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Things to do and see in Istanbul Turkey

Istanbul Turkey
I had a friend, an expat living in Istanbul that spent time to show me Istanbul, its a big city that is on 2 continents and best to have someone local show you around to to take a tour.

Istanbul Airport -  I flew into Ataturk Airport from Dubai, Turkey has visa on arrival for American citizens, before getting in the immigration line, get a Visa Stamp, it will cost you $20. Expect long line at Turkish immigration as Istanbul is a popular tourist destination.   From the Airport, I took the Metro to my B&B, the train had to be changed to get to my final destination, important get a Metro Map.

Things to see - Basilica Cistern, Blue Masque, Hagia Sofia, Grand Bazar, Topkapi Palace, Dolmabahce Palace..  to name a few

The Tünel underground rail in Istanbul

Taksim - A walk during the day and if night clubs is your thing then that’s a great place to be at.

A must do in Turkey - Visit a Turkish Bath. Hamam, The one I went to was called Cemberlitas bath, Location Sultanahmet Area

No trip to Istanbul is complete without a ferry ride on the Bosphorus

Eat - One of my favorite city in the world for food, other than the kebabs, get Manti 

For Sea Food, visit KumKapi, Map to KumKapi https://goo.gl/maps/CP496dGTWux

Stay: I stayed in the The Sultanahmet area close to Divan Yolu Road, which is one the main streets, It is in  heart of historic Old Istanbul and walking distance to a lot of tourist sites. MY room was $30 a night in a B&B with shared bath.

The city is in 2 Continents, Most of my days in Istanbul were spent in the European side, I did go to the Asia side when taking the ferry to Bosporus

Important: Avoid going with anyone offering to buy you a drink, there are too many scams in Istanbul 

Blue Mosque

Its in the heart of Sultanahmet, you cannot miss it
Blue Mosque

Basilica cistern

Above Basilica cistern upside-down Medusa head, The Basilica Cistern, was constructed in 532 to supply water to the Byzantine Palace, a must see. Location Sultanahmet Area, A must See

Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia

inside Hagia Sophia

Above Hagia Sophia From 360 AD until 1453, it served as the Greek Patriarchal cathedral of Constantinople. Location Sultanahmet Area

Grand Bazaar

One of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world, Location Sultanahmet Area
Grand Bazaar Istanbul

Grand Bazaar Istanbul

Grand Bazaar Istanbul

Grand Bazaar
Grand Bazaar and the book stores near the Bazaar

Istanbul University
Istanbul University

Spice Shops

Hazer Baba Turkish Delight

Hazer Baba location about 4 miles from the blue mosque, picked up a few boxes of Turkish Delight to give as gifts 

Spice Shop Istanbul Turkey

Istanbul Turkey

Istanbul Turkey

Istanbul Turkey

Above - Walking tour of the City

Taxim Istanbul
A street band in Taxim Istanbul - walk along the main street in Taxim, at night it is worth a visit also with all the night clubs, I did go to a club, there was a live band and they played popular American music


Ferry in Bosporus, between Europe and Asia, I took the ferry and on the way back took buses to Istanbul, see the country side a little

 Divan Yolu Rd Kebab Restaurant

Below Topkapi Palace, the former residence of the Ottoman sultans and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Location Sultanahmet Area and walking distance from the Blue Mosque. There is Café in the palace with amazing views of the Bosporus

Topkapi Palace

Below Dolmabahce Palace A must see

Dolmabahce Palace

Photography is not allowed inside Dolmabahce Palace.
Wiki - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dolmabah%C3%A7e_Palace

Happy Travels


  1. Despite the recent issues in Turkey, it is still on my list of places to visit. I will be sure to get the Visa stamp as you recommended. The architecture and history is what draws me to the country. The markets are appealing too.

  2. What a great overview of a wonderful city. We so loved Turkey and would love to go back. I hope things settle down there soon so more people will return to visiting. Their tourist industry is really suffering.


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