie, this post really remind me of my childhood time going to Bali. I lived in Java where most people are muslim. When I was a little kid, while seeing swimsuit is normal, bikini is not. It’s usually the one-piece style, and many times it comes with a little skirt. The first time I went to Bali, this is when I was small, it’s difficult not to stare at topless ladies in the beach. I know some male friends that have pretended to taking picture of themselves, but the camera is angled to the topless ones. But Bali at least is not a muslim island (even though it’s sitting in Indonesia that is majority muslim).

  14. says

    @Laura. Hi and thanks for stopping by my blog. Reading the words of your comment, I feel that my post has upset you somehow. I can assure you that was not my intention. However your comparison of illegal immigrants in your country driving without insurance, thinking they know best and sponging off the state can not really be compared to women sunbathing topless. It is two total different end of the spectrum.

    You will also see that I mention the tourism factor but I feel making it illegal would be going too far. If that was the argument, then it should also be made illegal in Spain, the canary islands and every other destination. Topless sunbathing is also a topic that the western world is split over. Not all western women agree with it. For me rather than make it illegal, lets discuss it as part of sustainable tourism because that is what it is. It is not a crime against humanity, it is not a person committing an act of violence against any other person. It is just a very good topic to discuss when assessing how much sustainable tourism we actually practise when we are in other countries.

    I also never said you should sit on the beach fully covered. My exact words were “The best advice I can give you is to buy a strapless bikini top and never take it off.” I even went that one step further and added strapless so you do not end up with white strap marks which would ruin the look of your evening dress.

    Re Saudi Arabia. I have never been however from what I have heard from other people is that there is a massive problem with illegal booze and the ex-pats. Is that true?

    @Dina. It must of been lovely to grow up in Bali. That is one destination that I would like to visit. I too, have seen the camera come out here and it is not pointed at the angle that it is meant to be. LOL

  15. Donna Schwarz-Nielsen says

    Wonderful post. We will be living in Turkey permanently later on this year and it’s nice to read some common sense from an expat with experience. Looking forward to more.

  16. says

    I would go one step further at the risk of sounding like a boring old f**t. Whether the country is Muslim or not I find it distateful when people flaunt their bits under my nose. I lived in Nice for many years and hated having to put up with semi-naked people in the supermarket when I was doing my weekly shopping. I enjoy bathing nude but would only do that on a secluded (i.e. nobody but me on it) beach or a nudist beach.

  17. dea says

    If Turks don’t like women “showing their assets” then fine, female tourists should go somewhere else and take their money with them. There are plenty of sunny counties in the world were the locals are not so prudish or offensive to visitors.

      • dea says

        All countries, “foreign” or otherwise, are designed to make their own people comfortable. Like I said, that’s fine. But tourists are also designed to make themselves comfortable, so if “foreign countries” object to visitors having their own cultural norms, then those visitors will simply find other places that are more welcoming and tolerant. The sensitive locals can live in peace and quiet with whatever cultural norms they like while the tourists take their money elsewhere. Then everybody will be happy.

        • Nat says

          Dea. I already said in the article that by the end of summer the lads will be used to it and won’t bat an eyelid because you are a stranger. They just don’t want their girlfriends or wives sunbathing topless, but do you think they should change their opinion on that as well, just to make you feel at home for two weeks? What difference is it to you that they don’t want their girls sunbathing topless?

          Re them thinking that you are easy, if you feel that strongly about it, show them that you are not by holding your own. Woman all over the world often have to do that when faced by men who presume too much.

          It sounds like you travel for different reasons than me but you will find the Aegean and Mediterranean coasts of Turkey welcoming. The people are loving and friendly to strangers. You come, you go. That is it. Don’t worry, you will not get stoned for the lack of a a bikini top :)

          Is sunbathing topless also a cultural norm for the western world, or is it a fashion trend? I ask because of the content of these articles that make for interesting reading. They all seem to describe it as a fashion trend, not a cultural norm.

          http://www.thelocal.de/society/20110502-34747.html

          http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/women_shealth/7941571/Theres-nothing-wrong-with-topless-sunbathing.html

          Another favourite quote that I came across.

          “If you reject the food, ignore the customs, fear the religion and avoid the people, you might better stay at home.” – James Michener

          • dea says

            “Is sunbathing topless also a cultural norm for the western world or is it a fashion trend”? That’s a reasonable question. In some parts of “the western world” it is while in other parts it’s not. I am Scandinavian. Freedom of choice is a cultural norm. I go where I’m free to choose without becoming the object of intolerance and chauvinism. It’s not like I expect to walk around topless in the middle of Istanbul. But beaches are beaches and we don’t expect to be governed by archaic dogmas on beaches abroad any more than we do at home. But like I said, it’s your country and if we’re not welcome we can go somewhere else. No problems. Love dea

            • Nat says

              No one said anything about not being welcome Dea but consider this. Turkey is 99% Muslim where traditionally female dress is more covered than the western world. Sunbathing happens on the Aegean and western coasts, is that not enough for you that a Muslim country already shifted their attitude to allow it happen for tourism? If it was such the intolerant society that you make it out to be, sun bathing would be illegal. Perhaps you had better go elsewhere, but nothing will change. The way you travel, you will just see just the tourism side of a country and never experience the true face.

              • kemal says

                Hi Natalie,

                I wonder how do you assess that Turkey is 99% muslim. Did you count it?
                How can you make such a classification in a laic country. Beliefs are between the individuals and their god. Who can imagine what is the beliefs of the individuals?
                In my opinion, which is open to every kind of critics, Turkey is at most 5 to 10% “real” muslim; if you read the Coran completely in your language and observe the lifestyle and behaviours of the people in Turkey you will may understand what I mean.

                I think that sunbathing style and dress modality of the tourists in Turkish coasts is not a serious issue of the Turkish people as it may be for some conservative foreigners. You have to not forget that the belief roots of the turkish people goes up to shamanism which still has many effects on the life style of the people even they are muslim.
                Nobody can deny the traditional tolerance of Turkish people towards other cultures. You can not compare Turkey to some islamic countries, for example like Saudi Arabia.
                Isn’t there some exceptional fanatics in Turkey? Of course there is, as there is fanatics everywhere in the world. (for example: https://www.google.com.tr/search?q=Sam+Bacile&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:tr:official&client=firefox-a&channel=rcs )

                • says

                  Kemal. I might be good but not even I could count a whole country full of millions of people. When population and religion are stated, the numbers are normally taken from Government papers. For example, everyone who has a kimlik has their religion on it. These stats are then shared. That is why the CIA also states 99% but they did not personally count it either https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook//geos/tu.html

                  My classification is based on my experience. I also said in the article that by the end of the summer season, the young boys will be used to topless sunbathing. What won’t change however is their opinion that western women are easy.

                  I agree with your figure that possibly only 10% of Turkey are practising Muslims but the opinion that western women are easy has been expressed by many Turks I know who have never read the Quaran and do not even go to the mosque. While they might not be practising muslims, they still have their beliefs and the traditions that they were bought up with.

  18. aycil says

    I am a turkish girl, grew in Istanbul and do may holidays in Izmir. Turkey is a secular country where we try to advance in individual rights. Honestly, I think this post is not reflecting “the respect by occidentals” but a “general assumption” that in “Muslim” countries nothing changes and there people continue to live like in middle age. In catholics, it is also not allowed to have sunbath topless i believe? But you do it, and in Turkey we also do it… or at least some of us doing it… or we try to respect the right of the women who want to do it.. If your social criteria for whole country is the guy which has just left his village then there is something wrong with your image! I’ve never been in an arabic country, but there are considerable number of atheists in Turkey.

    • says

      My whole criteria is not just a village boy actually. I have asked quite a few Turkish men and not one of them was happy with their daughter / wife / sister, sunbathing topless.

