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Learn more about flights to Istanbul. 🛫
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Turkish Airlines and most international airliners have daily direct flights to Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport, which is on the European side, and is able to accommodate 90,000 passengers a day. The airport is situated 28 km from the city centre. The second international airport, Sabiha Gokcen, is located on the Asian side, 50 km away from Taksim in the city centre. There are also daily local flights to various parts of Turkey with multiple airlines.
Modes of transportation from the airports into the city include bus, taxis, metro, and bus/taxi + ferry if you need to cross the bosphorus to the other side.
A city of various cultures, mostly Asian and European and various peoples, Istanbul is a beautiful city of the past and the present, divided by the waterway known as the Bosphorus. Known historically as Byzantium and Constantinople, the city of around 15 million residents is Turkey’s most populous and also its cultural, economic and historic centre. A third of its population live on the Asian side of the Bosphorus, while its historical and commercial centre is on the European side. Istanbul is a transcontinental city in Eurasia that lies between the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara. It is seen as a bridge between the East and the West, blending continents, various cultures and people, and this only adds to its beauty and diversity.
An exploration of the city of Istanbul can go on for weeks on end. There is always so much to see and do in its distinct neighbourhoods with thriving culture, rich and delicious foods and its compelling history that all but draws you in.
Try donurma - local analogue of ice cream, made of milk, sugar, mastic and sweet flour; climb onto the bastions of the fortress; go to the 4d show on the roof of a skyscraper, pet hundreds of street cats; visit the harem's former quarters and try sweet corn. There is something for everybody in Istanbul, and a lot to take in.
So you have to only buy a ticket to Istanbul, and feel the dimensionless greatness of this city in person.
One of the largest covered in the world, the Grand Bazaar of Istanbul can be found on the European side and is over 500 years old. With 60 streets and over 4,000 stores, the bazaar is famous for souvenirs, jewelry, leather, ceramics and carpets. The constant hustle and bustle and the chaos is a great way to experience Istanbul all at once, however be careful not to get lost. But if you do, shopkeepers are always willing to help you find your way.
A great place to hone in your bargaining skills, the bazaar has local everyday shops as well as 12 mosques, 18 fountains, 60 restaurants, and even a school. Almost anything can be found in this gargantuan marketplace which has been open since 1461.
Food is a very huge deal in Istanbul and the options are endless and absolutely scrumptious. The Asian and European mix results in a wide variety of delicious dishes. There is none however, as popular as the famous Turkish breakfast. It is a must-have.
A complete Turkish breakfast is several spreads in one. breads, cheeses, olives, honey, and more, plus sausages and eggs alongside surplus amounts of delicious Turkish tea. It is a completely filling and incredible meal.
You can also try tavuk göğsü, a creamy chicken meat dessert pudding, or the popular kebap; also Turkish sweets and the popular yoghurt drink Ayran. You can eat fish sandwiches made from freshly caught fish under the Galata bridge. You can also book a Bosphorus dinner cruise and delight yourself with a Turkish dinner and wine (Raki) while watching the sunset over the city.