Istanbul in July: Things to Do & Places to Visit 2021
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Attractions

Things to Do in Istanbul in July

See Hagia Sophia Museum, Explore Topkapi Palace Museum, Visit Princes’ Islands, Spritual Blue Mosque, Travel at Istiklal Street, Experience Golden Beach, Enjoy the Whirling Dervishes Show, Istanbul Theme Park , Take a Bosphorus Sunset Cruise, Shop at Grand Bazaar, and many more.

There is an absolute treasure trove of places to visit in Istanbul in July as the city boasts of its most pleasant climatic conditions, in which its locals and tourists can easily explore. Istanbul has a perfect blend of history, culture and beautiful landscapes combined with its strategic location at the border of two continents of Europe and Asia makes it the epicentre of art and cultural heritage of both the worlds.

While all the tourist attractions are worth giving a visit any time of the year, in July, you will get to a lot more things and enjoying these places in Istanbul in July just gets better! 
For instance, watching the sunset at Bosphorus cruise, or shopping at Istiklal Street become one of the most important things to do in Istanbul in July.

The weather is pleasantly warm with the temperature hovering around the 24-degree-celsius mark, which makes it  easy and breezy for the tourists to hop around anywhere in the city and explore its treasures. 
From the 400-year-old iconic historical site Blue Mosque, to the world famous Istiklal Street, here are some of the places to visit in Istanbul in July.

Here is list of best places to visit in Istanbul in July:

01

Hagia Sophia Museum

Hagia Sophia Museum is one of the rarest sights you'll see across the whole world. Apart from being an architectural wonder, Hagia Sophia has been a Church for 916 years, a Mosque for 482 years and now it has been built into a magnificent museum. In July, it is altogether a different experience to visit this museum.

You could feel the aura bright and chirpy as so many tourists flock here to visit this gem. The architecture of Hagia Sophia adheres to two different religions, i.e. Christianity and Islam, makes it stand out among all the other tourist attractions in Istanbul.

In 1985, Hagia Sophia Museum was declared as the UNESCO World Heritage site as it has become a prominent destination for not just tourists, but also historians, artisans and archaeologists. Apart from being a visual retreat, the museum is believed to be guarded by divine interventions. No matter how many quakes and shocks try to break it down, its walls and domes stand unshaken throughout these years. 

Location-
Sultan Ahmet, Ayasofya Meydani No:1, 34122 Fatih/Istanbul, Turkey 

Entry Fee-
72 TL 

Timings-
9AM- 7PM (Summers) 9AM- 6PM (Winters) 
02

Topkapi Palace Museum

Topkapi Palace is one of the most popular places to visit in Istanbul in July. Located at a hilltop, it becomes a great adventure sport in July to reach the museum on a bicycle or trek all the way to the top to finally reach the heavenly spot.

The Palace was built between 1466 and 1478 by the emperor Sultan Mehmet II of the Ottoman era. The palace, later on, got its name from the Turkish locals who named it "Topkapi" (Gates of Cannons) due to the large cannons dug deep inside its gates.

For anyone who wants to have a closer look at the rich history of Istanbul, this archaeological museum strongly welcomes you. On some special days, the Museum is reserved for concerts, art exhibitions and events which will allow you to dig deeper into Byzantine history. 

Location-
Cankurtaran, 34122 Fatih/Istanbul, Turkey

Entry Fee-
12.56 US Dollars 

Timings-
10-4 (Weekdays), 10-2 (Saturday), Sunday closed 
03

Visit Princes’ Islands

Image Credit : https://pixabay.com/photos/princes--islands-marmara-sea-1848737/
Princes' Islands or Kizil Adalar (Turkish) is a perfect weekend getaway for all the locals and tourists of Istanbul. To get a day or two away from the chaotic urban life and hustle-bustle people flock here in large numbers through the ferry service available in the city. 

It is best to explore these islands in July since these islands remain mostly deserted in winters. Out of these nine islands, only four of them, including those of Büyükada, Heybeliada, Burgazada and Kinaliada invite tourists to explore their natural beauty. One can relax in utmost tranquillity as a result of the complete ban on any motor vehicle on these islands.

The only mode of transport here being bicycle and horse cart, it offers a unique experience for its tourists to explore its beautiful lanes. The sun in the month of July won't let you feel the heat of the sun pricking your skin and it'll be a surreal experience to drive a bicycle under the clear and bright sky.

Location-
Adalar, Marmara Sea, Istanbul, Turkey 

Entry Fee-
Depends on the ferry service you take. 
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04

Blue Mosque

The Blue Mosque or Sultan Ahmed Mosque is situated right opposite Hagia Sophia. The place is surrounded by a picturesque location, with greenery all around. In July, the location of this Mosque feels like a mini paradise on earth as you could feel the plants and trees shine back at you.

