Mysterious and majestic, noisy and fabulously beautiful, Istanbul is a bridge between Europe and Asia, between the traditional East and the modern West. Throughout its rich history, it has managed to change several names and was the capital of four empires: the Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman, and Latin. The former capital of Turkey, its main cultural, commercial, and industrial center is divided into two halves, even geographically. It is located on both sides of the Bosphorus Strait, which means that it is on two continents. The European part of Istanbul is conventionally divided by the Golden Horn; the Old City, with its famous sights, largely retained its medieval image, and the new concentrated on business and commercial life. The Asian part is less popular among visitors, but it is here you can explore the traditions and lifestyle of residents in the smallest details. Istanbul has many faces: solemn squares, cozy courtyards, intricate narrow streets with bright avenues, ancient mosques with modern mansions, and so on. The crowded, bustling metropolis is a city for contemplation, for an unhurried dive into the wonderful world, where times and cultures mingle.

Istanbul areas


Fatih is the main neighborhood in the central part of the Istanbul city and is one of the most orthodox and conservative neighborhoods in Istanbul. Sultanahmet, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with St. Sophia Cathedral, the Blue Mosque, the Hippodrome, and dozens of other unique historical monuments, is the most popular neighborhood among visitors. The Eminenyu neighborhood is one of the oldest in Istanbul, famous for its museums, mosques, and colorful oriental bazaars, including the legendary Spice Market.


Beyoglu is the new Istanbul district and the main cultural, commercial, and entertainment center of modern Istanbul. The neighborhoods of Karakey, Galatasaray, and Taksim are home to a concentration of the best stores, art galleries, antique shops, and coffee shops. Beyoglu is a cosmopolitan area, it is a home not only to Turks but also to the Jewish and Christian communities. Daily Beyoglu is visited by more than a million people, most of whom are visitors. The district center is Taksim Square, the terminus of many buses and one of the subway branches. The main attractions are the Independence Monument and the Ataturk Cultural Center. Galatasaray is an ancient quarter founded as far back as the Byzantine era of Istanbul. There are many ancient Genoese buildings here, the most famous of which is the Galata Tower, the symbol of the district. Further south is the Karakey district, which connects Beyoglu with the historical center across the Golden Horn.


Another famous neighborhood in Istanbul city is the prestigious Besiktaş, located on the European shore of the Bosphorus. Here you can find Ortakoy Wharf, Sinan Pasha Mosque, Yildiz and Dolmabahce Palaces, and Barbarossa Square. There are many hotels in Besiktas, most of which are quite expensive.


Kadıköy is one of the main districts in the Asian part of Istanbul and is the perfect place for entertainment and shopping. Luxury shopping malls, clubs and restaurants have turned it into a Mecca for rich Turkish youth.

Must-visit places in Istanbul

St. Sophia Cathedral

A monumental building surrounded by four slender minarets is the center of attraction for all tourists arriving in Istanbul city. For 1500 years, St. Sophia's Cathedral has been amazed by its architecture, splendid mosaics, and the easily perceptible aura of a place of power. The symbols of Christianity and Arabic script on its walls do not mix but complement each other. Few similar historical buildings in the world have preserved their luxurious decorations, despite the complex twists and turns of their extraordinary destinies.

St Sophia Cathedral was turned into a mosque after Constantinople was annexed by the Ottoman Turks and turned into Istanbul in 1453. Since then, the remains of the minarets, mosaics, and panels with Arabic script have been preserved in the temple. In 1934, Ataturk called for the preservation of the unique temple as a museum, so now this place can be visited for a small fee by anyone. Hagia Sophia is one of the main monuments of Byzantine architecture and is a recognized symbol of the Byzantine period of prosperity.

Blue Mosque

The Blue Mosque (aka Sultan Ahmet Mosque) is located opposite the Hagia Sophia and the Hippodrome and is considered to be the most important active mosque in Istanbul. The exterior is not enough: the main magic happens inside. The Blue Mosque's huge hall, with its sky-colored walls, is completely filled with sunlight, which shines in through 260 specially arranged windows. The building was decorated with special ceramic tiles painted in blue and white, which made the mosque look really blue. It was produced by the old Inzik manufactory, which had to produce its unique and high-quality products only for this construction. Eventually, all trade contracts with other customers were terminated, and eventually the bank went bankrupt.

