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Planning a Trip to Istanbul – 6 Important Things to Know

Whether you’re thinking about a trip to Istanbul or you’ve already got your flights booked, this easy guide will help you decide where to go, where to stay, how to get around, what to eat, and much more. Read on for these easy travel tips.

Easy Istanbul Travel Guide

A Simple Guide to Planning a Trip to Istanbul

If cats wanted to establish their own state, they would probably do so in Istanbul. After all, for several thousand cats – full residents of the city – there is everything: food, sun, and even houses to sleep in.


Tourists in Istanbul are also welcome, especially this summer. Be sure to get your e-Visa Turkey sorted first. Unlike locals, who are quarantined and unable to go outside after curfew from 10 pm to 5 am, as well as work and walk on Sundays, tourists can explore the city around the clock.


This makes for a great time for a trip to Istanbul.


If You’re a Student

A trip to Istanbul can be especially beneficial for students, as they’ll get to open up their world views, as well as take a break from the constant studying of textbooks. Feeling overwhelmed by all the accrued deadlines you have?


Consider employing the paper writing service MasterPapers just like many other learners already do. In fact, some students completely unload their assignments to service professionals and make trips to other countries to fully enjoy their college years.

transportation in istanbul from airport

How to Get From the Airport to the City

One of the most important aspects of a trip to Istanbul is getting from the airport to the city. So many travelers overlook this detail, but there’s nothing more intimidating than being in a foreign city without a plan.


Istanbul’s new airport looks like a small city. There are beauty salons, bookstores, restaurants with traditional Turkish cuisine, and even a museum and a small market.


Free recreation areas under decorative palm trees have also been set up for tourists. The airport is located 35 kilometers from the city center, so after arrival, it is better to call a taxi or take a bus.


Buses from Havaist, one of the largest carriers, depart from Istanbul’s Havalimanı station for various parts of the city. The trip to the central district of Taksim costs 30 lire for one passenger.


You can buy a ticket on the Havaist website or on the mobile application.


The fastest way to get to the city center is by taxi. The fare costs about 200 lire, but you can bargain up to 170 lire.


You have to be careful with Turkish taxi drivers. Although the American Uber works in Istanbul, the drivers of local yellow taxis do not like this service, because it “steals” their customers.


One important note: 1 USD is almost 10 lira, and most prices there you’ll find very friendly. So, even students will have no problem finding money to both delegate their academic assignments to MasterPapers and buy tickets to Turkey.dolmabahce palace, trip to istanbul

Best Areas to Stay At

If you’re planning a trip to Istanbul then you’re surely going to need a place to stay. In this city, hotels are at every turn: from luxury hotels to budget.


However, to experience the city, it is better to look for an apartment on the Airbnb website.


Among tourists, the European part of the city is popular, not so much the Asian, where most locals live. The most famous mosques, museums, and restaurants are located in Istanbul.


There will be no problems with finding housing in this part of the city.

hotel istanbul

To stay near the city center, you should look for accommodation in the area of Sultanahmet, near the Galata Tower, or in the hotel area of Besiktas. Each district of Istanbul has its own characteristics and is not like the other, so wherever Google-map leads – there are places worth noting.

trip to istanbul

Getting Around Istanbul

Travel transportation is often overlooked when planning a trip to Istanbul, but it shouldn’t be. Logistics can make your trip fun or terrible. So, be sure to get ahead of this.


By foot: There are many small streets and cozy cafes in Istanbul that you will not see when traveling by car or subway. For long walks, it is better to choose clothes that protect from the sun and comfortable shoes, because the streets of Istanbul are paved and often go almost perpendicularly up.


Underground: This is a convenient option for those who want to avoid endless traffic jams in Istanbul. The European part of the metro has four branches and operates from 6 am to 12 am.


A one-way subway ride with a regular ticket costs about 7 lire. Transfers to other lines are paid. Tourists can save by buying İstanbulkart, which also operates for other types of public transport: buses, ferries, funiculars, and trams.


