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Angela
Wilkes Barre

Turkey, Istanbul

8 full days in Turkey! Where to go besides Istanbul?

My girlfriends and I are venturing to Turkey this summer, and we'd like to hit up a beach town after visiting the city for a few days. My questions are the following:

1. How many days do you recommend staying in Istanbul?

2. What coastal cities would you recommend (we will probably only choose one, but I want to investigate our options). 

We love food, culture, fun... we want to be safe, but super huge party/tourist spots are not that big of a draw for our group. Beauty and beaches and some sites are probably what most of us are looking for.

 Thanks!


12 Answers

top answer by
Tony

Istanbul is a pretty amazing place. I wouldn't do any less than 3 days to cover of some of the sites, try some great food in a beautiful atmosphere and some aimless wandering. Check out the newer part of town around Beyoğlu as well as the historical area of Sultanahmet. Catch a ferry over to Uskudar and maybe go for a meal at Çiya Sofrası and catch the ferry back to Eminönü around sunset past the Maiden's Tower. Maybe go and have a meal with a family or try a street food picnic to taste the real food the locals love. (Disclosure: I'm the General Manager of Urban Adventures).

For beach towns, my absolute favourite is Kas. Because it is equal distance from the airports at Antalya and Fethiye, it is just out of reach of the package tourist hordes (thankfully). It has managed to keep its charm but still have enough interesting eating, shopping and sites. As there is a group of you I'd recommend renting and apartment. Check out Tripping.com for the quickest way to see most apartments that are available in the area.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Beyoğlu (metro area)
  2. Sultanahmet (neighborhood)
  3. Uskudar (neighborhood)
  4. Çiya Sofrası (restaurant)
  5. Eminönü (neighborhood)
  6. Maiden's Tower (attraction)
  7. Kas (city)
  8. Antalya (city)
  9. Fethiye (city)
12 thankscomments (5)


answered by
Agnes from The Hague

Dear Angela, First of all congratulations with you excellent choice of going to Istanbul this summer. I would recommend staying 3 full days in Istanbul ( if you only have 8 days in total) and then the other days go to the coast, There is a beach nearby Istanbul too. Which is clean and safe. If you realy want to go to a beachtown then I recommend Bodrum which offers nices beaches and nice nightlife too. There is just too much in Istanbul itself. Expolore the area near Galata Tower too and catch a boat to go to Ortaköy Cami, which offers nice Bosporus side cafés and stroll around. The tourist area near Sulthanamet is nice for the highlights like Topkapi Palace and Blue Mosque the shopping around that area is very tourist and you girls will be hassled by Turkish guys, see it as fun and enjoy the attention, they don't mean a thing it is all part of the Ottoman Theatre ;-) Have a great time! 


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Bodrum (city)
  2. Galata Tower (attraction)
  3. Ortaköy Cami (attraction)
  4. Blue Mosque (attraction)
  5. Topkapi Palace (attraction)
8 thankscomments (1)


answered by
Steve from Exeter

We made a trip last year to Turkey where I have visited around 15 times over the last 25 years ( some just work!). We stayed in Istanbul for 4 days and to get a true flavour of the city I think you need a minimum of 3 nights to get under the skin of the place. In addition to places already mentioned we visited the İstanbul Modern and had a fantastic time there ( great restaurant for lunch with  a terrace overlooking Sultanahmet

We then took an overnight bus to Cappadocia and finally an overnight bus to Kaya valley which is located just above Fethiye and very quiet, beautiful with excellent restaurants. To enjoy the coast take a boat out for the day from Fethiye. We took a boat with Mohammad and his family who cooked a great BBQ fish lunch on the back of the boat and we swam in the sea all day and then sailed back ( no motor - just sailing) on his small Gulet - all for about £130 for the whole boat for the day.

You won't go far wrong reading Lonely Planet's Turkey book. Transport easy, buses have wifi & air conditioning and internal flights also easy.



Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Sultanahmet (neighborhood)
  2. Cappadocia (region)
  3. Kaya (city)
  4. Fethiye (city)
  5. İstanbul Modern (attraction)
7 thankscomments (3)


answered by
vehbi from Istanbul

Dear Miss, 

First I'd say 3 full days would be enough for Istanbul to see around , shopping, enjoy historical and night life. But you should wake up early an be at streets by 09 am. :) Rest of you holiday I'd recommend you to go to Fethiye, which you'd feel yourself as if you are in Maldives or Bahamas. I'd also advise you to take 12 island tour moonlight tour and cleopathra bath tour. For more details you can contact me directly whenever you wish to. All my recommendations are based my birth place is Istanbul and I have a downtown home at Fethiye. Thank you and wellcome both of you:)


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Istanbul (city)
  2. Fethiye (city)
5 thanks


answered by
Ozgur from Istanbul

In Istanbul, if you like steak, Nusr-Et Steakhouse is the best steakhouse of the town. But there may be a bit expensive, 100 dollar per person.

