Istanbul beaches await day-trippers amid normalization
Emre Eser - ISTANBUL
Hürriyet daily visited beaches on the Black Sea coast of the city as Turkey eases COVID-19 restrictions and followed the works conducted on the shores for Istanbul residents who locked themselves in their homes for about three months due to the pandemic.
Dense crowds are not seen on the beaches compared to the previous seasons, however, operators of seaside facilities are of the opinion that the main intensity will begin from next week.
Residents first try to find out if the beaches are open and ask what measures were taken against the virus, according to operators.
“There is a lot we need to do before putting the beach into service. The sand on the beaches must be sieved and cleaned. We also clean the moss layer on the shore,” said an operator, adding that he is trying to fulfill the deficiencies of the facility because it has only been opened recently.
It did not go unnoticed that a large number of beaches in the north of Istanbul were between 20 and 30 percent more expensive compared to last year.
Entrance fees, which were between 40 and 60 liras ($6-9) last year, vary between 60 and 80 liras ($9-12) this year. This fee includes the use of sunbeds and umbrellas, and food and beverage costs are not included.
Food and beverage prices also differ in restaurants and cafes on the beaches.
Hamburgers and pizzas are sold between 22 and 45 liras ($3-6), while the price of a plate of French fries is around 25-30 liras ($3-4).
The price of a single breakfast can be up to 120 liras ($18) in some facilities.
However, the biggest difference on beaches apart from the price compared to previous years is the social distancing measures.
Those running the beach services are reducing the number of sunbeds to ensure social distancing measures, as the staff at the beach entrances follow the measures, wear face shields and masks in line with the rules.