Istanbul lies at the crossroads of history and the world. As the famed gateway between Asia and Europe it has seen centuries of trade, not just of goods and services but of ideas, religions and entire cultures. These myriad influences have created a city representative of a diverse collection of people as represented in its art, architecture, music, food and so much more. Istanbul is both beautiful and fascinating with so much to offer families with children.
Address: Beyazit/İstanbul, Turkey
Phone: 90 212 519 1248
Hours: 9:00 am – 7:00 pm
Getting There: Take a tram to Beyazit, Üniversite or Sirkeci
Covering over 60 streets and 5,000 shops, The Grand Bazaar is one of the largest markets in the world. This market is known for its unique jewelry, ceramics, carpets, embroidered pieces, spices and antiques. Founded in 1461, The Grand Bazaar is one of the oldest covered markets in the world. The complex houses two mosques, two hammams, four fountains and several restaurants. The most valuable items and antiques in the market are housed in the high domed hall of the Cevahir Bedesten. Here you will find antique furniture, prayer beads, inlaid weapons, watches, old coins, candlesticks and many more treasures. This bazaar is perfect for visitors of all ages.
Address: Ayasofya Meydanı, Sultanahmet Fatih, Turkey
Phone: 90 212 522 17 50
Hours: April 15 – October 1 9:00 am – 7:00 pm, October 2 – April 14 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, Museum is closed on Mondays
Admission: Adults – $14, Children under 12 – Free
The Hagia Sophia is one of the most visited museums in the world. With its prominent monuments and amazing architectural style, Hagia Sophia has been called “the eighth wonder of the world” by East Roman Philon. For over 900 years Hagia Sophia was used as a church. It was then converted into a mosque for nearly 500 years before becoming a museum in 1935. There are several plaques throughout the museum providing interesting historical information. The whole family will enjoy exploring this famous site and admiring its intricate architecture.
Address: Kocatepe Mh., 34045 Bayrampaşa/İstanbul, Turkey
Hours: 10:00 am – 8:00 pm
Admission: Adults – $16, Children – $12
Explore a variety of amazing marine life at one of the world’s largest aquariums. Turkuazoo Aquarium has several thematic galleries featuring animals from around the world. The Rainforest Gallery features species including Mata Mata turtles, piranhas, red tail catfish and many others. Visitors will see several different species of sharks and stingrays in the Coastal Cliffs Gallery. Children will enjoy interacting with giant horseshoe crabs at the Touch Pool. The main tank in the museum is the Underwater Tunnel which holds 1.5 million gallons of water. Visitors will be mesmerized by the thousands of fish, sharks and stingrays swimming in all directions. Stop by the Shark Jaws exhibit to see impressive jaws, teeth and rows of backup teeth of different types of sharks. Turkuazoo Aquarium is guaranteed fun for the whole family.