35 super things to do in Istanbul with teenagers

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.Embarking on a journey to Istanbul with teenagers is an exciting adventure that blends history, culture, and vibrant city life. As you step foot in this captivating metropolis, you’ll find yourself immersed in a city where the echoes of the mighty Ottoman Empire still resonate.

One of the best places to uncover historical treasures and ignite curiosity is the Sultanahmet district, a UNESCO World Heritage site. From awe-inspiring architectural marvels to bustling markets and tantalizing cuisine, Istanbul offers much for families seeking an educational and immersive travel experience.

Table Of Contents
  1. Know before you go. Our top Istanbul travel tips
  2. Things to do in Istanbul with teenagers
  3. Free things to do in Istanbul with teens
  4. Day trips from Istanbul with teens
  5. Things to do in Istanbul for young adults.
  6. Amazing restaurants in Istanbul for teens
  7. Frequently asked questions about Istanbul.
  8. Author bio:

Join us as we unveil the wonders of Istanbul and the Byzantine Empire, guiding you through the footsteps of emperors and introducing you to the pulsating heart of this captivating city.

Istanbul is the only city in the world situated on two continents and divides Europe and Asia, making it a melting pot of cultures from 2 different worlds.

Know before you go. Our top Istanbul travel tips

Travelling to Istanbul with teens can be such an enriching experience for the whole family, with the Turkish Capital one of the top family destinations in Europe.

Did you know that Istanbul is home to the world’s oldest and biggest covered market in the world?

There are so many things to do in Istanbul and having information on the best place to stay, how to get around, which currency to use and more is extremely important. Below you will find some information for planning a hassle-free family vacation with teens in Istanbul.

Where to stay in Istanbul with teenagers

Great vacations with teens start with some great vacation planning. When you are planning a trip to Turkey with teens, you’ll never be short of options for your family accommodation in Istanbul.

In Istanbul, you find a range of hotels, apartments, and hostels for families on holiday in Turkey. You will be sure to be able to find something to fit singles, couples, families, and groups on every budget on your family trip to Istanbul.

For luxury family-friendly hotels in Istanbul, you should consider staying at the La Quinta by Wyndham Istanbul Gunesli, Movenpick Living Istanbul and Doubletree by Hilton Istanbul Umraniye. All these hotels feature pools, fitness centres and amazing dining options.

For more midprice and budget-friendly options in Istanbul families should consider staying at the Oldtown Sultanahmet Suites, Alhambra Apart Hotel and The Grand Naki Hotel. All these hotels are located centrally near the Grand Bazar.

If you’re not keen on any of our picks below or have specific needs for your teen travel holidays, we recommend using Hotels.com and Expedia to find the best prices in Istanbul for your family vacation to Turkey.

Istanbul apartment alternative for your stay

If you prefer a home away from home-style accommodation on your Europe trip with teenagers in Istanbul, then an apartment is the best choice for your family vacation.

There are so many options for singles, families, and budget-friendly options in Istanbul as well. You can search VRBO to help you find the perfect apartment in Istanbul for teens on your trip to Turkey with family.

Getting to Istanbul

Istanbul is one of the best family destinations in Eurasia for family travel with teens. The city is the capital of Turkey and is connected by highway from Bulgaria, long-distance buses, trains, and planes, all of which bring people daily to the city. This makes Istanbul one of the easiest family travel destinations in Europe.

  • Istanbul Airport(IST) is the main international airport serving Istanbul, Turkey. It is located in the Arnavutköy district on the European side of the city. It served more than 37 million passengers in 2021, making it the busiest airport in Europe and 13th-busiest airport in the world. The airport lies 35 kilometres north of the city. Search flights to Istanbul with Expedia.
    • If your flights have a long stopover, or you just want to relax before your trip you should consider getting a lounge pass with Priority Pass. Priority Pass have access to airport lounges all over the world. Search now for your lounge pass.
  • You can catch a train to Istanbul with international trains arriving at Sirkeci or Haydarpasa stations, with convenient city locations and public transport links. All international trains from Europe into Turkey go via Sofia, Bulgaria, with a connection at Dimitrovgrad to Bucharest (Bükreş), Romania. Book your train to Istanbul with Omio.
  • Istanbul can be reached directly from 256 cities and indirectly from anywhere across Europe. Flixbus tickets are available at great prices. Bus travel with teens in Europe and Turkey can add so many wonderful experiences for teens on vacation. Book your bus tickets to Istanbul with Flixbus.

How to get around Istanbul

Istanbul is serviced by an efficient and reliable public transport network that includes ferries, buses, and railways such as metro, tram systems, and Marmaray. The electronic ticket for the public transport system in Istanbul is the Istanbulkart. A single ticket costs 6 TL per person. There are no day tickets and no fare zones in Istanbul.

a teenage boy in istanbul
An Istanbul family vacation with teenagers is a great choice.

Weather in Istanbul

Summer is warmest from mid-June to mid-September, with an average daily high temperature above 25 °C. The hottest month in Istanbul is August, with an average high of 28 °C and a low of 21°C. Make sure you pack for the warm weather to keep cool.

Istanbul’s winter season has an average daily high temperature below 13°C. The coldest month is February, with an average low of 4°C and a high of 9°C. Istanbul can receive snowfall, and it snows on average for seven days every winter.

Istanbul for international visitors

International travel to Turkey requires a bit more thought. You will need travel insurance in Istanbul. Medical care is not cheap; if you want good quality care, it will cost you a fortune if you don’t have travel insurance.

The official currency of Turkey is the Turkish lira. If you use your bank account from home, you will be charged high transaction fees, while your mobile phone calls will be charged at an international rate. These are just some things you must consider when visiting Istanbul with teenagers.

Get the Istanbul e-pass

Looking for a hassle-free way to explore Istanbul? Look no further than the e-pass! With this pass, you’ll have access to over 40 top attractions and experiences in the city, including the Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern, and Blue Mosque

Not only does the Go City Pass save you time by allowing you to skip the lines at popular attractions, but it also saves you money, with free and discounted entries. So why wait? Book your e-pass today and discover the best of Istanbul with ease and convenience

Things to do in Istanbul with teenagers

Now that we have covered all the essential Istanbul travel tips for families, here are the best things to do in Istanbul with teenagers.

Activities for teens in Istanbul

The Grand Bazar

The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul is one of the largest and oldest markets in the world. If you are looking for one of the best things to do in Istanbul with teenagers, visit the Bazar.

The market dates its Byzantine architecture back to the 14th century and is home to over 4,000 shops selling spices, souvenirs, and other goods. The market is also a major Istanbul tourist attraction, with visitors visiting the historic architecture and purchasing traditional Turkish goods.

Hagia Sophia

The Hagia Sophia Mosque is located in Istanbul, Turkey. It is one of the most historic and culturally significant mosques in the Islamic world and one of the city’s landmarks and most popular historic sites.

Istanbul for teenagers is exciting.

The mosque was initially constructed as a church by Emperor Justinian I in the 6th century and underwent several renovations over the centuries before being converted into a mosque in 1453.

The Hagia Sophia Mosque is renowned for its stunning architecture and intricate mosaics and has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. To truly marvel at Istanbul’s architectural splendours, visit the Hagia Sophia museum and book a Hagia Sophia highlights tour.

The Blue Mosque

Istanbul’s must-see landmarks include the Blue Mosque. The Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmed Mosque) is one of the most iconic mosques in the Islamic world and a major tourist attraction. Completed in 1616, it’s one of Istanbul’s oldest and largest mosques.

The mosque gets its name from the blue tiles adorn its interior walls. Some say it is the most beautiful mosque in the world. It’s also one of Turkey’s most culturally significant mosques, vital in its history and architecture.

Make sure you wander around Sultanahmet Square, find the Egyptian obelisk, and once you’re home to chariot races that separate the Blue Mosque from Hagia Sofia, The rich historical heritage of Istanbul is shown on the whole show at the Blue Mosque in Istanbul. This is a must-see in Istanbul for families.

