Norwegian Expat Living in Turkey - Interview with Sissel

Published: 13 Mar at 9 AM
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Filed: Interviews,Turkey
Sissel is a norwegian girl who travelled to Alanya, Turkey for the first time in 2002. There she, as many other girls, fell for the charm of a turkish boy and it lasted for about a year. Not being able to forget the boy she once met she again went to Alanya in 2009 and the lovestory continued. This time she decided to take a chanse and packed her bags and moved to Turkey in 2011 to the man of her dreams. 3 years later she is now a happily married woman with a son and living the dreamlife as a housewife in Alanya. Sissel's expat blog is called Hayatim - my life in Turkey (see listing here)

Typical sight in the summer
Typical sight in the summer

Here's the interview with Sissel...

Where are you originally from?
I am from Norway

In which country and city are you living now?
I am living in Alanya, Turkey

How long have you lived in Turkey and how long are you planning to stay?
April 2014 it has been 3 years since I moved here, and we have plans to grow old together here in Turkey as of today. But we cannever know what is going to happen.

Oversight of the harbour
Oversight of the harbour
Why did you move to Turkey and what do you do?
I moved to Turkey because of a boy. He didnt want to move to Norway and the distance was killing us so we had to finish or one of us had to move. So i packed my bags and said goodbye to my old life in Norway.

Did you bring family with you?
No it was just me.

How did you find the transition to living in a foreign country?
For me it has for the most part been easy as we are living in Alanya and that is a tourist place. There is also many foreingers here and I have group of norwegian girls that I spend my days with. This means that I dont interact much with turkish people other than my husbands family.

Was it easy making friends and meeting people; do you mainly socialise with other expats?
Turkish people is not easy to make friends with. I often feel that we get bad eyes from the turkish girls and it is not common to be friends with boys so I am sure my husband would object if I started hanging out with turkish boys. I socialise with other norwegian expats most of the time.

Typical sight in the winter
Typical sight in the winter
What are the best things to do in the area; anything to recommend to future expats?
I love the beach, my favourite place to be. We have a hugh castle, boattrips, roadtrips and just exploring the narrow streets and finding new secrets.

What do you enjoy most about living in Turkey?
I would have to say the weather and the laidback lifestyle

How does the cost of living in Turkey compare to home?
It is much much cheaper than Norway which is reflected on the low income of most people.

Winter in Turkey
Winter in Turkey
What negatives, if any, are there to living in Turkey?
Turkey is a land where there is a lot of corruption, there is no social security like we have in Norway and I dont always like the way the men can treat their wives while all other looks away. Also my heart breaks weekly by the way they treat animals.

If you could pick one piece of advice to anyone moving to Turkey, what would it be?
Relax and never think it will be like where you come from. Never compare things to your old life and you will be just fine here.

What has been the hardest aspect to your expat experience so far?
The hardest parts are around christmas time when I really start missing all things familiar. Living in a muslim country christmas can be lonely.

When you finally return home, how do you think you'll cope with repatriation?
If we ever decide to move back to Norway I think the typical A4 life would slowly kill me.

The joy of my life and myself
The joy of my life and myself
What are your top 5 expat tips for anyone following in your footsteps?
  1. Be flexible. They have something called turkish time here and things never happend on time
  2. Remember that this is a muslim country, even if very moderate, so show respect
  3. Never, ever compare your life here to your old life back home
  4. Learn the language
  5. Go out into the world with a big smile every single day
Tell us a bit about your own expat blog.
My blog is in both norwegian and english and mostly about my everyday life here in Turkey. Mostly write for my family and friends who are far away with many extra bonus readers from here and there. Lots of pictures as I am a hugh fan of dokumenting every step of my life

How can you be contacted for further advice to future expats coming to your area?
Email is the best way

About the author

Expat Blog ListingSissel is a Norwegian expat living in Turkey. Blog description: My life in Turkey (av Sissel)
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