Learning Turkish from scratch doesn’t sound practical for a relaxing, memorable Bodrum vacation but putting a few Turkish vocabulary in your pocket may bring various benefits during your stay.
Turkish dictionary published by Turkish Language Association (TDK) contains 111,027 words but an average person uses not more than 10,000 words in a life time.
There are some foreign words commonly used by Turkish people and they can make your life easier. If you can read these lines, you already know what t-shirt, tablet, notebook, check-in, credit card, internet or WC means in Turkish. You don’t need to memorize them, they are all the same!
I have created a travel dictionary, or we may call it a vacation dictionary, which includes some words and expressions that may be handy for you to understand what’s going on around you and help you to express your basic needs when travelling in Turkey.
You don’t need to build a comprehensive Turkish vocabulary set to enjoy Bodrum but still you may want to take a look at the below word list which was divided into sections.
Although Turkish words are pronounced as they written like in Spanish, I know some letters like “ı” or “ğ” may be difficult sounds for a foreigner.
I have searched the internet and found an online English – Turkish dictionary which also gives the pronunciations of Turkish words. Sesli Sozluk is a free and easy to use tool for any English speaker who needs assistance with Turkish language. Mobile applications are also available for both your iOS and Android based devices.
I have taken the above screenshot of Sesli Sozluk and numbered the important sections from 1 to 4.
1 is the input area where you can enter the word you are looking for. It doesn’t matter if it is a Turkish or English word.
After entering your word and clicking the search button – hitting the enter key on your keyboard will also work - the results of your search will be listed at 3.
Label 2 is where you can actually hear the pronunciation of the word whether it is Turkish or English. Just click to speaker icon next to the language code – which are TR for Turkish, EN for International English, UK for British English, US for American English, etc.
Number 4 shows where you can find the mobile application for your tablet or smart phone. Android icon will take you to a page linking to Google Play store, on the other hand, Apple icon will open a page linking to Apple’s Application Store. Click the relevant link and follow the instructions to download Sesli Sozluk into your device.
Unfortunately, you may not hear the correct pronunciation of idioms, verbs which are not in infinitive form and the nouns with personal endings. Still, this is the best tool in hand at the moment and much better than to have nothing.
Each link below will take you to the relevant topic on this page. Just click one of them to find some useful words on that specific topic. When you want to come back this index, click the “Back to Index…” link at the end of each section.
May be: Belki
Not possible: İmkansız
Very: Çok. i.e. “very good” is “çok iyi”.
Thank you (I - singular): Teşekkür ederim
Thank you (we – plural): Teşekkür ederiz
You’re welcome: Rica ederim
I am sorry: Özür dilerim (when you think you did something wrong)
I am sorry: Üzgünüm (when something bad happened)
I’m glad to meet you: Tanıştığımıza memnun oldum
Enjoy your meal: Afiyet olsun
Hi: Merhaba (or selam)
Get well soon: Geçmiş olsun
Good morning: Günaydın
Good afternoon: Tünaydın (not common)
Good evening: İyi akşamlar (can be used both for greetings and good-byes after the sunset)
Good night: İyi geceler (usually used before going to bed)
Good bye (to a person - singular): Hoşçakal
Good bye (to a group – plural): Hoşçakalın
See you later: Sonra görüşürüz
11-19: Easy! Just say “on – 10” and add the number between 1 and 9. For example 14 is “ondört”. You can also derive the numbers for 20+, 30+, 40+, etc. with the same method.
200: İkiyüz (“2 – iki” + “100 - yüz”; 300, 400, 500, etc. are the same).
2000: ikibin (“2 – iki” + “1000 – bin”; 3000, 4000, etc. are the same).
Coffee (instant or filter coffee): Kahve
Coffee (Turkish coffee): Türk kahvesi. You don’t pour sugar into Turkish coffee after it is served. Instead, you should tell how you like it while ordering.
Coffee (Turkish coffee - black): Sade Türk kahvesi
Coffee (Turkish coffee – with a little sugar): Az şekerli Türk kahvesi
Coffee (Turkish coffee – with medium sugar): Orta şekerli Türk kahvesi
Coffee (Turkish coffee – with sugar): Şekerli Türk kahvesi
Draft beer: Fıçı bira
Bottled beer: Şişe bira
Red wine: Kırmızı şarap
White wine: Beyaz şarap
Hot (temperature): Sıcak. i.e. hot tea is “sıcak çay”
Hot (spice): Acılı. i.e. Spicy kebab is “acılı kebap”. If you don’t like “acılı kebap”, you should order “acısız (not spicy) kebap”.
Cold: Soğuk. i.e. cold beer is “soğuk bira”
Beverage (alcoholic): İçki
Beverage (alcoholic and non-alcoholic): İçecek
I am hungry: Acıktım
I am thirsty: Susadım
Meal: Yemek. Yemek also means “to eat”.
Lunch: Öğlen yemeği
Dinner: Akşam yemeği
Red pepper: Kırmızı biber
Let’s go to lunch/dinner: Yemeğe gidelim
Table for two please: “İki kişilk bir masa lütfen” or “iki kişiyiz – we are two people”
Table for four please: “Dört kişilk bir masa lütfen” or “dört kişiyiz – we are four people”
One more beer please: Bir bira daha lütfen
One more cup of tea please: Bir çay daha lütfen
Can I see the menu?: Menüyü alabilir miyim?
I want to order: Sipariş vermek istiyorum
I want to change my order: Siparişimi değiştirmek istiyorum
Is this dish spicy (hot): Bu yemek acılı mı?
Can you bring me some water?: Su alabilir miyim? Put anything instead of “some water”. i.e. “Can you bring me salt?” is “Tuz alabilir miyim?”
Bill please: Hesap lütfen
Where are the rest rooms?: Tuvalet nerede?
Credit card: Kredi kartı
Do you accept credit card?: Kredi kartı geçerli mi?
Credit card pin: Kredi kartı şifresi
Change: Para üstü
Do you accept dollar?: Dolar kabul ediyor musunuz?
What is the exchange rate for Euro?: Avro için döviz kuru ne?
Tip: Bahşiş (see tipping in Turkey for more information)
How much does this cost?: Bu kaç lira?
How much does that cost?: Şu kaç lira?
How much?: Ne kadar?
Any discount?: İndirim var mı?
I want to buy two: İki tane almak istiyorum
I want to buy three: Üç tane almak istiyorum
Help! (S.O.S.): İmdat!
Police station: Karakol
Where is the nearest police station/hospital?: En yakın karakol/hastane nerede?
I need help: Yardıma ihtiyacım var
Can you help me?: Yardım eder misin?
Hammam experience in Bodrum is something you may want to go through. These words are specific for traditional Turkish baths and have no or little use in daily life. I just thought it would be cool to learn a few Turkish Vocabulary to show off when you are back!
Külhan: A large and closed furnace located below the hammam
Tellak: Male masseur of the bath for men
Natir: Female masseur of the bath for women
Peştemal: Silk or cotton cloth to cover the body
Takunya: Wooden clog to prevent slipping on the wet marble
Göbek Taşı: Large marble platform at the hot room where people can get massage or take a nap
Kurna: Marble bath basin for washing up with soap and water
Kese: Coarse mitt for massage used by tellak or natir