      Interesting enough, I have also asked men from other countries such as the UK and only half of them were happy with their wives etc being topless on a beach. I was quite surprised with those results.

      It is now starting to appear that this is not about being in a Muslim country. It is a topic that is discussed in every country, with some people saying yes it is acceptable and the other half saying no it is not.
      Natalie wrote about..The Galata Mevlevi Whirling Dervish House and Museum

  19. kemal says

    Natalie,
    I have respect to your experiences and I appreciate your kind interest to Turkey and to Turkish people.
    My opinions also are based on my 57 years of life experience in Turkey where I also travel on Aegean and Mediterranean coasts twice a year.
    I only wanted to share my life experience.
    If state’s papers should be concerned we have first to look at the constitution where it is distinctly stated that “The Republic of Turkey is a democratic, secular and social State governed by the rule of law” and this provision on the characteristics of the Republic, is among the articles which “shall not be amended, nor shall their amendment be proposed”.
    This is not a country ruled by laws of the religion.
    So, we can not say that this country is this much percent muslim, or another religion.

    What is written in the religion section of the identity cards and the numbers taken from government papers mean nothing. This information is only based on old custom (which is contrasting with the laicism of the country and which is always discussed to legislate away) to register on birth of everybody without asking to the new born baby what is his/her belief. Nobody knows how the belief of the baby will be developped and also nobody in future wants to waste time to change his/her registrations on Identity cards. For that reason, in Turkey the demographic statistics may not be a criteria for the religious composition of the people.
    Nobody can know who is muslim, who is jew, who is christian, who is buddhist , who is deist, who is atheist, and so on… We can do such a generalization for every country, every people, even for a country like Saudi Arabia which is ruled by moslem religious law where it should be very difficult to dare to argue other believes. This shows the importance of the laicism.

    Even Turkey constitutionally is a laic country, in practice still there may be some kind of oppressiveness especially from the major religious sect over other believes. This fact comes from centuries and is not very easy to eliminate even by application of laicism.

    I also don’t agree with the idea that Turkish people may have an opinion that western women are easy.
    This is not a correct generalization.
    I can easily say that Turkish people having very close relations for ages with western world knows the western people quite well and have an objective opinion about western people, men and women.

    There is many marriages of Turkish men with western women without any social objection, contrarily with too much social respect.

    Of course there may be always exceptional wrong opinions as there may be everywhere in the world. Isn’t there exceptional wrong opinions of some western people regarding other peoples?

    I would finish by indicating that it is a pleasure to discuss with you.

    • says

      Hi Kemal,

      I think you are looking too much into the religion of a country. All across the world, every country has a fact file. For Britain or America, it will say x% is catholic or muslim. It is what scholars do as there is no other way to gather figures. They can only estimate using the paperwork available to them. Every country in the world has a fact file estimating the main religion.

      If a file says that x amount of the population is Muslim, it does not refer to how a country is governed as this is a completely different matter, even if the country does use religion to rule.

      Re westeners making wrong assumptions, there are plenty. You would be amazed at how many emails I get in a week asking me if Turkey is safe to visit. Where do most of these westerners get the strange idea that Turkey is not safe? The main stream media.

      Nice discussing it with you too.
      Natalie wrote about..The Galata Mevlevi Whirling Dervish House and Museum

  20. kemal says

    Not at all Natalie. I am not looking too much into the religion of the country.
    Please remember that you made mention of 99% which is in fact not correct.

    However as you mentioned, if Turkey was really 99% muslim , topless or even barer women on the beaches should feel much more undisturbed, because their holly Qur’an order them not to stare at unlawful, stranger women.

    When we look at the forum pages where foreigners discuss about safety of Turkey, we can see that most of the foreigners find the country well enough safe.

    http://www.tripadvisor.com/SearchForums?scope=2&ff=367&geo=293969&q=solo+single+traveller&sub-search.x=13&sub-search.y=4&returnTo=__2F__

    Even this situation increases the holiday expenses of the Turkish people, realy they enjoy it.

