With a frenetic kaleidoscopic vibe and a spectacle of breathtaking historical gems, it is no surprise millions of travel junkies from all over the world are drawn to Istanbul’s charm. From gleaming skyscraping buildings to aromatic buzzing bazaars and traditional Turkish baths, this beloved tourist haven also offers a beautiful medley of tourist attractions and treasures that can keep you thrilled for days and weeks. What’s more, this Turkish metropolitan boasts a plethora of mouthful goodies that will surely satisfy your gastronomic cravings.
What are the best things to do in Istanbul? As you read this guide, you will find a handful of informative tips that can come in handy for your escapade in this Turkish destination.
Visit the Hagia Sophia
No trip to the city of Istanbul is complete without a visit to the Ayasofya, or also referred as Hagia Sophia. One of the most sought-after tourist attractions in Turkey, the Hagia Sophia beckons international travelers with historical significance and magnificent interior views. Often billed as the chef d’oeuvre of Byzantine architecture, this historic wonder is also famous for its breathtaking architecture.
Take pictures of the awe-inspiring Blue Mosque
The Blue Mosque is truly a spectacular sight that will leave you in awe. Built by Sultan Ahmed, this majestic landmark was designed to rival the grandeur of Hagia Sophia, which is situated just a few meters from this site. With a flurry of eye-catching minarets, semi-domes and domes, it is easy to why people call it as the most photogenic edifice in the city.
As far as food, you will be spoiled for options with the varied culinary scene of Istanbul, which ranges from traditional street food vendors to the sleek fusion restaurants. Whether you are looking for something spicy, sweet or sour, the city has a dazzling array of cuisines and dishes to fill your stomach and please your taste buds. To experience the ultimate gastronomic foray in Turkey’s cultural capital, make sure to try the kokorec, simit, dondurma, kebab and midye dolma.
Party all night long
The city of Istanbul isn’t lauded as one of Europe’s best party capitals for nothing. A night owl’s paradise, the city has a zippy and eclectic nightlife scene that can be rivaled only by a few party capitals like Ibiza and Las Vegas. When the sun goes down in Istanbul, the energy steps up, and the metropolis magically showcases its hippie youthful character.
Shop for souvenirs at the Grand Bazaar
For those who are looking for cheap vintage souvenirs in Istanbul, make your way to the Grand Bazaar in Sultanahmet. One of the world’s oldest and largest covered shopping markets, the Grand Bazaar overwhelms shoppers and visitors with its countless selection of stalls. Here, you get to choose from a wide range of souvenirs and products like chessboards, art, clothing and carpets. Furthermore, it is home to a handful of mosques, cafes and restaurants.
Indulge in a comforting Turkish bath
A great way to end a beautiful day full of thrills in Istanbul is to sooth your senses with a blistering rejuvenating experience at the Suleymaniye Haman. As a guest in this historic traditional Turkish bath, you will be able soothe your jaded joints and unwind by indulging in its massages, bath and beauty treatments. As a bonus, the place has a splendid interior with an exquisite ambiance.