Why not book a combo ticket with entry to Hagia Sophia History Museum + Topkapi Palace & Harem Museums: Skip-the-Line Entry & Audio Guide

Istanbul with teens – Marina Aquapark

There are many fun things to do in Istanbul. The Marina Aquapark Waterland, Istanbul, is a great place to spend a day with the family. There are plenty of activities for all ages, including 17 different waterslides. You will also find a lazy river for relaxing and a kids’ playground for families.

a teenager girl in Istanbul going down a slide of water.
Family fun in Istanbul at a water park

The park is also home to various restaurants and cafés, making it easy to find something to eat. It is open during the summer months, and DJs play nonstop music during the days. Entrance fees include sun loungers, umbrellas, and lockers during your fun day in Istanbul. This is one of the best fun activities in Istanbul for teens.

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Topkapi Palace

Topkapi Palace is one of the most popular tourist attractions for teens in Istanbul, Turkey. It served as the primary residence of the Ottoman sultans for nearly 400 years and is now a museum that showcases centuries of Ottoman culture and history.

Cultural attractions in Istanbul are everywhere.

The palace was first built in 1459 by Mehmed II, the conqueror of Constantinople, and underwent numerous expansions and renovations over the years. The Topkapi Palace features many ornate rooms and courtyards, including the famous Harem, as well as exhibits on weaponry, ceramics, calligraphy, and other subjects. The palace is also home to several impressive gardens.

Sealife AquariumA family holiday to Istanbul

Istanbul, one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, is home to a sealife aquarium that is a must-see for any visitor.

The aquarium is located in the heart of the city. It contains a variety of marine life from all over the world, with the highlight being an 83-metre-long underwater Ocean Tunnel.

It is an excellent place for families in Istanbul to spend an afternoon and learn about the aquatic life in our oceans—book entry tickets to Istanbul Sealife.

Why not book a combo ticket with entry to both Madame Tussauds & SEA LIFE Istanbul and save some money on entries

The Galata Tower

One of the most well-known sites in Istanbul is the Galata Tower. The tower was built around 527 AD, during the reign of Byzantine Emperor Justinian.

Originally built as a defensive tower, the Galata Tower has been used as a prison and an observatory for astrologers. Today, it is an exhibition space and museum. It is one of Istanbul’s iconic landmarks.

Outdoor activities in Istanbul – Vialand

Istanbul’s newest attraction is Vialand, a massive theme park that offers something for everyone. Rollercoasters, animated characters, fun fare, and amusements abound in this sprawling complex, which will keep all family members on holiday in Istanbul entertained for hours on end.

Some popular rides are The Viking Water Coaster, the Maceraperest family rollercoaster, and The Jeyski ride. Whether you’re a thrill seeker or just looking for a fun day out with the family in Istanbul, Vialand is a must-see destination for teenagers.

You can catch free shuttle buses from the city centre to the theme park. Book your tickets to Vialand today.

Read more: How to keep your teens social and engaged while travelling

Canoeing on the Golden Horn & the Bosphorus

Istanbul is best explored by boat. The Bosphorus, the strait that bisects the city, is a natural waterway perfect for sightseeing by canoe or kayak. Families and groups of friends can paddle up and down the strait, taking in the sights of Istanbul’s impressive skyline.

2 teenagers canoeing in Istanbul
Teenage adventure activities in Istanbul

Teenagers especially enjoy canoeing in the Golden Horn. It’s a fun way to explore a new city and get some exercise.

Canoeing is also a great way to see Istanbul’s waterfront neighbourhoods full of colourful homes and charming cafés. It is one of the best things to do in Istanbul during the summer.

Ural Ataman Classic Car Museum

If you or your teenagers in Istanbul are car lovers, the Ural Ataman Classic Car Museum is a must-visit attraction for Istanbul teenagers.

The museum is housed on two floors, with the first floor showcasing Classic American cars and motorbikes from the 1950s and 1960s.

The cars are complemented by a 50s diner and automobile memorabilia. The second floor focuses on the museum’s collection of European cars, such as the 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing and the 1960 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud II. The museum houses 60-70 cars at any one time.

Cruise on the Bosphorus in Istanbul

Take in the sights of Istanbul on a relaxing cruise down the Bosphorus.

a boat on the Bosphorus
A cruise is one of the top things to do in Istanbul.

Enjoy a dinner cruise with stunning cityscape views, or take a sightseeing cruise to see this ancient city’s highlights. The Bosphorus separates the continents of Europe and Asia. A boat cruise in Istanbul is perfect for teenagers, with plenty of historical and cultural landmarks to explore.

