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Gallipoli

Anzac Day Services

Anzac Commemorative Site, Gallipoli, Turkey

Snapshot

Service: Dawn Service, Anzac Commemorative Site: Australian Memorial Service, Lone Pine Cemetery; New Zealand Memorial Service, Chunuk Bair
Date: Wednesday, 24 April - Thursday, 25 April 2019
Time:

TBA: Anzac Commemorative Site opens
5:30 am: Dawn Service commences
9:30 am: Lone Pine Service
11:30 am: Chunuk Bair Service
12:45 pm (approx.): Coach loading and departures at Chunuk Bair

Seating style:

Anzac Commemorative Site: No stands or seating. Sitting or standing on the grassed areas
Lone Pine: Limited seating and standing on grassed areas
Chunuk Bair: Limited seating and standing on grassed areas

Venue: Anzac Commemorative Site, Lone Pine and Chunuk Bair, Gallipoli, Turkey
Weather: The weather at Gallipoli is highly variable. The site is exposed to the elements and there is no permanent shelter. Severe wind-chill can result in temperatures being below freezing overnight on 24 – 25 April. During the day the temperature can be very hot. Strong winds and heavy rain has been experienced on site in previous years. Visitors should ensure they come prepared for these conditions.
Visa requirements: Yes – obtain your visa on the e-Visa website.
Security: Airport-style screening including restrictions on liquids, aerosols and gels.
Important Notes: An Australian Memorial Service will be held at Lone Pine Cemetery and a New Zealand Memorial Service at Chunuk Bair on the morning of 25 April after the Dawn Service. Visitors should be prepared to walk a minimum of 8 km during your time at the commemorations, mostly up steep hills.

Links

Getting to the Anzac Commemorative Site, Gallipoli

On 25 April each year, we commemorate the landings of the Anzacs at Gallipoli.

The Australian and New Zealand Governments jointly conduct the Gallipoli Anzac Day Dawn Service on 25 April each year at the Anzac Commemorative Site, Turkey. This service takes place with the permission and support of the host nation, Turkey. The commemorative sites at Gallipoli are the sovereign territory of the Turkish people and holding the annual Anzac Day commemorations is only possible with the cooperation and generous assistance of the Government of the Republic of Turkey.

The Gallipoli Peninsula is a 5 hour drive from Istanbul. The nearest towns to the commemorative sites are Eceabat (20 km), Canakkale (30 km) and Gelibolu (45 km), but there is no public transport available from these towns to the national park. The services take place in the Gallipoli Campaign Historical Site, a protected area in a national park. The services take place in an isolated, remote and exposed location with no permanent infrastructure, facilities or shelter. 

Most visitors attend the commemorations as part of a guided bus tour. Numerous tour providers in Australia and Turkey offer tours that incorporate the Dawn Service. DVA recommends that visitors travel to the commemorations as part of an organised tour arriving by coach.

All visitors will undergo airport-style security screening on arrival at each of the sites and will pass through multiple security screening points. For cultural reasons, visitors may be separated into male and female lines to undergo screening. Security at the site is the responsibility of the Turkish authorities, who provide considerable military, Jandarma, police and medical assistance to the commemorations. In addition, private security contractors also assist with visitor safety and security screening. You must follow the directions of the Turkish authorities and service officials at all times. Conditions of entry apply to entering the commemorative sites. You should ensure you review the prohibited items list.

After passing through security visitors will then be wrist-banded to enter into the seating area.

Transport Arrangements

Road Closures

Temporary road closures and traffic restrictions are likely to be in effect at various times on 24 – 25 April around the Gallipoli peninsula at the discretion of the Turkish authorities. These may restrict access to commemorative sites, cemeteries and other locations in the Helles and Anzac areas.

Access to the Anzac Commemorative Site is expected to commence at 10 pm on 24 April and cease at 3 am on 25 April. We encourage visitors to be at the Anzac Commemorative Site well before the road closure to ensure you can gain access to the site.

