In this Absolute Istanbul collection of the most common Istanbul City FAQs, we endeavour to quickly answer the most Frequently Asked Questions about Istanbul and we certainly hope these will assist with your research and enjoyment of the city.

Istanbul is a vibrant and exciting city with so much to offer both its citizens and its visitors alike.

Please do let us know if you think we should add any FAQs to this page and we’ll be happy to add them!

We’ll also include specific FAQs for each blog post we write and for each page we add to the website.

Please note that these are a general list of frequently asked questions based on our personal experiences in Istanbul and may vary depending on individual interests, time of visit and other determining factors. So whilst this list is by no means comprehensive, it will certainly provide most of what you, as a tourist to this amazing city, might find yourself asking.

What Language Is Spoken In Istanbul?

Turkish is the official language of Turkey obviously, but English is widely spoken in the city from public transport officials to shopkeepers & restauranteurs. The best advice we can give is to learn all the basic Turkish words and phrases such as the words “please, thank-you, hello and goodbye” and these will go a long way to ensuring your visit to the city is a positive one. The language of Istanbul and of Turkey can be tough to master but learning the everyday phrases is no more difficult than doing so for any other language.

What Country Is Istanbul In?

Istanbul is in Turkey. Yes, there are many people who ask the question of What Country Is Istanbul In? Unbelievably there are actually people out there who believe Istanbul is a country itself!

What Continent Is Istanbul In?

Istanbul actually has parts of the city in both the continents of Europe and Asia. Istanbul is a city that seamlessly blends Eastern and Western cultures and is divided by the Sea of Marmara with its European and Asian sides connected by three bridges, the most famous being the Bosphorus Bridge.

What Was The City of Istanbul Previously Called?

Istanbul was previously called Constantinople. Also colloquially known as “the city that never sleeps” or “the city of dreams”, Constantinople was the city’s ancient name. This is a city that is always evolving, always on the move, and ready to surprise! Some previous inhabitants of the city – namely the Greeks – still have much of their population who refuse to call Istanbul by its modern name and still refer to the city as Constantinople.

What Time Is It In Istanbul?

The time in Istanbul is 3 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and the Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). So, for example, midday in the UK will be 3pm in Istanbul. These times are subject to European Day Light Saving changes however, so always check.

What Is The Average Temperature In Istanbul?

The average temperature in Istanbul, like everywhere in the world, alters with the seasons. In the summer (June to August), the average temperature ranges from 25-30°C (77-86°F), whilst in the winter (December to February), the average temperature ranges from 5-10°C (41-50°F).

What Is The Population Of Istanbul?

The population of Istanbul is fast approaching 16 million inhabitants. The population of the city is ever changing but this most recent figure comes from the reputable people over at World Population Review. The city is predicted to reach over 17 million by 2030.

Where To Stay In Istanbul?

When visiting Istanbul we recommend that you stay in Sultanahmet as this is the best place to stay in Istanbul for tourist attractions. There are thousands of hotels and hostels in Istanbul, so figuring out where to stay should be based on what you’re actually in the city for. If sightseeing is your game – then Sultanahmet is for you! If you’re here on business then perhaps Taksim might be more suitable. The city is so vast however, that there are many locations suitable.

What To Do In Istanbul?

The entire purpose of this blog is to advise and recommend on What To Do In Istanbul so strap yourself in and read on. We’ll have articles that cover all the Things To Do In Istanbul and all the Things To See In Istanbul, as well as all the additional information you’ll ever require in order to have a fun and well planned stay in the city,

How Safe Is Istanbul?

In out opinion, Very Safe. But don’t just take our word for it and make sure you do your research prior to visiting.
Istanbul overall, when taking many factors into account, is considered a very safe city to visit by many reputable authorities such as the UK Government. Nevertheless, it’s still important to be aware of your surroundings, especially in tourist areas. Incidents of street robbery and pickpocketing are common in these areas, so it’s wise to exercise the same level of caution just as you would in any other city you visit.

Istanbul Visa? Do I need One?

Its not actually an Istanbul Visa obviously, but is instead a Turkish Visa that you might need to enter Turkey via any of the Istanbul Airports. Whether you need to actually have an Istanbul Visa is a question you must ask your local government authority in the country you reside before you depart that country. And always. always check with the Turkish Government before departure as well just in case the information is different.
To check if you need a visa to enter Turkey in Istanbul or any other Turkish entry point go to the official Turkish Visa Website at the following link


Please feel free to contact us at anytime to discuss any feedback including any historical or factual inadequacy within the information provided as part of these Istanbul City FAQs by emailing us at any time.