Luxurious Destinations
Turkey
Destinations Within Turkey

Turkey Trip Itineraries

Istanbul for the "History Freaks"

Destination(s): Istanbul

Istanbul has been home to many different civilizations and nations over the centuries. What were once pagan temples were then converted churches, and then were embellished as mosques. Living quarters were arranged such that there were both a mosque and a church for all residents from differing nationalities and religions to pry. Even now in every old neighbourhood, you will see a church placed delicately a few blocks away from a mosque; and you will notice the irony as you observe Muslims going into a church to celebrate the Christmas or to light a candle. Palaces, in fact “sinking” palaces were constructed to host Sultans and the Pashas. The fortresses, that is now surrounding what used to be the old city, still tells the stories of war and conquests, glamour and courage. The hammams, where the mothers once used to observe the neighbours’ daughters and pick among them for their sons to marry, are still frequented by ladies –although the parade like atmosphere of the old times no longer exists. To finalize, the culture and history of many civilizations are still embedded in the lives of the local people. It is in a shop, in a gesture, in a tradition or a in a routine. But, it is not far away; and with this guide hopefully, those thriving on history and culture will be able to satiate their appetites. The guide has been designed assuming that the visitors are in a treat for a week. However, days 1&2 can easily be combined to reduce the number of days for the trip. The recommended time of the year for the trip is April or May, as the weather will be cool enough and warm enough for enjoying the city in open air and walking around it at ease. read more about Istanbul for the "History Freaks"

Sade Kahve

Sade Kahve

  • Yahya Kemal Caddesi No:36/1 Rumelihisari
  • Rumeli Hisari
  • tel:90 212 358 23 24
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
Gedikpasa Hamam

Gedikpasa Hamam

  • Caddesi Neviye 21
  • Beyazit
  • tel:90 212 516 8753
  • Istanbul, 34126
İstiklal Caddesi

İstiklal Caddesi

  • İstiklal Caddesi
  • Istiklal Cad., Beyoglu
  • Istanbul, 34437
Kapali Çarsi (Covered Market)

Kapali Çarsi (Covered Market)

  • 22 Kalpakçılar Caddesi
  • tel:90 212 519 1248
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34975
Topkapi Palace

Topkapi Palace

  • Sultanahmet Meydanı
  • tel:90 212 522 4422
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34122
Four Seasons Hotel

Four Seasons Hotel

  • Tevkifhane Sokak No. 1
  • Sultanahmet-Eminönü
  • tel:90 212 402 3000
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34110
Mangerie

Mangerie

  • Cevdetpasa Caddesi 69 Bebek
  • tel:90 212 263 51 99
  • Istanbul, 80810
Cagaloglu Hamam

Cagaloglu Hamam

  • Prof Kazim Ismail Gürkan Caddesi 34
  • Cagaloglu
  • tel:90 212 522 2424
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
Galata Tower

Galata Tower

Süleymaniye Camii (Süleymaniye Mosque)

Süleymaniye Camii (Süleymaniye Mosque)

  • Süleymaniye Mosque, next to Istanbul University's north gate, Suleymaniye, Fatih
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34110
Tarihi Selim Usta Sultanahmet Köftecisi

Tarihi Selim Usta Sultanahmet Köftecisi

  • 12 Divan Yolu
  • tel:90 212 513 1438
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34110
Kybele Hotel

Kybele Hotel

  • Yerebatan Caddesi 35
  • tel:90 212 511 7766
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34410
Istanbul Modern

Istanbul Modern

  • Meclis-i Mebusan Cad. Liman Sahasý Antrepo No: 4
  • Karaköy
  • tel:90 212 334 7300
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
Galata Mevlevihanesi (Dervish Lodge)

Galata Mevlevihanesi (Dervish Lodge)

  • Galip Dede Caddesi 15
  • Tünel
  • tel:90 212 245 4141
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34430
Spice Bazaar (Mısır çarşısı)

Spice Bazaar (Mısır çarşısı)

  • Behind the New Mosque in Eminönü
  • Istanbul
Pudding Shop

Pudding Shop

  • 18 Divan Yolu
  • Sultanahmet (across from the tram)
  • tel:90 212 522 2970
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
Pierre Loti Hotel

Pierre Loti Hotel

  • Piyerloti Cad No 5
  • tel:90 212 518 5700
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34400
Istanbul Ferry

Istanbul Ferry

  • Various locations
  • Istanbul
Dolmabahçe Palace

Dolmabahçe Palace

  • Dolmabahce Caddesi
  • Besiktas
  • tel:90 212 236 9000
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
Anglican Church

Anglican Church

  • Serdar-ı Ekrem Caddesi
  • Beyoglu
  • Istanbul

The Anglican church which was used by Sri Lankan Anglikan community, is located on Serdarı Ekrem Street, extending to the Galip Dede Street in Beyoglu, Istanbul. Lord Stratford Canning laid the foundation in 1856. It was built in memory of English soldiers who attended to Crimean war on the site of the Greek cemetery. Christmas celebrations are a rare kind attended by a cheerful priest and a choir.
read more about Anglican Church

