Thursday, 18 March 2010

The seven tourists you'll meet in Turkey

A quick guide to identifying the different tourists you'll meet in Turkey. Where do you fit in?

A tourist wearing this could be a student. Or maybe they really are stupid?

The student

Characteristics: Slogan T-shirt, carefully ripped jeans, Converse trainers, stained rucksack and student ID card. Here on a budget flight they paid for with their student loan. Keen to visit any free attraction.

Can be found: In Gumbet, trawling the happy hour bars for 2-4-1 cocktails, or trying to get some shut-eye on the beach because they can’t afford the hostel. The student will never be seen before noon.

Favourite phrase: "Do you offer a student discount?"

"What do you mean, there's no camenbert available, dear?"

The middle class snob

Characteristics: Identical sensible jackets, polo shirts, sun hats sensible shoes and matching suitcases. A guide book which failed to mention Turkey was full of Turkish people.

Can be found: At their rented Calis villa drinking gin and tonic by the pool. The village has too many locals and anyway, there’s no Waitrose.

Favourite phrase: "Can’t you speak English for God’s sake?"

"We're gonna need a bigger boat."

The sailor

Characteristics: Gore-Tex jackets, short shorts, deep tan, squinty eyes. Sailing their way around the Mediterranean coast.

Can be found: In Gocek, stocking up on canned food, sunscreen and rum; or three sheets to the wind in the marina bar swapping stories about tsunamis and sharks.

Favourite phrase: "Is starboard left or right?"

Sure, it's nice in Olympos' tree tops - but watch out for the greater-spotted hippy.

The wannabe hippy

Characteristics: Hemp clothing and Birkenstocks. Carefully tousled hair with salon-achieved sun-lightened streaks. Here to experience the culture, play guitar and chill out, man. Eschews other tourists and quickly picks up the lingo. Well, enough to impress the flighty hippy chicks, anyway.

Can be found: Sipping raki in one of Olympos' tree houses, lecturing a trapped-looking crowd of locals about the guiding principles of Buddhism.

Favourite phrase: “When I was in India with Swarmi Shivananda...”

If you eat your roast beef in Turkey, it's considered Turkish food, right?

The bucket and spade brigade

Characteristics: Tramp stamps, hoops, muffin tops and tight, low-cut singlets on the girls; bicep tattoos, gold chains and pastel-coloured vests on the guys. Staying at the cheapest accommodation in Altinkum, and never staying in the same bed twice.

Can be found: During the day: watching the Millwall game at whichever sports bar does the cheapest roast beef dinner. At night: scrapping in the street.

Favourite phrase: "Oi, stay away from my bird!"

Posh and Becks cool their heels after a long day fleeing the paparazzi.

The filthy rich

Characteristics: Tasteful jewellery, bespoke couture, handbag-sized dog, aloof air. Won’t go anywhere without their stylist or long-suffering PA.

Can be found: At their multi-million pound villa with its own private beach, jacuzzi and sauna, or at clubs so exclusive even the staff aren’t allowed to know where they are.

Favourite phrase: "How much for that island over there?"

The golfer may be a walking stereotype.

The golfer

Characteristics: A walking golf stereotype: plus fours, golf cart and shiny new golf clubs bought just for the occasion.

Can be found: In Belek, of course. Stuck in a sand trap or lamenting the water features of one of the resort town's seven golf clubs. Later, the golfer can be spotted at the bar, complaining about his handicap and massaging lotion into his sunburnt bald patch.

Favourite phrase: "Fore!"


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