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Istanbul Travel Guide

Explore the country that is a blend of traditional & modern culture. Being amongst one of the oldest cities in the world, Istanbul is home to some of the greatest Mosques, museums and other archaeological centres. True to its strategic geographical location, even the culture of Istanbul also stands at the crossroads between Europe and Asia. Walking down the streets of Istanbul you will be left to wonder at how seamlessly the Oriental and the Occidental culture collude in its architecture.  

Today, the city of Istanbul is known for its welcoming atmosphere, sparkling nightlife, restaurants bars and more. The city is a blend of everything in a beautiful package. It has so much to offer that no tourist would be able to resist. On the contrary, with one of the most updated and modernized appearances, the city is a good dig through history. The marvellous architecture, artistic treasures galleries, traditional festivals, museums and more, would take you back to olden times. The city was officially named as Istanbul after the founding of the Turkish Republic and is today strewn with glorious remnants of its long and illustrious history, and the sightseeing here will impress even a tourist who is not interested in history and architecture. The topmost attractions of this city are the big four- Aya Sofya, Topkapi Palace, Blue Mosque, and Grand Bazaar. However, apart from these there are other tourist attractions that are located in, or near, the old city district of Sultanahmet that render this landscape furthermore interesting.

The delectable food is another reason why you should head towards this party town in Turkey. Everyone is well aware of Turkish Kebabs. The country itself has a long and colourful history and Istanbul travel guide is filled with attractions. It has been home to the Selijuq, Byzantine, Mongol and Ottoman Empires and these have all had their influences on Istanbul. Rich in history and culture is what makes Istanbul the most popular travel destination. Istanbul tourism welcomes you with its charm and poise!

How To Reach Istanbul


  • By Air: The Ataturk International Istanbul Airport which is located in the European part of the Istanbul is 28kms from the main city centre. It is well connected with all the major cities throughout the globe with frequent international & domestic flights to Istanbul. From airport you can avail public transport such as city bus, trams, cabs, metro & shuttle to reach the main city centre.
  • By Road: Located at a distance of 10 kms from Sultanahmet is the International Istanbul Intercity Bus Terminal. Buses are well connected to Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, and Germany & Middle East. Car can also be hired for pick and drop service to the airport & bus terminal.
  • By Train: There are trains which run from Istanbul to whole of Europe. There are two railway stations in Istanbul, Sirkeci Train Station which is in the European part and Haydarpasa Train Station which is on the Asian part.


Istanbul has an excellent system of public transport that makes it easier for the tourists to roam around.

  • On Foot: The best way to explore a city is undoubtedly on foot. It gives you an opportunity to marvel at the city’s unique architecture that is a blend of European and Asian art.
  • By Taxi: Taxis are plentiful in Istanbul and are more likely to hail you than vice versa. 
  • By Bus:  Metropolitan buses in Istanbul are frequent, comprehensive, economical, and easy.
  • By Dolmus: Dolmus are yellow minivans that operate like group taxis with set routes. A relatively informal system, dolmus run daily from early morning to early evening. A dolmus will leave its terminus (marked with a blue "D") only when it fills up (the word dolmus means "stuffed") and then pick up and drop off passengers along the route. 
  • By Metro: Starting in the 1990's, a modern and extensive (and often confusing) light rail system has been constructed in all parts of the city.
  • By Tram: Trams in Istanbul are fast, comfortable and connect most of the landmarks in the city to each other. 

Hotels & Restaurants In Istanbul



  • Nar Bomonti Apartments: Located in Bomonti district, this budget hotel offers modern decorated apartments with a fully equipped kitchen and free Wi-Fi.
  • Blueway Apart: Situated 200 metres from Osmanbey Metro Station, this hotel features a 24-hour front desk with security, an elevator and free Wi-Fi access in all areas.


  • Glory Residence Taksim: In the heart of the city, this mid-range hotel offers an indoor pool, steam bath, sauna, a fitness centre and modern apartments with a private kitchen. 
  • Cozy Flats: The stylish apartments at Cozy Flats include LCD TV with satellite channels, a spacious living area and a contemporary kitchen.


  • Golf Royal Residence: Offering spacious, modern apartments and suites, Golf Royal Residence is set in the Harbiye area of the city and is 200 metres from the Istanbul Convention Centre.
  • Ottomare suits: Ottomare suits offer luxurious accommodations in Istanbul. Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the property and free private parking is available on site. 


  • Matbah: Matbah offers dishes that were first devised in the palace kitchens between the 13th and 19th centuries. The menu changes with the season and features unusual ingredients such as goose. 
  • Antiochia: Menu in this restaurant includes wild thyme, pomegranate syrup, olives, walnuts and tangy home-made yoghurt, and the kebabs are equally flavoursome.
  • Asitane: Aaitane restaurant next to the Kariye Museum serves Ottoman dishes devised by the palace kitchens at Topkapı, Edirne and Dolmabahçe.

Travel Tips For Istanbul

  • Time Zone: Istanbul follows the Eastern European Time Zone UTC+02:00.
  • Currency: The currency operational in Istanbul is Turkish Lira.
  • Electricity:  In Turkey the mains voltage is 220 Volt. You may need a power adapter for all your electronic equipment, if in your country another mains voltage is used.
  • Internet: Connecting to the Internet in Turkey is pretty easy and inexpensive. If you travel with your own laptop, tablet computer (iPad, etc.) or smartphone, most Turkish hotels, particularly the small and medium-sized ones—offer wireless Internet access (Wifi) in at least one public space, such as the lobby or lounge, and many have signal repeaters that make Wifi available in all the guest rooms as well.
  • Language: The language spoken in Istanbul is Turkish but English, and sometimes German, is spoken at tourist sites and at hostels.
  • Emergency Contacts: Ambulance: 112 (all over Turkey), Police: 155 (all over Turkey), Tourism Police: (0212) 5274503 (Istanbul only).
  • The city does bask in glorious sunshine a lot of the time but its maritime location and prevailing weather patterns mean that drizzle, drops and plain old rain frequently interrupt a day’s sightseeing. With an umbrella you can carry on regardless until the clouds part and the sun comes out again.
  • Bargaining is a must in Istanbul.
  • Turkish baths, the famous feature of Istanbul’s tourism can also be a trap to mint money. The best ones are those used by locals, not exclusively by tourists and will be reasonably priced.
  • Be careful of pick pockets. Keep your valuables safe.
  • Dress modestly especially while visiting mosques in the city.
  • Respect the Turkish flag when in the city. Disrespect to the flag would hurt the sentiments of the locals.

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