    • says

      You are focusing on it too much. You are still on about it now but you do not know that 99% of the country is not Muslim. Remember I never stated fully practising Muslims. When those stats are collected, they do not ask people who goes to the mosque five times a day.

      Same as in the UK, someone will say they are a Christian but they don;t go to church. It does not mean they do not believe in their religion. It does not mean they have turned against the environment in which they were bought up. You are focusing too much on a small detail which can neither be proved or dis-proved.

      Also I don’t buy your story that if a majority of the country was Muslim, the topless women on the beaches would feel undisturbed. Like I mentioned in the article, the men that I have spoke to just do not want their sisters, mothers or wives doing it. Hell, if my mum went topless, I would freak. Strangers doing it and I don’t bat an eyelid. Are you telling me if your mum went topless on a beach, you would be happy about it?

      Re if Turkey is safe. Trip advisor does not have the monopoly on what foreigners think about Turkey.

      This page called “is it safe to come to Turkey”, is the second most popular page on my website http://turkishtravelblog.com/is-it-safe-to-travel-to-turkey-in-2011/

      Yesterday I had five emails asking me if they should cancel holidays because of the riots in Libya.

      I still get people asking me if it is safe to come here because of the trouble in Syria.

      I often read articles from Americans saying that they came to Turkey and lied about their nationality. Said they were Canadian.

      Yes, 12 million tourists each year believe that Turkey is a safe country. However there are billions of people in the world and some of them do not believe Turkey is a safe country. Trip advisor does not account for billions of people in the world.
      Natalie wrote about..The Colourful Wooden Mosque of Maral

      • kemal says

        Hi Natalie,

        I would not elongate this much. But still there are misunderstood items.

        I observed a little bit your complete blog. I appretiate it too much. A very laudable work is yours. I think I should read all pages and comments of this blog as long as I will have time.

        Concerning the main subject, may be correct or wrong, but I have every respect to your opinions about demeanour of foreigners in Turkish beaches.
        But when you relate your views to the religion of the people by mentioning Turkey with an adjective such as “99% muslim”, this is wrong. This country doesn’t need such an adjective as UK or some other European country also are not identified with relation to the religion of their peoples.

        For example: It should be wrong to identify France as “this much percent christian”. And would it be correct to criticize the people sunbathing in the beache of Cap d’Agde especially because of the believes of the people in Lourdes (as in case of our village guys)?

        I would say, as you should know, there are three kinds of lies: “lies, damn lies, and statistics” but I looked for you at the web pages of Turkish Statistical Institute ( http://www.turkstat.gov.tr/AltKategori.do?ust_id=11 ) where I couldn’t find any percentage for the religion ratios of the Turkish people. Normally as it must be in a laic country, it is not surveyed officially.

        By estimation of 99% even some blokes obliging their women to be packed from head to foot on Dog Days as well and going then gawking other women on the beach or elsewhere may also be considered as good muslims. Is that correct?

        You say that “Also I don’t buy your story that if a majority of the country was Muslim, the topless women on the beaches would feel much more undisturbed.”
        Well, I sell nothing my views are free to agree. This is what is written in the Quran, as “say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty” ( http://corpus.quran.com/wordbyword.jsp?chapter=24&verse=30 ). Every muslim must strictly obey to the Couran if he/she is real muslim.

        According to your logic, best advice you can give as to buy a strapless bikini top and never take it off, should not be satisfactory. Islam requires much more than this. If islam must be taken into account perhaps something like burqa may be a better suggestion than a strapless top. Fortunately this is not the case in Turkey and everybody is free in his/her lifestyle.

        • says

          Kemal, every country in the world is identified as having a religion. Even if you do not like it. For example, most people when asked to identify America with a religion will say Christians. To delve down into whether they are practising Christians and whether their beliefs and cultures have been influenced by religion is impossible.

