There are many interesting facts about this city. The most impressive one is that is placed on two continents, Europe and Asia, divided by the Marble sea. Even though it is the biggest city in Turkey, it is not the capital. Also, it has a long history and you will have a chance to see a lot of historical monuments. Before the Ottomans, it was called Constantinople, and it was the capital of the Byzantine Empire. With more than 15 million people, it is also one of the biggest cities in Europe.
Istanbul is always crowded with people from all over the world. Therefore, it is not a surprise that there is a huge airport with connections with almost every country. It can be a great choice for taking a break while traveling from one to the other side of the world. There is an excellent service where you can easily find a room near the airport. If you are interested in this option, click here.
If you choose a travel agency, the great thing is that you will be provided with guidance from someone who knows more about this place. On the other side, if you want to avoid groups and go there alone, it is important to learn some things before arrival. Here are some tips that will make your time there more interesting.
1. Get the Card for Public Transport
It is not a surprise that there is a well-connected service for public transportation since it is a 15+ million city. Also, there is no reason to spend more money on taxis or private buses since this option is highly developed and one of the best systems in the world.
It will help you check each corner of this amazing place. An even better solution to regular public transport is the cart especially introduced for tourists. There is enough space for 5 people to ride in it, and what is the best feature is the price of under 20 cents. Therefore, you can use it five times and you won’t spend a whole dollar on this service.
2. Don’t Rush
The common mistake people are making is when they decide to visit this town only for one or two days. Keep in mind that it is huge and that there are too many attractions to check them all in such a limited time. Therefore, it can be a great idea for your next vacation since you can spend a whole week checking different sites, and there will still be more to see.
Our suggestion is the start with the mosque. This amazing place is known as Hagia Sophia, and it represents a unique combination of Islam and Christianity since the officials decided to recover its historical appearance and allow a certain part to remain as a church. When you get inside it, you will notice that most of the symbols are related to Islam. Therefore, be sure to follow the rules and show respect if you are not from a Muslim country. Also, there are some details left from the period when it was a church, and you will see pictures of saints at the top of the building inside.
There are many other amazing places as well, and you can spend hours observing or enjoying each one of them, such as visiting museums, getting a ride on a boat through the Bosporus, and much more. The best solution is to plan your activities in advance so you don’t skip anything interesting.
3. Be Prepared for the Crown in Grand Bazar
The most interesting fact about this part of the town is that it represents one of the biggest marketplaces in the world. There are thousands of stores that you can visit and buy all kinds of things, from art, clothes, interesting artifacts, and spices, to modern devices, and many other things. There are more than 400k people that will go through this place every day. Therefore, don’t be too surprised when you find yourself in such a crowd. Also, if you are not alone, be sure to keep your company close so you don’t get lost in this place.
4. Avoid Renting a Vehicle
The reason why we suggest that this is not a good option is not related to the price or quality of these services available in this town, but to the fact that the traffic is crowded, and people are always in rush. If you are from Europe or northern America, you got used to organizing rules and signs on each corner. Therefore, the traffic here may appear too chaotic
Besides that, there are always crowds and traffic jams are quite common. People will try to get in the line without following any rules while bikes will be all over your vehicle. Therefore, driving here will require some experience. On the other hand, public service is excellent, and there is no reason to struggle with driving here.
5. Find a Reliable Exchange
This country is using the lira as the official currency. There were some ups and downs related to it, and inflation is causing the lower value of this currency all the time. Therefore, keep in mind to always check the value on the day when you are exchanging your Euros or Dollars to avoid potential scams.
One thing is sure, and that is that you will have an amazing time when you visit this place. These were only some essential tips that will make your time there even more pleasant. Always book the room in advance so you don’t have to worry about available spots. Also, there is a pass for museums where you can get one card and use it for all kinds of places.
Choose your activities according to the time that you can spend there. Also, even though Turkey is more progressive when compared to other places with dominant Islam religion, alcohol is banned in certain places, and those where it is available will probably charge you much more than you expect.