Madame Tussauds – Istanbul for kids

There are numerous things to do with kids in Istanbul. If you’re looking for a fun and exciting attraction in Istanbul, look no further than Madame Tussauds. This wax museum is a popular tourist destination for people of all ages, and it’s easy to see why.

Dutzus of lifelike wax models of celebrities, politicians, and athletes are on display, as well as interactive exhibits that allow visitors to get up close and personal with some of history’s most famous figures.

The museum is also a great place to take the family if the weather is not great in Istanbul, as there’s something for everyone here.

Teenagers will love seeing their favourite stars up close, while younger kids will enjoy the interactive exhibits. And don’t forget to snap a selfie with your favourite celebrity by booking your entry tickets here.

Are you thinking of visiting Europe with teens? Visiting Paris with teens is an epic bucket list destination.

Camlica Tower – Istanbul with teenagers

For good reason, Istanbul is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. There is so much to see and do in this city that it can be hard to know where to start. If you’re looking for a great view of the city, make sure to visit Camlica Tower.

a tower in istanbul
Places to see in Istanbul on vacation with kids

This observation deck is located on a hill overlooking Istanbul and offers stunning views of the cityscape below. It’s a popular spot for teenagers and families and is a great place to take photos or soak up the atmosphere. Book your skip-the-line entry ticket here.

Watch a football match in Istanbul.

Istanbul is the largest city in Turkey and home to some of the best football teams in the country. Besiktas, Fenerbahce, and Galatasaray are in Istanbul and compete in the Turkish Superliga.

a football match being played in Istanbul
Fenerbahce and Besiktas playing in Istanbul

Football is a hugely popular sport in Istanbul. Fans of all ages cheer on their team. The atmosphere at football matches is electric, with supporters singing and dancing throughout the game.

Istanbul has a long and rich football history. The first Turkish football club was founded in 1903. Since then, the city has been home to many of the country’s most successful clubs. Istanbul teams have won 30 out of the last 31 Turkish Superliga titles.

Football plays a vital role in Istanbul’s culture and identity. The city is a passionate and friendly place, and its love for football reflects this.

Eat Turkish Delight – Istanbul things to do

One of the most famous Turkish foods is Turkish Delight. It is a traditional confectionery made from starch and sugar, typically flavoured with rosewater or citrus fruit.

assorted falvours of turkish delight in Istanbul

Turkish Delight comes in various colours and flavours, offering a delightful combination of sweetness and tasty flavours.

Try Turkish Delight is a must when visiting Istanbul. For a sweet tooth, the best place to go is Altan şekerleme, a fourth-generation shop selling Turkish candies.

Things to do in Istanbul with teenage girls – High Tea

High Tea started as a quintessentially British thing. This afternoon tea tradition involves savoury sandwiches, cakes, pastries, and tea. For mothers and daughters, its often a memorable experience.

If you want something to do with teenage girls in Istanbul, you should experience high tea firsthand. You will find high tea offered in some places in the city. 

Some of the best Istanbul High Tea venues are the Shangri-La Istanbul, Raffles Istanbul. and the Lavinia Lounge.

Mum and daughter activities in Istanbul – Day Spa

How about a mum-and-daughter bonding day with a day spa experience? Enjoy a relaxing day experiencing saunas, steam rooms, massages, beauty treatments and pool areas.

There are several choices in Istanbul, including the Sarnıç Spa & Turkish Bath, Felicity Spa Center and Catma Mescit Istanbul Hamam. You will have a memorable family vacation in Istanbul.

Need expert advice? Our guide to travel essentials for teens will make your family vacation a breeze.

Family fun adventures in Istanbul – Segway Tour

How do you make the best vacations for teenagers? Segway! There is nothing more fun than zipping around a city on a Segway, and for teens in Istanbul, this has to be one of the best things to do.

An Istanbul Segway tour is an excellent opportunity for fun and learning about the city. Segway tours are for the whole family. You will be given instructions and a short amount of practice time before you set off on your Istanbul Family Adventures with teenagers.

Istanbul, Hop on, Hop off bus

Istanbul outdoor activities offer a variety of options for visitors. The Istanbul hop-on-hop-off bus is always popular with family travellers. A sightseeing bus tour in Istanbul is a great way to give you an overview of the city.