          The saying in the Quran of “say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty” has no affect on the women. It is not saying “throw stones at the women”. It is focusing on the mens reaction itself which is nothing to do with the women.

          Re the burqa, it is my understanding that this is not featured in Islam. The burqa was something introduced in the middle east countries and there is nothing in the quran about the Burqua.

          Also like you say, Turkey is a free country so my suggestion that a bikini top is worn is ample enough.

  21. Louis Thorndon says

    I found your article thought provoking. I disagree with it. Western women, by Turkish standards, are very easy. That is part of Western culture. Feminists have fought since the 1960s to end the double standard. In view of that, either do not go to Turkey OR wear Turkish clothes generally OR go topless at resorts. I say that it is a mistake to pretend you are something you are not – lose the top.

  22. Francisco says

    As a Spaniard of age, I recall the same experience when Nordic and Scandinavian women used to sunbath topless in Spain in the 60s and 70s. It was against our tradition and culture. Nobody wanted their systers and mothers to be topless and Scandinavian women were suposed to be easy. No Spanish woman would go topless at the time. But tourism broght new customs to traditional Spain and now you can see wormen in topless in all Spanish beaches. Sometimes topless wormen are the majority of women at the beach. Therefore, I have to disagree. When a foreign woman shows her tits in Turkish beach, it is modernising Turkey, in teh same way her mother modernised Spain.

    • says

      Really Francisco?? You think that by getting her tits out, a woman is helping to modernise the country. I would have thought modernization starts with child education and the attitude towards the women in the home. I also remember most of the western world where women are very much judged on their looks. even in business so I really do not think women displaying their tits helps to modernize a country.
      Natalie wrote about..28 Stupid Questions That People Asked Google

  23. julie donald says

    Sorry i have been going to turkey since 1996 and have never been looked down upon for sunbathing topless. I have met lots of turkish freinds and families and became really good friends with these people and never once have they mentioned this subject. So your the one who is being uptight about this. (Comment edited – please read the comment policy )

    • says

      Hi Julie – if you read the article before commenting, you will find out why Turkish friends and families have never mentioned it to you. They don’t care while you are just a friend. Become their wife or daughter in law and it is a totally different matter. Please also read the comment policy if you want your next comment to be published.
      Natalie wrote about..28 Stupid Questions That People Asked Google

  24. julie donald says

    Sorry natalie i forgot to mention i visit my friend once a year who lives just out side sarigerme.
    She is married to a lovely turkish man and he nor his friends mind her or us sunbathing topless at there pool.
    She is english and he accepts that she does english things.

    • says

      Congratulations to your friend then. She has found a unique man. For everyone man like him there are hundreds with a totally different view point.

  25. julie donald says

    Happy new year natalie. I’m of to see them in may this year and after 16 years you have given me a issue that has never arisen before. His friends and elder members of family visit there home and his brothers and sisters children also visit and they only wear bottom swimwear . He is a highly respected man in this area of turkey who owns a few hotels.
    He is a unique MAN.

    • says

      You have not got an issue if he does not mind topless sunbathing and children don’t really count in that scenario. If he is a hotel owner that explains his relaxed attitude. Hotel owners are used to seeing foreigners sunbath topless. They accept it as part and parcel of the trade. The hotel owner I used to work for never battered an eyelid because he just became used to it. Happy new year to you as well. ;)
      Natalie wrote about..My 2013 Travel Plans for the Bodrum Peninsula

    • Luke says

      …and then why shouldn’t we encourage more turkish men to have a similar attitude, just as the friend of Julie Donald? I really think that if all turkish men would allow their wives to act in an English or in general Western way, wouldn’t this modernize Turkey a lot faster? Unless you are against the westerization of turkish society…?!