Private Vehicles

DVA strongly encourages visitors to travel to Gallipoli as part of an organised tour. No private vehicle parking is permitted near the Anzac Commemorative Site.

Arrangements for private vehicles are at the discretion of the Turkish Jandarma and are subject to change without prior notice.

Subject to any changes at the direction of the authorities, after the opening of coach registration, private vehicles will need to register and receive important messages at Mimoza Park Otopark (approximately 3 km south of the Anzac Commemorative Site), and then proceed to park across the road at Mimoza Park. They should then return to the Otopark to obtain transport into the Anzac Commemorative Site. After the service on 25 April, a shuttle will transfer visitors back to Mimoza Park Otopark to be reunited with their vehicles.

Coaches

Arrivals

From 9.30 pm (TBC) on 24 April coach registration will open at the Coach Registration point (TBA). Coach details will be recorded and important information provided to visitors about the arrival process and what to expect overnight. An identifying coach number will be provided and each passenger provided with a matching card.

Security measures required all passengers to disembark at the coach registration point and then to move through a bag and pat-down search, while the coach is screened. After visitors have been searched they then re-embark their coach for registration. Identity cards will also be checked at this point. 

Following registration, coaches will proceed north a further 2 km to Beach Cemetery where passengers will disembark, and walk the remaining 1 km to the southern entry to the Anzac Commemorative Site. A shuttle is available for visitors requiring mobility assistance.

Please note that coaches will depart the area immediately after passengers disembark. Visitors should ensure that all prohibited items remain on their coach and that they take everything they will need for overnight and the following day with them in their day pack when leaving the coach (including any medication required). Visitors will not be reunited with their coaches until after the conclusion of the services on 25 April.

Departures

All visitors will be collected by their coaches. Visitors will hold in a waiting area until their coach arrives in the loading zone and their coach number is called. Please note that coaches will not arrive in the order in which they were registered and it is impossible to predict when an individual coach will arrive. Please follow the directions of service officials.

Coaches will not commence loading until released by the Turkish Jandarma. It is advisable not to make any onward travel arrangements on 25 April, as coach departure times cannot be guaranteed.  

Accessible Seating

Limited accessible seating support is available. Support is provided on a ‘most at need’ basis and assistance cannot be guaranteed as capacity is limited. Visitors with an accessibility requirement should identify themselves to a staff member on arrival to the Anzac Commemorative Site. They will then register for accessibility seating support at the information tent on site.

Accessible Seating support for successful applicants includes:

  • Designated accessible seating area for the applicant and one carer. There is a small capacity wheelchair area.
  • Accessible toilet access.
  • Shuttle transfer from Anzac Commemorative Site to Lone Pine Cemetery after the Dawn Service.
  • Shuttle transfer from Lone Pine to Chunuk Bair from coach loading after the Lone Pine Service.

Accessible seating support does not include one-on-one carers, mobility aids or other supports. If this assistance is required, please ensure you bring it with you. 

You should consult with your doctor regarding the conditions you are likely to experience on site to ensure you can safely travel to Gallipoli.

General Seating

Please refer to information below regarding seating at each of the Gallipoli commemorative sites.

Dawn Service Anzac Commemorative Site (ACS)

The ACS is a custom designed site which provides for amphitheatre style viewing of the Dawn Service. Visitors will be located on the grassed area and it is advisable to bring with you a plastic sheet or similar to protect you from overnight condensation. Please note, no folding chairs or temporary seating will be allowed to be brought into the site.

There will be limited accessible seating for those who require it. Please see information regarding accessing this above.

Some areas may have restricted views, however a large screen is available to view the service.

Australian National Service, Lone Pine

There will be limited temporary seating available at the Lone Pine Service. This will be available on a first come, first in basis. Please note that the Lone Pine service is held within the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Lone Pine Cemetery and Australian and New Zealand National Memorials, and as such, visitors are asked to not sit on the grassed areas around the graves, and to locate themselves in the vacant areas and along the sides out of respect for those buried within the cemetery.

For those who registered for accessible seating at the ACS, there will be a designated accessible seating area.

