Internet freedom in Turkey is on a constant downward curve with rising instances of censorship on social media and even arrests for journalists/bloggers expressing criticism in the country.
Although Turkey is not a member of the 14 Eyes, it still enforces data retention laws on ISPs in the country who must maintain IP logs of users for a period of 1 year.
Furthermore, Turkey has blocked multiple social media sites like Facebook, YouTube and Wikipedia, along with a large number of news sites before. These problems make it important for Turkish people to use the best VPN for Turkey.
We tested 150+ VPNs in the country and came up with a list of 6 VPNs that are great to use in Turkey. Out of these, ExpressVPN is our #1 recommendation as it offers an excellent no-logs policy and safe jurisdiction, which allows the user to avert Turkish surveillance and data retention.
6 Best VPNs for Turkey (August 2021 In-Depth Analysis)
We tested 150+ VPNs on the basis of their servers, speed, unblocking capabilities, security protocols, privacy features, money-back guarantees, and more. Out of them, 6 passed the test and got listed as the best VPNs for Turkey, offering high-quality features for Turkish residents:
1. The Best VPN for Turkey – ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for Turkey. The provider has an extensive network of 3000+ servers available in 94 countries, including 1 server in Turkey.
If you’re an ex-pat that loves watching Turkish shows, you can connect to ExpressVPN’s Turkish server to access shows like TRT Haber, TRT Spor, TBMM TV, TRT 3, and EBA TV İlkokul easily.
This VPN is also a fantastic option to enjoy geo-restricted streaming services worldwide. You can use its 3000+ global servers to enjoy BBC iPlayer, Disney+, CraveTV, NBC, and Netflix using ExpressVPN.
ExpressVPN offers an average speed of 76 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection, letting users enjoy bufferless streaming and torrenting with it. You can always confirm these speeds through our ExpressVPN speed test guide.
This VPN is one of the most renowned log-free VPNs in the industry, so privacy-seeking users in Turkey can instantly elevate their privacy online with this service. It also offers an effective kill switch that disconnects you from the internet in case your VPN connection drops.
ExpressVPN also offers DNS leak protection, split tunneling, AES 256-bit encryption, and an exclusive MediaStreamer feature to enjoy geo-restricted services and to stay protected over the internet in Turkey. We ensured that this VPN does not reveal your actual location and IP by connecting to its US server and testing it:
As you can see above, ExpressVPN did not leak our Turkish location and IP at all.
Let’s not forget that you can enjoy its services on all popular operating systems and devices like Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS, Fire Stick, Smart TVs, and more.
With these features combined and a reliable logging policy, ExpressVPN offers a great balance between speed, privacy, unblocking power for Turkish users along with a 3-month free subscription on its annual plan. All ExpressVPN’s packages also offer a 30-day money-back guarantee and support 5 multi-logins for users to enjoy.
Learn more about this VPN in our ExpressVPN review.
2. Budget-friendly VPN for Turkey – Surfshark
Surfshark is a budget-friendly option for Turkey. It comes at a meager cost of $2.49/mo along with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
This VPN offers 3200+ servers in 65 countries including 1 server in Turkey. For this reason, Surfshark is a great option for Turkish users that want to connect to offshore locations as a means to hide their IP addresses and obtain better privacy.
This VPN works with Turkish streaming services such as EBA TV Ortaokul, TRT Arabi, TRT Belgesel, PuhuTV, and BluTV and lets you access them by connecting to its Turkish server.
At the same time, you can also use Surfshark’s worldwide servers to unblock and enjoy Netflix, Disney+, CraveTV, Channel4, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, etc. in Turkey.
Surfshark offers an average speed of 66 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection on its Turkish server and lets you access geo-restricted services without any buffering.
This VPN, just like ExpressVPN, is also based in the British Virgin Islands, where no data logging regulations are enforced. As a result, you can count on this VPN to keep your privacy intact from the invasive surveillance of Turkish authorities.
The provider also delivers extra features, including WhiteLister, CleanWeb, and MultiHop, to further boost your online privacy and to help you stay protected from data harvesters and Turkish agencies snooping around for your data.
We tested this VPN’s DNS leak protection feature to check if it doesn’t leak your actual IP. You can check below that it did not leak our Turkish IP address at all:
This Turkey VPN is also compatible with all the major platforms like Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, Android TV, iOS, etc.
This VPN offers all these fantastic features at a very reasonable cost. Along with that, it also comes with unlimited simultaneous connections, which is a standout feature of Surfshark.
