Standing at the junction of two continents, Turkey is a gateway between the Middle East and Europe. Bordered by three different seas, Turkey has a diverse terrain and plenty of awesome riding, both on and off the road. With relatively easy border crossing procedures, it’s a great country to explore on a bike – here’s how.
For US citizens, Turkey requires an e-visa which can be obtained online for $20. The e-visa is valid for 90 days; to import your bike into the country, you’ll need your temporary import document which is valid for 6 months. Generally, Turkish border procedures are fairly straightforward and easy. You’ll only need a carnet de passage if you’re planning to continue onwards through Iran. If you’re coming back to Europe, all you need is your passport, bike documents, and bike insurance (you can buy Turkish insurance in all major cities locally).
Fuel in Turkey isn’t cheap – around $1.34 per liter at the moment – but prices fluctuate, so double-check before going. Istanbul is the most expensive for fuel, whereas in the provinces, it may be much cheaper.
Turkey is an all-year-round destination, but expect snow if you’re heading out into the mountains in winter. April, May, September, and October are the best months for riding in Turkey.
There’s plenty of great riding all over the country. From the weird and wonderful landscape of Capadoccia to mountain views and gorges, coastal Mediterranean routes, and hundreds of off road trails, Turkey has got it all. One of the must-ride routes in Turkey is the local “death road” – a gravel road of Bayburt Yolu, a 102-kilometre mountain route stretch with 29 hairpin turns. Situated between the towns of Bayburt and Surmene near the Georgian border, this road is a must-try for anyone on two wheels: