Correct information! I have been in Turkey since december last year and I will leave on march 10th, making it 90 full days in this beautiful country.
Yes, Turks are the friendliest people you will ever meet on this planet, most of the times because they are, by nature, extremely friendly but sometime also because they will want you to buy something (which is okay, at least the service is a lot better than in many countries in this region where people working in the service industry couldn't care less about you or providing you a good experience).
Yes, english is not a language that you can easily get by with. Actually, it's easier to find old people who can manage broken survival english that the young ones. I was (and still am) impressed by how young people here can't even say the numbers in English. I am not kidding. Nowadays if I need help in the streets or at a shop, I directly go to the oldest person than the youngest one. It's more likely I'll be more successful. Whenever I am in a restaurant and the menu is only in Turkish, if the waiter is a young boy or girl, the communication is really difficult and soon they bring the cook or the manager (who usually are in their mid-40, 50) to answer a basic question if there's chicken or meat in the döner :P
Of course I am learning Turkish and nowadays I already know how to communicate with them in restaurant and shop situations but they are not used to foreigners speaking Turkish so they cannot adapt to your level, which still causes a bit of confusion but with laughs!
But that will certainly not be an issue that will affect in your experience in the country. I am fascinated by it and am sad to have to leave soon! :)
The city of Van has become a favorite destination for tourists from Iran, so much so that local merchants and restaurant owners are learning Persian to accommodate their customers.
The biggest attraction is probably the bars and nightclubs, but if that isn't your thing there are many other attractions. See beautiful Lake Van and Akdamar Island.
Shop for Turkish-made clothes, which many Iranians consider superior in quality to their own local brands. I know someone who makes regular trips to Van to buy clothes, selling them for a profit back home.
Like Iran, every region has its own style of kebab. You could go from place to place trying them all :) My personal favorite is Adana kebab.
It's good to have you back on italki :)
I've never visited Turkey but it's a popular destination and almost everyone from my family
and friends have visited it once. I hope you know someone there because they could take
you to a less touristic and reasonable priced restaurants! Going to Turkey can be money
consuming and it's considered one of the expensive destinations, not like Egypt nowadays
or Syria in the past. What Murillo said is very interesting :)
One more thing, I know your trip isn't all about food, still I hope you try the "Pişmaniye" and
I want to ask you to eat extra from this delicious sweets on my behalf :D
Ok, here's Mark Wiens's Street Food from istanbul :)
I believe you have 14 episodes of his trip to Turkey, and what I like about his show
is that he put the prices of everything he eats :D So it would be a good indicator
for you to manage your budget before you travel.
After a few episodes you would feel like punching the guy in the face ;) hehe
He does this thing with his eyes and head everytime he tastes something delicious!
I don't believe street food is that expensive, but touristic restaurants are.
I second the idea of trying different kinds of kababs and shawarma sandwiches as
well. Here's the episode of Doner Kabab:
Also if you could try fish sandwiches in one of the food booths on the beach in
Istanbul, it would be a good idea because I heard they are usually good.