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Top Istanbul Tips - Your Insider Tips for Istanbul

  • The Turkish capital is one of Europe's most famous cities, and famous as being the meeting point of both Europe and Asia. We asked you for your 'top insider tips' at our facebook page. Here’s what you had to say...

  • Embrace the people

    Anita P Rusdihardjo says:

    Come with an open heart and arms. Istanbulites are very friendly - its not uncommon to have a complete stranger asking you to join his/her family for dinner at their home. Extremely heartwarming also.

    Baran Duman says:

    Be smart, be respectful and be careful.

  • Check out 'Babylon' for nightlife

    Sebnem Sunar says:

    An insider tip? As Istanbulite, Babylon is highly recommended for live music & concerts.



    Multiple tips

    Fiona Saulness says:

    had a fabulous time..a carpet shop owner invited me to dinner with his workers and family!! Walk down to the ferries and take the one all the way to the end of the line and have a fish lunch! Walk to Sultanahmet and buy a carpet at Noah's Ark and ask for Mehmet. Then celebrate your purchase at the Seven Hills Hotel--head to the rooftop deck for the best view over Istanbul and have a drink and watch the sunset!

    Enrique Pinto says:

    Out of the most touristic routes, you should not miss the ambient in Eyüp on sundays (the day when the locals goes here). The small and cute Eyüp mosque is one of the most important for the muslims, placed in a conservative neighborhood really close to the Pierre Loti cafeterie where you'll watch the best panorama view of the Golden Hoorn. On your way back to the city center take the ferry boat and go until the last stop. In that way you'll arrive to the Asian side of the city named Uskudar, and from here taking a short walk close to the Bosphorus to reach to the Maiden tower. Try to be in Uskudar around 30 minutes before the sunset to have the perfect end of the day before going somewhere to taste the delicious Turkish meals... afiyet olsun!

    Emily Russell says:

    Go to the Spice Market. Buy kebab from a cart for 1 lira; get some Turkish Delight, have some coffee - drink it like the Turks do "black as death and sweet as love"; buy some saffron and ship it home! Visit the Aya Sofia & Sultanahmet - you won't regret it; take a boat across the Bosphorous, so that for the rest of your life you can say you visited two continents (Europe & Asia) in one day!

  • Haggle to save yourself some money when shopping

    Zita Magori says:

    Best tip: Beat down the prices.

    Enrique Pinto says:

    Haggle is a must! When shopping at the Great Bazar wait until the end of the day - you want to buy stuff but at this time as you'll get a better discount.

  • Leave yourself time to see everything

    Dave Bowen says:

    Make sure you leave plenty of time to see everything, it's a very big city :)



    Find this secret carpet shop...

    Suzanne Nichols says:

    See if you can find the lovely little tea/coffee/ shisha shop on the edge of the Grand Bazaar that doubles as a carpet/rug shop. You can sip apple tea while sitting on piles of rugs!

  • Get off the beaten track

    Alicia Oliver-Cook says:

    Take a stroll off the tourist route through Gülhane Park on a Sunday when all the local families are out relaxing. Not a tourist in sight! And be sure to cover up ladies...

  • Remember to look up...

    Ed Lloyd says:

    Remember to look up. Yep, up there on top of some buildings you will find random terrace restaurants and bars. Sometimes they are not always advertised at street level.

  • Take a ferry and check out this neighbourhood

    Tom Stockwell says:

    My tip would be catch a ferry over to the Asian side of the city, and discover the neighbourhood of Kadikoy, a main port on the city's public ferry system. My favourite neighbourhood in Istanbul (forget the tourist touts and rip-offs of Sultanahmet and Taksim) is Kadikoy. This is where the real Istanbul is at. Love the place

  • Remember to look up...

    Ed Lloyd says:

    Remember to look up. Yep, up there on top of some buildings you will find random terrace restaurants and bars. Sometimes they are not always advertised at street level.

  • Check out Club 360

    Richard Berendsen says:

    Club 360 in the Pera district. It's hidden in an old building, but its one of the best clubs ive ever been to. And it has an incredibly beautiful view as well!

