Discover Exclusive Offers and Special Deals on MSC Cruise Deals
Find a cruise and book cruises direct - no booking fee!

Cruises from Istanbul

Istanbul, Turkey Cruises

Istanbul, Turkey Cruises

Istanbul presents a gracious concoction of the east and west quite gracefully. While the city buzzes with the urbane hustle and bustle, the town breathes its history on every other street. Hagia Sophia, which was once regarded as a church and a mosque, is now a museum that reflects the interiors of the Byzantine and the Ottoman empires. Behold the mesmerizing interiors of the Blue Mosque with its symmetrical dome patterns. Topkapi Palace, Basilica Cistern, and Dolmabahce Palace will highlight your trip to Istanbul.

Istanbul Highlights

The major highlights of visiting Turkey's most significant metropolis are plentiful - from physical reminders of past empires to new neighborhoods that reflect the modern city's spirit.

1. A Mixture of Western and Eastern Food

Cultures mixed over a century ago also impacted the food scene significantly. Authentic Ottoman cuisine is available in Istanbul, as is Turkish cuisine with its delicious mezes and meat and fish dishes, as well as modern cuisine in the west. Do not hesitate to indulge in one of the many Turkish desserts if you still have a little appetite left. Additionally, be sure to try some Turkish drinks such as rakI, which is the national anise drink, as well as some quality Turkish wines and juices.

2. Rich History and Culture

Today's lifestyle in Istanbul reflects the city's extensive and rich history. Although there is still the essence of all the empires that once ruled the region in Istanbul, you may think it is a fast-moving metropolis, which would not be wrong. Rome, the Latin Empire, the Byzantine Empire, and the Ottoman Empire occupied the city at some point in history. In the 19th century, Mustafa Kemal Attaturk turned Turkey into a republic by taking over the empire. There are a lot of museums in Istanbul that preserve the history and culture of the city. You can explore a wide range of exciting exhibits.

3. The Shopping Scene

Istanbul is a shopping destination for people who love traditional and modern products. Istanbul is a huge metropolis with a wide variety of shopping malls and districts where travelers can find almost every world brand. With its outdoor markets, bazaars, carpet and kilim workshops, copper shops, antique shops, and handicraft shops, Istanbul has everything for every kind of traveler, from designer shops to traditional shops, modern department stores, and big shopping centers.

Interesting Spots to Visit in Istanbul

Istanbul has everything from historical sites and beautiful architecture to leafy parks, bustling markets, secular museums, and lively amusement parks to appeal to every kind of traveler. The below-mentioned places will add more to your adventures as you travel through Istanbul as a holiday destination.

1. Day Trip to Prince's Island

Tourists and locals find this group of nine islands a popular getaway to escape the hectic city life in the Sea of Marmara. There are tangerine and lemon trees, pink magnolias, and magnificent wooden mansions all over the area. Prince's Island gained its name due to its former use as an exile base for royal empresses and princes. Prince's Island is the perfect place to enjoy the beach and sunshine or to swim in the sea.

2. Basilica Cistern

You can learn about the lives of great personalities in the past in what is considered the largest underground cistern in Istanbul. It features a teardrop motif on the Hen's Eye column, which is a major attraction of the cistern. There is a café and elevated walkways with lighting for visitors' convenience.

3. Istanbul Archaeology Museum

It has three museums: the Archaeological Museum, the Ancient Orient Museum, and the Tiled Kiosk Museum, making it one of the most important museums in Turkey. Visitors can find over 1 million objects from cultures worldwide in the three museums combined. Topkapi Palace served as the site for the first Turkish museum, founded in 1891. Initially constructed in 1472, the Tiled Kiosk is still in use today. A casket is associated with Alexander the Great among the thousands of artifacts in the museums.

4. Cruise the Bosphorus Strait

There is a waterway separating Europe from Asia called the Bosphorus Strait. This cruise offers scenic views of Istanbul landmarks on both sides of Europe and Asia. On this cruise, you can also see the Hagia Sofia and Sultan Ahmed Mosque. The Strait of Hormuz plays a crucial role in international trade. Old wooden houses from Ottoman times can also be found along the coast. Both continents are connected across the strait by suspension bridges. Among Istanbul's best and most scenic tours is a cruise along the Bosphorus Strait.

5. Eminonu Square

Istanbul's Eminonu neighborhood is a very crowded, slightly chaotic area. A famous waterway runs through the city, the Golden Horn. This harbor area is located on the banks of this waterway. A ferry will take you to many places in and around Istanbul, including mosques, the Spice Market, and famous restaurants. Here, you can see Istanbul's hive of activity all day long, a place where the city is in action.

When to Visit Istanbul?

The months of March and May, as well as September and November, are the best times to visit Istanbul. Furthermore, budget travelers can enjoy spending the day outdoors in the sun between November and March.

Cruise Inquiry