Hop on hop off bus in Istanbul
The tourist bus is a great way to see famous places in Istanbul.

The bus route takes you to all the best Istanbul attractions so that you can see everything from the Spice Bazaar to the Blue Mosque.

This tour bus allows you to visit all the top Istanbul attractions and hop back on the next bus when it appears. Search for a hop-on, hop-off tour in Istanbul.

Catch a ferry across the Bosphorus.

Catching a ferry across the Bosphorus Strait is an enchanting experience. It offers breathtaking panoramic views of Istanbul’s skyline, Bosphorus Bridge, majestic palaces, and historic landmarks.

Departing from Eminönü near the Galata Bridge, the commuter ferry takes you on a serene journey along the sparkling Bosphorus River.

Crossing from the European to the Asian side of Istanbul, you’ll enter a vibrant atmosphere, a trendy neighbourhood with bustling markets and cultural delights.

Whether you relax on the open deck, capture stunning photos, or savour a cup of Turkish tea or Turkish coffee inside the cabin, the ferry ride provides a unique perspective on Istanbul’s maritime history and the captivating beauty of the Bosphorus Strait.

Have a food experience with a local

How do you make the best teenage family vacations? Food! Some teens cook, some teens get served, so why not take a cooking class or eat with a local family on your family vacation to Istanbul?

Maybe experience what the locals eat or take different cooking classes in your city of choice. Food plays a big part in local cultures, whether it be cooking it, or eating it. Search and book your Istanbul food experience.

Indoor Rock Climbing

Indoor rock climbing offers a great alternative for those who want to enjoy the sport but don’t have easy access to outdoor climbing areas or want something safer.

Indoor rock climbing can be found in most major cities, and many offer classes to teach beginners the basics of wall climbing or free climbing for more advanced.

Indoor rock climbing is a great way to get fit and have fun. Kids can have some indoor fun at Boulder Istanbul.

More history in Istanbul

It would be impossible to write about all the fantastic history in Istanbul. There is just so much history to see. Some of the other locations for a teenage history buff to visit include:

a palace sitting on water way in Istanbul Turkey
Dolmabahce Palace
  • Step into the opulent Dolmabahce Palace, a majestic symbol of Ottoman grandeur. Marvel at its stunning architecture, adorned with lavish interiors as Dolmabahce Palace transports you back in time.
  • Take a boat ride to the Maiden’s Tower, standing gracefully on a small islet. Legend has it that it was built to protect a princess. Enjoy panoramic views of the city and indulge in a romantic atmosphere.
  • Visit the Suleymaniye Mosque, an architectural masterpiece that showcases the grandeur of Islamic art and design. Its serene atmosphere invites you to reflect and appreciate the beauty of the surroundings.
  • Descend into the mystical depths of the Basilica Cistern, an ancient underground water reservoir. Wander through its dimly lit corridors and be mesmerized by the columns and reflections on the water’s surface.
  • Nestled in Istanbul’s Beylerbeyi neighborhood on the Asian side of the Bosphorus, the Beylerbeyi Palace is a magnificent Imperial Ottoman summer residence. Constructed from 1861 to 1865, this architectural gem sits just north of the iconic first Bosphorus Bridge

The most Instagrammable shots in Istanbul

The best family vacations for teens always incorporate something they love. Social media is important to travel teens, and Instagram is one of the most popular photo apps for teens on holiday.

With Instagram and social media playing an important part in the lives of travelling teenagers, we have some great places for Instagram photos in Istanbul.

The inside of the  blue mosque in istanbul
Must-see places in Istanbul are everywhere.

We recommend visiting Refik Saydam Lookout Point, Grand Bazaar, and the Blue Mosque for the best Instagram shots in Istanbul.

Alternatively, you can book an Instagram tour with a guide who will take you to all the beautiful places in Istanbul. Check prices on the best Instagram tours in Istanbul. 

Professional photoshoot in Istanbul

As our kids age, we spend less time with them, making family travel memories. One excellent way to capture some of these critical family vacation moments with teenagers is to hire a professional photographer for a few hours to make some lifelong memories for you on your family vacation with teens.

