First time in Istanbul? Don't know where to start? Feeling like this big city might swallow you whole? Don't worry; we've all been there. Conquering this massive city is no easy task, not if you get a little help from your friends. Even if you spend all your life in Istanbul, you won't have the time to do sightseeing. An option is not a shortcoming in this matter; discovering Istanbul will leave you wanting more. And there's the upside; you won't run out of places to find. Sightseeing in Istanbul can be hard work, but one of the critical things you need is a well-connected area that will make sightseeing much easier for you. We'll be suggesting some places where you can stay in Istanbul for sightseeing.
Traveling can sometimes feel like a chore. Not knowing where to stay, not knowing which places to go to, and not wanting to miss out on discovering the city—in our case, not wanting to miss out on discovering Istanbul. Here, we'll suggest the best ways to discover Istanbul, the best places to sightsee, and the best areas to stay in Istanbul.
Discovering and Traveling in Istanbul
Where to start the journey to sightseeing in Istanbul? If you're here only for a limited time, these are our best places to discover Istanbul.
The Spice Bazaar
One of the biggest bazaars in Istanbul is in Fatih, and when you get there, it might seem like an endless labyrinth. The Spice Bazaar is the way to go to commence sightseeing in Istanbul. With its endless spices, dried plants, and rugs, the bazaar offers one of the most different products. While sightseeing in Istanbul might drain your energy from time to time, the locals at the Spice Bazaar will always try to cheer you up with their positive attitudes. Do not miss out on this spicy journey while sightseeing in Istanbul!
Discover Istanbul with the perfect view of it! The Galata Tower offers an enchanting panoramic view of Istanbul to anyone wanting to see it. But the sight of Istanbul is not the only sightseeing you'll be doing at the Galata Tower. It is currently being used as a museum where you can go around seeing some exhibitions while you're at it. Being at the center of boutique hotels and unique restaurants, the Galata Tower is a must-see in your sightseeing journey in Istanbul.
The Prince Islands
You thought changing continents was extreme? Try visiting some of the most beautiful and famous islands while sightseeing in Istanbul. The prince islands consist of nine islands just outside of Istanbul. Many people who can't handle the chaotic nature of Istanbul move to the islands to get some serenity and peace. Commuting from the islands to the mainland is no trouble since it's less than two hours. Summertime is nearly the perfect time to go and visit the islands, where there are almost no cars around. Have a nice glass of rakı and watch the sunset as it goes down. Going to the sea, riding a bike, and then finishing it off with a nice meal. Many people consider this the best sightseeing activity in Istanbul.
The Old Town
Walking through the historic landmarks and mosques is like no other feeling and is a vital point in sightseeing in Istanbul. Known as The Historical Peninsula, the old town consists of all the historical artifacts and palaces in the Tophane quarter. Sightseeing in Istanbul will be much easier when all the historical landmarks are joined together in one area. From Topkapı Palace to the numerous churches and mosques, you can find the old Ottoman spirit in the air. One landmark in the city's heart is Haghia Sophia, located right next to the Topkapı Palace.
One of the things that makes Istanbul what it is now is its citizens. Walking through the neighborhoods in Istanbul is just as crucial as discovering its landmarks. Whether you're walking in Beşiktaş or Kadıköy, you will understand what it means to discover Istanbul. The local restaurants and pubs you'll see while walking down a street in Cihangir or Üsküdar are just as indicating of Istanbul as it is sightseeing in Istanbul. So go to your local coffee shop, thrift store, and anything that will give you a sense of what it's like to travel to Istanbul but also live in Istanbul.
Hotels for Sightseeing in Istanbul
Sightseeing in Istanbul starts with where you visit, and the Beyoğlu district might be what you're looking for. Istanbul, is a city known for its dreadfully life-sucking traffic, staying in an area that is close to the metro is always beneficiary. One of those areas that are highly central is Taksim. Millions of people make their way daily to one of the most crowded squares in Istanbul: the Taksim Square. However, if it is a little too crowded for your pleasure, staying in one of the boutique hotels located in the back streets of Taksim can be a good option for you.
Mr. Cas Hotel is an excellent option if you want to be right in the middle of the action. Located on Istiklal Street, it offers proximity to the many museums and galleries scattered around Taksim. Madame Tussaud stays just across the street; sightseeing in Istanbul is easy when you stay in the right places!
The Loft Istanbul is another excellent option to expedite your sightseeing in Istanbul. Located near the Museum of Innocence, it'll make you want to discover Istanbul even more because of how easy travel in Istanbul.
The Soul Hotel has a great location where you can stroll down to Karaköy in ten minutes, taking only one street. Except for its excellent location, you will be staying in the heart of the night scene in Istanbul.
Frequently Asked Question
What should I avoid during my trip to Istanbul?
Avoid going to chain restaurants as you won't get the experience of eating Turkish cuisine. Also, avoid going to lesser-known areas without a friend or someone accompanying you.
What kind of public transportation pass do I need in Istanbul?
Getting an Istanbul Kart will help you in the long run. You can get it at a newsstand, a small "Tekel" or an Istanbul Kart machine. You can find stands and Istanbul Kart machines where you can put money in it.
What should you not miss in Istanbul?
While visiting Istanbul, we recommend that you do not miss some important historical spots like Hagia Sophia, Dolmabahce and Galata Tower.
What is the best way to travel around Istanbul?
You can walk among some improtant historical spots in Istanbul, especially the ones in Sultanahmet. You won’t need a vehicle in Sultanahmet.
Where is the best place to visit Istanbul?
The best place to visit in Istanbul is subjective, but Hagia Sophia and the Bosphorus strait are among favorites.