Elegant boutique guesthouse and restaurant in the most unspoiled part of Turkey. The interior design is exquisite, rooms are comfortable and the food rivals that in any of the best restaurants I have eaten at in Paris, London, Istanbul, Melbourne or New York. The price is very reasonable considering the excellent quality.
We have stayed at this lovely boutique hotel between July 5th and 10th. Perfect location in walking distance to all historical attractions Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace and Grand Bazaar. Very attentive staff and beautifully decorated spacious rooms.
Akbiyik Cad. No:32 Sultanahmet-Istanbul. 0090 533 4886325. www.themillenniumsuites.com
For a hassle-free, pleasurable and informative shopping trip in Istanbul's bazaars, I highly recommend Istanbul Personal Shopper. They saved us time and money and took us shopping away from the typical tourist stores.
A company run by long-time expat residents of Istanbul, they are known for not accepting commissions from merchants in the bazaars, which is something the majority of tour guides will do.
Ayvalik has been a great suprise! Beautiful village and surroundings Bonjour Guesthouse is amazing place to stay. The atmosphere and historic decor are superb.
It was very enjoyable to stay here because it's so close to the sea and the center of town.
The delicious Turkish traditional breakfast is really very good - I recommend it.
The location of the hotel is excellent for a sightseeing trip to Istanbul, being approximately two minute's walk to Sutanahmet Square (Blue Mosque Aya Sophia and Topkapi Palace) in one direction and about five minutes to the Grand Bazaar in the other. Breakfast is served on the rooftop terrace that has an amazing view of some of the above mentioned sites, the Bosphorus straight and its famous bridge, and the Asian side of the city. We arrived early at the hotel, and while the room was being prepared for us, we were invited to relax and enjoy a complimentary Turkish coffee on the terrace - unforgetable. The level of professionalism of all, staff and management, combined with a genuine hospitability, made our five day stay at the hotel a memorable experience. Everybody was very helpful, trying hard to make our vacation as enjoyable as possible. The hotel is stylishly decorated and kept very clean. Our room was elegant, spacious, and quiet. We arranged transfers from and back to the airport with the hotel and this ran very smoothly. We highly recommend this hotel and we will definitely come back.
We spent a wonderful week in Instanbul staying at pasha!place. The apartment is perfectly situated next to Galata Tower, restaurants and shopping areas and is walking distance to Galata bridge. The apartment is beautifully renovated and furnished with much taste. And there is an absolutely fantastic view out of the livingroom window across the water to the Topkapi, Hagia Sophia and Blue Mosque!
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A delightful French restaurant with a verdant garden tucked away in the back streets of Kaş. Evy was a chef on yachts before settling in Kaş and she brings a real taste of France to this corner of the Mediterranean. The menu is short, but the taste is huge, as are the portions. The steaks are the biggest we've ever had, and are served with a choice of sauces and a huge side dish of seasonal veg. Wild boar, succulent lamb and chicken also feature on the menu. It is very hard to leave room for dessert.
In the off season dine inside and be entertained by various colourful locals hanging out at the bar and by Evy's dancing parrot. Reservations essential, and it is worth the wait.
Terzi Sokak 2, in a small street behind the Red Point bar, Kas
+90 242 836-1253
Google map: bit.ly/aoNLvm
More than a hotel, Selcuklu Evi is a historic Seljuk house in Urgup lovingly restored, arranged in an Oriental style, combining authentic charm with great comfort.
One word: magical.
+90 384 341 7460
Yunak Mah. P.K. 55 - 50400 Urgup
This fish restaurant opened a couple of years ago and immediately became one of the most popular places to eat. Reservations are a good idea if you don't want to wait for a table. The garden overlooks the tomb right in the middle of town and is full of flowers. The menu offers a wide range of meze and main courses which you would usually only find in a quality restaurant in one of the big cities.
Süleyman Sandıkçı Sok. No:18
+90 (0) 242 8362779
This Turkish bistro served us the most amazing starter (mushrooms in a sort of shredded pastry) and a beautiful steak that would stand up to comparison with any good restaurant in England. The menu could be described as Turkish, Mediterranean, English fusion. Classy but reasonable at about £25 a head. The clientele seemed to be young professionals but as 40/50 year old women, we felt welcome and it was so nice to have a change from the meze that you get around Sultanhamet. We just kept saying 'mmm' all the time.
Near Taksim main shopping street on the left. See www.hayalkahvesibistro.com for better details
Found this lovely place on the tram line (homemadeistanbul.com) on a wander. The restaurant provides a lovely and reasonable lunch. There was a mixture of Turkish and Mediterranean food on the menu and everything was lovely. It had the best salads we found in Istanbul. We were surprised to find wine at a reasonable price as well as the great food. To get there take the tram to Sirkeci then walk back (if you came from the Sultanhamet). It's easy to find because of the non-Turkish sounding name and the woman in the window making fresh bread (which was, again, the best we had in Istanbul).