A whole lot of migratory birds surround the place and their chirps and hops feel just like an icing on the top. On the outside, the mosque has a collection of huge domes along with six tall minarets which can even be seen from a pretty large distance.

The mosque has its interior covered with 20,000 blue Iznik tiles which later on became the inspiration behind its unique name. People from far away lands come to worship here. It is mostly open throughout the day for its tourists and visitors except at the time of six prayers of Muslims in the day. 

Location-
Sultan Ahmet, Atmeydani Cd. No:7, 34122 Fatih/Istanbul, Turkey 

Timings-
Open all days except Friday mornings. Also closed on Muslim holy day 
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Ever thought about clicking photos with celebrities and famous characters? If your answer is yes then grab this Madame Tussauds & Sea Life Istanbul combo ticket. Get a chance to see all underwater animals at the SEALIFE, Istanbul and get up close to famous characters at the Madame Tussauds, Istanbul. 

What to Expect:

Enjoy entry to Madame Tussauds waxwork museum
The Madame Tussauds wax museum is the place featuring over 60 waxworks of your favorite international celebrities and players. Get a chance to click pictures with Micheal Jackson or Lady Gaga or George Clooney. You will see the waxwork of the Ottoman Empire to the Turkish Republic with Madame Tussauds & Sea Life Istanbul combo ticket. 

Watch Underwater Wildlife Species
Done visiting the wax museum so now its time to explore the Sea Life Istanbul. See all sea creatures like sharks, fishes, and learn about life on a tropical reef. Admire how big the shark looks like and also touch starfish in the rockpool. 

Skip the line and enter directly
Skip all the long lines and enter directly with the Madame Tussauds & Sea Life Istanbul Combo Ticket. Get a pass to explore the two most famous places Madame Tussauds wax museum and SEA LIFE in Istanbul. 

Head for a Fun Day Outing
You will explore the two most famous attractions in Istanbul with this tour. So get ready for the family or friends fun day out.  

Know before you go:

Opening hours:
10:00 am- 08:00 pm

Group Size:
Min: 1 pax
Max: 9 pax

Location: 
Madame Tussauds Istanbul, Hüseyinağa Mahallesi, İstiklal Cd. No 56, Beyoğlu

How to reach:
You can easily reach the location by public or private transport.

Additional information:
- You can present either a printed or a mobile voucher for this activity
- Children under 2 years old can join for free 
- For Madame Tussauds & Sea Life Istanbul combo ticket child age is 3-17 
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06

Basilica Cistern

Built underneath the Stoa Basilica, it is the largest cistern in the city of Istanbul. Its mesmerizing piece of architecture was built in 532 by Justinian as a means to provide water supply to the Great Palace and its surrounding areas.

This underground palace was later degraded by the locals who threw all sorts of garbage and corpses inside it. But finally, after going through several restorations, it was open to the public in 1987. Now, the cistern is one of the most visited tourist attractions of Istanbul. Its sheer grandeur and symmetry make it a retreat for tourists in summers.

Even though there is not much water left in it, walking through its wooden pavements allows you to feel its dripping water on your face. This is why it is advised to visit this attraction in the month of July to take a complete charge of its offerings. 

Location-
Alemdar, Yerebatan Cd. 1/3, 34110 Fatih/Istanbul, Turkey

Entry Fee-
10TL onwards 

Timings-
 Every Day 9AM-5PM
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07

Take a Bosphorus Sunset Cruise

Any trip to Istanbul is incomplete without Bosphorus Sunset Cruising. In fact, it is one of the topmost things to do in Istanbul in July. An hour and a half ferry tour along the Bosphorus will let you see the wider picture of Istanbul.

The cool breeze on the onset of evenings refreshes your mind to the core. Watching all the magnificent mosques and museums from the ferry during the sunset time is truly a magical experience. To make your sailing experience a little more entertaining, you can book a three-course dinner at the cruise which comes along with complimentary folk dance and music events.

The cruise starts from Eminonu in the day and travels all the way to the Black Sea in the North.

Location
- Kucuk Ayasofya Mahallesi, Nakilbent Sk. No:29, 34122 Fatih/Istanbul, Turkey

Entry Fee-
200 TL onwards 

Timings-
 Departure 10AM - 9PM
08

Explore the City on the Hop-On Hop-Off Bus

Admire the beauty of churches, palaces and mosques with the Istanbul's hop on hop off tour. The tour gives the tourists an opportunity to explore its gems, archaic buildings and monuments through a bus which takes you all around the city. In the month of July, these exploration tours are in full force due to a large inflow of tourists.

Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Egyptian Spice Bazaar and others are some of its famous stops. Not just the tour lets you visit these places, but you can gather information about the history and tradition of everything through a headphone commentary. The commentary is done in eight languages which you can choose from. The hop-on hop-off tour is one of the best things to do in Istanbul. 

