World, Africa

South Africans learn Turkish ahead of Turkey visit

Yunus Emre Institute introduces basic language course to equip tourists

Hassan Isılow   | 20.01.2020
South Africans learn Turkish ahead of Turkey visit


The Turkish cultural center in South Africa is providing basic speaking courses and tips to travelers planning to visit Turkey starting this February.

‘‘As of 2020, we are launching a new program under the name of Turkish Travel Essentials. The program will offer basic speaking as well as how to introduce travelers to Turkish language during their trip and holiday in Turkey,’’ Gokhan Kahraman, coordinator of the Yunus Emre Institute told Anadolu Agency on Monday.

He said those who wish to join the crash course in South Africa are required to bring their itinerary ticket for traveling to Turkey so they can be registered for the course.

He said the short course will provide travelers with basic Turkish communication skills by teaching them, words and sentences on how to get directions, restaurants, and dishes while in Turkey.

‘‘Travelers will be informed of where to shop, recommended cities, sites, historical and cultural places to visit,” Kahraman said.

Turkey is one of the leading tourist destinations in the world and attracts millions of tourists annually who come to view its archaeological sites, cultural and natural beauties.

However, at times tourists visiting the country find difficulty in communicating as most locals speak the Turkish language, but with the introduction of such courses and the help of tour guides, visitors are expected to get the best out of their holidays.

The Turkish embassy has also been promoting tourism by hosting annual workshops to educate tour operators and hotel representatives about some of the tourist attractions South Africans can expect to experience when they visit Turkey.

Kahraman said South Africans especially students have shown growing interest in learning the Turkish language by enrolling in different courses offered by the institute.

‘‘A total of 405 students have had the opportunity to participate in the Turkish language course since 2017, as it has been observed that there is an intense interest regarding Turkey and the Turkish language in the country,’’ he said.

Kahraman said Turkish language courses are taught on weekdays by an expert Turkish lecturer from Turkey in accordance with the European Language Standards.

The institute said their student’s age range from 7-70 years, and some of the courses include, Turkish language, calligraphy and Ebru marbling among others.

He said the institute was also promoting educational opportunities for South Africans who want to study in Turkey under the Turkish scholarship program.

Since its establishment in 2009, the Yunus Emre Institute has taught Turkish to more than 100,000 people in 40 countries.

Named after the influential poet Yunus Emre, the institute now has around 50 cultural centers around the world offering artistic, social and scientific programs.

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