Istanbul Waether in Istanbul

Weather in Istanbul

İstanbul has a mild climate combining those of the Mediterranean and Black Sea climate types, with a hot dry summer and pleasantly warm spring and autumn. Winters are cold but snow is rare. İstanbul is a city where all four seasons can be experienced.

Winter, from December to February, is quite cold: the average temperature between December to February is around 10-12 °C/50-53.5°F during the daytime and around 5-7 °C/41-44.5°F during the nighttime.

During winters you can experience rain in İstanbul whereas snow is usually seen once or twice in a year.

Spring: The average temperature between March to May is around 18-21°C /64.5-70°F during the daytime and around 11-13 °C/52-55.5°F during the nighttime hours.

Summer, from June to August, is hot and sunny. The heat is felt especially within the city, while a relieving breeze blows from the sea. The average temperature between June and August is around 23-25°C/73-77°F during the daytime and around 18-20 °C / 64.5-68°F during the nighttime.

Autumn, from September to November, is warm and often sunny. İstanbul also experiences rain in November. The average temperature between September and November is around 20-23 °C/ 68-73.5°F during the daytime and around 15-18 °C / 59-64.5°F during the nighttime.

İstanbul is a year-round destination offering diverse activity options for each of the four seasons.

Getting around Istanbul

Getting around in Istanbul

İstanbul offers a huge network of public transportation including buses and railways such as metrotram systems and Marmaray that stretch to both continents. 

In order to use all public transportation in Istanbul (boats, subways, buses, tramways, funiculars), you will need the magnetic card (Istanbul Kart).

Boats/ferries – vapur in Turkish – are the most popular and the convenient way of transportation across the Bosphorus. By taking the ferry, you will realize the vastness of the city, it is also a good way to see the city from the water at a lower price. The main piers on the European side are Eminönü, Kabataş, Karaköy, and Besiktaş, and on the Asian side, Üsküdar and Kadıköy.

Istanbul Where is Istanbul

Where is Istanbul

Location and Geography

With one arm reaching out to Asia and the other to Europe, İstanbul is the only city in the world built on two continents separated by a natural strait called the Bosphorus. Due to its unique location and landscape, a temperate Mediterranean climate makes the city a favorable place to live.

The Golden Horn (Haliç) is an inlet of the Bosphorus with two rivers draining into it at the far end. It is considered to be the world’s largest natural harbor and separates the European shore of İstanbul into two. The best places to observe the Golden Horn’s activity is the Galata Bridge.

İstanbul, is literally, the bridge between Europe and Asia; a rectangular land with the Sea of Marmara on its southern shores, Black Sea on its northern shores. Sea of Marmara is an inland sea connecting Black Sea to the Aegean through the straits of Bosphorus and Dardanelles.

İstanbul is known as the City on the Seven Hills as these hills refer to the hills on the Historical Peninsula. The city has inherited this tradition from Roman Constantinople which – consciously following the model of ancient Rome – was built on seven hills too.

While not the actual capital, İstanbul is Türkiye’s largest city with a population of more than 17 million people.

Istanbul Why Istanbul

Why Istanbul

It is İstanbul’s endless variety in a combination of modern and traditional that fascinates its visitors.

One can observe the vibrant daily life in a setting of ancient history and natural beauty. Türkiye’s largest metropolis brings two continents, Europe and Asia together across the Bosphorus Strait. Remnants of past empires of Eastern Roman Empire and the Ottoman gives the city a historic charm. Rich culinary heritage of the city offers top-notch restaurants, recipies from the Palace kitchens and tasty street food.

  • Türkiye’s largest city with a population of more than 17 million people.
  • A dynamic, multicultural transcontinental metropolis.
  • Exquisite scenery. 
  • Junction of various cultures.
  • Offers a perfect mixture of exotic and modern. 
  • Impressive cultural and artistic scene. 
  • A shopper’s paradise, catering to all kinds of shoppers.
  • Perfect spot to explore the diversity of Turkish cuisine.
  • Amazing variety of activity options.
Photogallery of Istanbul

Photogallery of Istanbul

“Explore Istanbul Through Our Photogallery”

Step into the enchanting world of Istanbul with our captivating photogallery. Immerse yourself in the city’s timeless beauty, from historic landmarks like the Hagia Sophia to the vibrant life of the Grand Bazaar. Discover the essence of Istanbul’s culture, history, and modernity through stunning visuals that will inspire your visit to Türkiye. Let our photos be your window to the breathtaking experiences awaiting you in this remarkable city.

