Want to avoid the faux pas of the newbie Istanbul tourist? Here are a few tips to have you acting like an ‘Istanbullu’ in no time.
Tag Archives: Istanbul
April 29, 2013
Istanbul is a gigantic and crowded city, and can quickly become overwhelming for those not accustomed to it. For those looking to escape for a day or two, here are a few places worth checking out, all possible on a day trip.
April 1, 2013
Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar first opened its doors in 1461. It is one of the oldest and largest covered markets in the world, with over 3,000 shops. Every day somewhere between 250,000 and 500,000 visitors make their way through its covered streets, a good majority of them tourists. The Bazaar is an essential experience for any visitor to Istanbul.
March 26, 2013
The 220-foot-tall medieval Galata Tower, one of Istanbul’s most iconic buildings, offers stunning panoramic views of the Old City. There are other, taller towers and buildings with sweeping vistas, but Galata Towers’s unique position in the heart of the Galata district gives it a privileged vantage point over the Golden Horn estuary and some of the oldest neighborhoods in the city.
March 18, 2013
Istanbul might have a reputation for its cosmopolitan population and increasingly modern attitude, but the heart of the city still beats in the historic old town of Sultanahmet, located on the European peninsula bounded by the Golden Horn and the Bosphorus. First founded by Greek colonists in 667BC, the area of Sultanahmet was once the walled city of Istanbul known as ‘Constantinople’ and today the peninsula is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and teeming with examples of Byzantine and Ottoman era architecture.
March 4, 2013
With exchange rates plummeting, Istanbul isn’t quite the bargain destination it used to be, but those on budget will still find plenty of opportunities to stretch out their dollars. From marveling at the city’s famous minarets to taking advantage of the legendary Turkish hospitality, here are some ideas for free things to do in Istanbul.
February 4, 2013
Exploding with color and pungent aromas, Istanbul’s Spice Bazaar, or Egyptian Spice Market (so-called as the spices were originally imported from Egypt) is one of the city’s most vibrant and most-visited attractions. The historic market dates back to the 17th century and remains a fully functioning market, bustling with locals and camera-wielding tourists.
January 21, 2013
Whatever comes to mind when you think of a Hookah cafes in Istanbul – groups of Middle Eastern men getting high on smoky inhalations in shadowy teahouses or the rainbow of peculiar looking vials cluttering the stalls of the Grand Bazaar – you’ll likely find plenty to fuel the stereotype. Rest assured though, the hookah pipe, or Nargiles as they are known throughout Turkey, are far removed from the hashish-packed water-pipes of the 1960s – today’s offerings are strictly tobacco, albeit a little stronger than the average cigarette.
January 7, 2013
With its unique setting straddling Europe and Asia, vibrant bazaars and myriad of important historical and religious sights, it’s no surprise that Istanbul is one of the most popular Mediterranean cruise destinations and there’s so much to see that many cruise itineraries offer a 2 day stay.
December 10, 2012
With freezing temperatures, wind-swept seas and frost gathering on its many minarets, Istanbul is nothing if not atmospheric in the winter months: and with fewer tourists hitting the city sights, it’s a great time to explore. Make a beeline for the Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque and the Dolmabahce Palace, normally rammed with tourists, climb the Galata Tower without the dreaded queue or hunt out some Christmas bargains in the Grand Bazaar, where fewer tourists means greater haggling potential. Winter is also a great time for shopping in Istanbul with many of the city’s malls and shops along Istikal Caddesi holding sales in the run up to Christmas and throughout January.