Discover Istanbul’s most Instagrammable roof terrace
For those looking for a laid-back evening in an incredible setting enjoying some artisan comfort food, the iconic rooftop, A’YA Lounge is top on the list. With the massive buttress of Hagia Sophia & Blue Mosque at eye level this is an ideal venue to enjoy evening drinks, and memorable sunsets with the backdrop of Old City.
But been there, done that?
Then find below the concierges top recommendations in the city of 2 continents. A fusion of age-old glories and a cool, contemporary 21st-century culture, Istanbul is the last stop in Europe and the first stop in Asia. Travel in time by visiting below sites just steps away from each other:
- Visit Spice Bazaar & Covered Bazaar: Home to the Grand Bazaar, the largest covered market in the world, Istanbul boasts a vibrant and unforgettable shopping scene. More than 4,000 shops on 58 streets feature goods and fine crafts from all over Turkey and beyond, and the Grand Bazaar is one big Aladdin’s cave.
- Go underground at the Basilica Cistern: The Basilica Cistern is the largest of the ancient underground water cisterns found across Istanbul.
- Visit Hagia Sophia: One of the most visited museums and most prominent monuments in the world in terms of art and the history of architecture, Hagia Sophia should be at the top of your to-see list for Istanbul. Do not miss the upstairs gallery to catch the best views and to glimpse the surviving mosaics, in particular the golden mosaic of the Virgin and Child in the apse.
- Visit the Blue Mosque: Also known as the Sultan Ahmed Mosque, the Blue Mosque’s two most striking features are its 6 minarets and blue domed exterior.
- Get a taste of royal life at Topkapi Palace: Topkapi Palace is the largest royal residence in Istanbul and it served as the main residence to the Ottoman Sultans for almost 400 years.
- Visit Dolmabahçe Palace: Home to the last six sultans of the Ottoman Empire, Dolmabahçe is the largest palace in Turkey.
- Enjoy the view from Galata Tower: Located in Beyoğlu, the views from the outer balcony of the tower are breathtaking.
- Go to the Maiden’s Tower: Built on a small islet located at the southern entrance of Bosphorus, Kız Kulesi was used as a surveillance tower during the siege of Constantinople in 1453.
- Visit Istanbul Modern Museum:. Housed in a recently renovated two-story warehouse, it was the first modern arts museum to open in the city. Admission is free every Thursday, enabling tourists to see its expansive photography gallery, cinema hall, and new media art area.
- Take a Taste of Istanbul Tour: For a total experience you can take advantage of the special offer “Taste of Istanbul” package and enjoy a private, full-day tour with the knowledgeable guide and take in the sights and sounds of this unique city like a true local.
And just in case that is not enough here are four unique experiences to cross off life’s bucket list when you visit Istanbul
- A Turkish bath experience in a 400 year old historical Turkish hammam will leave you refreshed and renewed, as it has done for people since ancient times.
- A trip to Istanbul is not complete without a Bosphorus cruise. This provides it a nice overview of the city, as both the European and Asian shores of the famous waterway have a lot to offer including centuries-old palaces and mansions. You can enjoy a glass of Champagne or fine wine while watching the golden sun sink slowly beneath the picturesque surface of one of the most majestic waterways on earth and end your day with a dinner between two continents.
- A walkover on the Galata Bridge that spans the Golden Horn in Istanbul at sunset offers enchanting views of the city and its silhouette.
- To experience Istanbul at its most magical, witness the Whirling Dervishes.