Europe Travel News

During a tour of Turkey, make sure you visit Istanbul's Beyoglu district

Istanbul is one of the most unique cities not only on Turkey tours, but perhaps in all of Europe. Nowhere else is there such a blend of eastern and western culture on display, and there's a fulfilling experience lurking around seemingly every corner. Although Istanbul is home to many well-known landmarks, including the Galata Tower and Hagia Sophia, some of the best destinations are off the beaten path, including the small neighborhood of Beyoglu. 

Ride the tram
Beyoglu has been a staple of Istanbul for centuries, and it still maintains remnants of a bygone era, especially in its historic red tram. The train runs along the famous Istikal Avenue, which is home to plenty of attractions worth visiting. Most notably, there is a wealth of unique local businesses ranging from boutiques and bookstores to art galleries and theaters. Hopping off the tram and walking will bring you through a bustling pedestrian center filled with live music - an experience that will undoubtedly leave a lasting impression long after you've headed home. 

Sample the local fare
As is the case with any destination, you need to try some of the local cuisines, and Beyoglu is among the best places in Istanbul to try some Turkish dishes. There is certainly no lack of restaurants and cafes spread throughout the neighborhood, but if you're looking for the best dining experience, most experts recommend Mikla Restaurant. Located on the top floors of the Marmara Pera hotel, the restaurant not only offers first class food, but it provides diners with stunning views of the Old City.

Museums abound
Aside from its lengthy history, Beyoglu may be best known for its many museums. There's something for everyone, whether you want to admire some of the best pieces of art from the Ottoman Empire or gaze upon artifacts from centuries past. A popular option is the Pera Palace Hotel. Built in the late 19th century, this hotel is still in service, but is somewhat of a living museum. In fact, many famous writers have stayed at the hotel, including Ernest Hemingway and Agatha Christie. In fact, Christie's room has been preserved as a museum. Rumor has it she wrote the novel "Murder on the Orient Express" while staying there. 

Share
Recommended Tours

Baltics Highlights

7 days from $2,191 pp*
Custom Private Tour
The scent of rich pine forests lingers in the breeze as the 13th-century ruins of Turaida Castle are revealed before your eyes in the lush Gauja River valley in a medieval sanctuary untouched by the march of time.
More Info

Budapest, Vienna, Prague Signature

7 days from $2,016 pp*
Custom Private Tour
The aroma of dark roasted Viennese coffee hangs thick in the air as you tread the cobblestone laneways and bask in the elegant architecture, atmospheric cafes and refined restaurants in one of the most beautiful cities in Eastern Europe.
More Info

Highlights of Eastern Europe

10 days from $2,760 pp*
Custom Private Tour
The rhythmic trot of your horse and the soft crunch of your carriage wheels upon cobblestones is a seductive soundtrack to accompany the stunning ancient architecture of Vienna’s charming Ringstrasse.
More Info
Kensington Advantage
Personalized itinerary with private guide & driver. Award winning value.
  • Personalized itinerary that fits like a glove
  • Full attention of your own private guide & driver
  • In-country offices for 24/7 peace of mind
  • Multi-award winning
  • 30,000 delighted clients

With the inside track on the new, the old, the off-the-beaten track and the out-of-this-world, you won't find a more knowledgeable team of destination specialists.

Meet Our Experts
Curators of extraordinary experiences, you won't find a more skillful team.
30,000 Delighted Customers
"Kensington, you've done it again...perfection!"

Don't take our word for it.
Here's what our clients have to say.

"Fabulous trip. Every aspect from the planning to execution was excellent."

Newsletter Subscription
Have our hand picked trips, news & specials delivered to you.
Thank you for signing up!

Your details have been received and processed successfully.
National Geographic Traveler : 50 Tours of a Lifetime 2014 Travel + Leisure : World's Best Award 2014 Family National Geographic Traveler : 50 Tours of a Lifetime