Learn more about this VPN in our Surfshark review.
3. Secure VPN for Turkey – NordVPN
NordVPN is a secure option for Turkey, backed up with privacy-enhancing features like Onion Over VPN, Double VPN, Nordlynx, CyberSec, and obfuscated servers. It further offers a strict no-logging policy which solidifies your privacy even further. Agencies in Turkey will have a real hard time uncovering your real identity if you use NordVPN to surf the web.
The best aspect of NordVPN is its extensive server network that includes 5200+ servers in 59 countries including 8 servers in Istanbul, Turkey.
These Turkish servers are great if you are a Turkish expat or a traveller who is away from the country for a while. Just connect to a server in Turkey, and you will be able to access all geo-restricted websites such as Cine5, Kanal D, Uçankuş TV, Kanal 7, Beyaz TV, etc, that are blocked outside the country.
Similarly, this VPN lets all Turkish users out there who are bored of their local TV enjoy multiple geo-restricted streaming services across the world like Disney+ Hotstar, OxygenTV, NBC, BBC iPlayer, Voot, and more.
NordVPN is known to offer great speeds on all its servers. This VPN offers an average speed of 75 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection. You can check out the speeds of its worldwide servers in our NordVPN speed test guide.
Let’s not forget that this VPN doesn’t leak your IP. We confirmed that by connecting it to a French server and conducting a test:
Like all other best VPNs for Turkey, it also supports popular platforms such as Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Firestick, Smart TVs, etc.
At the price of $3.30/mo , 6 simultaneous connections, and a 30-day refund policy, NordVPN is one of the best VPN services for Turkey.
Learn more about this VPN in our NordVPN review.
4. The Fastest VPN for Turkey – IPVanish
IPVanish is the fastest VPN for Turkey. It offers super-speedy connections that give off an average speed of 85.23 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection that lets users stream their favorite content without any buffering and access blocked websites within seconds.
The provider has a network of 1600+ servers that cover 75+ locations on the whole with no servers located in Turkey. However, Turkish ex-pats can still enjoy local Turkish channels like Kanal D, TRT Arabi, BluTV, etc. using this VPN’s servers in Bulgaria, which is a neighbouring country.
Similarly, connecting to this VPN’s offshore servers can easily let you access geo-restricted content such as BBC iPlayer, Sony Liv, Hotstar, UK TV, NHK, CCTV within Turkey that may not be accessible otherwise.
IPVanish is an excellent choice for those in Turkey who want to avoid having their data logged by ISPs, putting their privacy at risk of non-consensual exposure.
It further offers a split tunneling feature, which allows you to split your VPN-routed traffic from normal internet traffic. Its features also include an internet kill switch and ad-blocker too to further enhance your online privacy in Turkish cyberspace.
We tested if this VPN leaks your actual IP by connecting it to a Hungarian server and the results were negative:
The service is vastly compatible with different devices and can be installed on Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS, and a few others, and offers 10 multi-logins.
You can get IPVanish at a price of $3.33/mo along with a 30-day money-back guarantee if you want a VPN offering blazing-fast speeds.
Learn more about this VPN in our IPVanish review.
5. User-friendly VPN for Turkey – CyberGhost
CyberGhost is one user-friendly VPN for Turkey. This Turkish VPN service is compatible with all the major operating systems and devices such as Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Firestick, Android TV, Roku, Xbox, and PlayStation. It als0 offers 7 multi-logins for users to enjoy its services on.
This VPN offers 7000+ servers in 90 countries worldwide along with 40 servers located in Istanbul, Turkey. By using CyberGhost’s Turkish servers, people abroad can also enjoy Turkish entertainment such as TGRT Haber, Ülke TV, NTV Spor, Fenerbahçe TV, Semerkand TV, and MinikaGO.
Furthermore, this VPN is also a treat for all Turkish users as they can easily access multiple geo-restricted contents in their countries such as the BBC iPlayer, Sky-News, Eleven Sports Network, France 24, Hotstar, and CBS using its extensive server network.
CyberGhost offers an average speed of 62 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection which is less than the VPNs above but still offers unblocking capabilities without any lags. You can learn more about its speeds in our CyberGhost speed test guide.
This VPN is known to not log any user data. It also offers DNS leak protection, split tunnelling, kill switch, AES 256-bit encryption, and OpenVPN protocol for users to stay safe and sound while they stream or access blocked sites.