Istanbul Now Istanbul

Now Istanbul

Istanbul in 2023 is likely to remain a vibrant and dynamic metropolis with a rich history and culture. While I don’t have access to events or developments beyond my knowledge cutoff date in January 2022, here are some general expectations for Istanbul in 2023:

  1. Historical Sites: Istanbul’s historic landmarks like Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque will continue to draw visitors from around the world. The city will likely make efforts to preserve and promote its cultural heritage.
  2. Cultural Events: Istanbul hosts numerous cultural events, festivals, and art exhibitions throughout the year. Expect a diverse cultural calendar that celebrates both traditional and contemporary arts.
  3. Economic Hub: Istanbul serves as Turkey’s economic center, and it will likely continue to play a pivotal role in the country’s business and trade activities. New developments and investments may enhance its economic significance.
  4. Tourism: The city is a major tourist destination. Tourists can explore its historical sites, vibrant markets, and culinary delights. The tourism industry may continue to grow and evolve in response to changing global conditions.
  5. Transportation: Istanbul’s transportation infrastructure, including airports, bridges, and public transit, may see further development to accommodate the growing population and the needs of travelers.
  6. Urban Development: As a city with a rapidly expanding population, Istanbul will likely continue to experience urban development, with new residential and commercial projects shaping its skyline.
  7. Cultural Exchange: Istanbul’s unique position as a transcontinental city straddling Europe and Asia will continue to promote cultural exchange and diversity.
  8. Challenges: Istanbul may face ongoing challenges, including traffic congestion, environmental concerns, and urban planning issues, as it strives to maintain its historic charm while embracing modernity.

Remember to check the most recent travel advisories, local news, and event calendars for the latest updates and information on what to expect in Istanbul in 2023.

Istanbul Where to stay

Where to stay in Istanbul

Istanbul offers a wide range of accommodations to suit various preferences and budgets. Some popular areas to stay in Istanbul include:

  1. Sultanahmet: Ideal for history enthusiasts, as it’s close to major attractions like the Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque. It offers a mix of luxury and budget hotels.
  2. Taksim Square: A bustling area with a vibrant nightlife, shopping, and dining options. It’s well-connected to other parts of the city and has a variety of hotels.
  3. Eminönü: Located near the historic peninsula, it provides easy access to the Grand Bazaar, Spice Bazaar, and waterfront. It offers a range of mid-range and budget hotels.
  4. Galata/Karaköy: Trendy and artsy neighborhoods with boutique hotels, cool cafes, and a lively atmosphere. Great for those seeking a more contemporary vibe.
  5. Beşiktaş: On the European side, this area has a mix of upscale and budget accommodations. It’s known for its scenic views and lively dining scene.
  6. Kadıköy: Located on the Asian side, it offers a more local and laid-back experience. You can find boutique hotels and enjoy a different side of Istanbul.
  7. Bosphorus Shores: If you’re looking for luxury, explore accommodations along the Bosphorus, offering stunning views and upscale hotels.
  8. Princess Islands: For a tranquil escape from the city, stay on one of the car-free islands, such as Büyükada or Heybeliada, and enjoy boutique guesthouses.

Consider your interests, budget, and the areas you plan to explore when choosing where to stay in Istanbul. Each neighborhood offers a unique experience in this vibrant city.

Istanbul Where to go

Where to go in Istanbul

When in Istanbul, don’t miss these top destinations

Here is some destinations prepared for you. Where to go in İstanbul

1. Hagia Sophia: Visit this iconic masterpiece of Byzantine architecture, which served as a cathedral, mosque, and now a museum. Marvel at its stunning domed interior.

2. Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmed Mosque): Admire the intricate blue tiles that adorn this historic mosque, and take in its serene atmosphere.

3. Topkapi Palace: Explore the former residence of Ottoman sultans, where you can see exquisite artifacts and stunning views of the Bosphorus.

4. Grand Bazaar: Shop in one of the world’s oldest and largest covered markets, where you’ll find everything from spices to jewelry.

5. Spice Bazaar: Experience a sensory delight as you explore the vibrant market filled with spices, sweets, and more.

6. Bosphorus Cruise: Take a scenic boat trip on the Bosphorus to enjoy panoramic views of Istanbul, with Europe on one side and Asia on the other.

7. Galata Tower: Climb to the top for panoramic views of the city and the Bosphorus.

8. Istiklal Avenue: Stroll down this bustling street lined with shops, cafes, and historic landmarks.

9. Suleymaniye Mosque: Visit this grand mosque, an architectural marvel, and enjoy stunning views of Istanbul from its courtyard.

10. Basilica Cistern: Explore this ancient underground water reservoir, known for its atmospheric lighting and Medusa heads.

11. Historic Peninsula: Explore Istanbul’s Historic Peninsula, a treasure trove of iconic landmarks like Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque.

12: Beyoğlu: Beyoğlu, Istanbul’s lively district, boasts the famous Istiklal Avenue, Galata Tower, and a vibrant nightlife, making it a must-visit destination.

13. Asian Side: Explore Istanbul’s Asian side, a dynamic region offering a mix of modern neighborhoods, serene parks, and stunning waterfront views across the Bosphorus.

14. Bosphorus: The Bosphorus in Istanbul, a majestic strait, connects Europe and Asia, offering breathtaking views, cruises, and iconic waterfront mansions.

