Some cities surely make you dream, transport you to remote times and distant worlds, they invite you to imagine what the day-to-day life was like for the people who lived there during their golden years. There are cities that you have to visit at least once in your life, and Istanbul is without a doubt one of them. Place of separation, or rather of the union, between East and West, with an exciting history and a present full of life and color, of bazaars and delicious flavors … If you are one of those travelers who enjoy authentic and different places, you are going to fall in love quickly from the most populous city in Turkey. In this post, we tell you 30 things to see and do in Istanbul.
- Perhaps I am intrigued by the house, but it is without a doubt one of the best things to do in Istanbul to visit the imposing and lovely Hagia Sophia. Though born as a Byzantine basilica and now a museum, it has been the largest mosque of Istanbul for 500 years. No words exhibit exactly what you feel like when you first see it near… The long history and the indelible signature of all those who passed by make it a special place in the world.
- Right in front of Hagia Sophia, you will find the Sultanahmet Mosque or Blue Mosque, for many the most magnificent in the entire city. Do not miss the superb mosaics inside made with no more and no less than 20,000 ceramic tiles from Iznik. To visit it, you have to consider that it closes in each of the 5 prayers and you must dress appropriately. The entrance is free.
- With privileged views of the Bosphorus Strait, located between the Golden Horn and the Sea of Marmara, you will find the Topkapi Palace. You will run the risk of getting lost touring its multiple buildings, gardens, and rooms that occupy a total space of 700,000 square meters! Admission at the box office costs 60 lira (about €10) although you can book the skip-the-line ticket online for a supplement, or also include a guided tour (in English) for €15.
- You are sure to catch your eye with the colorful street fruit stalls in Istanbul. Be careful about your senses and try the delicious pomegranate juice, the perfect dose of vitamins, to go on to the city with intensity.
- The power you need to deal with the bazaar dealers in the game… If shopping isn’t your thing doesn’t matter because visiting two of the oldest city bazaars is an experience you can’t get lost while in Istanbul:
- The Grand Bazaar, an authentic small city with its 64 avenues and streets where you will find articles of all kinds
- The Egyptian or Spice Bazaar, where, as its name suggests, you can buy spices and other typical products such as sweets and nuts.