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06-18-2009, 11:03 AM   #16
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apemen's Avatar

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Welcome to our country Smigol,

It is very likely you'll have a great time in here, and I hope you will.

Don't take those ancient official procedures too seriously

My friend brought me a K20D and 5 lenses from USA and god knows what else he had with him as presents to others.

May I ask you which cities do you plan to visit?

06-18-2009, 11:13 AM   #17
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Travel lens?

If you look at the beautiful city of Istanbul on your travel program, you should take
a lens like the DA 12-24/4 or the DA 15/4 with you.
Otherwise just the DA 18-55 AL II or the DA 17-70/4 is perfect for this trip.

Hartmut from Germany
06-18-2009, 12:45 PM   #18
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I see a lot of people discussing the rules about bringing cameras etc into turkey.

If someone finds a link, can they post the link in the thread on photographers rights and laws, in the gathering events and photo trips section of general talk.

I don;t want discussions about the laws but postings to sites that list the regulations would be greatly appreciated
06-19-2009, 12:36 AM   #19
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It is very funny Take your photography bag and put as much lens as possible bring them with you.You just think which lens you will need more.Dont worry about the customs regulatiıns.If you bring the lenses in a plastic bag and in their boxes than they will think that you are bringing them new to somebody livin in Turkey.Other wise who cares how many lenses does a tourist carry in his photography bag
I live in Istanbul and travelling all around the world for my business and most of the time my Kata bag is with me and 5-6 lenses inside They have never asked the lenses like any where in the world.Trust me and and enjoy your stay in Istanbul

06-19-2009, 12:43 AM   #20
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I also live in Istanbul and make frquent vistis out of country. You really will not get into any trouble for carrying additional lenses. Definitely get your 50mm f/1.4 because Istanbul is VERY colorful at night

Oh and 18-250 is a very nice lens by the way. The convenience of not having to change lenses is a huge advantage. The image quality is not bad at all. Things like vignetting, CA, distortion etc. are fixable with some little post processinga anyway
06-19-2009, 01:00 AM   #21
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don't worry
enjoy turkey.
no problems with the customs.
i work for an international company. we always have visitors from germany, usa, japan etc. they carry huge bags incl. camrecorders, cams, lots of lenses and other acc without any problems.
if you are planning to visit istanbul do not hesitate to cantact us for some help

alper from istanbul
06-19-2009, 02:46 AM   #22
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One of my friends showed this topic to me. You should contact with bactman from this forum.Because he visited Istanbul this April. He brought some lenses.One for me which is very big - Tamron 70-200 f2.8 .
There is no such problem with lenses.You can enter with them without any problem.
Try to get visit places from Bactman, because he visited a lot places.

Last edited by AlexanderMayorov; 06-19-2009 at 04:04 AM. Reason: addition
06-19-2009, 08:23 AM   #23
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Original Poster
Thanks for the great replies!

FWIW, We're visiting these locations as a part of a 13 day trip:

Istanbul, Gallipoli, Canakkale, Troy, Izmir, Ephesus, St. Mary's House, Pamukkale, Hierapolis, Antalya, Perge & Aspendos, Konya, Cappadocia, Urgup & Goreme, Ankara, Gordion, Bursa, and finishing again in Istanbul.


For reference, the turkish embassy website lists this page where they identify what items will go through customs. It's on this page where these comments about electronics appear:
Electronic Equipment:
One black-and-white television; one colour TV (up to 55cm screen); one pocket colour TV up to 16cm screen; one black-and-white television-radio-tape (combination); one video recording camera and 5 video tape cassettes (blank); camera with eight mm (with ten blank films); one slide machine; pocket PC (Up to 128MB Ram); compact disc player; one portable radio and radio-tape (the properties of the radio-tape will be determined by the undersecretary.); one walkman or small tape-recorder; Game Boys without cassettes and cartridge; record, cassette or compact disc maximum of 5 for each; GSM-Pocket phone (With SIM cards) will be permitted to pass through Customs.