The photographer will supply everything; your family just needs to provide the smiles for your Istanbul photoshoot with teenagers. Book an unforgettable family travel memory today and secure your family travel photo shoot.

Street Art in Istanbul

There are many Istanbul activities for tourists to enjoy. Street art is found worldwide, but it is especially prevalent in major cities. Cities are home to a wealth of street art, from graffiti on building walls to pieces painted on lanes and bridges.

Street art provides a unique aesthetic for these places, and topics include current events, pop culture, portraits, and more.

a cat on the streets of Istanbul
Street art in Istanbul is popular with visitors.

Finding street art is a very popular free thing to do in Istanbul, and it attracts tourists and teenagers alike. Street Art in the beautiful city of Istanbul is mainly found around the Beyoglu district and the Karakoy.

Pin Bowling in Istanbul with teenagers.

If you’re looking for a fun, friendly family competition in Istanbul with kids, then 10-pin bowling might be just the family activity for you and your teen travellers.

You can go 10-pin bowling in Istanbul at several locations in the city centre. It has to be one of the best family-friendly things to do in Istanbul with teenagers. 

Most bowling alleys are more entertainment centres featuring amusement, food and drink options. You will find some of the best bowling locations in Istanbul below.

  • Atlantis Fun City Kadıköy – Caferağa, Neşet Ömer Sk. 3 / B, 34710 Kadıköy/İstanbul, Turkey
  • ARCADE TİGERS ENTERTAİNMENT CENTER – Şehit Muhtar, İstiklal Cd. NO:12, 34435 Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey

Axe Throwing in Istanbul for Young Adults

Axe Throwing is a new phenomenon that is sweeping around the world. Istanbul is home to Wild Academy. No experience is required, as the staff at Wild Academy will run you through the safety precautions before giving tips and hints on how best to throw an axe.

If you are looking for unique experiences for teenagers in Istanbul, then axe throwing could be it. Axe Throwing is one of the awesome things to do in Istanbul on your family vacation. For more information, click through to the Wild Academy website.

Accommodation with teens: Why staying in a hostel is good for your travelling teens

Family holidays in Istanbul – Going to the cinema

Great vacations with teens involve a mix of everything! Watching a movie is popular with teenagers worldwide.

Going to the cinema in Istanbul with teenagers is a great evening activity. You will find state-of-the-art screens and sound for you to watch the latest blockbusters in Istanbul cinemas

In Istanbul, you will find multiplex, Imax, 3d and speciality cinemas showing art house and indie films. A cinema is one of the best places to visit in Istanbul at night with teens. You can use Yelp to find the best cinemas in Istanbul for teens.

Escape rooms in Istanbul for teens

For those new to Escape rooms, this is a quick run down. An escape room, also known as an escape game, is a physical adventure game in which players solve a series of puzzles and riddles using clues, hints, and strategies to complete the objectives at hand.

Escape rooms may consist of a large, single room or span multiple rooms. Players are given a set time limit to unveil the secret plot hidden within the rooms.

If your travelling teen likes this, it is definitely one of the top things to do in Istanbul with teenagers. Below are 2 of the best Istanbul Escape rooms.

  • The Key Room – Türkali, Dizi Sk. No:36 D:2, 34357 Beşiktaş/İstanbul, Turkey
  • Enigma Room Escape – Katip Mustafa Çelebi, Anadolu Sk. No: 2/4, 34433 Beyoğlu/İstanbul,

Shopping in Istanbul for older kids

Shopping with teenagers in Istanbul can be an exciting and challenging experience while on vacation.

Teenagers often have their own unique tastes and preferences when it comes to fashion and entertainment, making it important to find shopping destinations that cater to their interests. 

in the shopping district of Istanbul
The best places to go shopping in Istanbul are the street stalls.

Istanbul is a shoppers’ paradise with its abundance of bazaars, malls and shops. You can find almost anything you’re looking for, from souvenirs to luxury items. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some tips on where to go shopping in Istanbul.

Istanbul is a shoppers’ paradise, with many boutiques, shopping centres and markets to explore. The Grand Bazaar is the city’s oldest and most famous market, dating back to the 15th century.

