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“Amazing Eceabat and amazing TJ”
Review of TJ's Hostel

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TJ's Hostel
Reviewed 9 July 2014

TJ is the best. A group of us have used TJ tour company and we cannot recommend him enough, he goes over, above and beyond what is expected. His main effort is to ensure you have a bespoke package that meets individual requirements. It's a shame that we cannot clone TJ so that he can provide the same service worldwide. I cannot recommend him enough. Thank you TJ you're a star.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled on business
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Thank Gail W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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32 - 38 of 80 reviews

Reviewed 23 June 2014

Tj's hostel is clean comfy with big spacious rooms a great breakfast and staff that were lovely and willing to make our stay as good as possible. Tj himself was absolutely brilliant his tour and knowledge of the gallipoli peninsula was out of this world, at times it was so humbling my partner and myself had goosebumps. You really get the feel for both he Anzac and Turkish soldiers...

Room Tip: Get on board one of Tj's tours and he will make your stay as comfortable as possible.
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank B3nno5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 June 2014

I can only concur with all the positive things that have been said about TJ's tour on this website but in addition I would praise the care TJ gave me and my husband in making sure we got to the cemetery where my great uncle is buried. With that cemetery being off the tourist route it could have been difficult for our young 60 ish/70 ish legs to walk it from the main tourist route but knowing in advance that this was our mission he did everything he could to ensure we made it there and we did. It was the most memorable and affirming experience especially as I was the first one in my Aussie family to have ever made it there.

I mention this because before departure from UK I was quite concerned about going all that way and perhaps not getting to the grave knowing it was off the beaten track. TJ was true to his word all down the line and if you have any doubts or questions like this he is the person to approach. Even though I did a fair bit of research in advance I couldn't find any other source for the kind of information TJ was able to give us and we are so thankful to him for his kindness and hospitality. He is a gem.

About the mainstream tour that we also had the benefit of we particularly appreciated the way TJ personalised the tour by reading extracts from the ANZAC's letters and diaries - it brought home the tragedy of the whole engagement. When you see that beautiful, peaceful pristine landscape today particularly in spring it hard to imagine the horrors that were perpetrated there but TJ brings it more alive and especially the impact it had on both the allied and Turkish soldiers. As a Turkish Aussie who can better understand all his own people than TJ. He conveys how much both sides suffered there. But of course we were attacking their country and Gallipoli is as important a place for the Turkish people as it is for us Aussies in forging their national identity. He also reminded us that Aboriginal Aussies were amongst soldiers fighting at Gallipoli as they were in many theatres of war. As a scholar with a deep and detailed knowledge of his subject he introduces some interesting and contemporary perceptions into his account of Gallipoli's history that brings it into our own time where it is very much alive if you want to see it. His is an anti-war stance when all those unresolved remnants of WW1 are now seeping again to the surface.

There were some delays during the collection & return to our hotel in Istanbul but to be honest when you see how the tour operators create order out of the chaos of tourists wanting to do their own thing, often at the last minute it is a little miracle that they achieve what they do. And the overall experience for us was so mind-blowing nothing could detract from the great privilege of having the opportunity to experience it.

A 2 day excursion with a stay over in Eceabat is definitely the best way to appreciate all the excursion has to offer. TJ's Hotel is first rate and all the staff delightful. To take in the intensity of the visit and all there is to learn it is excellent to have a very comfortable hotel nearby to relax and have the space of mind to absorb it all. The next day we went on the Troy tour which was also very interesting and we had another excellent tour guide in Mustafa Askin who is a foremost authority on the site and a writer.

A month after our return home the excursion stays as alive and memorable as it was at the time, far surpassing our expectations and this is a journey I would highly recommend to every-one.

Room Tip: Our room was at front of hotel overlooking the harbour and main street but it was very quiet and we...
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Rosemary O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 May 2014

Well words can not describe how good this company is. TJ is a wealth of knowledge on the Gallipoli campaign. What a great guide and even a nicer person. TJ and his staff are first rate. They all went over and beyond what I expected. I was sad to leave. I can not recommend this company and hotel enough. Can't wait to return. Thank you.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with friends
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Thank Chris3009
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 April 2014

My husband & myself stayed @ TJ's between 22/4/2014 & 29/4/2014.
We were in that part of Turkey for ANZAC remembrance service & look around WW1 sites.
The hostel staff & tours are second to none. We enjoyed every moment. At this time of the year it can get very hectic & extremely busy, but all the staff were very professional in getting over every hurdle. This is our second trip there & certainly not the last as we intend to come back with our children & one day with our grand children. The history around there will never die & we shall remember all the sacrifices of our brave military personnel with outmost respect. The driver & tour guide were excellent & full of information. A short ferry trip will take you to Cennakale, where the sea front promenade, cafes, shops & bargains, naval museum are a must.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank 10Lucie555
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 April 2014 via mobile

A group of 3 of us booked a simple tour with TJs to get to this years ANZAC day service. While nothing necessarily bad happened to us, it is what happened to other people on the tour bus that would deter me from bookin with this company again.

