Take away Sultanahmet. Get rid of the delicious food and colorful markets. You can even have the City Walls, if you’d be so cruel. Even without most of the major tourist sites in town, Istanbul would still be one of the prettiest cities in my world.
I dig nearly everything about the cityscape of Istanbul. Truly, the crumbling Ottoman churches and mosques are beautiful. The waterways, center of the city for centuries, add so much. But even the newest parts of the city still seem to be dotted with minarets and mosques and beautiful colors and appealing textures. No matter where you look on the Istanbul skyline, it seems to amaze.
To be honest, the look and feel of the city actually comes close to rivaling Hong Kong for me. Thats about as high a compliment as I know to pay. Tall buildings mingle with atmospheric neighborhoods that each seem to have a distinct character of their own while fitting cleanly into the city as a whole.
Istanbul is truly one of the cities where I can simply walk for days on end, exploring somewhere new each time and rarely if ever growing bored of it.
Istanbul doesn’t bite. You can totally get around and see it on your own. If you just don’t want to, though, GetYourGuide has literally hundreds of options for stuff to do in town. Check them out.