The wall, to which one turns while praying, is decorated with two hundred and sixty stained glass windows. Unfortunately, time and various cataclysms were merciless to the most beautiful stained glass windows, the work of the best Venetian masters, and today they are replaced. And the floor is covered with unique carpets, of course, handmade. Today, Istanbul tourists are free to enter the mosque, although not in all its halls. For this, they must take off their shoes and wear closed clothes (at the entrance, you can buy a special cloak). The mosque is open daily from 9:00 until sunset, but there are breaks for prayer.

Topkapi Palace

Topkapi is a whole palace complex with an area of seven hundred thousand square meters, consisting of four separate courtyards stretching for five kilometers. There was a shelter, a treasury, a divan (something like the Turkish government), an armory (located in the building of the Church of St. Irene, the main cathedral of the Princes of Constantinople), bakeries, the Sultan's stables, luxurious gardens, and flower terraces with fountains. In some distance was the Tile Palace, where concubines lived.

The architecture of the palace is quite diverse. Various styles were mixed here as the palace was repeatedly destroyed by fires or earthquakes, and then it was rebuilt, each time making certain adjustments. In 1856, a new residence in Istanbul was built that was in keeping with the spirit of the time and slightly less colorful than the palace of Topkapi, but since then, only the wives of the once first state husbands have lived here. In 1924, when Turkey became a republic, the palace was turned into a museum.

There are now exhibits that were once the pride of the Turkish padishahs. In particular, in the museum you can see almost the most unique collection of porcelain-a total of twelve thousand items, including products of white porcelain, the only one in Europe. There are also various kitchen utensils, silverware, precious jewelry of the sultans and their wives, and even thrones made of precious wood, entirely covered with gold, decorated with ivory, pearls, and other precious stones.

Dolmabahce Palace

The luxurious Dolmabahce Palace, the most "non-Turkish" of the monarch's residences in Istanbul, was created to compete in pomp with the best palaces of European rulers. The total area of the premises of Dolmabahce is 4.5 hectares, of which a large part is open to visitors — in addition to the main building, there are more than ten outbuildings, pavilions, and chalets. The main subject of tourist interest is the Dolmabahce Grand Palace itself, which consists of three parts: the State Apartments, the Ceremonial Hall, and the Harem. In the first halls, the Sultan performed the functions of the head of state; the Harem Rooms were intended for the personal life of the ruler, and the Ceremonial Hall served as a kind of a link between the two sides of one person. The palace has a total of 285 rooms and 44 reception halls. It shows the scale of the Ottoman empire and Abdul Majid's plans.

It is worth seeing the luxurious summer palace of Beylerbeyi, located right on the shore of the Bosphorus. It is famous primarily for its vibrant facade in the Neo-Baroque style — a real gem, so uncharacteristic of Turkish architecture. Inside, the Sultan's apartments, the living quarters of the Valide Sultan (the ruler's mother), and the obligatory harem halls, with windows overlooking the picturesque shores of the Bosphorus, are of interest. Other noteworthy buildings of the Dolmabahçe Palace complex include the elegant peach pavilion Aynalıkavak with carved platbands, the fabulous Ihlamur pavilions, Yıldız chalet palace, Maslak and Beykoz pavilions, as well as Floria Atatürk sea mansion and Yalova Atatürk house.


Sultanahmet is the main square of Istanbul and its historical center. All the most interesting things to see in this Istanbul are within one square — the grandiose Agia Sophia Cathedral, the graceful Blue Mosque, the ancient Greek columns, the Egyptian obelisk, the luxurious fountain presented to the Turkish Sultan by the German Chancellor at the dawn of the 20th century, and much more.

Galata Tower

Galata Tower is one of the oldest monuments in Istanbul. To the impressive height of the tower itself (61 meters, although it was built in the 14th century!) is added the natural elevation of the hill of the same name, so Galata is perfectly visible from almost every area of the Turkish capital. And of course, this top view increased the popularity of the construction among tourists. A great view of Istanbul is the first thing worth climbing to the top of the Galata Tower. The height is dizzying, so don't look down for the impressionable. There are a restaurant and a cafe with two elevators at the top of the tower. At the foot of the tower is a good place to hang out in a nightclub.

