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Istanbul-Turkey

Istanbul is the capital of Turkey that bestrides Asia and Europe across the Bosphorus Strait. It is Turkey’s cultural, historic and economic center, with commercial and historic center on the European side and suburbs on the Asian side-comprising of a third of the country’s overall population. With over 15 million residents in its metropolitan area, it is one of the most populous cities in the world. 

The city is strategically located between Black Sea and Mediterranean. It’s divided by water in three parts, centered by Sultananhmet, home to The Blue Mosque, The Hagia Sophia and Topkapi Palace.

Cross the Golden Horn via the Galata Bridge, to get on the European side of Istanbul, home to boutique restaurants and nightlife, that’s vibrant and fun-filled. Across the Bosphorus, there’s Asian side of Istanbul- more populated with little tourist penetration, has destination and places like, the Crimean War Cemetery and Florance Nightingale Museum.

Whether its thick Turkish coffee or unique boutique cafes and restaurants, Istanbul has idiosyncratic charm, alongside generous and welcoming people, residing in this wonderful place are worth a visit.

Top Attractions

1.  The Hagia Sophia, an ancient orthodox church turned into mosque into a museum; gives an insight into the Byzantine architecture.

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2. The Blue Mosque, an ancient and popular mosque in the city, dating centuries back, attracts tourists through its historic and contemporary artifacts and culture. 

3. Sultanahmet, once known as Constantinople, is an old city with several museums.

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4. Revitalize at Turkish Hamam, number of them prevalent here in Istanbul, through spas and
massages offered here in some ancient structures, dating back to 15th and 17th century.

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5. Enjoy the nightlife at the Beyoglu District, covered with wine houses, bars, pubs, cafes and nightclubs.

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6. Topkapi Palace, a museum decorated with beautiful tiles.

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7. Visit the city’s oldest and largest market, ‘The Grand Bazaar’ where you’ll find all sorts of wonders like pipes, carpets, decorated pottery, lanterns and much more.

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8. Go for a boat ride on a boat ride on the Bosphorus Strait that provides a skyline view of the city.

istanbul boat ride

Some of the delicacies worth a try

1. Baklava: With fleet of stores serving this sweet and delicious dish, is the right way to serve your taste buds.

2. Turkish Tea and Coffee: Turkish coffee is known worldwide, but, what came as a shocker was more tea consuming population as compared to the established belief of a coffee loving consuming culture.

3. Lahmacun: It’s a baked dish, first impression for anybody being that of a pizza, is however, very different. It’s basically thin rolled dough with a layer of meat along with strewed vegetable and herbs.

4. Turkish Breakfast (Kahvalti: You’ll be surprised to find a whole street dedicated to it and goes by the name, ‘Breakfast Street’. There’s a whole range of authentic Turkish breakfast, which is a must try.

5. Turkey’s favourite snack- Cig Kofte The name itself means, ‘raw meatballs’ commonly found all across the country. It’s basically spicy and hand rolled, wrapped in lettuce.

Top Excursions

1.  The Bosphorus snakes into the city. A 90-minute cruise from Eminonu Quay to Bosphorus
Bridge and back opens you to unparalleled views.

2.  Some of the day trips from Istanbul, worth a try include,
● A trip to gorgeous towns of Turkey, Sile and Agva, for its spectacular scenic views and a
day into the small town life of Turkey.
● A thirteen hour ride to the Black Sea.
● Head to islands of Buyukada, an eight hour boat trip through the Sea of Marmara.

3. Hangout on roof top cafes, opening you to spectacular views and an bird’s eye view to the city.

The Best Time to Visit Istanbul

The best weather being in spring and autumn season, with pleasant and moderate climatic conditions prevailing during this time of the year, makes it the best time to visit Istanbul. It has a climate which is a mix of oceanic and Mediterranean. The winters here are chilly and dull and summers being hot and humid. However, the maximum temperature here in summers, i.e. during the July and August months is 30 Degrees Celsius, which may be soaring for travellers from certain parts of the world, while moderate for another part.Ramadan in Turkey is observed between the months May and June (as in other parts of the world) provides unique experience. If you’re interested in exploring the country’s culture, this is the best part of the year for your travels to this country.

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