When you're seeking an exceptional and unforgettable experience during your trip to Istanbul, embarking on a Princess Island Tour is an absolute must. Within the Sea of Marmara's collection of nine islands, Buyukada stands out as the largest and most favored among tourists. Prepare yourself for an array of captivating moments and don't miss these remarkable highlights during your Princess Island tour.
To begin with, the journey to Buyukada itself promises an adventure. Board a ferry from Kabatas or Kadikoy, and immerse yourself in a delightful hour-long ride. Along the way, you'll be treated to awe-inspiring vistas of Istanbul's captivating skyline and the mesmerizing Bosphorus Strait. As you step foot onto Buyukada, you'll quickly notice that the island prohibits cars, encouraging exploration on foot, by bicycle, or through charming horse-drawn carriages.
One of the most beloved activities on the island is indulging in a leisurely bike ride or embarking on a tour via horse-drawn carriage. Bikes can be rented conveniently at the port, and you'll find numerous bike rental shops scattered throughout the island. Opting for the horse-drawn carriage tour will take you on a delightful journey encompassing the island's major attractions, including the Greek and Armenian Orthodox Monasteries, the Aya Yorgi Church, and the historic mansions.
Prepare to be enchanted by the island's stunning beaches, which are an absolute highlight of the Princess Island Tour. Buyukada boasts several beaches, including the popular Buyukada Beach as well as the more secluded Yorukali Beach. Crystal-clear waters and sandy shores create the ideal setting for relaxation and basking under the warm sun.
History enthusiasts will find delight in exploring the island's historic mansions. Among them, the Splendid Palace stands out as the most renowned. Constructed during the 19th century, this opulent palace served as the summer residence for the Ottoman sultans. Today, it has been transformed into a hotel, welcoming visitors to explore its gardens and savor a cup of tea or coffee in the relaxing café.
Finally, the island is adorned with numerous restaurants and cafes that specialize in traditional Turkish Cuisine. Indulge in delectable offerings of fresh seafood, grilled meat, and meze dishes while soaking in the breathtaking views of the sea. Additionally, you'll find several shops on the island that offer a delightful array of souvenirs, handmade crafts, and local products to bring home cherished mementos of your Princess Island adventure.