Fly into Istanbul, Turkey, via the Istanbul Ataturk Airport, also the biggest airport in Turkey by total number of passengers, exceeding 50 million passengers a year. Ataturk Airport is also the world’s top 10 busiest airport and Europe’s 5th busiest airport. Step into the award-winning airport and be amazed at the architecture which happens to be one of the fifty civil engineering feats in Turkey. With a total of 4 terminals, the terminals are divided by domestic flights, international flights, cargo and general aviation. Arriving at Istanbul, you will be greeted with a whole range of terminal services and the information counter staff will be most willing to help you with any enquiries on your transportation or travel itinerary. Passenger information kiosks are also available for use if the information counter is too busy.
How to get around
Ataturk Airport is located only 25 kilometres away from the city centre, making it very accessible to travellers. Ataturk Airport is also highly connected with different modes of transportation such as the metro, bus, taxi and seabus. Located next to the peninsula, travellers might be stoked to know that the seabus operates from the airport along the coast - even if your final destination may not be along the coast, the seabus ride may prove to be a great relaxing ride after a long flight, and a good photo opportunity. Otherwise, take the metro or bus, which will take less than 30 minutes to the city centre. You may wish to check out the real-time traffic congestion map provided by the airport before hopping onto a taxi - in bad traffic conditions the other modes of transport may be a better bet.
What to see and do
One of the largest urban agglomerations in Europe, second largest in the Middle East and the fifth-largest city in the world by population within city limits, Istanbul is the world's fifth most popular tourist destination. Its impressive stats have been contributed by the fact that it is strategically positioned along the historic Silk Road, with rail networks to Europe and the Middle East, and is the only sea route between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean. Istanbul is primarily known for its Byzantine and Ottoman architecture, where its buildings reflect the various empires that have previously ruled the city.
The city's biggest draw is its historic centre, which is partially listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Though Genoese fortifications were largely demolished in the 19th century, only the Galata Tower is left. Take a trip to Istanbul’s cultural and entertainment hub which can be found across the city's natural harbour, the Golden Horn, in the Beyoğlu district. Visit the Dolmabahçe Palace and the Ortaköy Mosque in the district, and take pictures of the luxurious chalet mansions which line the shores of the Bosphorus north, originally built by 19th-century aristocrats as summer homes.
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Airports near Istanbul
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