I usually don't do a lot of flying in my own country, Turkey. I used to in the past, replicating Turkish Airlines' domestic flights but since a while now I like to fly elsewhere. Actually, if you like scenic approaches with mountainous areas close to the airport, Turkey is a good spot. You could try the challenging VOR 19 approach at Dalaman (LTBS), one of my favorites or the VOR 03 with the 12 DME arc at Van (LTCI) which is very exciting in low visibility.
I was inspired by the real world flight, XQ9435, that my mother took on Monday with SunExpress, a Turkish-German low cost operator.
The route was typical of Izmir - Istanbul (Gokcen) flights:
LTBJ BERGO G80 BIG N604 BKZ DCT SBH
I didn't fly the last segment from the BKZ VOR since runway 06 was in use and after BIG I flew directly to intercept the localizler trying to stay away from LTBA's heavy incoming traffic. This is more or less how they do it in real life.
Cruise altitude was 28000 feet for this short 258NM trip.
Flights between these 2 major Turkish cities are usually very crowded, I made no exception and filled up my 737-800 with a lot of passengers and baggage.
ZFW was around 130K lbs with a fuel load of 12K lbs.
Izmir was typically clear skies, hot with northerly winds at 11 which called for a runway 34R take-off followed by a Bergo1G SID which is pretty much straight out considering the other twisty LTBJ departures. No need to throw the loaded NG into tight turns resulting in the use of barf bags.
Parked at LTBJ, preflight complete
FS online weather can only retrieve hourly updates at Turkish airports so just before I finished my preflight the weather went back to default scheme and since there was no incoming aircraft ATC switched the active runway. I seriously should get AS6...
I ignored the change and took off from 34R anyway.
Ready to go runway 34R
Initial climb was very bumpy with wind direction changes, not anything violent though.
I joined the G80 airway at Bergo and continued my climb while enjoying the beautiful Aegean coast view.
The city of Izmir
Cruise was very short and mildly turbulent. I only had time to wolf down my breakfast (a sandwich) in front of the computer. Top of descent was just over the Biga VOR. I don't know what FS ATC would have been thinking because I was flying VFR.
Initially I planned on flying the full route and flying the whole published circling approach over the SBH VOR. While descending I wanted to simulate the real thing and changed my mind, took a short cut heading directly to intercept the localizer for runway 06. This resulted in a steep descent with the spoilers deployed all the way down to 3000 feet.
Passing over Biga
There were plenty of AI coming and going out of LTBA which is a hive of activity especially in the summer.
Luckily no traffic on my course.
Winds were 149/7 at Sabiha Gokcen with scattered clouds at 3300 and a warm 24C
On final for runway 06
I hand flew the glide slope below 100o feet, no crosswinds, still very fun in the this aircraft.
Just before touchdown
Traffic was sparse at LTFJ in FS as in real life. As I was waiting for my mom at the parking lot doing some spotting I only saw 2 landings and 3 take-offs all in about an hour and a half....I was quite lucky to see a departing 747 though, which is rare for Istanbul. You can't see the runway from the parking lot but I knew it was a heavy from the way it sounded on it's take-off roll.
Taxing to the stand
The scenery is freeware and is quite good in my opinion. Nothing fancy but then the real LTFJ isn't fancy either.