If you're looking for a unique and unforgettable experience during your visit to Istanbul, a Princess Island Tour is a must-do activity. Among the nine islands in the Sea of Marmara, Buyukada is the largest and most popular among tourists. Here are some of the highlights of a Princess Island tour that you shouldn't miss.
Firstly, the journey to Buyukada is an adventure in itself. You can take a ferry from Kabatas or Kadikoy, and the ride takes about an hour. During the journey, you'll be treated to stunning views of Istanbul's skyline and the Bosphorus Strait. Once you arrive at Buyukada, you'll notice that the island is car-free, so you'll have to explore on foot, by bike, or by horse-drawn carriage.
The most popular activity on the island is to take a leisurely bike ride or a horse-drawn carriage tour. You can rent bikes at the port, and there are several bike rental shops throughout the island. The horse-drawn carriage tour takes you around the island's main attractions, including the Greek and Armenian Orthodox monasteries, the Aya Yorgi Church, and the historic mansions.
Another highlight of the Princess Island tour is the stunning beaches. The island has several beaches, including the popular Buyukada Beach and the more secluded Yorukali Beach. The crystal-clear waters and sandy beaches make for a perfect spot to relax and soak up the sun.
If you're a history buff, you'll enjoy visiting the island's historic mansions. The most famous mansion is the Splendid Palace, which was built in the 19th century and served as the summer residence of the Ottoman sultans. Today, the mansion is a hotel, and you can visit the gardens and enjoy a cup of tea or coffee in the café.
Finally, the island has several restaurants and cafes that serve traditional Turkish cuisine. You can enjoy fresh seafood, grilled meat, and meze dishes while taking in the stunning views of the sea. There are also several shops on the island that sell souvenirs, handmade crafts, and local products.