In the summer when the days are hot, a getaway to the Princes’ Islands is a great way to escape the bustle of Istanbul. A quick ferry ride away is lies this unique world where cars are replaced with horses and carts and the Sea of Marmara provides tranquility. Originally a place where royals were exiled, the cluster of islands is now a popular spot for those who want to get out of town without having to go very far.
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Made up of nine islands, four have the biggest draw (and the places to catch the ferry) — Kınalıada, Burgazada, Heybeliada and Büyükada. The largest of the islands, Büyükada, has a sixth century church and monastery worth a visit, along with Istanbul’s first and only city museum. For those looking for some beach time, head to Heybeliada.