Süleymaniye Mosque

The most beautiful mosque in Istanbul is Süleymaniye, the masterpiece of architect Sinan. The talented author paid special attention to the elegance of its silhouette during construction. It is best to admire the mosque from the bay, rather than up close. The religious building can accommodate up to 5000 worshipers, and in addition to the mosque itself, it includes a whole complex of baths, madrasas (Islamic schools), kitchens, a library, an observatory, and, of course, four tall and slender minarets.

You should remember that the mosque is active; there are services, but it is open to tourists. Women are likely to be asked to wear a headdress. Pants are quite lenient here. After all, Turkey is a Muslim country for the most part, but secular, but the open shoulders are absolutely inappropriate. Take care that your scarf covers them, otherwise you just do not get inside.

Basilica Cistern

It seems that there is not a single secluded place to escape the scorching sun in summer's heated Istanbul. But in fact, it is right in the center of the Turkish metropolis. It is the Basilica cistern — a perfectly preserved ancient underground reservoir of Constantinople, located at a depth of 10–12 meters. In this huge cool room, you can not only escape the heat, but also learn a lot of interesting things. The structure was built on the site of the Basilica of St. Sophia. Cistern in Greek means "reservoir", so today the museum is called Cisterna Basilica.

By the way, the Cistern Basilica remotely resembles a palace, as it consists of 336 nine-meter columns. All the columns are different in appearance, as they were brought from different ancient temples. On two of the columns are the marble heads of Medusa Gorgon. Historians still can't figure out where these columns came from. In addition, scientists do not know exactly why one column is positioned upside down and the other turned on its side. Perhaps this was done so that people were not afraid to be petrified by accidentally looking into the eyes of the Gorgon. After all, that's exactly what could have happened, if we believe the myths of ancient Greece.

Istanbul Grand Bazaar

The Oriental fairy tale, unthinkable without the bazaar, filled with noise, laughter, bright colorful goods, aromas of oriental spices, and unforgettable emotions, is alive and located in the heart of Istanbul, in the Sultanahmet district, about one kilometer from the Hagia Sofia and the Blue Mosque. It is the famous Grand Bazaar, a real oriental market, which is a huge square spread over many city blocks, covered with arches, roofs, etc. The entire structure dates back as far as 1461, when it was created.

There are 61 streets, 4400 shops, 2195 ateliers, 18 fountains, 12 mosques, 12 warehouses, one school, one bathhouse, several cafes and exchange offices inside one of the largest markets in the world.

The maze of the Grand Bazaar has it all — ceramics, gold, silver, costume jewelry, shawls, scarves, amulets, carpets, kilims, and much more. Haggling is a must because the original price can be inflated by half. Soap and beads, bronze and glass, rolls of fabric, tons of copper, cheap allegedly branded items, and a fragrant spice market: this is a feast for the eyes but a mourning for the wallet. You can't resist shopping here. So if you want to feel the atmosphere of an oriental bazaar and do some touristy shopping at the same time, then this is the best place in Istanbul for it. However, even if shopping is not part of your plans, you should visit the Grand Bazaar. Stroll through the ancient streets and immerse yourself in a special oriental atmosphere. The thick stone walls of the Grand Bazaar protect it from the scorching sun and piercing wind. So that the walk promises to be pleasant at any time of year. The Grand Bazaar is open daily, except Sundays and religious holidays, from 8:30 am to 7 pm.


One of the main wonders of Istanbul is the Bosphorus — the water border between Europe and Asia. It is impossible to imagine Istanbul without the Bosphorus, and it is the Bosphorus that gives Istanbul its distinctive size and breadth. One of the piers that will greet the travelers will be the coastal area of Karakoy. The pier used to be more of a fishing pier, and even today, everyone can still buy fresh fish here.

Most of the time, visitors boats depart from the Eminonu pier. There is a long cruise for six hours and a short one for two hours. The most popular route is to the Black Sea, with a stop at Anadolu Kavagi for 1.5 hours, where there is a beautiful fortress. On either side of the water, there are luxurious stone palaces and poor shacks. This is due to the history of the city of Istanbul. The Turks, after the settlement of Constantinople, began to build mostly in central areas, and since the 19th century, when the steamships appeared, construction began in the more remote and inaccessible areas of the land.

