All About Istanbul

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Istanbul being the capital of some world’s greatest empires presents an amazing blend of history and modernity. With its key location situated between Europe and Asia, and its 18.000.000 habitants, İstanbul is an important center for many sectors. Today the city is visited each year by millions of travelers who come to catch a glimpse of its ancient city walls, enchanted churches, palaces and mosques, while savoring the delightful tastes of the city’s rich cuisine. İstanbul offers an unforgettable experience with its colorful daily life and dynamic nightlife.

The famous Grand Bazaar is a labyrinth of stores selling a vast range of goods and could keep you occupied for your whole stay in Istanbul, but it’s not the only shopping option in Turkey’s greatest city. Elsewhere in Sultanahmet’s Old Town are other bazaars, such as the Spice Bazaar and the Arasta Bazaar where traditional wares like carpets and handicrafts are worth haggling over.

Chic shoppers looking for contemporary fashion, music, books and restaurants, will find what they need in the streets of Nişantaşı as well as various new generation malls such as Kanyon, İstinye Park and the new Zorlu Center - this is designer turf and is priced accordingly.

İstanbul is a magical seal which unites Europe and Asia since the ancient times. Without a doubt, Istanbul is certainly the most beautiful place of the world. Gerard De Nerval
French Writer

Climate

September in Istanbul is fairly warm. The historical average temperature for the day time is around 20-21°C, dropping to 12°C after sunset. There is still a chance of rain so a raincoat or umbrella is recommended.

Currency and Banking

Turkey's official currency is Turkish Lira (TRY). Many hotels quote rates in Euro or Dollar but will charge you in Turkish Lira on your bill.

ATMs are common in Istanbul and usually offer instructions in English, French and German.

Changing Money

There are 24-hour exchange offices (döviz bürosu) in the arrivals hall at Atatürk International Airport that offer rates comparable to those offered by bureaux in the city.

Credit Cards

Most hotels, car-rental agencies, shops, pharmacies, entertainment venues and restaurants will accept Visa and Mastercard. Amex is less-widely accepted and Diner’s rarely accepted. Local taxis and basic eateries such as "pide, kebap and börek restaurants" usually only accept cash.

Electricity

Turkey uses standard continental round two-pin plugs, both earthed and unearthed. The domestic electricity supply is 220v AC, 50Hz.

Tipping

Tipping is discretionary but expected, mostly in restaurants and hotels. Some restaurants add a 10% service charge to their bills. If not added you can tip 10-15%. Taxi drivers do not expect a tip but it is usual to round up the fare. Make sure that your journey is on the meter and do not accept the offer of a 'fixed price'.

Visas

Depending on your nationality, a visa may be required to enter Turkey.

Taxis

A taxi from Istanbul Atatürk airport to the city centre will cost approximately 50 TL (Turkish Lira) and will take between 30-90 minutes (subject to traffic). Always allow plenty of time to get to the airport and avoid rush hour where possible (7.30-9.30am and 5.00-7.30pm).

%30 Discount From

to All Startup Istanbul Attendees

Metro Line (M2)

It is probably the fastest way to get to Taksim Square if you have a metro station near to you.

City Buses

The major bus stands are at Taksim Square, Beşiktaş, Aksaray, Rüstempaşa (Eminönü), Kadıköy and Üsküdar, and most services run between 6.30am and 11.30pm. For buses you need to purchase an Istanbulkart.

Tram

You can use the tram when getting around in the historical area. It runs from Sultanahmet and Eminönü, and then across the Galata Bridge to Karaköy (to connect with the Tünel) and Kabataş (to connect with the funicular to Taksim Square). Trams run every five minutes from 6am to midnight. Istanbulkart or tickets can be used. A two-stop antique tram runs along İstiklal Caddesi between Tünel and Taksim Squares in Beyoğlu.

Ferries & Seabuses

The most enjoyable way to get around town is by ferry. Crossing between the Asian and European shores, these vessels are as efficient as they are popular with locals. IDO and Şehir Hatları have fare and timetable information or you can pick up a printed timetable at any of the ferry docks.

Suggested Hotels

We recommend you to stay in these hotels below, which are close to the event venue. However you are completely free to choose wherever you want to stay. Here are some suggested hotels closer to the event venue.

Avantgarde Hotel Levent

Levent, Beşiktaş

Mövenpick Hotel

Levent, Beşiktaş

Sheraton Hotel

Maslak, Şişli

Grand Hyatt Istanbul

Taksim

Airbnb Suggestions

Airbnb is one of our partners and we recommend you to use AirBnb rooms. However you are completely free to choose wherever you want to stay. These selected rooms are close to the event venue. For more rooms from Istanbul, check AirBnb.com

airbnb

Cozy Flat

Beyoğlu

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airbnb

Private Room

Beyoğlu

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airbnb

Bosphorus View

Bebek

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airbnb

Antique Palace

Cihangir, Beyoğlu

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airbnb

Studio

Beşiktaş

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airbnb

Dublex

Beyoğlu

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