We really enjoyed Istanbul and had a beautiful time. This apartment in Cukurcuma is cozy and comfortable and the location fantastic. The area is an exciting mix of the old Ottoman tradition and new artistic trends and the Galata tower and bridge are within walking distance. We met Tarkan's family: lovely people!
Some of the most fascinating day walks to be enjoyed anywhere in the world. The famous troglodyte villages and the amazing scenery are best enjoyed on foot. Walking possibilities are endless in this area of cave-lined valleys and surreal rock formations. The walking is of moderate difficulty and is generally between 4 and 5 hours each day. There is also time en route to visit some of the attractive villages.
Stunning little town. Good food, really friendly people and a fair amount of ex-pats to talk to. Lots to do too. Hillwalking, coastal walks, boat trips, sea kayaking, an ancient amphitheatre to visit. Simply amazing. Even the drive to the town will blow you away.
A short drive along the coast from Kalkan. Or there are plenty of hotels in Kas itself if you fancy a stay. Dalaman Airport is closest.
From Dalaman, through Fethiye, through Ölü Deniz, along a narrow road on the side of a mountain, we climb higher. The sun gets lower and sinks as a huge red ball into the sea. We stop, but we should be down at sea level. Out of the gloom a safari jeep appears. We climb in the back and the jeep plunges over the edge of the road, down a precipitous boulder-strewn track, winding between trees barely a jeep width apart. Eventually we do reach sea level and are greeted by Yalcin and his wonderful staff. They, carrying hurricane lamps, guide us to our rooms, which are balconied cabins – rustic, yet well appointed with all mod cons. They, the kitchen and behind the bar are the only places under cover. Elsewhere, sun shades and vines on pergolas shade the many peaceful lounging areas. Everything is clustered round the kitchen garden which provides much of the delicious food. On the first day, everyone was very British and ate at separate tables. Thereafter everyone was very Mediterranean and we all ate round one big table exchanging life histories and tall tales. There are great walks (look out for wild boar, tortoises and rare butterflies) and the sea to cool off in. If you can’t be bothered to go the three minutes to the sea, there is a pool – but don’t try diving in – the rocks on which it was built provide a smooth but uneven bottom. Not just Turkish Delight, but Turkish Paradise.
Beyaz Yunus Faralya, Faralya, near Ölü Deniz
+44 (0)20 8605 3500
This is a fully vegetraian eco-camp which is only accessible down a rocky path via jeep. Set back into mountains lie around 11 small huts with basic Turkish facilities but stunning views of the surrounding countryside and the Turquoise Coast. All meals are made from locally sourced produce, most of which is grown on the site itself. On-site the owners have built a raised wooden platform which hosts early morning yoga and there lies a private cove just 15 minutes walk from the camp which hosts evening bbqs, providing the little needed entertainment.
This three-bedroom villa is located in one of the most striking locations in Turkey. Kayakoy is a ghost town filled with fantastically preserved empty stone houses, gradually crumbling and being consumed by ivy. You can take a stroll up the hills on which it is situated, ducking in and out of the ruins, feeling like you own it completely. Small wonder Louis de Bernieres based his novel Bird Without Wings in this ethereal, historic setting. The villa itself does justice to the mystery and uniqueness of the place, built with regional masonry and cedar interior furnishing. It is spacious and comfortable, with not only a swimming pool but a Romeo and Juliet balcony with a prime view of Kayakoy. The town takes on an especially magical charcter at night, when it is floodlit, and you can hear the faint strummings of guitar players in the distance. What really sets this place apart is the owners; Selma and Hussein, whom we came to know personally, have their house next door. Expect to be invited to one of Selma's fantastic barbeques-welcome is the word, no strings attached. Picking of fruit from the surrounding fig, almond and pomegranate trees is allowed - if you are lucky Hussein will even help you to do it. To cap it all off, the villa is a short drive from the beach, walking distance from sumptuous pine forests, and is well served by restaurants offering the best in locally sourced Turkish food.
Phone Hussein: 00905326059072. Nearest airport Dalaman airport. Nearest large town Fethiye.
In the old quarter of Istanbul the Empress Zoe hotel is to be found. The rooms range from tiny to more spacious two roomed suites with kitchens and sitting rooms but what they all have in common is exquisite taste; hand painted Byzantine murals, antique furniture, traditional textiles and cool marble Turkish bathrooms. There are many twisting narrow stairs but they are worth the challenge to reach the cool, shaded courtyard garden. The breakfasts are to die for- plump cherries, freshly squeezed juice, crusty bread, olives, home baked cake, cheese and coffee. The staff are attentive and kind- when we arrived too early for our booking after a 12 hour overnight long-haul flight they offered us another room to rest for a couple of hours followed by a delicious breakfast free of charge. It is a popular hotel so book in advance.
Tel: 90 (212) 518 25 04 518 43 60 / Fax: 90 (212) 518 56 99
Empress Zoe Hotel,Akbiyik Cad. No: 4/1 Sultanahmet, Istanbul/TURKEY
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