In the narrow neck of the Bosporus between Europe and Asia, there are two bridges in operation: the Bosphorus Bridge and the Sultan Fatih Bridge. The distance between them is about 5 kilometers. They are both operational, and you can use the more convenient one. However, it should be borne in mind that the passage of bridges is paid, and pedestrians entering them at all is prohibited. This is explained by the fact that the bridges were often used by suicide bombers. Under construction is the third road bridge, designed to connect the two traffic arteries on both sides of the strait. Eight lanes are planned for the bridge, and the project is estimated to cost $6 billion.

The narrowest part of the Bosphorus is also notable because there are two towers on either side of it. On the European side of Istanbul is Rumelihisari, and on the Asian side is Anadoluhisar. Anadoluhisari is a small fortress that was built on one of the banks of the Bosphorus by order of the Ottoman sultan Bayazid during the first siege of Constantinople. It is 25 meters high, and after the fall of Tsarigrad, the building was used as a prison. Today, there is a museum there, which, according to some reports, is not accessible to the general public.

Rumelihisari is a fortress built for the capture of Constantinople, which was intended to cut off Istanbul from the Black Sea. That is why the name of the fortress is translated as "cut-throat", because, after its construction, not a single ship could pass through the strait peacefully. After the fall of Tsarigrad, the fortress became a checkpoint. Today, the building is safe, it has been restored, the Artillery Museum is located there, and music concerts are held.

Prince’s Islands

The Prince's Islands are an archipelago of nine islands, which are administratively one of the districts of the province of Istanbul. They get their name from the purpose for which they were used by the rulers of first the Byzantine and then the Ottoman empires. All the august families and royalty that were in disgrace were exiled here. In the 19th century, mainly wealthy members of the Armenian, Jewish, and Greek communities started to settle here, but gradually the population became more Turkish because of the influx of Turkish capital. Today, the Prince's Islands are one of the most popular destinations for day trips from Istanbul. The only way to get here is by ferry, and the islands are only accessible by horse-drawn vehicles and bicycles that can be rented (about 6 TRY per hour).

Istanbul Museums

The city, which has a reputation as one of the visitors and cultural capitals of the world, has to have many museums. And it is very successful in maintaining its reputation. Istanbul's museums carefully preserve the rich history of Istanbul, and their exhibits give visitors a glimpse of 2,500 years of its history. Each museum exhibit is unique, interesting, and has a priceless twist to delight visitors. Most museums in Istanbul are spacious exhibition halls with hundreds and thousands of exhibits, but there are also very tiny private museums with a special chamber atmosphere. Most of the museums are concentrated in central areas, so it is convenient to combine your visit with a walk around Istanbul. Be prepared to see not even a tenth of Istanbul's museums on your first visit. It will take more than a month to go through them all slowly and meticulously.

One of the most popular museums is the Museum of Innocence, founded by Nobel Prize winner, writer Orhan Pamuk. Everything here is filled with love for the old city, and in the exposition are things that the author imagined belonged to the characters of his novel of the same name. Also noteworthy are the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Art, the Istanbul Museum of Modern Art, the Museum of Spinning Dervishes, and many other interesting exhibits.

Istanbul for children

Istanbul has plenty of places for a memorable vacation for the whole family. One of the best activities for children is a stroll through the Park of Miniatures. There are more than 120 of Turkey's most famous landmarks on the 1:25 scale. All of Turkey is in the palm of their hand! To make sure your child doesn't get tired of the long walk, you can take a ride through the park on the Miniaturk Express steam train. For a wildlife experience, head to either of Istanbul's two aquariums. One is TurquaZoo at Forum Shopping Mall, and the other is in the Bakirkei District. At both aquariums, visitors can view a rich collection of marine life and even feed the fish themselves. When visiting the TurkuaZoo Aquarium, don't hurry to leave the Forum building. There is also a dinosaur theme park, Jurassic Land. Every child can experience the thrill of being an archeologist by exploring mysterious caves, digging for dinosaur eggs in the sand, or walking among moving figures of ancient animals.

A must-visit is the Istanbul Toy Museum, with a unique private collection of over 4,000 exhibits. Boys love antique toy soldiers, Indians, and cars, while girls love dolls and charming toy houses with miniature furniture and utensils. Opened in 2008, Istanbul Dolphinarium invites everyone to an exciting show with dolphins, walruses, seals, and beluga whales. You can swim in the pool with the incredible mammals here. In the amusement park Vialand, you can enjoy a thrilling roller coaster, a merry-go-round, themed games, and a variety of other activities.

