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Health and Safety

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Istanbul is generally a safe city  but one should exercise normal precaution as anywhere in the world. Do not carry a large amount of money with you and clutch on to your purse/bag as bag snatching is very common. Be alert when taking a cab as cab drivers do not speak English and you may be taken for a ride, literally and have to shell out a hefty sum. It is better to ask your hotel to arrange a cab for you. Do not form friendship with unsolicited local people who may show undue interest in you as they might view you as a potential buyer and lure you into buying something you absolutely have no intention of. It is always better to move around in groups. Avoid being out till late. Women especially should take care of this. 


It is important to have proper medical insurance when traveling anywhere, including Turkey. You should carry your own supply of medicines as well. The Turkish medical system is very efficient and medical care is excellent.  Doctors generally do speak English and pharmacies, known as eczanes can deal with many minor complaints. Hotels can also get you a doctor if required. Istanbul can get very hot in the summer so it is important to keep well hydrated. Ensure that children are well hydrated as well. Sunscreen is also an important item to remember during a summer trip to Istanbul.Turkish food is generally fresh, healthy and delicious. Everything is safe to eat from ice creams to yoghurts, cheeses, fruits, meats, chicken and fish. Even street food is generally safe but of course one must use common sense when buying any edibles.

Medical emergency - Tel: 112

Coastguard -  Tel: 158

Gendarmerie - 156

Police – Tel:155

Fire – Tel: 110


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