Pandeli Lokantasi

Pandeli Lokantasi

  • 1 Misir Çarsisi
  • Eminönü (immediately inside the entrance to the Egyptian Bazaar)
  • tel:90 212 522 5534
  • Istanbul
Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia

Hippodrome

Hippodrome

  • Sultanahmet Meydani (Square)
  • At Meydani (Horse Plaza), Sultanahmet
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
Beylerbeyi Palace

Beylerbeyi Palace

  • Abdullahağa Caddesi Beylerbeyi Uskudar
  • tel:90 216 321 9320
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34676
Istanbul Archaeological Museum

Istanbul Archaeological Museum

  • Osman Hamdi Bey Yokusu Gülhane
  • tel:90 212 520 7740
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34425

The museum consists of three parts: Archaeological Museum (the main building), Museum of the Ancient Orient and Museum of Islamic Art (Tiled Kiosk). There are more than twenty galleries filled with artifacts gathered from all over Turkey and the near east that reminisces 5,000 years of history with exhibits from Byzantium, the Ottoman Empire and the many civilizations of Anatolia and ancient Egypt. The main building houses the finds of nineteenth-century painter and archaeologist Osman Hamdi Bey, who is also the founder of the museum back in 1891. Other high points include in particular the famous Alexander the Great's tomb, the inscription of Hezikiah's tunnel in Jerusalem and the Kadesh Treaty. The Museum of the Ancient Orient contains artifacts from Egypt and Mesopotamia, including a magnificent frieze of a bull from the Ishtar gate in Babylon. read more about Istanbul Archaeological Museum

Saint Antoine Church

Saint Antoine Church

  • İstiklal Caddesi
  • Galatasaray
  • Istanbul

The Saint Antoine Church is located on Istiklal Street in Beyoglu, Istanbul. The construction began on August 23rd, 1906 and it was completed and opened to service in 1912. Its architect is Giulio Mongeri, who was born in Istanbul. The church which was governed by Italian priests is the greatest Catholic Church in Istanbul with the biggest number of congregation. It was openned to service on February 15th, 1912. read more about Saint Antoine Church

Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmet Mosque)

Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmet Mosque)

  • Tavukhane Sokak 5-27
  • tel:90 212 518 1802 (Sultanahmet tourist info office)
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34420
Egyptian Obelisk

Egyptian Obelisk

Hünkar

Hünkar

  • Mim Kemal Öke Caddesi 21
  • Nişantaşı
  • tel:90 212 225 4662 / 90 212 225 4665
  • Istanbul, 34360
Feriye

Feriye

  • Çırağan Cad. No: 40
  • tel:90 212 227 2216
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
Musa Ustam Ocakbaşı

Musa Ustam Ocakbaşı

Kariye Museum

Kariye Museum

Basilica Cistern (Yerebatan Sarayi)

Basilica Cistern (Yerebatan Sarayi)

  • Yerebatan Caddesi 13
  • (Near St. Sophia)
  • tel:90 212 522 1259
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34110
Changa

Changa

  • Siraselviler Caddesi 87/1
  • Taksim
  • tel:90 212 249 1348
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
Aşşk Kahve

Aşşk Kahve

  • Muallim Naci Cad. 170/A
  • tel:90 212 265 47 34
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34975

"Ask" means love in Turkish, so the Assk Kahve is the "Love Cafe" in translation. It has a very simple menu with various sandwiches, toasts and paninis, salads and pasta. Yet, its unique location on the sea makes Assk Kahve one of the places to be in the summer. As such, it tends to get quite crowded with both young adolescents and adults. It is highly recommended that you find yourself a seat on the deck, but for that you will need to arrive a bit earlier than 11:00 AM. Breakfast is very enjoyable and you are supposed to order everything to the middle. Do order the "giant pogaca" (pastry / croissant) and honey & cream. At other times, enjoy their home-made lemonade and the "tongue of love" sandwich. read more about Aşşk Kahve

Galeri Apel

Galeri Apel

  • Hayriye Cadessi 7
  • Galatasary
  • tel:90 212 292 7236
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 800060
Asitane Restaurant

Asitane Restaurant

  • Kariye Camii Sokak 6
  • Kariye Hotel
  • tel:90 212 635 7997
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34240

Housed in a 19th-century Ottoman mansion (now converted into the Kariye Hotel), the Asithane Restaurant is big diversion from the mainstream Turkish and Ottoman Cuisine Restaurants in Istanbul -a.k.a kebab houses or doner / tacos buffets as the stereotypical Turkish food. Asitane Restaurant is a highly recommended restaurant to get a feel of the real historical taste of the Turkish culture. The menu changes seasonally - although some typical dishes don't, such as almond soup, stuffed calamari, seasonal salad with beetroot and hibiscus, hassa breği (aged skin bag cheese from goat's milk, yogurt, green olives, walnuts and tarragon wrapped inside wafer), muntancana (stewed lamb served with pearl onion) and mahmudiyye (chicken flavored with honey served with almond, apricot, cinnamon, dried grape and flavored rice). Asitane Restaurant has a gorgeous summer terrace and an aromatic rose garden overlooking the Chora Church (Kariye Church). Enjoy your şerbet and / or wine, whilst sampling the small dishes (hot and cold appetizers). Go for sharing everything - as there is so much that is so good. The staff is overly well-behaved, kind and they speak very good English. Share your appetite with them and they will arrange your meals' size such that you will get to taste everything you want.  read more about Asitane Restaurant

