Istanbul: Multicultural Weekend Trip on the Bosporus
The 14 million metropolis on the Bosporus is a cultural and economic center of Turkey and one of the most colorful gay and lesbian playing fields of Europe. Have an extended weekend trip to Istanbul!
Istanbul seems to be a magnet for gay tourists. During the day, you can visit the mosques and other places of interest. In the evening you can dance with like-minded and enjoy life. We recommend you to visit Istanbul for a long weekend. The best months are May, June, September and October, at this time the weather is pleasant. In June, the Gay Pride takes place annually. Istanbul impresses with its multicultural atmosphere. Unlike other states Turkey allows gay relationships over 18 years. But some parts of the Muslim-majority society are very conservative.
Beyoglu is the ancient Greek center on the European side. It is considered the red-light district of Istanbul. Here, the gay scene is also concentrated. Here you will find numerous bars, clubs, saunas, hammams, cafés, restaurants and hotels. Many gay-friendly hotels impress with a bygone beauty. Crystal chandeliers and antique décor are reminiscent of the time of the Orient Express.
Culture and Sights
The center is best explored by foot and with a good map. Simply start your tour and let yourself drift, because the most interesting things are mostly discovered in the side streets.
A bus ride costs about 4 TL. To everyone, who wants to drive taxi: Always make sure that the meter is set before your trip! By boot (4 TL) you can also enjoy a very nice view to the Golden Horn and between the European and Asian part of the city. Istanbul is full of interesting sights. Sightseeing is a must-do for gay tourists in this city! So definitely visit Topkapi Palace, a former residence of the sultans until 1853 and the Aya Sofya (Hagia Sophia), the Church of the Divine Wisdom. But also the Sultanahmet Camii (Blue Mosque) is highly recommended. You want to enjoy more outside activites? No problem -
How about a dip in the Turkish bath, the hammam? Most of them are over 100 years old. The floors are heated from below and the walls are made of marble. An unforgettable experience!
While you’re in Istanbul, how about a boat trip on the Bosporus to the Princes' Islands? On the 9 islands about 20 km southeast of Istanbul in the Marmara Sea, there are no cars, but only horse-drawn carriages. A nice venue to enjoy water sports!
Istandbul is also very popular for its Covered Bazaar with about 4,500 shops. However, it is very designed for tourists. Even the Grand Bazaar and the Egyptian Bazaar are a delight for the eyes and nose. Around the Egyptian Bazaar and the Grand Bazaar are many shops and street sales. Be sure to be well informed and act vigorously! Even the Western-oriented Istiklal Avenue is worthwhile. Here you will find many international clothing companies, boutiques, bookstores and antique shops.
Enjoy the hustle and bustle in Istanbul and have a wonderful time!