New Zealand National Service, Chunuk Bair

The Chunuk Bair site is small and seating and standing room is limited, and it may mean that not all visitors to Chunuk Bair will be able to view the service. Similar to the Lone Pine service, the Chunuk Bair service includes official New Zealand and Turkish National memorials and cemeteries and visitors are asked to refrain from sitting amongst the graves and significant surface manifestations. There will be an overflow site at Hill 261 for those who cannot access the official Chunuk Bair site.

What to expect

Attending the Gallipoli Anzac Day commemorations is a rewarding, but challenging experience. You will be exposed to the elements in all weather conditions for the entire period you are on-site, including overnight. You should prepare for these conditions and ensure you are fit to travel.  

The terrain includes reasonable flat sealed roads, cobblestone paths, sloped and uneven gravel tracks and grassed areas (which can become slippery or muddy when wet) as well as very steep ungraded paths. Visitors will often need to stand and queue for long periods at times, for security screening to enter the commemorative site, as well as for the limited public amenities. If the site is nearing the safe capacity, visitors on the grassed areas will be asked to stand.

You will walk a minimum of 8 km during your time at the commemorations, mostly up steep hills. Moving between Anzac Commemorative Site and Lone Pine involves a walk of approximately 3.1km, including walking up the very steep Artillery Road from sea-level to the Lone Pine Cemetery on the ridge line. Artillery Road is unpaved and can be challenging (the equivalent of 30 flights of stairs or climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge). From Lone Pine to Chunuk Bair is a further 3.3 km uphill, past numerous cemeteries and historic sites, which visitors will have an opportunity to view-en-route.

Coach loading will occur at Hill 261, adjacent to Chunuk Bair. Details will be provided throughout the night to prepare you for this and staff will be on hand to assist at the conclusion of the services.

Attending the Anzac Day Service is like a vigil – there is little opportunity for sleep and you are likely to be awake for long periods overnight and into 25 April.

Very basic and limited facilities including limited temporary seating (at Lone Pine and Chunuk Bair), lighting and portable toilets are available on-site for the period of the commemorations. You will need to bring adequate supplies of non-perishable food – there are no cooking facilities on-site for the period of the commemorations. Limited rubbish disposal facilities are available and were possible, visitors are asked to take their rubbish with them. There is no running water or power on-site, except for those in use for the services.

Mobile phone coverage is available at the commemorative sites, but there are no recharging facilities.

Limited medical support is provided by local Turkish health authorities from the evening of 24 April to the afternoon of 25 April. You should bring your own prescription medication (if required) and basic first aid supplies, including non-prescription pain relief medication and band-aids. The medical support provided is equipped for medical emergencies and is not designed to treat minor ailments. If you require any medical equipment, including medications, wheelchairs or mobility aids, you will need to bring these with you.

Wreath Laying

Wreath laying by invited official representatives will occur during the services. Members of the public who wish to lay a wreath or floral tribute will have the opportunity to do so at the conclusion of the service. If you wish to lay a wreath or floral tribute, you will need to bring this with you and register your details at the information tent. The proceedings will be announced by the Master of Ceremonies who will call individuals in order to lay their wreath or tribute. Please note that you will need to organise your own wreath or floral tribute. It is your responsibility to carry it with you, care for it and transport it to the Anzac Commemorative. There are no facilities or arrangements for storage or transport of personal wreaths at the commemorations.

Please note that taking any historical artefacts and items from the Gallipoli Campaign Historical Site is strictly prohibited and carries severe penalties under Turkish law.

Further reading

The Department of Veterans’ Affairs has developed the Gallipoli and the Anzacs website - a major award-winning educational web site containing text, documents, graphics, timelines, video and audio about Australians in the Gallipoli campaign of the First World War. 

Contact Information

In Australia

Department of Veterans’ Affairs
Telephone: 1300 364 002
Email: overseascommemorations@dva.gov.au

For Consular Assistance in Canakkale

Telephone: (+90 286) 218 1721

For Consular Assistance in Istanbul

Telephone: (+90 212) 393 8542

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