We needed to confirm that this VPN does not leak your actual location and IP address. We did this by connecting this VPN to a German server and the VPN did not leak our IP at all:
CyberGhost comes at a price of $1.99/mo along with a 45-day money-back guarantee and strong privacy controls.
Learn more about this service in our CyberGhost review.
6. Best Torrenting VPN for Turkey – PIA
PIA is the best torrenting VPN for Turkey. This VPN offers 35500+ servers in 78 countries across the globe including 24 in Turkey that are not only optimized for torrenting but will also help you take care of social media censorship rampant within Turkey.
Connecting to this VPN’s Turkish servers will give you a Turkish IP address so that if you’re travelling abroad, you can still stream channels from back homes such as MinikaGO, MinikaÇocuk, Powertürk TV, Number One TV, Number One Türk TV, TMB TV, and Yaban TV.
Apart from bypassing social media restrictions, Turkish citizens can unblock popular geo-restricted content such as Disney+ Hotstar, Voot, Sony Liv, BT-Sports, UKTV Play, CBS, Spotify, and Euro-Sport easily using its worldwide servers.
PIA offers an average speed of 58 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection that is great for torrenting files easily. You can check out this VPN’s worldwide server speeds further in our PIA speed test guide.
PIA is equipped with IPv6 leak protection, split tunnelling, internet kill switch, and DNS security. When enabled, these features further improve your privacy on the web and come in handy if you’re performing sensitive activities like P2P-file sharing.
We confirmed that this VPN does not leak your actual IP address by connecting to its Denmark server:
PIA is easily configurable on popular devices such as macOS, Windows, Android, iOS, Android TV, Firestick, Linux, and routers. It also offers port forwarding and Socks5 support for users to enjoy torrenting. Let’s not forget that this VPN offers 10 simultaneous connections for users to enjoy PIA’s services.
For a price of $2.08/mo and a 30-day money-back guarantee, PIA is one great option for Turkey.
Learn more about this service in our PIA review.
Test Methodology: How we tested the best VPN for Turkey
To test which VPNs are the best for Turkey, we set up a criteria and tested 150+ VPNs based on it. Here are the factors you should look out for when choosing a VPN:
1. Servers: This is a major concern when it comes to a premium VPN. We wanted the VPNs we list to have a large server network. Therefore, all the VPNs listed as the best VPNs for Turkey offer thousands of servers across the globe. VPNs like ExpressVPN also offer speedy and effective servers in Turkey for users to enjoy Turkish content.
2. Speeds: If a VPN lags multiple times while you’re trying to stream a geo-restricted streaming service, then the VPN is technically useless. All the VPNs above offer great speeds that unblock worldwide geo-restricted services with minimal buffering.
3. Security features: If you’re accessing a geo-restricted service, you’d want to hide your activity. For this, VPNs offer multiple security features that keep users protected over the internet. All the VPNs above offer AES 256-bit encryption, OpenVPN protocols, kill switch, DNS leak protection, split tunneling, and more to keep users completely secure.
4. Simultaneous connections: Premium VPNs offering a single connection is a complete turndown. All the VPNs above offer multiple simultaneous connections to users with a minimum of five connections.
5. Ability to access geo-restricted streaming services: VPNs offer the ability to bypass geo-restrictions and access streaming services across the globe like UK-based BBC iPlayer, American Netflix, Canadian-based CraveTV, and more. All the VPNs above let you bypass geo-restrictions and enjoy these streaming services easily.
6. Customer support: One last factor we considered was customer support. Customer support is a huge advantage for users who face any inconvenience or have a query. All the VPNs above offer 24/7 live chat support to users.
3 reasons why you need a VPN in Turkey?
VPNs are becoming important to use for Turkish people with time for several reasons. We have listed down 3 of them for you here:
1. State of Internet Freedom
President Erdogan’s rule in Turkey has led to a constant decline in internet freedom in the country. You can be penalized with jail time for up to 4 years for insulting Erdogan online in Turkey.
Criticism of the ruling members of the state is obviously not taken very lightly in the country. Arguably, this is one reason why content removal requests on social media are high in the country. These facts reveal the severity of censorship and the lack of freedom on the internet as a prevailing problem in Turkey.
Furthermore, public internet providers in hotels, resorts, etc, are obligated by authorities to maintain IP distribution logs of their users for a period of 1 year.
Amidst these totalitarian measures, the government correctly anticipated heightened VPN services and called for regular monitoring and restrictions on the use of VPNs.
