On the coast of the Bosphorus – the strait that marks the divide between Europe and Asia – Besiktas is one of the most dynamic parts of Istanbul. Cosmopolitan cafes and fashion boutiques make it a great place to wander all day, while a major landmark is Dolmabahce Palace, a formidable fortress of Baroque and Rococo grandeur, with opulent sights such like the Crystal Staircase, fashioned from Baccarat crystal and mahogany.
Separated from the Old City by the shimmering stretch of the Golden Horn, Beyoglu is a cosmopolitan quarter crammed with tempting cafes, bars, and restaurants – especially along the famed Istiklal Avenue, one of Istanbul's busiest streets. Look out for the ornate Art Deco and Neo-Gothic buildings all around as you head down to Taksim Square, the hub of modern Istanbul, which is home to the Republic Monument.
Get a taste of Ancient Rome in Turkey by visiting Beyazit. The ruins of the columns of the Forum of Theodosius still stand, while next to Beyazit Square is one of Istanbul's great attractions: the Grand Bazaar. Dating back to the 15th Century, its ancient warren of shops sell everything from glowing lanterns to ornate rugs, while the vintage fountains and tiled, arched ceiling make the market itself a must-see.
Sirkeci's train station is famous, and with good reason. It was the last stop of the Orient Express, and with its stained-glass decor and Ottoman architecture, it still exudes the glamor of a lost age. Sirkeci has plenty of hotels to choose from, and it's only a short walk to the Spice Bazaar, with its striking vaulted walkways lined with shops selling colorful heaps of sumac, paprika, and red peppercorns.
All the splendor of old Istanbul can be found in Sultanahmet. A stunning fusion of Islamic and Ottoman architecture, the Blue Mosque is a stand-out sight. Then there's Topkapi Palace, which with its stone towers, sprawling courtyards, and inner buildings is a city in itself – it houses some of Islam's holiest relics. For a classic Turkish experience, bask in the heat of one of the area's traditional baths, or hamams.
Romantic hotels in Istanbul
With Hotels.com you can search through a great selection of Istanbul Romantic hotels to find the perfect one for you. Make sure you don't miss out by booking online today and enjoying last minute deals and offers on many Romantic hotels in Istanbul.
Reviewed by a Hotels.com guest on Feb 19, 2013
We were in Instanbul for two nights, one full day only. We were very happy with the hotel. The people at the reception desk were friendly and attentive even though we did not get there until 1:00am. They called me by my first name even! (The taxi ride to the hotel was a little scary at midnight with a driver who did not speak english, be sure to arrange for the hotel shuttle!) We were upgraded which was nice. The hotel is in a perfect location, however it is a little hard to find the first time. Taking the shuttle should eliminate this problem. I would certainly stay here again!
We had a wonderful stay. The staff was fantastic - very friendly and helpful with all of our requests. We enjoyed the liveliness of the location on Saturday night-plenty of restaurants nearby although they definitely cater to a seafood palate.
Reviewed by a Hotels.com guest on Jan 23, 2013
I couldn't say enough good things about this boutique hotel. The staff was incredibly helpful and the view from my room was drop dead gorgeous. Highly recommended. It's located in a beautiful and romantic neighborhood, near everything you need to see in Istanbul, all within walking distance. The room was small but nicely laid out and decorated. The bed was comfy. Everything was super clean. The price per night very reasonable. A real home run!
"wonderful location, facility and staff"
Reviewed by a Hotels.com guest on Oct 25, 2012
Would certainly stay again. Free Wifi, friendly and helpful staff and incredible view of the Blue Mosque while enjoying an alfresco breakfast buffet consisting of 44 different items....e.g. the cheese selection was just one of the 44 items.