Kınalıada, Istanbul, Turkey

Last Updated on May 22, 2019

Named “henna’d” (kınalı) after its red soil, Kınalı is smallest of the larger islands off Istanbul (map), measuring about 1.3 square km (130 hectares, 321 acres).

It’s easy to identify: it’s the one with all the antenna towers on it.

Ottoman Greeks called it Proti, and they and their Armenian neighbors built Ottoman-Victorian summer villas on the island, many of which survive along with several churches.

Unless you have friends who own a villa on the island, you probably won’t be going there. But if you want to visit one of the Princes Islands where you’re likely to be among the very few foreign visitors, give it a try.

Your reward: the many small beaches on Kınalı are less likely to be crowded with day-trippers from the city.

Otherwise, stay on the ferryboat until it reaches the larger islands of BurgazHeybeli and Büyükada.

—by Tom Brosnahan




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