The VPNs listed above are all tested and confirmed to be working in Turkey, and all of these are capable of ensuring your online freedom in the country.
2. Blogging anonymously
Considering the government’s high-handedness regarding criticism of state elements in Turkey, bloggers have no choice but to engage in self-censorship to avoid provoking the government. In these states of affairs, VPNs can play an important role in promoting journalist’s and people’s right to criticize government institutions.
The strong encryption and jurisdictional complications that VPNs introduce can give bloggers some anonymity to safely voice their thoughts without being punished for it by the state.
You can also use the Tor browser along with a VPN to further enhance your security and make it increasingly difficult for any third party to trace you on the web.
3. Unblocking Turkish Streaming Channels Abroad
Turkey’s cinema and TV shows have gotten fairly popular over the past few years, especially in Muslim-majority countries. However, the rights to broadcast these shows are given only to a few local streaming services in Turkey, such as BluTV and PuhuTV.
This leaves many fans of these shows deprived of some good old entertainment if they live abroad since the above-mentioned streaming channels are only accessible with a Turkish IP address.
A VPN offers thousands of servers across the world including Turkey which can be used to obtain a Turkish IP address and unblock all the local content of the country.
Which VPNs are blocked in Turkey?
Unfortunately, not all VPNs are accessible within Turkish territories. This is because the official authorities have cracked down on different VPN services in the recent past and plan on doing it again. Here is the list of VPN services that do not work in Turkey:
- VPN Master
- Hotspot Shield
VPN Guides for Other Countries
Turkey isn’t the odd one out when it comes to privacy and censorship issues. Here are a few articles focusing on workarounds for these problems in specific countries:
- Best VPN to use in USA
- Best VPN to use in China
- Best VPN to use in Australia
- Best VPN to use in UK
- Best VPN to use in Canada
- Best VPN to use in Qatar
FAQs – Best VPNs for Turkey
Let’s take a look at some frequently asked questions regarding the best VPNs for Turkey.
ExpressVPN is the most popular VPN service in Turkey due to its ability to unlock any restrictions placed on social media or streaming services while upholding the complete online security and privacy of the user.
Yes, torrenting is completely legal in Turkey. However, downloading copyright material via torrent is illegal, although ISPs in Turkey have not placed any restrictions against it.
Yes, you can access Hulu in Turkey with a VPN. All you need is to connect to a US-based server using any VPN application of your choice. Once you have acquired a US-based IP address, you should be able to access Hulu in Turkey.
Here’s how you can watch Turkish channels outside Turkey:
- Subscribe to a powerful VPN service like ExpressVPN.
- Install the ExpressVPN app on your device.
- Log in to the app using your ExpressVPN credentials.
- Locate a Turkish server in ExpressVPN’s server list and click Connect.
- Once connected, you should be able to access Turkish channels like Kanal 7 easily.
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for streaming in Turkey. Thanks to its high-speed 3000+ servers, which are spread globally, you can access almost any content from anywhere. With its Turkish server, you can also unblock the local TV of Turkey when abroad.
No, you shouldn’t. Free VPNs are super unreliable, to begin with. These VPNs offer limited bandwidth and just a few servers that won’t let you do anything in Turkey. These VPNs also continuously fail to safeguard your online activity and data by logging your data and selling it to third parties. Therefore, a paid VPN like ExpressVPN is ideal to use in Turkey.
You can try out some tactics if your VPN service does not work in the country. You can opt port forwarding mechanism that allows you to overcome VPN blocking issues to a certain extent. You may forward the OpenVPN protocol to any port on TCP and UDP range.
The internet traffic blocking phenomenon is based on various ports that VPN providers use. Hence, it would be best to use the OpenVPN protocol to forward traffic on port 443. The said port is meant for HTTPS traffic primarily.
HTTPS is mandatory when it comes to accessing the internet securely from users’ points of view. Therefore, it becomes next to impossible that the authorities can block it. This way, you can take huge benefit from the port forwarding tactic.
Best VPN for Turkey – Final Thoughts
The state of the internet in Turkey is far from ideal. It is in serious need of extensive reforms to promote freedom of expression and individuals’ right to privacy.
As per our testing, ExpressVPN is the best VPN for Turkey for its capability of unblocking national and international websites, securing your online privacy and data, and offering you complete anonymity from government or private organizations.
Hence, a VPN, especially ExpressVPN, is the only proven method to counter the Turkish government’s authoritarian measures and circle around censorship, which is routinely applied on the web.