The tour we booked was simply a coach bus from Istanbul to Gallipoli and back. Simple enough, right?

After the Lone Pine service the ANZAC cove setup was very professional and you had to wait for your bus number to be called. I don't know if TJ was trying to make an impression that he was a your guide with connections or what it was but he made it known to the group that he was going to get us out of Anzac Cove first. None of us really minded when we left and we certainly didn't want to push in front of people.

We went for a walk to go and look at a WW1 trench and just so happened to run into our tour group as we were re-entering the gates to the lone pine service. The our guides told us our bus was coming and to go wait up the road. This meant we sat in the woods on the side of the road for 15 minutes in the rain with absolutely no information. Then we were crammed onto a shuttle bus to meet the tour bus, which didn't have enough room for us anyway.

We eventually go back on the tour bus to go back to Eceabat when a few of us realised we were missing passengers! We told the guides several times that we were missing people.. Their first response was that they were finding their own way back to Istanbul, and then the missing passengers were organising a consulate to take them back to Istanbul?!

Only after a few of us started getting really stern with the tour operator (we knew they weren't finding their own way back because all of their luggage was on the coach) did the staff bother to do a head count and do something about it. Mind you, we were back in Eceabat by this stage.

All up about 9 people, including an elderly lady, were left in the cold and rain at Anzac Cove for hours.

I have absolutely no doubt that is a group of us didn't start to get really angry with the tour guides that they would have left the poor people at Anzac Cove.

I also don't think there was an apology at all. All in all I wouldn't book with TJs again.

  • Stayed: April 2014
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3  Thank Kimberlee_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 April 2014 via mobile

Very disappointed!

My husband and I have just returned from our Anzac Cove dawn service 'tour' and are fuming.

2x groups from different busses were left behind at Lone Pine after the last memorial service and were made to sit in the pouring rain for 3+ hours. The Anzac staff at the site were incredibly helpful and were ready to book a private coach to get us all back to Eceabat when a TJs bus finally turned up after many phone calls from some very upset Aussies. According to the Anzac staff, TJs is notorious for this kind of thing and has a really bad reputation.

What happened was; Anzac staff have a brilliant system that ensures effective communication between the tour busses and the site visitors to make sure we are all collected in a safe and organised manner. All visitors were given a plastic card with a number on it that corresponded with the bus we belonged to. When this bus is on approach to the pick up zone the number is broadcast in the Lone Pine site on a big screen and the people belonging to that bus make their way to the correct pick up zone. Two bus numbers were never called out.

Apparently TJs has their 'own system' (the only company out of 40+ other tour operators) where they don't communicate with the Anzac staff, and instead just drive by one of the pick up zones (there are five different ones and they don't tell their customers which one to go to and when) and we are expected to be there ready to be picked up. How does that make sense?!?!?!!! The few people who did make it on to the bus told us that they told TJs staff that we were missing but nothing was done to contact us via phone or Anzac site staff to find us, and they left without us! Other busses that were missing passengers communicated with Anzac staff to get announcements made in Lone Pine where 3000+ people were waiting... But not TJs!!!

Three of the people left behind had connections on to Istanbul that were messed up because of this. The rest of us were wet, cold, tired, and very angry. When TJ himself showed up we raised our concerns and made our complaints, but he refused to admit that the problems were is fault! He just wasn't listening and didn't understand that how he runs his Anzac operation is wrong. And it isn't just a 'Turk' thing; every Turk we have met has been so kind, respectful and willing to help you (even when neither side speaks the same language). Oh how I wish that I was on one of the other tour groups with another company!

This day at the Anzac dawn service was so special to us, but it has been completely ruined by TJ and his 'tour'.

No refund was offered.

Shop around and go with someone else.

Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
3  Thank ZovoMu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about TJ's Hostel

Address: Kemal Pasa Mah. Cumhuriyet Cad. No 5/A, Eceabat 17900, Turkey
Region: Turkey > Turkish Aegean Coast > Canakkale Province > Eceabat
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 8 Speciality Lodging in Eceabat
Price Range: £14 - £34 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
TJs HOTEL & TOURS run by a Turkish/Australian couple who are experienced tour operators. Both management and guides have a long running reputation for being the Gallipoli tour specialists, having run daily Gallipoli tours to the ANZAC site for over since 1990. TJs is the closest Hotel to the Gallipoli battlefields located in the town of Eceabat, just 8km from the ANZAC site. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
TJ's Hostel Turkey/Eceabat

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