It’s home to over 4,000 shops selling everything from clothes and souvenirs to carpets and spices, making it one of the most popular places to visit in Istanbul.

If you’re looking for something more up-market, head to the stylish Nisantasi neighbourhood, where you’ll find boutique fashion stores alongside art galleries and trendy cafes. Istanbul also has several large shopping malls, including the Akmerkez and Zorlu Centres.

Istiklal Street is one of Istanbul’s most expensive streets. It is lined with shops, bars, museums, and movie theatres. This 1.5-kilometre-long boulevard is popular with both locals and tourists.

At the end of Istiklal Street is Taksim Square, with its Republic Monument. When visiting Istanbul, head to Istiklal Street.

These places are great for finding brand-name clothes and accessories at discount prices. If you’re looking for a unique Turkish souvenir, check out the local markets – there’s one in almost every city district.

Free things to do in Istanbul with teens

Istanbul offers some of the best free things to do with your teenage family members. These free Istanbul city activities are perfect for keeping everyone happy and entertained without spending any money.

There are also plenty of affordable restaurants and shops where you can shop for souvenirs without breaking the bank. Our recommendations for free activities in Istanbul for families are as follows.

  • Gulhane Park
  • Free Walking Tour

Day trips from Istanbul with teens

While staying in the city with teenagers on your family holiday, a day trip to see a bit more of Turkey is recommended. There are some fun trips for teenagers and families from Istanbul to make out of the city.

The best vacations for teenagers usually include a trip from Istanbul that lasts at least one day. Below are a couple of day trips from Istanbul recommendations for families travelling with teenagers.

When you add a day trip from Istanbul, there are also so many more things to do on your vacation with teenagers.

Troy, the home of the Trojan Horse

If you’re looking for a day trip from Istanbul with teenagers full of history and culture, Troy is the perfect destination. The ancient city is just two hours away from Turkey’s biggest city and is home to the famous Trojan Horse story.

a  odel of the horse of troy
The historic city of Troy.

Although much of Troy’s history has been lost over time, visitors can still walk through the ruins of the ancient city and see where Achilles and Hector fought. If you’re interested in learning more about Troy’s history, take a tour with a local guide who can share fascinating stories about this legendary city.

The Princes Island

If you’re looking for a day trip outside of Istanbul, the Princes Islands are the perfect destination. The Princes’ Islands are nine islands southeast of Istanbul in the Sea of Marmara.

There are four islands in total, all of which can be reached by ferry from Istanbul. The largest and most interesting of the islands is Büyükada. Once on the island, you can explore the small towns, go for a swim, or relax in the sun.

Things to do in Istanbul for young adults.

There are numerous things young adults can do in Istanbul. From exploring the historic Hagia Sophia and Blue Mosque to shopping at the bustling Grand Bazaar, there is no shortage of activities to entertain young adult travellers.

Additionally, visitors can enjoy a traditional Turkish bath experience, sample delicious street food, and cruise along the Bosphorus River. Istanbul also offers vibrant nightlife options, with trendy bars, clubs, and live music venues scattered throughout the city.

With its unique blend of history, culture, and modern amenities, Istanbul is a dynamic destination for young adults looking to explore and experience new adventures.

Amazing restaurants in Istanbul for teens

Vacationing with teens needs to include a brilliant meal to remember the family holiday. Family travel with teenagers is wonderful, and bonding over a meal at the end of the day or even during it is a great way to connect with your teen travellers. Having a dinner with family is one of the top things to do in Istanbul with teenagers.


Located in the heart of Istanbul’s old city, Deraliye Restaurant offers an unforgettable dining experience. The restaurant’s traditional Turkish cuisine is sure to tantalize your taste buds. From kebabs to dolmas, there is something for everyone at Deraliye.

Deraliye Restaurant offers its guests the unique chance to taste the authentic Ottoman meals that were once only worthy of a sultan. The restaurant’s intimate atmosphere and stunning views of the Bosphorus make it a must-visit for any traveller to Istanbul.

Street food for teens in Istanbul

Street food is a popular food in many parts of the world. It’s a quick and easy way to get some delicious local food without going to a full restaurant. Street food can be found in many different styles and options.

