If you are heading to Istanbul, you should know that you will be in a place with a history that is rich, a culture that is vibrant, and people that are friendly and welcoming. With this being pointed out, it is a must that you try to see as much of the capital of Turkey as possible, or you will end up regretting it because you have missed too much of the good thing. So whether you are going to the city for a business function or a holiday, you should take the time to visit the best places here to have a one-of-a-kind adventure and learning experience.

You probably know by now that there are plenty of things to do in Istanbul, such as taking a tour of its famous 6th century water-storage system while watching out for the hidden Medusa statue and marveling at all the tunnels and tanks. You may also have heard or read of the Blue Mosque, where there are more than 250 stained glass windows surrounded by around 20,000 majestically blue-green tiles. And if the city is known for the Blue Mosque’s blue-green tiles, it is also famed for its golden tiles, which can be found at the Aya Sofia. But there is more to this city than just these three. Here are some of the other exceptional places that you should not fail to visit while you are here.

The Topkapi Palace

If Granada has the Alhambra, Istanbul has the Topkapi Palace. If you have time to spare, make sure that you purchase your tickets online so that you can tour the Harem which is found at the Palace. One of the most fascinating things about this site is the fact that it is the world’s oldest palace in existence. When you get to the Harem, you can expect to be dazzled by the maze of rooms said to have been the place of residence of the wives and the concubines of the Sultan.

The Selimiye Barracks Museum

Are you interested in learning more about the Crimean War that took place back in the 19th century? If so, then you definitely will be happy to pay the Selimiye Barracks Museum a well-deserved visit. Here, you will be able to find yourself in the same area where Florence Nightingale used to tend to the troops who were injured during the war. The museum also has in display two of the lamps that the nurse is famous for up till today.

The Galata Bridge

The Galata Bridge, in itself, is already a sight to behold. The best part about it though is that it affords awesome views of the sunset. It is also a very interesting part of the city, as this is where you will find the old and the new mixing and living harmoniously together. If you want some refreshments, snacks, or a proper meal, you will not have a hard time finding what you need as this place is where some of the city’s nicest bars, restaurants, and cafes can be found.

The Grand Bazaar

Fancy some shopping, if so, then you should head to the Grand Bazaar and display your skills for bargain shopping. The bazaar is one of the world’s biggest covered markets. It has more than 5,000 shops, covering an expansive area comprised of 60 different streets. Here, expect to take in the scent of fresh and dry spices as well as leather goods.

The Great Hall at the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts

Last, but not the least, is to take some time admiring the great works of art at the Great Hall at the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts.