Tourists warned: no jandals at Gallipoli

New Zealanders going to Gallipoli have been advised to dress and behave conservatively. File photo / Mark Mitchell
New Zealanders going to Gallipoli have been advised to dress and behave conservatively. File photo / Mark Mitchell

Leave your jandals at home and behave with dignity is the advice to New Zealanders thinking of going to Gallipoli for the 95th commemoration of the Allied landing in World War 1.

More than 20,000 visitors, mostly from New Zealand, Australia and Turkey, travel to the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey for the Anzac Day commemorations every year on April 25, the day troops landed and died in their thousands in 1915.

However, Veterans Affairs New Zealand (VANZ) said travellers should plan the trip and take good footwear.

Elaine Myers-Davies from VANZ said in past years some New Zealanders had arrived at Gallipoli wearing flimsy footwear such as jandals.

"To get from the Dawn Service to Chunuk Bair for the New Zealand memorial service, travellers will need to walk several kilometres often on uneven and dirt roads, so sensible walking shoes are a must."

She said travelling New Zealanders should also register with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade safe travel service - the official source of advice for New Zealanders travelling or living overseas.

The site said Turkish authorities would provide extensive security for the Anzac Day services at the Gallipoli Peninsula Peace Park, including restrictions on entry points, and searches of people and bags.

Prohibited items would be confiscated and not returned. No alcohol was allowed.

The website said the Gallipoli Peninsula was equally revered by the Turkish people who also had great losses defending their homeland against invasion.

During the landings an estimated 40,000 Allied trops and 80,000 Turkish troops died. Thousands of bodies were never recovered and items of equipment and human bones continually surface on the hills and tracks above Anzac Cove where the New Zealanders began landing at 6am on April 25, 1915.

The peninsula was also a place of remembrance for other countries that participated in the 1915 campaign, including Britain, France, India, Ireland, South Africa, Canada, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Germany.

Memorial services will be held over two days, starting on April 24 with Turkish, French and British services.

The traditional dawn service at the Anzac Commemorative Site, the Australian Memorial Service at Lone Pine, the Turkish 57th Regiment Memorial Service (57th Regiment Memorial) and the New Zealand Memorial Service at Chunuk Bair would be held on April 25.

New Zealanders going to Gallipoli were also advised to dress and behave conservatively and "generally maintain a suitably dignified manner that respects local customs and sensitivities and the solemnity of the commemorative events."

Because of the congestion visitors could face a wait of several hours to get away from the peninsula after the services.

The website advised travellers to take comprehensive medical and travel insurance that included provision for medical evacuation by air.

- NZPA

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