The vast historic city of Istanbul, known as Constantinople in the days of the ancient Roman Empire, is one of the world’s most intriguing cities, part of it in Europe and the newer area across the Bosphorus Strait in Asia. Those who holiday in Istanbul generally come to marvel at its grand palaces, mosques, andmore
Watch out for Veni Vidi TRavel - mickwoodams. Date of travel: Oct 2010
Veni vidi travel. Also if dealing with these crooks, please ask for verification of any of their names, especially ayala travel because this agency is registered somewhere else in Turkey with licence no: 3974 and the same crooks are using licence number 5984 which supposed to belong to veni vici travel! Also they claim that venividitravel was established in 1986 they must be 21 years behind, 2007 sounds more right, big big lie ask for proof! This is criminal behaviour.
I once loved Istanbul... - Sarah. Date of travel: May 2009
The first time I travelled to Istanbul, I was with a big group of fellow classmates, four professors and a Turkish guide. It was great. We saw the sights and shopped in the bazaars. I enjoyed myself so much that I decided to focus my studies on Istanbul, leading me to return to the city a year later, alone - big mistake. Footnote - I am a pale skin, blonde and might as well have a huge sign that yells TOURIST!!. Therefore, I never once had any piece and quiet. Stupidly, on my first night here, I had a guy who wanted to "practice his English". Always willing to assist in continuing of education, I walked and talked with him. He told me of a cheap restaurant to go to and proceeded to buy my dinner. In the end, I was actually running to my hostel as the man was chasing me down the street. I prayed to all known gods to make him go away. Moral of the story, people are very coy here. The only way I managed my three week research expedition was by putting on a Medusa stare and ignoring all "hey Spice Girl, Charlie's Angel"...yada yada. I once had a vendor grab my arm as I quickly walked by. My advice, travel as a group, and if you can, find a man to go with you. Because, ladies need to be extra careful. They're all womenizers here.
Istanbul - Fantastic City! - Gale Winner. Date of travel: May 2009
Istanbul - It was the first time for both of us in this Fantastic City. We both enjoyed our holiday to Istanbul.
Best city - Sue Amory. Date of travel: Jul 2008
Istanbul was incredible! Bosphorus trips, Turkish nights, blue mosque, St Sophia, grand bazaar - magnificent!
Istanbul was great.... except for one dreadful apartment - Monaco love. Date of travel: Jul 2008
Istanbul is a beautiful city with the mixture of ancient and modern excitement.....except for one dreadful apartment.
Beware - M Hammer. Date of travel: Jul 2008
As noted by another visitor, please BEWARE of seemingly friendly individuals who will approach you on the street with the offer of going for a drink...you'll end up in a dive bar in a small alley off Taksim Square, where you will be served drinks and joined by overly-friendly ladies from the likes of Ukraine. When you've had enough, you will be presented with an astronomical bill (600-1200) and a large menu where the outrageous prices are clearly listed...and when you complain and/or refuse to pay...you will be surrounded by a gang of thugs who will persuade you to pay by intimidation. I have heard many similar stories from colleagues who have also gone to Istanbul. Some have sought the assistance of police, but because the police are quite corrupt this tactic may end up costing you more money in the long run. I would never return to Istanbul.
Enchanting Istanbul - Margot Hinz. Date of travel: Jun 2008
Istanbul is a bewitching city. With a fusion between old and new, modern and traditional, it's not like any city I've ever been to. Turn a corner and you'll go from skyscrapers and shopping centers to rundown houses where you will see stooped old ladies sitting in the shade on an old couch, looking over tiny children playing among the chickens. It's a city that steals your heart right from the start, with so much to see and so much history behind it, you can't help but long to return there. Take a tour, visit the magnificent mosques, the charismatic bazaars, and the breathtaking Bosphorus, smoke a nargili and don't forget to meet the locals.
Istanbul - Hala. Date of travel: Apr 2008
I visited Istanbul for the first time in April 2008 -- it is a fantastic city. But be aware of people seeking tourists and making short friendship. They start conversation with "where do you come from?" -- this is their famous starting line -- at the end of the conversation either they ask you for a drink in a bar (5 ytl) or a massage by young girls for cheap price (30 ytl) which is just a bait for dragging victim into the bar or the cheap hotel. There, they will offer a drink and some girls will come to share their drinks on the table and being very friendly. Then, the receipt comes with unrealistic amount (700 to 800 ytl) -- if you refuse to pay, four or five strong security men come on the table forcing you to sit down and won't let you go until paying them good amount of money depending on the money you have in your pocket. They will tell you that our cameras is recording that you are trying to leave without paying. Please, please, be careful, a rule of thumb, do not go with short time street friend to bars or cheap hotels, they WILL rob your money off and you may get injured.
