In 2010 Istanbul was named as the European Capital of Culture, so you can be sure that there will be plenty of things to see and do on a weekend in Istanbul.
You can visit Turkish Baths, head to one of the city’s many museums, or relax on the sun-drenched beaches. Flights to Istanbul are available from most major airports, and there are many beautiful and affordable hotels in Istanbul.
Things to do in Istanbul
Istanbul is the only city in the world that is on two different continents, and in the past served as the capital of the Roman Empire. The city has a lot of history, and this is displayed beautifully at the Archaeological Museum, the Museum of Islamic Art, and the Museum of the Ancient Orient.
If museums don’t tickle your fancy then you might prefer swimming in the picturesque Bosphorus Strait that divides Asia from Europe, or dining out at Ístiklal Avenue.
If shopping is your fix, then look no further than the Grand Bazaar. The Bazaar opened in 1461, and is one of the oldest covered markets in the world. It boasts over 4,000 shops, and is well known for its jewellery, pottery, spice and carpet shops.
The Sultman Ahmed Mosque, better known as the Blue Mosque, is a stunning building, and is one of the main reasons people go to Istanbul. The incredible interior is lined with more than 20,000 handmade ceramic tiles, and it is not to be missed.
A weekend in Istanbul is guaranteed to satisfy everyone’s needs!
Where to stay in Istanbul
The Crowne Plaza in Istanbul’s ‘Old City’ is a deluxe five star city hotel, set in the historial peninsula. It is within walking distance from the Grand Bazaar and the Blue Mosque.
The Almina Hotel is located in the ancient historical quarter of Sultanahmet and is guaranteed to provide its guests with a luxurious stay. It boasts 29 private rooms, a sauna, Turkish bath, and panoramic view of the old city.
The Swissotel Bosphorus Hotel is slightly more expensive but situated right by the ocean, with wonderful views. It is within 65 acres of gardens, and is adjacent to the fascinating Dolmabache Palace, which was the last residence of the Ottoman Sultans.