Location-
Several places in Istanbul 

Entry Fee-
 270 TL onwards 
09

The Istiklal Street

You must visit Istiklal Street in the city to experience the amazing energy and spirit of Istanbul. Since it is a long stretch of land in which the whole street is built, the weather has to be just perfect to explore its mini shops and events.

That perfect weather happens to be in the month of July when you can be out there on this street for long hours without giving any second thoughts about your inconvenience. The long stretch of the street boasts hundreds of mini shops, cafes, bars, cinema and live music.

This street is also one of the busiest streets all over the world as thousands of locals and tourists come here every day to spend long hours shopping, eating and watching cinema. One part of this street also sees a line up of the 19th century mansions, former palaces and embassies which are now home to the high street brands. Visiting this 1.5 km long pedestrian colourful street is literally one of the best things to do in Istanbul. 

Location-
 Istiklal Cd., Beyogu/Istanbul, Turkey 

Timings-
Open seven days except for Sunday 
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10

Golden Beach

Image Credit : https://www.pexels.com/photo/seaside-994605/
Golden Beach is a perfect destination for a beachside holiday and at the same time, one of the best places to visit in Istanbul in July. The month of July has the beach surrounded by overwhelming blue skies along with a vast stretch of gleaming water which will promise you a paradise of respite and quietude.

There are also plenty of options available for water sports, like motorboating, surfing, etc. Those who choose to also spend the night can relax in one of their wooden bungalows and boutique hotels built at a lavish stretch of the beach. 

Location-
Rumelifeneri Mahallesi, Iskele Cd. No:6, 34450 Sariyer/Istanbul, Turkey 

Entry Fee-
Weekday 25 Turkish Liras, Weekends 35 Turkish Liras 

Timings-
8 AM-8 PM 
11

Enjoy the Whirling Dervishes Show

The whirling dervishes is a spiritual practice dating back to the 10th century, in which prayers (dhikrs), dances and meditations are carried out in worship of the lord. The practice is so integral in the city's spirituality that there are so many restaurants and bars that show these transcendental performances on a regular basis.

However, the Hodjapasha Cultural Centre near Hagia Sophia offers authentic whirling dervishes. Around the month of July, the centre is flocked by many culturally driven tourists who take full participation in the rituals and make the aura incessantly spiritual.

This cultural mosaic also showcases some of the other Turkish traditions and beliefs as well. For instance, Rumi poems and Sufi music, Hyperrealist style dervish statues and video shows are all part of the exhibitions for tourists. 

Location-
Hoca Pasa Mahallesi Ankara Caddesi Istanbul TR, Hocapasa Hamami Sk. 3/B, 34110 Fatih, Turkey 

Entry Fee-
$30 onwards 

Timings-
7PM TTS 
12

Istanbul Theme Park

Besides exploring the rich art and culture of Istanbul, the city has a lot to offer in terms of outdoor fun and amusement. Out of the many theme parks, Istanbul or also known as Vialand is also one of the best places to visit in Istanbul in July.

The summer months in Istanbul are pleasantly warm, which amplifies your experience of dipping your body into the pools and taking water rides to the next level. Along with a breathtaking rollercoaster ride, the amusement park has 30 different entertainment zones.

A separate section for kids is also provided which has their entertainment facilities like Dora and Diego, and Safari Tunnel. 

Location-
Yesilpinar Mahallesi, Sht. Metin Kaya Sk. No:11, 34065 Eyup/Istanbul, Turkey 

Entry Fee-
USD 2.27 - USD 9.50 

Timings- 
Fri - Mon 10 am to 6 pm, Tue - Thu closed 
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13

Grand Bazaar

Spend a day exploring Istanbul's famous Grand Bazaar which is over 500 years old. The bazaar is one of the busiest markets around the world with more than 60 streets, thousands of shops inside them, restaurants, mosques and even some huge fountains.

Since the bazaar is built on a very large open area, it is best to visit here in July when the weather allows you to stay out for long hours without feeling uneasy. The shops in this bazaar are known for selling almost everything. From leather to gold, to even garments, the Grand Bazaar has it all covered up for its local people and tourists.

It'll give you the feeling of immersing into the rich heritage of Turkey, with its handicrafts, textiles and popular cuisine on full display inside the bazaar. Every day it attracts around 2,50,000 to 4,00,000 tourists from all across the globe. So whenever you plan your trip to Istanbul and struggle to get anything around, you know exactly where to look for. 