  • Book hostels in Istanbul

  • The Turkish capital is one of Europe's most famous cities, and famous as being the meeting point of both Europe and Asia. We asked you for your 'top insider tips' at our facebook page. Here’s what you had to say...

  • Embrace the people

    Anita P Rusdihardjo says:

    Come with an open heart and arms. Istanbulites are very friendly - its not uncommon to have a complete stranger asking you to join his/her family for dinner at their home. Extremely heartwarming also.

    Baran Duman says:

    Be smart, be respectful and be careful.

  • Check out 'Babylon' for nightlife

    Sebnem Sunar says:

    An insider tip? As Istanbulite, Babylon is highly recommended for live music & concerts.



    Multiple tips

    Fiona Saulness says:

    had a fabulous time..a carpet shop owner invited me to dinner with his workers and family!! Walk down to the ferries and take the one all the way to the end of the line and have a fish lunch! Walk to Sultanahmet and buy a carpet at Noah's Ark and ask for Mehmet. Then celebrate your purchase at the Seven Hills Hotel--head to the rooftop deck for the best view over Istanbul and have a drink and watch the sunset!

    Enrique Pinto says:

    Out of the most touristic routes, you should not miss the ambient in Eyüp on sundays (the day when the locals goes here). The small and cute Eyüp mosque is one of the most important for the muslims, placed in a conservative neighborhood really close to the Pierre Loti cafeterie where you'll watch the best panorama view of the Golden Hoorn. On your way back to the city center take the ferry boat and go until the last stop. In that way you'll arrive to the Asian side of the city named Uskudar, and from here taking a short walk close to the Bosphorus to reach to the Maiden tower. Try to be in Uskudar around 30 minutes before the sunset to have the perfect end of the day before going somewhere to taste the delicious Turkish meals... afiyet olsun!

    Emily Russell says:

    Go to the Spice Market. Buy kebab from a cart for 1 lira; get some Turkish Delight, have some coffee - drink it like the Turks do "black as death and sweet as love"; buy some saffron and ship it home! Visit the Aya Sofia & Sultanahmet - you won't regret it; take a boat across the Bosphorous, so that for the rest of your life you can say you visited two continents (Europe & Asia) in one day!

  • Haggle to save yourself some money when shopping

    Zita Magori says:

    Best tip: Beat down the prices.

    Enrique Pinto says:

    Haggle is a must! When shopping at the Great Bazar wait until the end of the day - you want to buy stuff but at this time as you'll get a better discount.

  • Leave yourself time to see everything

    Dave Bowen says:

    Make sure you leave plenty of time to see everything, it's a very big city :)



    Find this secret carpet shop...

    Suzanne Nichols says:

    See if you can find the lovely little tea/coffee/ shisha shop on the edge of the Grand Bazaar that doubles as a carpet/rug shop. You can sip apple tea while sitting on piles of rugs!

  • Get off the beaten track

    Alicia Oliver-Cook says:

    Take a stroll off the tourist route through Gülhane Park on a Sunday when all the local families are out relaxing. Not a tourist in sight! And be sure to cover up ladies...

  • Remember to look up...

    Ed Lloyd says:

    Remember to look up. Yep, up there on top of some buildings you will find random terrace restaurants and bars. Sometimes they are not always advertised at street level.

  • Take a ferry and check out this neighbourhood

    Tom Stockwell says:

    My tip would be catch a ferry over to the Asian side of the city, and discover the neighbourhood of Kadikoy, a main port on the city's public ferry system. My favourite neighbourhood in Istanbul (forget the tourist touts and rip-offs of Sultanahmet and Taksim) is Kadikoy. This is where the real Istanbul is at. Love the place

  • Remember to look up...

    Ed Lloyd says:

    Remember to look up. Yep, up there on top of some buildings you will find random terrace restaurants and bars. Sometimes they are not always advertised at street level.

  • Check out Club 360

    Richard Berendsen says:

    Club 360 in the Pera district. It's hidden in an old building, but its one of the best clubs ive ever been to. And it has an incredibly beautiful view as well!

  • Book hostels in Istanbul


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