Istanbul Holidays 2015

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Inspiring Istanbul

Istanbul holidays transport visitors to one of the most vibrant and historically-rich areas of the country, boasting stunning landmarks, beautiful natural scenery and charming islands. The most populous city of Turkey spreads far and wide from the central core of its location, reaching out to coastline, countryside escapes and cultural sites. While the city proper is home to some of Europe’s most wonderful cultural landmarks, the Istanbul area in general has so much more to offer intrepid travellers, many of which are favourites of the locals.

Your holidays in Istanbul can be spent relaxing on golden beaches, exploring intriguing and beautiful islands, or engaging with communities that inhabit towns and villages on the outskirts of the city. There are also a number of activities available in the city that will transport visitors to hidden and unknown gems, giving your Istanbul city break a sense of adventure and variety that you would otherwise fail to achieve by spending your getaway strolling the city streets.

Beaches, Cruises and Hammams

If you’re looking for some respite from the hustle and bustle of the city, escaping to some of the beach areas around Istanbul will give you a great opportunity to catch some rest and relaxation during your holidays to Istanbul. Kilyos, Agva and Silivri offer a great escape to the sea, offering perfect settings for some sunbathing and a number of water sports will keep those unable to sit still on the sand well occupied. Just south of the city are a collection of beautiful and vibrant islands known as the Prince’s Islands. The main hub of activity can be found on Buyukada which can be reached by frequent ferry services. Take a horse and cart ride around the charming streets or grab a tea in a traditional café.

For a more authentic experience, try visiting some of the smaller towns and villages around Istanbul to gain a more comprehensive insight into the traditional ideals of the Turkish people. Anadolu Kavagi, located to the far north of the city, is home to a captivating citadel, while the village of Polonezkoy displays the areas diverse cultural heritage. You’ll find you can make many trips from the centre of the city where you can base yourself in the comfort of a one of many luxury hotels. Take a cruise out of the city on the Bosphorus, tour the Blue Mosque and absorb the grandeur of Sultanahmet Square. There are a number of great daytrip options for those hoping to explore some more of Turkey’s attractive destinations. One of the most infectious cities is Edirne, with its stunning Selimiye Mosque and Macedonian Tower, while those with a real sense of adventure can travel the four-hour drive to the bustling capital city of Ankara – probably worth spending a night or two there.

Important Information

Travel Information
Language: Turkish
Currency: Turkish Lira
Local time: UTC +2 hours
Flight time: 3 hours 15 minutes

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Attractions

Istanbul is an extremely cultural city and has been a centre for arts and culture for centuries, even dating back to the Greco-Roman period. Istiklal Avenue is one of the city's most popular destinations, visited by millions of people every week. The avenue stretches for three kilometres and is populated by art galleries, bookshops, boutiques, cinemas, bars and restaurants. If you want to get a feel for modern Istanbul this is the place to go.

Activities

A walking tour of the city is perhaps the best way to explore and discover the delights of Istanbul. There are a wide range of tours available, some specialising in particular fields depending on what you are interested in. There are historical tours, cultural tours and even musical tours on offer. For a complete Istanbul experience head to a hamam, or Turkish bath, to cleanse away the stresses of modern day life.

Nightlife

Istanbul has a lively and exciting nightlife, there are plenty of restaurants and bars to choose from whatever mood you are in. For a romantic evening head to one of the fine-dining restaurants that you can find along the Bosphorus. You can sip cocktails along the bustling Istiklal Avenue or dance the night away in one of the city's late night bars or clubs.

Couples Hotels

Istanbul is a very romantic city and there are plenty of hotels that are the perfect place for a romantic holiday. For a modern hotel with a traditional feel in the centre of the city, check out the Orka Royal with its modern facilities and excellent international style restaurant. The hotel is located near the city's historic sites and is only a short distance from the airport.

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