The card costs 10 lire, and then it can be replenished for any amount in a special machine. A subway ride with this card will cost about 4 lire.ferry istanbul

Ferry: This is a relatively inexpensive and convenient way to travel between remote parts of Istanbul (for example, between the European and Asian parts). Ferries also carry bicycles, cars, and buses.


The price of the ferry depends on the distance between the piers, but usually, a one-way trip costs no more than 10 lire. Sehir Hatlari, a large, comfortable ferry with beautiful views of the city and the Bosphorus, runs between Istanbul’s piers.


The schedule and prices for the ferry are on the company’s website above.

food in istanbul, turkish coffee

What to Eat In Istanbul

One of the best parts about traveling is the food. So, it’s mindful when planning a trip to Istanbul that you think of this ahead of time so you know what you can and can’t eat.


It is easy to eat cheap and tasty in Istanbul. Cafes and restaurants are here on every corner and everyone is trying to attract tourists.


Be prepared to ignore the waiters who may stop you right in the middle of a crowded street. The most popular things to try in Istanbul are street food, shaved ice, baklava, Turkish delight, tea, Turkish coffee, and kefir.


Main dishes: Turkish restaurants are dominated by fish and meat dishes: kebab, pita with meat filling, gezleme cakes with minced meat, or hard cheese.


Turkish breakfast: Kahvalti – hearty and nutritious. It consists of sliced fresh vegetables, cheeses, olives, eggs, fried ham, and bread with jam and honey. All this is served in small saucers.

Hagia Sophia, trip to Istanbul

Where To Go In Istanbul

For Culture and history: Explore Istanbul with the most popular architectural and cultural monuments: the Hagia Sophia, Suleimanie, the Blue Mosque, the palaces of Dolmabahçe and Topkapi, as well as the ancient Basilica Cistern and the Galata Tower, which overlooks the European part of Stab.


For beautiful parks in Turkey: Gulhane Park in Eminönü, Yildiz Park in Besiktas, and Miniaturk in Sütluce.


Streets: To see the real Istanbul, you have to get lost. After all, every street of the city is special: the houses are lined with ancient mosaics, and cats live in the windows, under the doors, and on the balconies.


There are historic streets where women wear hijabs and more modern ones where young people listen to live music and drink cocktails. And on top of all this, six times a day there are calls for prayer from the minarets around the city.trip to istanbul

Shopping: In Istanbul, they try to sell you everything: carpets, clothes, fake Chanel perfumes, or ordinary magnets. The whole city resembles a large market. Interestingly, whole streets are allocated for certain types of goods. For example, on one street only musical instruments are sold, on the other – plastic toys or hookahs.


To buy souvenirs, spices, or tea, you should visit the Egyptian Bazaar in the area of Eminönü or the Grand Bazaar. Boutiques such as H&M or Zara, as well as numerous restaurants, can be found on the İstiklâl pedestrian street in the Beyoğlu district.

princes' island istanbul

Princes’ Islands (Adalar): These are small islands near Istanbul, located in the Sea of Marmara. The largest is the island of Buyukada, which can be reached in 1.5 hours from Istanbul by ferry.


On the island, you can rent bicycles for a whole day for 50 lire and ride along the beautiful streets with views of the blue bays and mountain slopes. There are many steep climbs in Buyukad, but the roads are smooth and well-groomed. On the way, there are restaurants and shops with water and snacks.

Istanbul street

To Sum Up

A trip to Istanbul should be on everyone’s “to go to” list without a doubt. Remember, if you’re a student, don’t let the overwhelming academic assignments get you down!


Simply read the article – Comprehensive Reviews of 5 Best Academic Services in 2021 and figure out the best platform for yourself to use. This way, you’ll have much less stress in your life and more opportunities for traveling to life-changing places like Istanbul. 

Christa Thompson

Christa Thompson is the Founder and Chief Editor of The Fairytale Traveler. She started traveling the world in 2003 when she attended a summer abroad study at the University of Cambridge in England. Since then, her wanderlust has been fierce. Her three passions in life are her son, traveling, and being creative. The Fairytale Traveler brand gives Christa the opportunity to do all of these things and to live intentionally every day. "It's never too late to believe in what you love and to pursue your dreams." -Christa Thompson

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