It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when planning Turkey holidays, because there are so many educational, historic, and fun things to do on your vacation. Here is a list to get you started.

Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmed Mosque)

The Sultan Ahmed Mosque is one of the most revered masterpieces in the Islamic world. It is commonly referred to as the Blue Mosque, owing to its blue ceramic tiled roofline, complete with six minarets. A tour of this mosque is a serene respite from the hustle and bustle of the streets of Istanbul, and provides countless photo opportunities with its beautiful architecture.

Istanbul Archaeology Museum (Arkeoloji Muzesi)

The Istanbul Archaeology Museum was the first Turkish museum, opening to the public in 1891. To this day, it remains one of the largest museums in the world, with over one million artefacts, including Greek, Byzantine and Roman antiquities. Located between Topkapi Palace and Gulhane Park, you will find it’s among the best value compared to other tourist attractions in Istanbul.

You can get right up close to all the exhibits, each complete with informative and interesting signs which help bring to life the artefacts’ fascinating history. One of the most spectacular exhibits is Alexander the Great’s tomb, which depicts him in battle. This breathtaking museum should not be missed on your holiday to Istanbul.

Basilica Cistern

Near Saint Sophia and the Blue Mosque you will find the Basilica Cistern. In ancient Byzantine, over 1,500 years ago, this cistern provided water for the emperor’s palace and the old city. A peaceful respite from the heat of the city awaits you when you walk down the stairs into the underground cavern. You will instantly be surrounded by beautiful brickwork and columns, Medusa head sculptures, soft music, and the water dripping from the ceiling into the pool of fish. The Basilica Cistern is the perfect place to rest and relax at the end of a busy day of sightseeing.

Bosphorous Cruise

One of the most beautiful sights in Istanbul is the Bosphorous Straight, the 20 mile body of water which divides the continents of Europe and Asia. There are a variety of cruise styles to choose from, including small boats, group cruise ships and large yachts. Most of the cruises offer stops along the way, such as tours of historic old wooden villas, marble palaces (including the magnificent Dolmabahçe Palace), forts, and small fishing villages. Many offer on-board cultural shows, such as live music or belly dancing. Viewing Istanbul from the Bosphorous Straight gives you a different view of the city that you simply can’t appreciate while on the ground. The night cruises are especially romantic, as your boat glides along under the stars, and the lights of Istanbul reflected in the water.

Grand Bazaar (Kapali Carsisi)

The Grand Bazaar is the oldest and largest covered marketplace in the world. Refine your bargaining skills at any of the 4,000 shops located inside. You will find a rich collection of hand-woven carpets, beautiful jewellery, leather products, food, clothing and souvenirs. The colour, activity and the huge variety of goods at the Grand Bazaar will delight your senses, and should not be missed on your visit to Istanbul.

This is just a short list of the beautiful things to see in Istanbul. But whatever attraction you choose, you can be sure your Turkey holiday will be among your favourite!



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