Other Items:
One portable typewriter; one camera (plus maximum 5 films); one pram for each child passenger; one bicycle for each child passenger; toys for child passengers (maximum 10); pocket calculator with battery; one iron (with or without steam diffusion); 1 x 1.5 metre seccade (prayer rug) made from wool, cotton or synthetic fabric); one pair binoculars (except night binoculars); one table clock; one gas stove will also be permitted to pass through Customs.
Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Va?ington Büyükelçiliği

(I like the comment about up to 128 MB ram in a pocket pc. )

06-20-2009, 05:09 AM   #24
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I had no idea that Turkish customs had such a droll sense of humour!
06-20-2009, 04:27 PM   #25
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Travel lens?
hm... DA40ltd...
no backpack needed, decently fast, forces you to be creative, excellent IQ and .... excellent IQ and small... did I mention small and IQ?
I think you get me..
For the price/size/performance ratio, there is NOTHING that can beat this little wonder...

06-20-2009, 04:32 PM   #26
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In 2007 I went to France & Israel with my Zenitar 16mm , F50mmF1.7 and FA135mm. Last yr I went to Hong kong with only Sigma 24-60mmF2.8. For travelling light, I probably only take a fast zoom.


I do have Zenitar 16mm 2.8, FA28mm 2.8, Sigma 24-60mmF2.8, F50mmF1.7 , FA100mm 2.8 Macro, FA135mm 2.8 , DA*200mmF2.8, A* 300mm F4
06-21-2009, 12:30 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by bymy141 Quote
Millions and millions of people go to Turkey for their vacation every year, you'll find many, many west and east Europeans there. Experience tells us that Turkish customs are very strict on drugs, but everything else goes through without problems.

- Bert
does smoking a bong considered smoking a drug? as far as I know, bong smoking is permitted there and they have a wide selection of bongs and variety of flavor to choose from.
06-22-2009, 04:25 PM   #28

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It's the motive, I expect.

The "one of each" rule sounds about right.

A handful of different lenses in random plastic bags and stuck into your Lowepro suggests "tourist". Three of the same lens in their nice, shiny Pentax boxes complete with warranty cards might suggest "importer".

I'd stick with the "tourist" look.

And by the way, some countries get quite out of sorts about objects that may be called "commercial samples". It's good to avoid any suggestion of that kind of thing. I don't have any so I've been able to duck that issue entirely.

Remember, you have nothing to declare but your genius (shamelessly stolen from Oscar Wilde).
06-23-2009, 09:03 AM   #29
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I took several lenses to Turkey/Istanbul and was never stopped/questioned/bothered when going through customs. I wouldn't worry about what regulations exist and focus on what you want to capture and experience in Turkey.

As for what I would recommend:

1) Go wide!!!!! DA 12-24mm, Sigma 10-20mm, DA14 or 15mm.

2) Medium range: DA40, Tamron 28-75mm, DA 16-50mm, DA 17-70mm

3) Moderate range zoom: DA 50-135mm, M 135mm F3.5, DA 55-300mm, etc.

4) Maybe low light: FA 31mm, maybe the FA50mm (may not be wide enough to capture night shots or low light captures within mosques/cisterns/etc.).

Feel free to pm me with any questions about my experiences in Istanbul.
06-23-2009, 10:29 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote
does smoking a bong considered smoking a drug? as far as I know, bong smoking is permitted there and they have a wide selection of bongs and variety of flavor to choose from.
It is not the bong that is the problem.

You'll see many people smoking a shisha with tobacco.
It's products like cannabis, marijuana, xtc and anything stronger that can get you into serious problems.
I believe one should stay away from any of these stimuli and it is good custom not to try any border with them.

Istanbul is a big international city with people travelling in from all directions. You can most probably get anything you'd want over there.

- Bert

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