If you try nice local food. My first recommendation is Ara Kafe https://foursquare.com/v/ara-kafe/4b4efc8af964a5201ff826e3, then Enstitu Restoran (Istanbul Culinary Institute) http://www.istanbulculinary.com.tr/tr/. The both places are near Taksim area. 

Saffet Emre Tonguc, is the most famous tour guide of istanbul. He has really nice tours in istanbul. I strongly recommend you. Mail them for detail info.  http://www.saffetemretonguc.com/index.php?pg=2014turlarim

And here is cool guide for istanbul. http://turkey.dailysecret.com/istanbul/en#axzz31d1Rn3rl


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Nusr-Et Steakhouse (attraction)
  2. Ara Kafe (restaurant)
  3. Enstitu Restoran (Istanbul Culinary Institute) (restaurant)
4 thankscomments (1)


answered by
Raquelle from Cochrane, Alberta

3 days in Istanbul is plenty! 


3 thanks


answered by
Missy from Newport

Hi, Usually 3 days in Istanbul are ample, including the first night after landing in Istanbul.  On the second day, walk around the Old City and visit the Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque and the Basilica Cistern.  The next day visit the Grand Bazaar and the Spice Bazaar.  Day 4, you may want to take an early flight from Istanbul to Izmir, where a day trip can be arranged for your group to be met with a van for a guided tour of the ancient site of Ephesus.  The van could drive you to either Bodrum or Marmaris, where I suggest, to really enjoy beaches, the beautiful Turkish coast and waters, to try a 5 day Gulet charter.  Either out of Bodrum  or Marmaris, there are ancient sites to visit, great beaches, and lots to see and do.  At the end you can fly back to Istanbul from either Bodrum, or Dalaman (for Marmaris)


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Istanbul (city)
  2. Hagia Sophia (attraction)
  3. Blue Mosque (attraction)
  4. Basilica Cistern (attraction)
  5. Grand Bazaar (attraction)
  6. Spice Bazaar (attraction)
  7. Izmir (city)
  8. Bodrum (city)
  9. Marmaris (city)
  10. Topkapi Palace (attraction)
3 thanks


answered by
Sebnem from Istanbul

Please read the comment I wrote here, it might give you a an idea too. http://www.trippy.com/question/Istanbul-Design-enthusiast-spending-4-days-in-Istanbul-in-September--October

For a coastal visit I wil recommend you Bodrum and Kas.

Antalya will be probably too hot in summer. They are expecting 53 degrees this weekdend :(((

If you have questions let me know =)


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Bodrum (city)
  2. Kas (city)
  3. Antalya (city)
1 thanks


answered by
Aleks from Istanbul, Turkey

Hi, for istanbul you should have at least 1 week to have all the joy of Istanbul. to see historical places go to shoping malls, taste foods and the night life, you need to have big time space. My opinion is for you to stay at the European side of Istanbul and choose a hotel at Taksim or Şişli area. Taksim is the most interesting place to go ( food, social life, night life and shoping). Also very near to Nisantasi which the most attractive and elegant area of Istanbul.

 


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Taksim (neighborhood)
  2. Şişli (metro area)
  3. Nisantasi (neighborhood)
1 thanks


answered by
Malibu from Alanya

Alanya is an amazing city to visit Angela, it is steeped in history, has shopping to die for, a bustling harbour area. A very laid back cosmopolitan town where many foreigners settle as a second home. In Alanya, there are many contemporary coffee shops and restaurants as well as traditional cuisine on the local Lokantas. We recommend a boat trip (Brothers Five is one of the best), breakfast on the mountains overlooking Alanya, Sapadere Canyon and the Floating Restaurants in the Dim Cay Valley. Whatever you loke doing - Alanya has it! 


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Alanya (city)


answered by
Yuksel from Kuşadası

Hello Angela,

1. 3 Days would be enough time to see and visit Istanbul

2. Aegean coast will be perfect for you because the sea is clean cities are safe , I can recommend you to stay in 'Kusadasi. It's very close to Ephesus ancient city, house of Virgin Mary and Pamukkale (Hierapolis) ancient city. From this region you can try and taste cultural food and drinks. Night life in this region is very popular

3. If you need any proffesional help you can contact Ada Vegas Travel for additional info (www.adavegastravel.com)

Have a good holiday

Yuksel


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Istanbul (city)
  2. Kusadasi (city)
  3. Ephesus (attraction)
  4. Pamukkale (city)
  5. Hierapolis (attraction)


answered by
Trish from London

Kalkanis perfect. It's still a bit of a hidden gem on the coast - a pretty, quaint, hilly town on the beach with great buzzy nightlife and restaurants. There are also 2 luxe beach clubs on either side of the town. I would rent a villa with a pool as close to town as possible.


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Kalkan (city)




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