Historic Istanbul - David Reid. Date of travel: Dec 2007
Historic Istanbul
Once known as Constantinople, Istanbul was capital of the Eastern Roman empire and has relics dating back to beyond this period from its Islamic and Christian history. An Istanbul holiday is a fascinating experience and can be combined with a few days on beaches of Turkey's Aegean coast. Istanbul has some excellent hotels and great restaurants, and the people are generally charming, and not in your face like the Arab countries. If you do travel to Istanbul you must visit a Hammam (traditional Turkish bath). The Cagaloglu Hammam is over 300 years old and is my favourite, wonderful archetecture and incredibly relaxing - massages, steam room and even a shave! Must-see attractions in Istanbul include The Blue Mosque (one of the world's most famous mosques) and The Grand Bazaar (a huge market where you can practice your bargaining skills).
More than you can barter for - get some practice in before going - Anton D'abo. Date of travel: Sep 2007
The square outside the hotel allowed me to walk to most of the town's main the tourist sites. Still you can grab a taxi or a metro. They're cheap and on the whole reliable and good for the few times I travelled on them. With 3 days, I just wanted to check out the old town. Basically I just walked along Pera, a pedestrian like shopping street. You can then get the bridge across the golden horn. There's lots to see and do there. If bartering is your game, have a go but I wasn't that good at it. Although I picked up some silks and a few small mats, it was value but not local value :-D
I loved Istanbul - Honestreport. Date of travel: Aug 2007
Istambul is a nice city full of wonder. People are kind, with some exceptions.
I love Istanbul - Susan Green. Date of travel: Jun 2007
I must say I love Istanbul. It’s the largest city in Turkey, with Muslims as the largest religious group. There’s a lot to explore in Istanbul.
Great City - Ann & Anthony Hume. Date of travel: May 2007
Istanbul is a nice city, recommend the old city there are many hotels near by... Try Best Western Acropol Hotel.
Dave Smith. Date of travel: Mar 2004
Istanbul was absolutely great for me and my partner( who lived out there for 5 years and speaks Turkish fluently) - the tea seemed to be endless and the people were fantastic too.. lots of things to see and do - we spent 3 weeks there and met some great people although we nearly got fleeced several times by untrustworthy characters- also at night endless amounts of pimps offering us prostitutes on all the corners but apart from that it was great- we ferried also to the asian side which was equally as fun- i'd advise anyone going to Turkey to go to Istanbul.. Tour Operator: Hays
Matt and Lorna. Date of travel: Feb 2004
Loved the Grand Bazaar even with all the hassle and pressure to buy. There is so much to see and absorb even if you don't want to spend hours negotiating a price for a carpet over endless cups of tea. Only don't be in a hurry to buy anything as bargaining and socialising is part of the experience, but it can get quite exhausting. And don't feel you have to buy something just because you have been given tea and had hundreds of carpets and kilims hauled out for your inspection - they try to make you feel guilty so you buy something!
Istanbul rocks! - lava. Date of travel: Jan 1970
It has many sites, bazaars and whatever you want. And the sea, oh the Turkish sea!
Hotels in Istanbul User Rating
5-Star Hotels
Marmara Istanbul Hotel | * * * * * |
Allstar Akgun Hotel | * * * * * |
Allstar Green Park Merter Hotel | * * * * * |
Allstar Cinar Hotel | * * * * * |
Celal Sultan | * * * * * |
Ceylan Inter-continental | * * * * * |
Crowne Plaza | * * * * * |
Divan | * * * * * |
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4-Star Hotels
Allstar Sevcan Airport Hotel | * * * * * |
Orient Express | * * * * * |
Best Western Historical Acropol Hotel | * * * * * |
Carlton Hotel Istanbul | * * * * * |
Accura Hotel | * * * * * |
All Seasons | * * * * * |
Allstar Arcadia Hotel | * * * * * |
Allstar Aziyade Hotel | * * * * * |
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3-Star Hotels
Allstar Nena Hotel | * * * * * |
Allstar Airport Florya Park Hotel | * * * * * |
Sultanahmet Suites | * * * * * |
Albion Hotel Istanbul | * * * * * |
Allstar Ambassador Hotel | * * * * * |
Allstar Blue House Hotel | * * * * * |
Allstar Galata Antique Hotel | * * * * * |
Allstar Pierre Loti Hotel | * * * * * |
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2-Star Hotels
Poem | * * * * * |
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Other Hotels
Istanbul Sweet Home | * * * * * |
Avicenna Hotel | * * * * * |
Hotel Agan | * * * * * |
Pera Palas | * * * * * |
Yeni Ayasofya Hotel | * * * * * |
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