67 meters tall tower built by the Genoese in Istanbul in the 14th century which offers a panoramic view of Istanbul. Accessible by stairs or elevator, one can enjoy the scenic lookout or enjoy a meal or drinks on top of the tower.
Hagia Sophia is a former Greek Orthodox patriarchal basilica converted into a mosque by the Ottomans and is famous for its massive dome. Today, topping the list of the main attractions in Istanbul, it serves as a museum.
Blue Mosque (or The Sultan Ahmed Mosque) is the most famous mosque in Turkey which continues to function as a praying site and is known for its hand-painted blue tiles. Along with Hagia Sophia, it's a must see in Istanbul.
The most popular square of Istanbul which Istiklal Avenue opens up to. Being a main metro hub, it's home to many hotels and restaurants. The square is a major meeting spot among the locals and tourists.
One of the most famous avenues in Istanbul, visited by millions every day. An elegant 1.4 kilometers long pedestrian street with a tram passing on it, one can find many shops, restaurants and bars on the street or in its vicinity. It connects Taksim Square and the district of Galata.
Grand Bazaar is one of the largest and oldest covered market places in history. Located in the Old Town, it has 61 streets and is full of shops selling spices, craftwork, precious metals and many other Turkish specialties. Visited by 90 million annually, in 2014 it ranked number one on the list of most-visited tourist attractions in the world.
A large museum palace located in the Old Town which served as the main residence of the Ottoman sultans from 15th to 17th century. The museum complex has a collection of Ottoman clothing, weapons, miniatures and many more.
Baroque style palace built by the Bosphorus in the 19th century. It was used as main residence of the sultans after Topkapi Palace lost its importance. The founder of the Republic of Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, used the palace as his presidential residence and spent his last days here before his death.
The Prince Islands are a cluster of 9 islands (four large, five smaller ones) on the Marmara Sea. The larger ones are accessible by ferries from both sides of the city. With having no cars allowed, the most popular ways to commute in the island are biking or taking a horsecar. Visiting the islands is a good idea for people who would like to wander away from the crowded and overwhelming atmosphere of the Istanbul center.
Only minutes away from Kadikoy, Moda is now the centre of "cool". One can discover another newly opened cafe every time they visit it. Old people comprise the majority of the residents despite it being now the major gathering spot of the youth.
The heart of the historic peninsula, Sultanahmet can be considered the Old Town of Istanbul. It contains the most well-known attractions of Istanbul such as Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque and Topkapi Palace.
Found on the other side of the Bosphorus, Kadikoy is the Asian equivalent of Beyoglu. Due to it being further from the Old Town, it is relatively less crowded and touristic. The district has a very welcoming vibe where one will not get stares for any kind of behaviour.
A district in the European side which contains Taksim Square and Istiklal Avenue, separated from the Old Town by the Golden Horn. One of the most touristic areas of Istanbul, it can be considered the center of the new city.
Historically a major trade and business area, Karakoy is now the center of hipster Istanbul. The neighbourhood has been gentrified recently and is presently packed with colorful streets, lively cafes and distinct bars.
Being next to each other, these neighbourhoods used to possess a huge Greek population. The Patriarchate of Orthodox Greeks is situated in Fener - Balat, which still holds significance for the Eastern Orthodox Christianity.
Trendy neighbourhood right by the Bosphorus that includes mansions owned by the affluent, many high-end cafes and restaurants. It is popular among the locals to have a walk by the coast or chill in its park in the weekends.
A resort town in the Asian side by the Black Sea in which the locals have summer houses and spend their weekends there. Having a number of beaches, people who find it far can enjoy the European side alternative Kilyos, which is located by the Black Sea and contains a lot of beaches also.
Being the largest city of Turkey, Istanbul, combines two continents, Europe and Asia, with the Bosporus Strait which flows into the Sea of Marmara. If you are interested in this city of bridges, which connects the East and the West both physically and figuratively, this lesson is a must-have for you.
Istanbul is the city of architecture, history, food and many other things. One should plan their next visit to Istanbul if he or she enjoys the diverse culture it provides. This magnificent city will not fail to amaze you with blending the tastes of the West and the East. Pack your luggage and let Istanbul welcome you soon!