Best Hotels & Flats in Istanbul

Last Updated on February 24, 2023

With 2000+ hotels, apartments/flats, pensions, and hostels, how do you find the Istanbul lodgings you want?

Best Hotels in Istanbul: the Short List

Here's the short list of my favorites, the ones I've inspected, stayed in, and have thought offer the best value for money in excellent locations, with friendly management and good services in all price ranges.

Best Hotel Locations

In this confusing city of half-land, half-water, with terrible traffic at certain times of day, a good hotel location is critical to your trip to Istanbul.

Here's how to choose a good hotel neighborhood in terms of transportwhat to see and do, and the types of hotels, hostels and apartments/flats available.

Types of Hotels, Hostels & Flats

Istanbul offers hostel dorm beds for as little as 20 per person, decent air-conditioned double rooms with private bath from 50 to 500 a night, and excellent values in short-term rental apartments/flats to let (for as few as two nights). What type of lodging would be best for you?


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Purpose of Your Visit

What you want to do during your visit can determine where you stay:

—If it's your first visit to Istanbul and you want to see the major sights such as Topkapı PalaceHagia Sophia, and the Sultanahmet (Blue) Mosque, then you should probably stay in Old Istanbul, the historic district that has been the city center for more than 2000 years. You can walk to most of the sights, and transport is easy for others.

—If you've come more for art museums and galleries, cool cafés and bars, a variety of restaurants, music clubs, browsing in trendy stores and antique shops, then you may prefer to stay in Beyoğlu, the district north of the Golden Horn developed during the 19th century.

—If you want 5-star luxury and fine views of the Bosphorus you can stay north of the city along its shores, but transport may be a challenge.

—by Tom Brosnahan

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