Some of the most well-known street foods include tacos in Mexico, Zapiekanka in Poland, Dan Dan noodles in China, and Shawarma in Middle Eastern countries.

donner kabab meat in istanbul
The most popular Turkish street food includes Kababs.

Street food in Istanbul often originates in the cultural history of people who immigrated to Turkey in the past. Some of the most popular Istanbul street foods include İçli Köfte (Stuffed Meatballs), Börek (Baked Filled Pastries), a fish sandwich and Doner Kabab.

Planning a camping trip with teenagers? Here is the ultimate guide on how to keep teens entertained, engaged and wanting more on your camping trip!

Travel accessories for teenagers

For teenagers, travelling can be a fun and exciting experience. However, they need to consider a few things to make the trip as comfortable and safe as possible. One of these is ensuring that they have the necessary travel accessories.

Don’t forget to book activities in Istanbul for your vacation. There are many places to visit in Istanbul with family.

Frequently asked questions about Istanbul.

Many frequently asked questions about Istanbul, especially from families travelling with teenagers. 

Istanbul is one of Europe and Asia’s best family city breaks and one of the best places to vacation with teenagers. There are many things to consider when planning your family vacation to Turkey.

Here is a list of some of the most frequently asked questions about Istanbul to help you make your family vacation to the Turkish capital easy and hassle-free.

What is the legal drinking age for teenagers in Turkey?

You must be an 18-year-old teenager in Istanbul to drink alcohol

Is Istanbul a safe city for families to visit?

Istanbul is a relatively safe city to visit if you avoid some parts considered somewhat dangerous. Most thefts and pickpocketing occur in tourist hotspots, restaurants, shops, and public transportation. Violent crime exists, and acts of terrorism have been perpetrated in the past. Be aware and alert.

How do I call the Police in Istanbul?

Call the police directly in Turkey by dialling 155

Is tipping required in Istanbul?

In Turkey, you can tip between 5% and 10%, depending on service. Don’t tip if you receive bad service. Only tip in cash and give the tip directly to your wait staff.

Can I drink tap water in Istanbul?

Tap water is perfectly safe to drink. Alternatively, you can buy a filtered water bottle for your holiday in Istanbul with teenagers.

What type of power sockets are used in Turkey?

The type of plugs and sockets found in Turkey are Type C or Type F so you will need an adaptor or travel plug to plug your appliances and devices. Buy your travel adaptor today,

Do people speak English in Turkey?

English is widely spoken in central areas of Istanbul, with staff in hotels, restaurants and tourist attractions speaking English. If you’re still concerned, you can buy a Langogo translator on your trip.

Where are the best places to stay in Istanbul for teenagers

At the top of the article, we suggested some accommodation choices for your holiday in Istanbul with kids. If you are looking for a wider variety of options for your family stay in Turkey, please find below an interactive map from Booking.com to find the perfect stay for your Istanbul vacation.


Are you looking to book flights, hotels, apartments, tours, airport transfers, travel insurance and more for your vacation with young adults? Are you unsure what travel companies you can trust to book your family travel online? We have a family travel resource page full of companies that we use, trust, and book through for all our family vacation trips, from a weekend away to long-term travel with older children worldwide. Click here to search our travel resources page.

We hope this article from  Wyld Family Travel inspires you to visit Istanbul with teenagers. There are so many things to do in Istanbul with young adults that will entertain you for your family’s whole stay in the city. Kids will enjoy participating in a variety of family activities in Istanbul.

Travelling with young adults, teens, and tweens has just as many issues as travelling with young children. Choosing the best teenage vacation destinations, working out a budget, deciding what bags and suitcases to take, travelling essentials, and more can be time-consuming. Planning family travel with teenagers and tweens can be stressful, and finding the best travel tips is essential. 

Our Travel with Teenagers Destination Guides have you covered! With insights from around the globe, these guides will spark inspiration for your next family vacation, making it an epic adventure with your teens.

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Author bio:

Father, husband, traveller, and chief destination manager here at Wyld Family Travel. When Mark is not discussing travel or planning travel, you will find him working in disability support. Mark is a family travel advocate, having travelled to over 45 countries with his kids from 10 months to their teenage years. You will find his work here and on other popular websites.

Having a beer in Pilsen Czech
Mark Wyld

Content Creator