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CruiseDirection - Magazine May 2019

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Istanbul

The city of Istanbul is one of the most diverse cities in Turkey. The city has only two sides that are distinguishable; the European side and the Asian side, separated by the Bosphorous Strait. The city stretches from the Black Sea to the Bosphorus and touches the Sea of Maramara. Filled with historic sites, plenty of places to shop, and accommodation to suit all tastes, Istanbul is one of the most unusual cities located on the Mediterranean.  

Most people come into Istanbul at Sultanahmet, a peninsula that juts out into the Bosphorous. The Tokapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, and the Yerebatan Basilica Cistern are located in this part of the city. The Hippodrome is also here and visitors can enjoy restaurants, cafes, bars, rug stores, and other shops that are intermingled with the popular tourist attractions. You will also want to visit the huge Grand Bazaar.

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Why visit Istanbul ?


Istanbul location iamge - CruiseDirection

One of the most diverse cities in Turkey

From religious sites to the wild nightlife, Istanbul is a gem within Turkey

Eminonu is located on the Golden Horn, another area of the peninsula, and is the last location on the tramline that runs through Istanbul. Visitors will love the Egyptian Spice Bazaar, probably the main reason for visiting here, and the New Mosque with beautiful minarets dominating the skyline. You can take a ferry from here to the Asian side of Istanbul and if you are planning on continuing on to destinations in Europe from here, the Sirkeci Railway Station is located in this area. The area known as Beyoglu/Taksim is a real ‘east meets west’ area and is the centre of the city’s nightlife. This is where many of the theatres are located. This portion of the city holds a large variety of activities that includes an open-air museum, churches, and the home of the International Istanbul Film Festival, the International Istanbul Music Festival, International Istanbul Theatre Festival, and the International Istanbul Jazz Festival.  

Karaloy is the home of the Goethe Institute, which is brimming with culture and art. The Selimiye Mosque is located in the Golden Horn, and Ortakoy is filled with crafts and other souvenirs. If you want to get to the beach, then you should go to Zekariyekoy, which is a very popular weekend getaway. The coast itself is a touristy area and visitors will enjoy the sandy beaches and fish restaurants that line the roads.  

Anadolu Hisari is a quiet area of Istanbul loaded with historic sites for visitors to see. The Princes Islands, four islands in the Sea of Marmara, are the home to Greek monasteries and plenty of beautiful beaches on which to relax. The islands have no cars on them and there are plenty of places to eat if you wish to stay and enjoy the tranquillity for a little longer. Istanbul, as you can see, is a huge city with plenty to do. Whether you prefer to enjoy one side of the city or the other, you will never be bored here. From religious sites to the wild nightlife, Istanbul is a gem within Turkey.

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