Istanbul, of course, is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. However, like all big cities, it can be a tiring and gloomy city for those living in it. That’s why many people living in Istanbul start looking for answers to the following question when they have the first chance: What are the places to visit near Istanbul?
If you want to get away from the stress and tension of Istanbul, take a look at our list of places, some of which are located within the borders of Istanbul and some are very close to Istanbul. You can make day trips to these destinations, which are a maximum of 3 hours away from Istanbul, or you can spare a few days for these destinations.
If it has become difficult for you to stay in Istanbul these days when the weather is starting to get better, we have compiled for you the places to visit near Istanbul where you can escape from Istanbul and breathe a little at the weekend, clear your head and spend a day or a few days of fun.
Places to Visit Near Istanbul
1. Prince Islands, Istanbul
Consisting of Büyükada, Heybeliada, Burgazada and Kınalıada, the Prince Islands are visited by thousands of guests every day. It would not be a lie if we say that the Islands are the first place that comes to mind for those who want to escape the traffic and sweltering atmosphere of Istanbul. The islands, which are beautiful in every season, can be reached by ferryboats from Istanbul (Kadıköy, Bostancı and Kabataş).
2. Sile, Istanbul
Şile, one of the districts of Istanbul, is located on the Black Sea coast in the northeast of the Marmara Region.
Şile is one of the first choices of daily or short-term trips with its magnificent nature, coastal beaches to the Black Sea and its proximity to Istanbul. Şile, one of the oldest settlements in the city, is approximately 60 km from Istanbul. If you have a private vehicle, you can reach Şile in 1.5 – 2 hours. If you do not have a private vehicle, it is possible to reach Şile by using the IETT buses (buses number 139) departing from Üsküdar.
3. Agva, Istanbul
Although it is a place connected to Şile, it is necessary to write something about Ağva.
Ağva, a coastal town in the middle of Göksu and Yeşilçay creeks, is at least as interesting as Şile. IETT bus number 139 going to Şile also stops at Ağva. Therefore, transportation is not difficult at all. While visiting Ağva, Saklıgöl, Ağva Lighthouse, Gelin Kayası and Gürlek Cave are among the must-see places. Ağva is also one of the places preferred by campers.
4. Kilyos, Istanbul
Kilyos is a town on the Black Sea coast of Sarıyer, one of the districts on the European side of Istanbul. Kilyos, whose official name is Kumköy, is one of the most frequented places especially for those living in Istanbul during the summer months. Kilyos, which has Istanbul’s largest and cleanest coastline, is approximately 45 minutes away from the central districts of Istanbul.
5. Abant Lake, Bolu
Abant Lake, which has the status of a national park, is among the first choices of those who want to make a daily getaway from Istanbul.
Abant Lake is a natural wonder place where blue and green come together (it’s like a perfect transition from blue to green in the TV series “Like” 😄) that relaxes people and gives peace and tranquility. Visitors generally prefer Lake Abant for picnic and tent camping. Apart from this, activities such as trekking, cycling, phaeton and horseback riding can be done in Lake Abant.
If you have a private car, you can reach Abant Lake, which is 300 km from Istanbul, in about 3 hours.
If you do not have a private vehicle, unfortunately, it is not possible to reach Abant directly by bus. To get to Abant, you should first use the buses going to the center of Bolu, then the minibuses or taxis departing from the center.
Abant Lake Entrance Fees (2022)
- Per Person Without Car: 11 TL (5.50 TL with Discount)
- Motorcycle: 22 TL
- Car: 33 TL
- Minibus: 99 TL
- Midibus: 165 TL
- Bus: 330 TL
6. Cumalıkızık Village, Bursa
If you want to get out of Istanbul and explore different places, Cumalıkızık, which is approximately 15 kilometers from Bursa city center and 250 kilometers from Istanbul, is for you. Cumalıkızık, which constitutes the most beautiful examples of Ottoman civil architecture and whose popularity is increasing year by year in Turkey, was registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2014. With its historical atmosphere and authentic texture, this 700-year-old village takes you on a journey in time. Cumalıkızık, which is especially preferred for its breakfast, is among the places to visit at the weekend close to Istanbul.
7. Avsa Island, Balikesir
Avşa Island is a place that attracts its visitors with its clean beaches, sea and calmness. It is possible to reach this charming island, located in the southwest of the Sea of Marmara, by sea buses departing from Istanbul from Bostancı and Yenikapı, in approximately 3.5 hours, with a cost of approximately 200 TL per person (May 2022). Click for details .
On Avşa Island, which is the 3rd largest island in the Marmara Sea, you can visit the bazaars and buy souvenirs for your loved ones, participate in bicycle tours, and taste the famous wines of the island.
8. Kiyikoy, Kirklareli
Kiyikoy, which is connected to the Vize district of Kırklareli, is approximately 2 hours away from Istanbul. There are many activities you can do in Kiyikoy, a cute coastal town on the Black Sea coast. If you like fishing, you can fish, if you are a hiking enthusiast, you can go trekking, camping, if you are interested in photography, you can capture beautiful pictures, and if you are a foodie, you can taste various dishes from the Black Sea cuisine.
9. Sapanca, Sakarya
Sapanca is one of the most accessible places close to Istanbul. Sapanca, which is about 2 hours away from Istanbul, is one of the first choices of those looking for a quiet and peaceful place away from the hustle and bustle of Istanbul. One of the things to do in Sapanca is a nice village breakfast to be eaten in Naturköy. Then you can rent a bike and take a trip around Sapanca Lake or join ATV tours with the view of Sapanca Lake. For your dinner, use your preference for fish. There are several trout farms in the region and the tile fish is famous.
10. Maşukiye, Kocaeli
Maşukiye, a village in the Kartepe district of Kocaeli, is one of the most important recreation areas of the Marmara Region. Maşukiye, one of the most suitable places for weekend getaways from Istanbul, amazes its visitors with its untouched nature. You can reach Istanbul in approximately 1.5 hours by your private car, or it is possible to reach by trains departing from Halkalı or Söğütlüçeşme. You can also choose Kocaeli buses for transportation.
11. Mudanya, Bursa
Mudanya is one of the most touristic and most beautiful districts of Bursa. Visited by tens of thousands of people every year, Mudanya is one of the coastal districts of Bursa, which has a coast on the Marmara Sea. Mudanya gets crowded especially in the summer months because it is the first place preferred by both the locals of Bursa and those who want to escape from Istanbul. You ask why? Because transportation is very easy. Bursa city center is only 30 km away, and it can be easily reached in just 1.5 hours by sea buses (BUDO and IDO) from Istanbul. If you are planning to visit Mudanya; Do not neglect to see many must-see places such as Armistice House Museum, Old Crete District, Kumyaka, Altıntaş, Dereköy Church, Tahir Paşa Mansion and Tirilye.