Balikçi Sabahattin

Balikçi Sabahattin

  • Seyit Hasan Koyu Sokak 50,
  • Cankurtaran Caddesi
  • tel:90 212 458 1824
  • Istanbul
Haci Abdullah

Haci Abdullah

  • Sakizağacı Caddesi 17
  • Beyoğlu
  • tel:90 212 293 8561
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
Galerist

Galerist

  • Istiklal Caddesi
  • 311 Misir Appartments
  • tel:90 212 244 8230
  • Visit website
  • Beyoğlu, 34340
Kiz Kulesi Restaurant

Kiz Kulesi Restaurant

  • Bosphorus Strait
  • Üsküdar
  • tel:90 216 342 47 47
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Center

Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Center

  • Istikal Cadessi No. 276 34340
  • Beyoglu
  • tel:90 212 293 2361
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 80050
Cezayir

Cezayir

  • Hariyre Caddesi 12
  • Galatasaray
  • tel:90 212 245 9980
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 34425
Galatasaray Hamam

Galatasaray Hamam

  • Junction of Turnacıbaşı and Capanoglu Streets No:24 Galatasaray
  • Galatasaray
  • tel:90 212 252 4242
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul

The Galatasary Hamam was built in 1715 as a public bath, yet it was actually exclusively for men. In 1965 the hamam underwent renovation and a new separate quarter for women was added to the establishment. During the renovation process, much has been kept intact and the main structure has not been altered radically, but architectural details were added. Galatasaray Hamam diverges from the mainstream public baths due to some of these architectural details and its more elitist atmosphere. One major feature here are the marble slabs where bathers can be massaged in semi-privacy rather than on the heated central navel stone. As such, the admission price tends to soar higher above regular bath prices as well. In Euros: 26 for a bath, 35 with a kese (scrubbing the body), 38 with foam massage, 44 for both kese and massage, and 57 for the 'Pasha' treatment – oil massage. Beverages are free and further tips to the keseci (massager) will guarantee further services and better treatment. Visitors to Galatasaray Hamam often complain that they are being ripped off inside by the increasing number of services and additional fees asked for each. But, if you discuss your options and prices before going on, you would now what to expect and not be disillusioned. After all think of hamam as an old-day spa, it was and is not for free.
read more about Galatasaray Hamam

Hayal Kahvesi

Hayal Kahvesi

  • Büyükparmakkapi Sokak 19
  • (off Istiklal Caddesi)
  • tel:90 212 244 2558
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul
360 Istanbul

360 Istanbul

  • Misir Apt. K:8 N:32/309
  • Istiklal Caddesi
  • tel:90 212 251 1042 / 90 212 251 1043
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 80600
Nu Club

Nu Club

  • Tepebaşı Mesrutiyet Caddesi 147-149
  • Petit-Champs Passage
  • tel:90 212 245 6070
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul

This two-level nightclub, formerly known as NuPera, now also called Nu Club, happens to be the Nu Terrace in summers. It is located within the NuPera complex in the Beyoglu neighborhood, enclosing three restaurants inside during the winter and the regular Nu Restaurant on the terrace in the summer. In terms of its clientele, there are no vast seasonal differences in winter and summer. On the other hand, the concept of the place tends to change a bit. During winters, the three rooms, in which the three restaurants are, rock to different types of music, making an enchanting club environment that allows you to bar-hop without putting on your jacket at all. The restaurants inside are Moreish, Nu Restaurant and Lilbitz, offering a range of fusion, world and tapas food. During the summer, the inner places close down and only the terrace area is open for both dinner and entertainment. The place does tend to be crowded, making getting in a tough work at times; but this does not deter the regulars, who jostle for elbow-space on the dance floor. An eclectic range of music is played by the DJs here, and that includes hip hop, house and pop. The clientele is elitist and the dress code is strictly smart and chic.
read more about Nu Club

La Brise

La Brise

  • Asmalı Mescit Caddesi 28
  • tel:90 212 244 48 46
  • Istanbul
Ataturk Culture Center

Ataturk Culture Center

  • Taksim Square
  • Taksim
  • tel:90 212 252 3500
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul, 80090
Kerem Görsev Jazz Bar

Kerem Görsev Jazz Bar

  • Abdi Ipekçi Caddesi 61/1
  • Tesvikiye
  • tel:90 212 231 3950
  • Visit website
  • Istanbul