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Istanbul, Turkey

There's a new aura of excitement in Istanbul these days, as this centre of the Ottoman empire has become one the world's focal points for art, fashion, haute cuisine and nightlife. Of course there's always an abundance of ancient monuments and grand mosques with stunning frescoes to see here, like the Hagia Sophia and Blue Mosque. Head to any park and you'll see why tulips have long been the symbol of this city. Explore more of Istanbul on a Middle Eastern cruise!


  • Port Name & Location
    Port of Instanbul
    Ship will DOCK at this port.
  • Time Zone
    EET (Eastern European Time)
    UTC/GMT +2 hours
  • Language
    The local language is Turkish. Say "hello" in Turkisy: "merhaba."
  • Currency & Shopping
    Turkish Lira (TRY)
    Native crafts, jewellery, leather goods and ceramics.
    • Best Way to Get Around
      Organised Shore Excursions for sightseeing. Buses, trams, metros and ferrys are available.
    • Famous For
      Known for its Byzantine art, bustling bazaars, lavish palaces and exotic food, Istanbul has thousands of years of history to see with just a leisurely stroll.
    • Fun Fact #1
      Don't miss the Hagia Sophia, built in 537 CE, which was the largest church in the world for 900 years before the Seville Cathedral was built.
    • Fun Fact #2
      Located on two continents, Europe and Asia and straddling the Bosphorus Strait, Istanbul is the only transcontinental city in the world.


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