Spanning two continents and as the cultural hub of Turkey, Istanbul has an amazing collection of old and new architecture. Having previously been under Greek, Roman, Venetian and Ottoman rulings, Istanbul is a culturally diverse city which makes it truly interesting and unique to explore.
Boasting sublime architecture as well as immense history and culture, visit the Haiga Sophia and see the wonderful fusions of the structure’s Christian and Islamic pasts both inside and out. Also in the Sultanahmet District, just a short walk away is the Sultan Ahmed Mosque, another hugely iconic Islamic structure which is commonly referred to as the Blue Mosque due to its beautiful blue interior consisting of more than 20000 blue coloured tiles. These are just two of the impressive array of historic buildings this city has to offer with other standout structures including the remarkable Topkapi Palace where you can see artefacts from the time of the Prophet Muhammad and explore the impressive courtyards, and the Basilica Cistern, an amazing underground beauty designed in the Roman time.
Shopping within the city is an attraction in itself with a huge diversity of shops and styles on offer. Stroll through the amazingly colourful, vibrant and bustling Grand Bazaar. Spread over 61 streets, the market almost covers an entire city quarter and is full of unique and quirky handcrafted treasures to test your bargaining skills with. For a more modern shopping experience, head down to the Istiklal street which along with its great shops has lots of great restaurants and cafes to take a break in.
To compliment the city’s fabulous architecture and shopping, Istanbul has some of the best restaurants in Turkey serving great cuisine which is as diverse as the city’s history. Finish off your break with a visit to the Turkish baths for a truly relaxing experience.