In Istanbul, Find our travel guide on things to do in Istanbul, including popular tourist attractions, sights, entertainment, day and night activities, excursions, and tours. Istanbul offers an unforgettable experience to its visitors, with its colorful daily city life and dynamic nightlife. The beautiful picture of the city combines countless historical places, churches, palaces, and mosques.
Istanbul is also one of the most vibrant cities in the world, offering a variety of world events, international films, music, theater, and arts festivals, more than 80 museums, and many art galleries showcasing all culture, history, and art, including painting, sculpture, photography and much more.
The best things to do in Istanbul
Discover the Sultanahmet area
For those who are passionate about history and want to see the historical sites in the city, we highly recommend you visit and see the Sultanahmet neighborhood. It’s the best way to make the most of the city’s noteworthy sights, sounds, and smells. In Sultanahmet, you can learn about both the Byzantine heritage and the glories of the Ottomans.
The Sultanahmet district embraces all the most visited historical and tourist sites in Istanbul, such as Sultanahmet Square (Horizontal Square), the Hagia Sophia, which has recently turned into a mosque, the Topkapi Palace, the Blue Mosque, the Basilica Cistern, the Archeology Museums in Istanbul, and the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts. Everything can be explored by walking.
Explore Galata Tower and Taksim
For those who are authentic enthusiasts of urban city life and enjoy its lively nights and streets, as well as archaeological sites and museums, we highly recommend you visit and see the Beyoglu district of Istanbul, which is home to famous tourist districts in Galata and Taksim.
Taksim, with its famous Taksim Square, is the main attraction for every tourist in the area. It is always vibrant, with cheery tourists taking selfies at the monument or the historical tram. From Taksim, you can continue down the world-famous Istiklal Street until you reach the Galata neighborhood of Beyoglu.
The area is home to the famous Galata Tower. From Taksim or Galata, you can walk towards neighboring neighborhoods such as Karakoy and Cukurcuma and feel the city life along its narrow streets filled with the historic facades of old Istanbul, as well as the best antique shops tempting to visit.
Take a Bosphorus cruise.
The Bosphorus cruise is one of the most popular and fascinating forms of entertainment during your visit to Istanbul. Bosphorus cruises depart slightly to the east of the famous Galata Bridge and continue to Anadolu Kavagi, the Bosphorus’s entrance to the Black Sea, making many stops as your sightseeing stops along the strait.
Tourist bus tour in Istanbul
The BangBus Istanbul tour is a cheap way to discover and explore the popular areas of Istanbul that you could not walk to and see in a day. He walks around the famous sights along Istanbul’s different and exciting neighborhoods and provides informative, pre-recorded commentary in 8 languages. The open double-decker tourist bus looks cool.
You can get off at any of the designated stations (which means a hop on, hop off) and explore the area and landmarks on foot, after which you can catch the next bus (Buses arrive at the stations every 30 min/60 min.) from any stop when you’re ready (which means hop on). Way) to go further and visit other sights on the way. All stations are located near the most famous sights of Istanbul. The upper deck of the sightseeing bus provides a great vantage point for beautiful panoramic views of the city and allows you to take pictures.
Turkish cuisine experience
If you are in Istanbul, you are one step away from tasting the delicious meals of Turkish cuisine, from hot and spicy Anatolian and Aegean dishes cooked with olive oil. Istanbul offers a wide variety of Turkish cuisine in a variety of excellent and fancy restaurants in Istanbul.
Traditional Turkish cuisine is worth savoring. Travelers can choose from a wide variety of Turkish kebabs, sherbet, appetizers, and mostly meat-based dishes. Turkish sweets such as baklava and Turkish sweets are also world-famous.
Enjoy the vibrant nights of Istanbul.
Entertainment venues are spread all over Istanbul. All the locals will tell you how energetic the city’s nightlife is. Istiklal Street between Taksim and Tunel provides a vivid example of the city’s liveliness at night. Another great evening out destination is Kadikoy, located on the Asian side of the Bosphorus. You can easily spend the night pleasantly with many cafes, parks, and small restaurants.
Enjoy the shopping scene in Istanbul.
The variety of traditional and modern products displayed in the historical Ottoman bazaars and modern shopping malls makes the city a center of attraction for shopping lovers. Famous Turkish carpets made of silk, wool, cotton, jewelry, authentic glassware, traditional souvenirs, and trendy products are popular commodities that tourists buy on their visit to Istanbul.
The world-famous Grand Bazaar is one of the largest covered markets in the world, with more than 4,000 shops. The Egyptian Spice Bazaar (Misir Carsisi) is also very popular, where you can admire various spices, dried fruits, baskets, jewelry, fabrics, and haberdashery.
Visit the charming museums of Istanbul.
For those true enthusiasts of culture and art, Istanbul’s museums offer the best of the city’s historical, cultural and modern art heritage. Istanbul hosts more than 80 museums and many art galleries showcasing all culture, arts, and history, including painting, sculpture, photography, and much more. The Istanbul Archeology Museums, Hagia Sophia Museum, Topkapi Palace Museum, Modern Istanbul, Rahmi Koç Transportation Museum, and Turkish and Islamic Arts Museum are among the best museums in Istanbul that you should not miss.
Fun day in Istanbul theme parks
Istanbul offers excellent theme parks ranging from stunning mega parks and horseback riding to aquariums, dolphinariums, themed museums, and much more. Amusement and amusement parks are places for entertainment and great places for your children to learn and develop their imagination.