Welcome to Istanbul
Istanbul will have you checking two continents off your bucket list!
Stretching from the banks of the Bosphorus River, one side of the city is situated in Europe and the other in Asia. And you can move between the two as easily as catching a ferry or taking the metro!
If you want to be awed, this city is the place for you. Visit Topkapi Palace with its fairy tale turrets and treasures, or travel under the city streets down into the Byzantine Basilica Cistern where you’ll marvel at 336 ancient columns.
Or just sit on a bench in the middle of Sultanahmet Square with the Blue Mosque on one side of you and Hagia Sophia on the other and wait for the ezan, or Islamic call to prayer, to wash over you like a wave of faith. (Be sure to also get in these magnificent buildings when prayer is not in session!)
Shopping, and not just for those famous Turkish rugs, is a signature experience of Istanbul. The fun of haggling and drinking coffee with shopkeepers will have you honing skills and meeting locals as you try spices, lamps, and all flavors of Turkish delight an ice cream.
And while the Grand Bazaar is reputed to be the oldest covered market in the world, consider visiting one of the lesser known bazaars throughout the city, like Kadiköy on the Asian side of the Bosphorus, or the Sahaflar Çarsısı (Beyazit Book Bazaar), or one of the weekly neighborhood bazaars.
And if you’re just after the simple joys in life there’s hookahs and backgammon, beloved stray cats, hamman Turkish baths, and the best Turkish breakfast around at Kale Kafe! Book one of our Istanbul photographers to capture your experiences in the two continents of this awesome city!