Istanbul is the largest and certainly one of the most vibrant and colourful cities in Turkey. A visit to Istanbul is a feast for the eyes and you will be blown away by the intense cultural experience. Located in the northwest at the Bosphorus Strait (which divides the European and Asian continents), Istanbul is a bi-continental city. So expect a city that is full of contrasts and a diverse ethnicity. The city is rich in fascinating history and tradition and has ancient buildings that will take your breath away. You may like to start by visiting The Topkapi Palace which was the official residence of the Ottoman Sultans for approximately 400 years. If you are a little lost and concerned you might miss out on something, you may like to take one of the tours through the Sultan Ahmet Centre which takes you through the heart of the Old City which is the location from where the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires ruled. This tour will take you to a host of incredible places including the architectural masterpiece the Hagia Sophia, and the Hippodrome which was the centre for chariot races, athletics and political activities. In terms of cuisine and bars, the best place to go for an authentic meal or drink is a traditional restaurant or bar called a Meyhane where you will get a true Turkish experience. Watch out for alcoholic beverages such as Raki, it is very strong! You will notice at night time the already busy Istanbul reaches an even higher intensity with locals and tourists filling the streets in search of a night out with food, drinking and dancing.If you like the vibrancy of Istanbul, why not check out some other lively Turkish cities? We have incredible apartments in Ankara, luxury vacation rentals in Izmir and wonderful guesthouses in Antalya which are all worth checking out.
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