Here are the top 26 tourist attractions to see in Istanbul:

1. Hagia Sophia

4.5 /5

0 km
from city center
1 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Arguably the most spectacular examples of Byzantine architecture, Hagia Sophia has been a cathedral, a mosque, and today is a museum and one of the country's biggest attractions.

2. Basilica Cistern

4.3 /5

0 km
from city center
2 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

The largest cistern in the city of Istanbul, built underneath the Stoa Basilica. It has hundreds of decorated columns and is a simply breathtaking piece of architecture.

3. Sultan Ahmed Mosque (Blue Mosque)

4.2 /5

0 km
from city center
3 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

This huge and beautiful mosque right opposite the Hagia Sofia is famous for its blue interiors and hundreds of thousands of detailed decorations.

4. Topkapi Palace

3.8 /5

1 km
from city center
4 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

The Topkapi Palace is a majestic building which served as the main residence of the Ottoman emperors for nearly 400 years. Today it serves as one of the most important museums of Istanbul.

5. SÙleymaniye Mosque

3.8 /5

1 km
from city center
5 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

The largest mosque in Istanbul. It took 7 years to build till 1557 and is an iconic landmark of the city.

6. Bosphorus Strait

3.7 /5

15 km
from city center
6 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

The Bosphorus Strait is the dividing waterway between Europe and Asia. It makes for an ideal cruise for some scenic views.

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7. Chora Church

3.7 /5

4 km
from city center
7 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

A church belonging to the Greek Orthodox and was converted into a mosque by the Ottomans. It today serves as a museum with some spectacular mosaics and frescoes.

8. Dolmabahe Palace

3.6 /5

4 km
from city center
8 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

The Dolmabahe Palace was the main residence of operation for the Ottomans after the Topkapi. It is built along the Bosphorus Strait and is another stunning imperial structure which today serves as a major tourist attraction.

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9. Grand Bazaar

3.6 /5

1 km
from city center
9 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

An unbelievably huge covered market with thousands of shops and one of the most busiest markets in the entire world!

10. Rahmi M. Koç Museum

3.5 /5

1 km
from city center
10 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

An interactive and fun museum of transport, industry and communications which was opened by Rahmi M. Ko, a member of the wealthiest Turkish dynasty.

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11. Rustem Pasha Mosque

3.5 /5

1 km
from city center
11 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

This Ottoman mosque is another of the stunning works of imperial Mimar Sinan, with various intricate details and designs all over.

12. Gulhane Park

3.4 /5

1 km
from city center
12 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

One of the biggest and most beautiful parks in Istanbul, popular among locals for picnics and recreation.

13. Miniaturk

3.4 /5

6 km
from city center
13 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Miniaturk is a fascinating miniature model park of Turkish buildings. It is one of the largest such parks in the world.

14. Istanbul Modern Museum

3.3 /5

2 km
from city center
14 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

A large museum housing collections of contemporary art mainly by Turkish artists.

15. Istanbul Archaeology Museums

3.3 /5

0 km
from city center
15 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

This is an incredible museum complex of 3 buildings that houses archaeological collections of more than 1 million items.

16. Emirgan Park

3.2 /5

13 km
from city center
16 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

This sprawling park of more than a 117 acres is a splendid example of the Turkish gardens from the Ottoman empire.

17. Hippodrome Istanbul

0 km
from city center
17 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Hippodrome of Constantinople, located in the Square of Blue Mosque, was a public area for various activities like chariot races, gladiator fights and many wars in the past. It was the hub of various social and cultural meetings in Constantinople, the capital of the Byzantine Empire. The place is now known as Sultanahmet Meydanı that still contains a few pieces of the ancient structure. The word ‘hippodrome’ comes from the Greek words hippos meaning horse and dromos meaning path, as it was a racing platform for the horses.

18. Spice Bazaar Istanbul

1 km
from city center
18 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

The Spice Bazaar in capital city of Istanbul is one of the largest and most popular bazaars filled with tourists and traders. It is one of the busiest markets having a wide range of spices and other items making it full of color and fragrances. A trip to this historical and beautiful city is incomplete without paying a visit and buying some of the most exotic spices in this market.

19. Chora Museum

4 km
from city center
19 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Chora or Kariye Museum is a historical building in Istanbul that depicts authentic Byzantine architecture. The monument is basically a church that goes by the name of The Church of the Holy Saviour in Chora. The museum is highly known for its intricate and one of the oldest interiors of the Byzantine designs. The architecture, the paintings and the museum depicts a large part of the country’s history in terms of religion, culture and traditions. The word Chora translates to countryside or outskirts in ancient Greek as the chapel was initially built outside the city in the open land.

20. Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts

0 km
from city center
20 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Located in the Sultanahmet Square, Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts was the first one of its kind. The museum is filled with collections of manuscripts and inscriptions in calligraphy, Islamic paintings, traditional handwoven and detailed fabrics, and ancient artefacts. The visual treat takes you through a journey of Turkey’s archives as one gets to witness the antique objects that played a major part in the making of history.

21. Yedikule Fortress

5 km
from city center
21 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Also called Fortress of the Seven Towers and the Dungeons of the Seven Towers, Yedikule Fortress is one of the oldest forts of Istanbul. Located 3 miles south-west from Sultanahmet, it is quite popular among tourists for its dreadful history and fantastic views.

22. Galata Tower

2 km
from city center
22 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Galata Tower is one of the most popular attractions of not just Istanbul but Turkey itself. This centuries old medieval monument erects straight in the middle of the capital and provides a panoramic view of the city. Also known as Galata Kulesi in Turkish, it makes its place in the skyline of Istanbul as one of the oldest and tallest towers in the city. Galata Tower is a nine-storeyed building having a height of 67 metres. A restaurant and a cafe sits on the top floors of the building from where you can enjoy your meal with the spectacular view of the city.

23. Istanbul Modern

2 km
from city center
23 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Also known as Istanbul Museum of Modern Art, Istanbul Modern was the country’s first museum that housed different forms of contemporary art. The museum was opened to the public in 11th December of 2004 and has hosted several art galleries and functions. Not only does it showcase the finest works of Turkish artists of the past, but also give a platform to upcoming Turkish artists by providing the best public space for display of their art. The museum also hosts a number of cultural activities and festivals to promote artists and raise funds for the museum.

24. Istiklal Caddesi

3 km
from city center
24 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Isktiklal Caddessi or Istiklal Avenue is the busiest street in Istanbul filled with a long stretch of cafes, restaurants, shopping centres, bars, cinemas and galleries. Estimated to have been visited by over 3 million people on the weekends, it is the best way to experience the vibrant, hustling side of the city. Located in the heart of the city, the avenue houses so many recreational activities that it is a favourite place to visit by the residents of the city. Even a stroll along the avenue would fascinate you to the very end and leave you asking for more. The road stretches for 1.4 km from Taksim Square and finishes the Galata Tower, and a full day is needed to explore this crowded street.

25. Uskudar

7 km
from city center
25 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Üsküdar is a region in the Asian side of the city with less of concrete and more of nature. The city is home to half a million people and surrounded by Beykoz on the North, Umraniye on the east, Kadikoy covering the south and Bosphorus on the west. All these surrounding cities are large metropolis, contrary to Üsküdar which is more like a country-side. The small empty streets, beautiful parks, less crowded markets and a collection of history, Üsküdar is the place for all the peace and nature lovers. So close to other touristy cities, yet so far from the metropolis culture, a visit to this place will definitely make you connect with the local cultures and make you view Istanbul in a different way.

26. Hagia Sophia Museum

0 km
from city center
26 out of 26
places to visit in Istanbul

Hagia Sophia Museum is one of the most stunning monuments in not just Istanbul but the whole of Turkey itself. Initially a Greek Orthodox Christian Cathedral which was converted into an Imperial Mosque in the Ottoman period and then finally into the museum that we see today, Hagia Sophia is also known as the eighth wonder of the world. It has been considered the finest example of engineering for its massive dome structure and marvellous architecture, considering it was built in 537 AD. It is not only visited for its magnificent building, but also for the different stages of history, the monument has been a part of.

FAQs on Istanbul

How much does a package cost for Istanbul?

The packages for Istanbul start at INR 58485 which can be further customized based on number of people, days, hotel category, vehicle type and customizations. You can have a look at all packages here

What are the top sightseeing places in Istanbul?

The top sightseeing places in Istanbul are Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern, Sultan Ahmed Mosque (Blue Mosque), Topkapi Palace, SÙleymaniye Mosque, Bosphorus Strait.

What are the top activities in Istanbul?

The top activities in Istanbul are Bosphorus Strait Afternoon Cruise, Bosphorus Strait Entertainment and Dinner Cruise in Istanbul, Istanbul Classics Tour, Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, & Basilica Cistern Combo Tour in Istanbul, Bosphorus Bridge, Camlica Hill, and Dolmabahce Palace Tour, Ancient Troy Day Tour from Istanbul.

What are the top hotels in Istanbul?

There are 3205 Hotels in Istanbul which can be booked through Holidify. The most popular hotels in Istanbul are Galateia Residence, I'zaz Lofts, Hidden Garden Suites, Balat House, Apartment Bosphorus, Manzara Bosphorus. You can see all the hotels in Istanbul here
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