Welcome to the Istanbul cruise port guide. This is one of the best place in the world to cruise. Exactly where the European and Asian borders meet we find the city of Istanbul on the river Bosphorus. It is impossible not to fall in love with this city.
With a population of about 14 million it is one of the largest cities in Europe. Just like Lisbon, Rome and other great European cities is has been build on 7 hills.
With the fall of Rome, one part of the Roman empire would vanish, but the eastern part would flourish as the Byzantine empire with Istanbul as its capitol. Back than the city was known as Constantinople. In 1453 it would fall to the Ottoman Turks who converted the city to Islam and renamed it Istanbul. Because of this historical event still 90% of the cities inhabitants is Muslim.
The city is the city of borders and meeting points. It’s not just Europe and Asia that meet here, but also old and new, tradition and modernity. It is a city that will not fail to amaze you.
You ship will sail the famous Dardanelles over the sea of Marmara, onto the Bosphorus where you can enjoy one of the most scenic arrivals in the world.
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-Do the shops and tourist sites take euro?
Most larger businesses will. Check form of payment before hand. Keep in mind it is always more convenient to have Turkish Lira on you.
-Is Istanbul wheelchair friendly?
It can be quite hard. Most of the city is quite flat, but you will find some small hills in the city that are connected by stairs.
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Cruise Port Guide Istanbul – Turkey: docked
Cruise ships dock at Istanbul’s Karakoy or Salipazari Quay. On these cruise docks you will find a cruise terminal where you should be able to find a tourist information point with maps and representatives. These docks are approximately 3,5 km from the historical city centre of Istanbul. Basically all you need to do is to cross the bridge and all the mayor sights are within short walking distance from one another.
Some cruise lines will offer a shuttle service. Check with the front office on board what will be the case for your voyage.
Taxis in Istanbul
You will find taxis at the exit of the security gate. The official taxis in Istanbul are yellow. Negotiate the price before you step into a taxi in Istanbul. This city is quite known for ripping off tourist.
A taxi from the Cruise Terminal to the city centre SHOULD cost you no more than 20 Turkish Lira. If the taxis at the exit of the port are being difficult just walk onto the public road and hail one on the street.
The best way to get into town is by public transportation. Outside the cruise terminal you will see the tracks of tram T1 going into town. Go to the nearest stop which you will see on the left or right hand side depending on where they let you exit the port. To ride the tram you will first need to buy a token. The token costs 3 Lyra. The machine only takes Lyra, up to 20 Lyra notes. Please know they only take Turkish Lyra. You will find local ATM’s on the same street as the tram is on.
You will see that tram T1 goes through the historical district of Istanbul. Get off at the following stops for the following sights:
Stop “Gulhane” – for Topkapi Palace
Stop “Sultanahmet – for Hagia Sophia, Hippodrome and Blue Mosque.
Stop “Beyazit” – for Grand Bazaar
Find more information on Istanbul’s public transportation on http://www.iett.gov.tr/en.
Hop on hop off bus
There is a hop on hop off bus in Istanbul that usually comes to the pier. Find a representative on the dock. The bus is wheelchair accessible.
Nuruosmanieye is Istanbul’s main shopping street. Find your souvenirs at the Grand Bazaar or Arasta Bazaar. Spices at the Egyptian Bazaar.
Distance from port
Galata = 1,3 km south
Suleymanieye Cami = 2,8 km south
Ibrahim Pasa Sarayi = 3,4 km south
Grand Bazaar = 3,1 km south
Topkapi Palace = 3,5 km south
Hagia Sofia = 3,5 km south
Blue Mosque = 3,6 km south