Istanbul Beaches

Guests in Istanbul have a unique opportunity to relax on the shores of two seas: the Black Sea and the Marmara Sea. The most famous beaches on the coast of the Sea of Marmara are in the Asian part of Istanbul, in the district of Kadikoy, and in Caddebostan. Their main advantages are free entrance; well-developed infrastructure (there are showers, toilets, changing rooms, umbrellas, and sun loungers), and a comfortable water temperature (the sea is shallow and warms up very quickly). The beach in Fenerbahce Bay is more cozy and secluded; it can accommodate only 50 visitors. It also has everything you need for recreation: cabins for changing, toilets, cafes, and a small restaurant.

Caddebostan is an area of Istanbul's most famous beaches on the shores of the Sea of Marmara.

The most popular beach on the European part of the Marmara Sea coast of Istanbul is "Floria", with a sandy shore and a comfortable entrance to the sea. The beach is free, but visitors are offered a whole range of exciting entertainment, from renting sporting equipment to fiery dancing in the bars and discos. The most famous places for recreation on the Black Sea coast of Istanbul are the Kilos area, with lots of private beaches, and the Schiele resort area. The Agva beach is ideal for active leisure enthusiasts. Yachting, water sports, and even fishing are available here. The second beach of the zone, the eponymous "Shile", is more suitable for connoisseurs of calm and tranquil rest. However, you can feel like a real seaside resort only on the Princes' Islands with their magnificent scenery. The sea here is clear, clean, and warm, and any transport except bicycles and horse-drawn carriages is forbidden. The largest and most popular of the islands is Büyükada, home to fashionable hotels, restaurants, and villas for Istanbul's wealthy.

Istanbul Hotels

Guests of Istanbul have no problem with accommodation in the city ofIstanbul: hotels of different levels are located here literally at every step. Oddly enough, room rates do not depend on the location of the hotel, so when choosing an area, it is best to be guided not by the budget but by your own goals. Those who travel to Istanbul on business can settle in the usual residential areas. Travelers who are in the mood for sightseeing most often choose the areas of Sultanahmet and Beyoglu. There are many interesting historical and architectural monuments in the Sultanahmet district, as well as interesting shops and restaurants with Oriental cuisine. Most of the hotels around the Blue Mosque are in restored old buildings.

There are many inexpensive hostels and cafes in Taksim and around Akbiyik Caddesi Street. If you enjoy the nightlife, Istiklal is the best place to stay, but if you prefer luxury, look west along the Bosphorus coast. Rooms range from 66 TRY in budget hotels to 1660 TRY in luxury hotels. Most local hotels allow you to bargain with the owners, except for chain and premium hotels. When checking into budget hotels, one should pay attention to the quality hotel mark indicating that the facilities are in the room, not on the floor.

Shopping in Istanbul

Istanbul is considered the unofficial capital of European shopping. Istanbul's famous "shopping center" is the Laleli district, which consists entirely of stores with a variety of goods, mostly textiles and leather. The prices there are more than moderate. The Grand Bazaar is a peculiar "city within a city" spread over 50 streets and including 4400 stores, 40 market courtyards, workshops, and coffee houses. The Grand Bazaar is the best place in Istanbul to buy souvenirs, antiques, and gold. The Egyptian Bazaar specializes in spices, coffee, sweets, and flowers, and the Sahaflar Charshysy Book Bazaar is a small market for used and antique books, where you can find any edition, from classics of Marxism to Turkish translations of the Koran. One should not go to Kapali Carci for big purchases; the prices are exorbitant. But the building itself and the atmosphere of the market will take you back to the Ottoman period. The most popular souvenirs from Istanbul are Turkish Delight, Turkish tea, carpets, antiques, jewelry, and leather goods. Turkish delight is the most famous snack, and it's better to buy it by the weight, not in pre-packaged boxes; it's more expensive, but more reliable. This way, you can taste the product beforehand and avoid being cheated.

Lovers of first-class shopping should visit one of the oldest shopping centers in Istanbul, the Atrium.