  26. atsam demekki says

    I agree with nathalie too. I am from Turkiye and I went beaches of Turkiye a few summer. There are lots of people who have never seen nude woman body in public in his life before. This can struck a man who came to sea from inner side of Turkiye first.. This will be a little disturbing for you thinking somebody watching you while you are sunbathing topless. If I were you I would prefer to go naked beaches in Turkey.

  27. la turca says

    I recently read an article posted on Mail Online revealing the results of a survey in England. Having sex on a first date was considered a big no-no and would reflect bad especially on the woman.
    I grew up on the West coast of Turkey, precisely Izmir and Kusadasi. Meeting topless women on the beach and even nude at times has not been a big deal so far.

    When mum used to take us to the holiday villages to swim in the pool, 80 per cent was topless. Turkish women normally do not prefer to go topless but whoever wants to do that, no one would have the right to say a word to you either.

    I now live in Malta, a Roman Catholic country where swimming topless is illegal and considered a shameful act while people dance without knickers on the box in a party area called Paceville. Now, you decide.

  28. Patricia says

    I am saddened that Westerners go to Turkey with complete indifference to the fact that the Turks made the area with ISLAM essentially a grave yard of Orthodox Christian and Monophysite culture with violence all the way into the middle 1950’s-let’s not count what was done to the Greek Cypriots. I would advocate a boycott of this land at all costs. There have to be places to sunbathe top less or nude, and the Greeks can cook what Turks eat-why support a blood diamond economy. Btw, if you want to promote tourism, then you had best think kindly of who is providing you with a paycheck. Perhaps we in the West should expose this. Turkish disrespectful view of Western women and take said cash and uncovered tatas not withstanding to friendlier climes.

  29. Rayner says

    I am 83 years of age. Live in Britain most of the time. Go to Bali, Indonesia a lot. Love how the children are, they will come up to me, and ask “do I want to cross the Road?” At first I would tell them, thank you but I can cross the road OK. Then I realised that they really want to practice their English. So I will spend say, 15 to 30 minutes with them.
    I designed the first two ringed baby sling when I lived in Hawaii in 1981. I discovered that they use a baby sling in Bali since forever. Even boys as young as eight will carry their very young siblings around in a sling. I feel so much at home as it is possible to be.
    I have my slings made in Bali as the seamstress is very good.
    I think that the reason why you will find in Denmark young women up to all sorts of ages sunbathing nude, as in other Scandinavian countries. It is a matter of economics. They don’t have to frustrate the men in order to purchase unecessary goods. If you rear a man say in England which has a very violent undertow, or of course America. Women are trained or brought up to say no, most of the time. Which of course they are perfectly entitled to do.
    But it has the effect of making many men frustrated and angry. This is not to say Scandinavian women are “easy’.
    Of course they are not, but in my personal experience, one does not have to go through the often complicated ritual present in England before a women will be open to sex.
    I suspect that I am laying myself open to critism. This is a very difficult subject and I don’t want to start a row over what I am trying to say.
    The Scandinavian countries are largely socialist, wheras we in Britain and America are capitalist. Nudism in public places are frowned upon. Whereas in Denmark, and other sociolist countries, women will be nude in any grass covered space that is available.
    The kind of heckling or even forms of violence that is in vogue in capatilistic or very religeous cultures is absent.
    Must go and have some lunch now. I enjoy this blog or whatever you call it. Rayner

    • says

      You bring up very good points Rayner. I don’t think you are laying yourself open to criticism, because they are valid points that should be considered

  30. gerry says

    As much as people should respect a country’s culture etc they should also accept modern western ways such as topless sunbathing if females wish to do so.

    These countries need the money they make from tourists so should learn to cater for them by accepting their western ways.

  31. Donna says

    I am not a fan of topless sunbathing and I am a westerner. I think that its a way for women to try and get attention. They can very easily pull their staps down or even wear strapless.if they dont want tan lines. However, why is it that we should respect their culture when they dont respect ours? I dont see them taking their headscarves off when they come here and wearing shorts and sundresses like we do. Yet we should be forced to cover our head if we visit their Country. B.S!

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