Location-
Beyazit, Kalpakcilar Cd. No:22, 34126 Fatih/Istanbul, Turkey

Entry Fee-
Free

Timings-
10AM- 6PM
14

A Fun Day at Babylon Beach Soundgarden

Image Credit : https://burst.shopify.com/photos/busy-beach?q=babylon+beach
Babylon Beach in Istanbul is the perfect spot for having a gala time with your friends and family. The youngsters love spending time on this exquisite beach because of many sports activities available.

One can play all sorts of beach games like volleyball and badminton, and later on relish some snacks like hamburgers, grilled fish and cheese sandwiches which are sold by the nearby food shacks.

The Soundgarden on the Babylon beach is the name of its music festival which is held every year. It's a night full of music and dance perfect for spending your days away from the urban commotion. 

Location-
Demircikoy, Kilyos, Istanbul.

Entry Fee-
 Weekend – 60 Turkish Liras. Weekdays – 40 Turkish Liras.

Timings-
 9am – 8pm 
15

Enjoy Istanbul’s International Jazz Festival

In order for all the music buffs to have a gala time, Istanbul's International Jazz Festival is one of the best things to do in Istanbul. Organised by Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts, the festival is a cultural event which is held every year in the months of June and July.

This is also one of the reasons why it becomes one of the best places to visit in Istanbul in July. Many renowned artists from all across the world are invited to this festival who spend days performing live in front of a massive audience.

Initially, the festival only entertained jazz music on its list, but since 1994, it has expanded its reach to various other music genres like rock, pop, blues, reggae and new-age music. 

Location and time-
Different every year, check before you plan your trip. 
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People Also Ask About Istanbul

  1. What are the romantic places to visit in Istanbul in July?

    1. Hagia Sophia Museum- The museum dates back to 537 and was a basilica first. It remained a Roman Catholic Church for a while before converting to a mosque, then the biggest cathedral, and finally turned into the museum with beautiful architecture.

    2. Topkapi Palace-The Palace was built by the emperor Sultan Mehmet II between 1466 and 1478. "Topkapi" meaning the Gates of Cannons because of the large cannons buried deep within its walls. It offers amazing adventure sports in July.

    3. Princes’ Islands- It is also known as Kizil Adalar and is an ideal weekend getaway for all Istanbul locals and visitors. It is a great place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city and can travel through the ferry service available in the city.

    4. Bosphorus Sunset Cruise- It is one of the most popular and romantic places to visit in July and offers an hour and a half ferry tour along the Bosphorus that will allow you to have a clear view of the entire Istanbul.

  2. Is it safe to go to Istanbul?

    A lot of people are sceptical about safety in Istanbul. This is because of some terrorist attacks that happened in the city. Sharing the borders with Syria adds on to the visitor's doubts. But in recent times the city of Istanbul has become pretty safe. All the turmoil is settled to a large extent. Even at night, one can feel secure because of its happening streets and amazing nightlife.
  3. What are the famous places to visit in Istanbul in July at night?

    1. Babylon Beach Soundgarden- It is one of the magnificent beaches that offers many sports activities for entertainment. The Soundgarden at Babylon beach is one of the music festivals that takes place annually. It's a music and dance-filled night ideal for those night out plans.

    2. Golden Beach- Golden Beach is full of many water sports activities, such as motorboating, surfing, etc. Those looking to spending the night can choose to stay on one of the many bungalows and luxury hotels that are built at the beach.

    3. Dancing Fountain at Sultanahmet- It is also one of the most beautiful places to visit at night in Istanbul, as it provides amazing views of palm trees, flower beds and color-changing river waters that look amazing when everything lightens up.

    4. Arnavutkoy Nightlife- It is one of the most thrilling nightlife locations, it has a series of excellent cocktail bars with amazing music playing in the background and scrumptious seafood being served in the area.
  4. What should I avoid in Istanbul?

    Since Turkey is a Muslim country, one should avoid exposing their knees and shoulders too much, especially when you're planning to visit a mosque. The women should not forget to cover their heads too. Also, the people of Turkey do not like PDAs (Public Display of Affection). So even if you're a married couple, avoid getting cosy in public places. The Turkish people have huge respect for their founding fathers, military and flag, so, do not make any jokes related to them.
  5. What is there to do in Istanbul at night?

    As the sun sets, the people of Istanbul get their parties started. The tourist attractions like mosques, historical buildings, palaces and bridges start illuminating in the night which offers a breathtaking view. You can also dance and party all night at their lavish rooftop bars and restaurants. Istanbul becomes altogether a dazzling and vibrant city at night.
  6. Is Istanbul expensive for tourists?

    Istanbul is expensive for people living there. For the tourists, it is comparatively cheaper. If you belong to a country earning Euros, Dollars, Pounds, Swiss francs, Swedish krona, then Istanbul's lira is cheaper and you won't struggle to pay your bills in the city. However, if you come from Asian countries earning in rupees, won or yen, you will find the city expensive for most of the things.

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