Also, carpets are good to buy in Istanbul. The prices in local stores are designed for visitors, so feel free to haggle with the sellers. Carpets and kilims are better to buy in the stores of Sultanahmet. In the jewelry shops, it is worth a look at the jewelry with chalcedony. But buying antiques should be done with caution: local laws prohibit taking out of Turkey objects that are more than 100 years old. To find the age of an article, you can take it to the examination in the Istanbul museum. In many stores, customers are immediately provided with museum certificates, confirming that the products in the range can be freely exported from the country. Tepe Nautilus in Kadikoy, Turkey's first themed shopping mall, also deserves attention. The Istanbul Deposit Outlet Center offers bargains, the 6-floor Profilo has a variety of entertainment, including cinemas, theaters, sports, and leisure centers.


What to taste in Istanbul?

Istanbul has a menu of unique dishes that one cannot afford not to try. Start with the appetizers: rice in grape leaves, stuffed tomatoes, and all kinds of salads with olive oil. Traditional first courses are the thick "chobra" soup with a base of local kvass and the cold "jajic" of fresh cucumbers and yogurt. Vegetarians will certainly love the “güveç” (stewed vegetables) and the Turkish pilaf, which is made with rice or bulgur (coarsely ground wheat). Istanbul's seafood deserves special attention. It is always fresh here because the city of Istanbul is surrounded by the sea. Shrimps, squids, lobsters, swordfish, mussels, and sea bass are served in the restaurants, and the street cafes have delicious fish sandwiches called "balik-ekmek". The most common meat dish is, of course, kebab, but do not forget to try the meatballs "kofta" of minced lamb with egg and onion.

For dessert, you should treat yourself to puff pastry stuffed with pistachios, traditional Turkish delight, and "dondurma" — local ice cream with orchid root extract. All this splendor is best served with the famous Turkish coffee or tea. As for alcohol, we recommend tasting "raki" — anise vodka, which is considered the main national alcoholic beverage.

Where to eat in Istanbul?

The best restaurants in the center (around Sirkeci Station) are located in large hotels. Most of them specialize in Turkish and Mediterranean cuisine. The prices are reasonable and the service is of high quality. In Sultanahmet, the food is more expensive, but the variety of local cafes and restaurants will certainly find an option for visitors with any budget. For instance, Divanyolu Street has numerous establishments specializing in Turkish kefta meatballs and shish kebab, a type of fried meat on a spit. The pedestrian street Akbiyik hosts restaurants of local, European, Moroccan, and many other national cuisines. Some of them even offer master classes on the preparation of traditional dishes. There are many decent cafes and restaurants in the Beyoglu area of Istanbul. There are a couple of them located in the courtyard of the Flower Passage not far from Galatasaray Square. Nevizade Sokak has an endless row of meyhane (traditional Turkish tavernas) with a laid-back, friendly vibe. If you want to try the Istanbul street food, head to Eminenyu Embankment and the neighborhoods around Galata Bridge. The best local treats are the freshest mussels, oysters and the famous balik-ekmek fish sandwiches for only 5-7 TRY apiece.


Istanbul Guest Card

The Guest Card is an easy and convenient way to explore the city of Istanbul. The easiest option (Classic Card) includes five rides on public transport, a cruise on the Bosphorus, and discounts in some stores and cafes. There are also cards called Premium (10 trips by public transport + expedited entrance to Topkapi Palace and Aya Sofia) and Deluxe (which additionally includes 12 museums and much more). An undoubted advantage of these cards is that you can order them in advance online, get them in the hotel and start using them immediately.

Istanbul Museum Map

To save money when traveling to Istanbul, many travelers buy the Museum Pass Istanbul. The card features free admission to 15 public museums in the city and discounts of up to 40% on organized tours and visits to private galleries, restaurants, and cafes. The price of the City Pass is 325 TRY and it is valid for 120 hours (5 days) from the first entrance to the museum.

When to visit Istanbul

Istanbul has a subtropical climate, but there are almost always cold winds blowing from the north. Winters are cool and humid with mostly snowy peaks. Summers are warm but without the exhausting heat. The best periods to visit the city of Istanbul are autumn and spring; during this time it is neither cold nor hot, but at night it rains. You can buy an umbrella on the street because umbrellas are sold everywhere during the rainy season. You'd better take a light jacket or sweater with you when you walk around in the summer, as it gets chilly in the evenings. Because of the large area and the influence of the sea on Istanbul, there are separate microclimates: when it rains in the north, it can be sunny in the south.