Istanbul as a Cheap City Break

05 Aug 2015

The city where east meets west, ancient traditions mix with modern life and the deeply rooted Islamic culture sits alongside western lifestyles. Straddling the Bosphorus strait, Istanbul is attracting more and more visitors each year, so much so that a new airport (Sabiha Gokcen) had to be built to keep up with demand, and now with numerous options of cheap flights to Istanbul on both scheduled and low cost carriers the city is even more appealing. National carrier Turkish Airlines offer stop overs in Istanbul on route to over 250 worldwide destinations.

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Although most visitors see Istanbul as a cheap city break, it is increasing in popularity to use it as a stepping stone or a twin centre Turkish holiday, pairing the hustle and bustle of the city with a relaxing beach break is of course the most popular option, the beautiful Turkish coastline or the beaches of North Cyprus are a very short journey from the city but worlds apart.

While in Istanbul a visit to the Old City, Sultanahmet is first on the list, steeped in history and charm and home to the world famous Blue Mosque and Grand Bazaar, but for an entirely different perspective of the city a ferry trip on the Bosphorus with views of the black sea is a worthy option, Ottoman palaces line the shores and the magnificent fortresses that sit either side of the straight are a rewarding view. For something a little different immerse yourself in some real Turkish culture, take a trip across the water to the Asian side of the city where few tourists go, or an hour away by ferry are The Princes Islands, nine islands that are renowned for their beautiful scenery and tranquillity.

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Turkish cuisine reflects the different flavours of the ages and the many cultures that have passed through the city, with restaurants offering a culinary journey through history via a number of courses and the many alfresco dining options where you can sit for hours while a seemingly never ending stream of mezze's make their way to your table.

So if you have found yourself a cheap flight on Turkish Airlines to one of their many worldwide destinations, consider a day or two exploring one of the oldest cities in the world, and if just looking for a city break that will fulfil your desire of immersing yourself in history and culture then Istanbul will certainly tick many boxes.