With accolades and adages that go something like “World’s Hippest City” and “City of World’s Desire”, being attributed to it, Istanbul definitely calls out to all vacationers to book their flights to Istanbul soon or just hop onto last minute flights! A megacity in its own right, Turkey’s largest city has seen a lot of action in its past, in terms of being the home to various empires. Today the city stands tall as a shining example of a place that embraces modernism without letting go of its roots, and herein lays Istanbul’s charm.
When to Go
Istanbul’s weather is simple to understand. Summers are very hot and winters are decidedly cold. Though the temperature doesn’t drop below zero, but once in a while snow can be expected. If you do not want to be caught in such extreme climate, then it is best advised that you get your cheap tickets to Istanbul booked for spring or autumn season.
Getting Around the City
Meandering your way through the city on public transport can seem to be a challenge, as you may have to go via a couple of modes of transport to reach your destination. Also getting a map in Istanbul can pose to be something of an issue. But if you are travel ling on the tram, bus or metro, remember that firstly, you will need a token and secondly, fares are at a flat rate, irrespective of how far or near you have to go.
For those of you, who intend to spend more than just a couple of days vacationing in the city, they can opt for the much smarter Istanbulkart. The Istanbulkart is a card that acts like a ticket across all modes of public transport; hence you will not have to queue up for tokens every now and then.
Must visit places
Istanbul is blessed with so many attractions that it will be difficult for you to take time out for everything, if you are here for a short duration. But the few things that you need to visit and enjoy are Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern, Blue Mosque, Galata, Miniaturk, Topkapi Palace, Military Museum, Bosphorus and the Prince’s Islands. The specter and beauty of the architecture will dazzle you, that is for sure.
Istanbul is also renowned for its tulips; in fact Netherlands was introduced with Tulips, Courtesy Istanbul only. Though once can find these beautiful splashes of colors on sidewalks etc, but if you want to see much larger patches then make way to Sultanahmet Park or Emirgan Park or Gulhane Park.
Things to Do
Before you think you are done enjoying all that Istanbul has to offer, cross-check if you have relished all of the following fun activities that spell Istanbul like no other thing ever can!
One of the best offerings of the city is a hamam. This Turkish bath is an experience that you have-to opt for. Just ensure that the one you get into scores high in cleanliness and then just lose yourself in the pleasures of massage and scrubbing, Turkey style! Besides this you have to try the Hooka, which is basically a water pipe and can be compared to smoking. Those of you, who do not smoke, can opt for a flavored hooka just to get a feel of it.
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