Dynamic city on the Bosporus
Discover the city where the Eastern and the Western world meet. Book a flight to Istanbul and discover an extraordinary culture. Stroll down Galata Bridge, get pampered in a traditional hammam and take a romantic boat trip on the Bosporus. Be inspired by the Grand Bazaar and the Spice Bazaar with their array of fairytale oil lamps and spices in every imaginable colour. It’s unlikely you’ll return home empty-handed!
City with an enchanting history
Lovers of history and culture can wander around Istanbul to their hearts’ content for days. Visit the Topkapi Palace, the Blue Mosque and of course the Hagia Sophia. Across the water there is plenty to see as well, such as the ancient Galata Tower. Istanbul is the ideal destination for a cultural weekend holiday or as the starting point for a vacation in Turkey. Treat yourself: book a flight to Istanbul now!
The nightlife your dreams are made of
The nightlife in Istanbul is like a Tale of a Thousand and One Nights. The Taksim Square neighbourhood is a popular area in the nightlife scene. In its narrow streets you’ll find numerous restaurants for excellent food and clubs where you can dance into the early hours. If you want the royal treatment, the luxurious Ortaköy district on the Bosporus is the place to be. Some of Istanbul’s trendiest clubs are located here, of which Sortie is the absolute number 1. This club has several fantastic restaurants, a spacious dance floor and phenomenal views of the Bosporus Bridge.
Flights to Istanbul for a unique holiday
With our favourable flight times, comfortable seats and attentive personal service you will reach your destination with ease. KLM is working hard to achieve increasingly sustainable aviation. Would you like to help? Read more about the actions you can take to reduce the impact of your flight.
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Istanbul, one of the most romantic cities in the world. This was the place where John F. Kennedy Jr. took his bride Carolyn Bessette on their honeymoon in 1996. The city is situated on the borders of Europe and Asia. And with the architecture, the promenades along the water, the exotic mosaic of flavours, aromas and sounds it is easy to imagine yourself as a character in a tale from One Thousand and One Nights.
ARTS & CULTURE
The Hippodrome occupies a very prominent position throughout the history of Istanbul. For many centuries the very popular horse races were held here. To this day, the Turks refer to this as 'Horse Square' (At Meydani), although it no longer has anything to do with horses. Today the square is a popular meeting place for locals and destination for tourists.
Right behind the famous Taksim Square, in the district of Beyoğlu, lies the neighbourhood of Cihangir. This attractive neighbourhood is known for its characteristic narrow streets, parks and squares. Cihangir is a favourite gathering place for local artists, writers and intellectuals. They flock to the many cafés and outdoor patios to discuss their latest projects or talk about life.
In the West, belly dancing is often seen as an erotic performance done by concubines to entice and seduce their sultan. But belly dancing is actually a joyous, graceful and energetic folk dance, performed by women during festivities such as weddings, births and holidays. In Istanbul there are several places where you can still attend one of these traditional belly dancing performances.
Paris may be known as the place for a romantic escapade, but Istanbul is a very strong contender for the title 'City of Love'. It is the perfect getaway for lovers, newlyweds or couples wanting to renew their vows. And what could be more romantic than to stay in a unique hotel with rooms especially furnished for an amorous experience?
Colourful oil lamps, fragrant spices and hand-made hamam cloths: spread out over 60 streets and almost 5,000 shops of the Grand Bazaar, the largest covered market in the world offers an enormous selection of goods. Nowhere else in Turkey will you see such a wonderful reflection of the typical melting pot of Turkish cultures, the entrepreneurial spirit of the Turks and the beautiful merchandise that has been sold for centuries.
ARTS & CULTURE
A visit to a hamam, a traditional Turkish bathhouse, is an absolute must for visitors to Istanbul. Immerse yourself literally and figuratively in Turkish culture and history with a centuries old bath ritual and the beautiful mosaic decor. After a treatment with olive soap, mud and a few camel hair wash cloths you leave with silky soft skin.
ARTS & CULTURE
The Hagia Sophia, which means ‘Church of Holy Wisdom’, proudly stands on a hill in Istanbul’s old city centre. Originally, the impressive building served as a church, later it became a mosque and since 1935 it has been a museum. But the Hagia Sophia is best known as a spectacular architectural landmark. In 532, a group of architects were commissioned to build a church that would be unlike any other church - and they certainly succeeded.
ARTS & CULTURE
The Topkapi Palace dominates the tip of the cape where Istanbul’s old city is located. For almost 400 years, this was the symbolic and political centre of the Ottoman Empire. Once home to the sultan and his harem, the palace is now a beautiful museum. The palace, which encompasses several buildings, charming courtyards and splendid gardens, is now open to the public.
ARTS & CULTURE
Time appears to have stood still in the popular districts of Fener and Balat. Small cobblestone streets lined with wooden houses lead visitors past churches, mosques and sacred gravestones. You will even come across a section of a 5th-century Byzantine city wall. It is hardly a surprise that UNESCO has declared Fener and Balat, on the historic peninsula of Istanbul, a World Heritage Monument.
In Turkey a water pipe is known as a ‘nargile’. In the past, smoking a water pipe was something only done by the older generations, but about 10 years ago this centuries-old custom has been revived. A visit to Istanbul is not complete without an evening in a water pipe café, where you may choose from all kinds of pipes and flavours to smoke.
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