Istanbul's food scene is a glorious reflection of its rich history and geographical location. The city offers a wide array of delicious delicacies. Begin your culinary journey with a traditional Turkish breakfast featuring Menemen, a tasty scramble of eggs, tomatoes, green peppers, and spices.

For lunch or dinner, enjoy the legendary Doner Kebab, meat roasted on a vertical spit, sliced thin, and often served in bread with salad. Another must-try dish is Lahmacun, a thin crust topped with minced meat, salad, and lemon juice, often described as Turkish pizza.

Those with a sweet tooth should certainly try Baklava, a sugary treat comprising layered filo pastry filled with crushed nuts and drenched in honey or syrup, and Künefe, a heated cheese dessert doused in a sweet sugar-based sauce.

To experience the local street food, try Simit, a sesame-encrusted bread ring, and Balık Ekmek, a grilled fish sandwich served with onions and lettuce.


Istanbul's culture is a melting pot of various civilizations and traditions. The city has been the capital of three empires - Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman - each leaving its indelible mark on the city's culture.

The city's numerous mosques, churches, palaces, and museums reflect its architectural diversity. Istanbul is also known for its thriving arts scene, with numerous art festivals and galleries.

In terms of religion, most of Istanbul's population is Muslim, but the city is a mosaic of different religious communities, including Greek Orthodox Christians and Sephardic Jews.

While Turkish is the official language, English is widely spoken in tourist areas, and many Istanbulites are bilingual.

Travel Tips

  1. Best Time to Visit: The most optimal periods to explore Istanbul are during the spring months of March through May and the autumn months from September to November. 
  2. Dress Code: While Istanbul is relatively liberal, it's essential to dress modestly, particularly when visiting religious sites.
  3. Safety: Istanbul is generally safe for tourists, but it's always important to stay vigilant, especially in crowded areas and while using public transportation.

Interesting Facts

  1. Istanbul is the only city in the world straddles two continents - Europe and Asia.
  2. The city was known as Byzantium and Constantinople before being renamed Istanbul in 1930.
  3. The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul is one of the globe's most ancient and extensive indoor marketplaces, boasting over 4,000 stores across 61 streets.

  1. Constructed in 1875, Istanbul's subway system is the world's third-oldest underground railway. It's 573 meters long and located in the Beyoglu district.
  2. Istanbul has over 3,000 mosques, the most famous being the Sultanahmet Mosque, also known as the Blue Mosque.

Top Places

  1. Hagia Sophia: Originally a cathedral, then a mosque, and now a museum, Hagia Sophia is a symbol of Istanbul's rich history.

  1. Topkapi Palace: Formerly the grand home of Ottoman sultans, this lavish palace now operates as a museum, displaying an array of Ottoman architectural marvels and valuables.
  2. The Blue Mosque: Known for its blue Iznik tiles and six minarets, the Blue Mosque is one of the most iconic landmarks of Istanbul.
  3. Bosphorus Strait: Take a ferry ride along this strait that separates Europe and Asia for breathtaking views of the Istanbul skyline.
  4. Grand Bazaar: A heaven for shoppers, the Grand Bazaar offers everything from jewelry and ceramics to carpets and spices.

With its vibrant mix of history, culture, and food, Istanbul is a city that leaves every visitor spellbound. Whether exploring its historic sites, strolling down its bustling streets, or savoring its delicious food, Istanbul offers an unforgettable travel experience.