We're unable to offer trips to Turkey at the moment. We'll continue to monitor the situation.
From the moment you arrive in Istanbul it is evident that you are in one of the world's greatest cities.
With a reputed population of 18 million, swelled by recent arrivals from the Anatolian interior and the Middle East, this rich source of European civilisation has layer upon layer of historical associations, from the founding of the city in the 7th century BC through the expansionist Ottomans - defeated at the Siege of Vienna - right up to Turkish Independence and the city's re-emergence as a cultural and financial powerhouse.
In antiquity Istanbul's name was Byzantium, before the Emperor Constantine re-created it as New Rome, later becoming Constantinople after his death. Signs of this history are dotted across the city - the Basilica Cistern, Topkapi Palace and the Blue Mosque provide a mere sample of what's on offer.
There is nowhere like it anywhere in either Europe or Asia, indeed Istanbul is the only metropolis on earth that spans two continents.
Littered with ancient monuments, astoundingly beautiful mosques and a surprising number of art galleries, Istanbul has enough sites to keep any visitor occupied for weeks.
However, the city is also home to a thriving cafe culture amid its labyrinthine smaller streets, and each of the numerous districts has its own distinct character. Exploring these is part of the charm of visiting Istanbul, and can provide a welcome break from the inevitable crowds at the ever-popular main sites.
Suggested itineraries featuring Istanbul
Our itineraries will give you suggestions for what is possible when you travel in Istanbul, and they showcase routes we know work particularly well. Treat them as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.
Map of Istanbul
Places & hotels on the map
Accommodation choices for Istanbul
We’ve selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit Istanbul. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.
Ideas for experiencing Istanbul
Our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the places that could feature in your trip. These activities reflect some of the experiences they've most enjoyed while visiting Istanbul, and which use the best local guides.