15. Golden Horn: Discover Istanbul’s historic Golden Horn, a natural harbor with scenic views, ancient city walls, and vibrant neighborhoods like Balat and Fener.

16. Historic Bazaars: Immerse in Istanbul’s enchanting bazaars – Grand Bazaar, Spice Bazaar, and Arasta Bazaar. A shopper’s paradise filled with treasures and flavors.

17. Princess Islands: Escape to the tranquil Princess Islands near Istanbul, a car-free paradise offering horse-drawn carriages, beautiful beaches, and a serene retreat.

18. Nature and Beaches: Discover Istanbul’s natural beauty at Black Sea beaches, lush forests, and serene parks, offering a peaceful escape from the city’s bustle.

Destinations Istanbul


Istanbul: Let’s meet where East meets West

Experience the enchanting fusion of cultures in Istanbul, Türkiye’s vibrant heart. Uncover the historic treasures of the Hagia Sophia and Blue Mosque, stroll through the bustling Grand Bazaar, and savor the culinary delights of Turkish cuisine.

Explore the magnificent Bosphorus, where Europe and Asia unite. Our Istanbul guide will lead you through this mesmerizing city, revealing its rich history and modern allure. Discover the best places to visit, dine, and stay in this transcontinental gem, ensuring your Istanbul adventure is truly unforgettable.

History of Istanbul

Istanbul, historically known as Byzantium and Constantinople, has a rich and complex history:

  1. Ancient Times: Founded as Byzantium by the Greeks in the 7th century BC, it later became Constantinople under Roman Emperor Constantine the Great in AD 330.
  2. Roman and Byzantine Eras: Constantinople was the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire, later known as the Byzantine Empire, for over a thousand years. It was a center of trade, culture, and Christianity.
  3. Ottoman Empire: The city was captured by the Ottoman Empire in 1453, led by Mehmed the Conqueror, and renamed Istanbul. It became the capital of the Ottoman Empire.
  4. Cultural Crossroads: Istanbul’s strategic location made it a melting pot of cultures and religions. It was a hub of the Silk Road and a center for trade, art, and scholarship.
  5. Modern Turkey: After World War I, Istanbul became part of the Republic of Turkey in 1923 when the capital was moved to Ankara. It remains Turkey’s largest city and a thriving cultural and economic center.
  6. Historic Landmarks: Istanbul is home to iconic landmarks like the Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace, and the Grand Bazaar, reflecting its rich history.
  7. Cultural Heritage: The city’s heritage includes a blend of Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman architecture, making it a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Istanbul’s history is a tapestry of civilizations, and its unique position straddling Europe and Asia has contributed to its enduring significance in the world.

If you are in Istanbul drink Çay and forget everything.

Erdinç Elhan –
Istanbul Where to eat

Where to eat in Istanbul

Istanbul is a culinary paradise, offering a wide range of delicious dishes. Here are some must-try foods when visiting the city:

1. Kebabs: Try various types of kebabs, such as doner (rotating skewered meat) and shish kebabs. Don’t miss Adana kebabs, which are spicy and flavorful.

2. Baklava: Indulge in this sweet and flaky pastry made with layers of filo dough, nuts, and sweet syrup.

3. Turkish Delight (Lokum): Savor these colorful, chewy sweets with various flavors and fillings.

4. Simit: Sample Istanbul’s famous sesame-encrusted bread rings, often enjoyed with cheese, olives, and tea.

5. Mantı: Taste Turkish dumplings filled with spiced meat or other fillings, served with yogurt and garlic sauce.

6. Iskender Kebab: A specialty of Bursa, this dish consists of thinly sliced doner meat served over pita bread and topped with tomato sauce and yogurt.

7. Meze: Explore a variety of small, flavorful dishes, including hummus, baba ghanoush, and stuffed grape leaves.

8. Turkish Tea and Coffee: Enjoy a cup of strong, dark Turkish coffee or a glass of traditional tea, often served in small tulip-shaped glasses.

9. Börek: Savor these savory pastries filled with ingredients like cheese, spinach, or minced meat.

10. Balik Ekmek: Try a fish sandwich from the many street vendors along the Bosphorus for a taste of Istanbul’s seafood.

11. Kumpir: A loaded baked potato dish, where you can choose from various toppings, including vegetables, meats, and sauces.

12. Menemen: Enjoy a Turkish breakfast favorite, a delicious scramble of eggs, tomatoes, green peppers, and spices.

13. Lahmacun: Often referred to as Turkish pizza, these thin, crispy dough rounds are topped with minced meat and spices.

14. Pide: Satisfy your pizza cravings with this Turkish version, featuring boat-shaped dough with various toppings.

15. Turkish Ice Cream (Dondurma): Experience the unique texture and flavors of traditional Turkish ice cream.

Exploring Istanbul’s culinary scene is a delightful journey, with a mix of traditional and contemporary flavors that reflect the city’s rich history and diverse culture. Don’t forget to pair your meals with Turkish tea or coffee for the complete experience.