istanbul on new years eve
Replies: 7 - Last Post: Dec 10, 2012 11:10 PM Last Post By: alexandra714
Nov 29, 2012 8:00 PM
istanbul on new years evemerhaba :)
Has anyone up on here been to istanbul on new years eve? (IA), i will be arriving on that day. I will be alone, and probably will want to do something that doesn't involving drinking or clubbing, preferably. Are there cruises on the Bosporus? I will most likely stay in a hostel in sultanahmet, but don't know where yet...i am actually surprised/disappointed having perused the rooms, to find the prices are not so much less than in the summer! I wonder if online they keep the same rates. i suspect if i go door to door, i might find better winter prices; however, i don't want to do that and would like to prebook the first two nights at least..
Also, more generally, can anyone recommend good things to do in turkey in winter besides museums, which i plan to do...i was there in June and did a lot of the summer activities, but i think there are many more things to do and see, yet i do not like the cold too much.
any advice on travelling in turkiye in january would be appreciated.
Nov 29, 2012 11:33 PM
1Lovely to hear you are heading back to Turkey again :) Re;room rates.I suspect you have been looking only at booking sites rather than the hostels' own web sites where you should be able to find better prices.Research a few likely choices and e mail to ask the rates,this is the way to get the best prices and also learn of any special offers such as a discount for cash payment,discount for X number of nights etc.This personal interaction also gives you chance to assess their friendliness and efficiency a also builds up a little relationship so when you arrive there it feels as if you aren't such a stranger(if that make sense).
However,on price it is also worth knowing that nowdays Istanbul is a popular destination all year round so there isn't such a huge variation in prices from season to season.Plus NYE visits are very popular too.After that date though you should be able to find pretty decent prices though.
That evening it may be better to stay in the hostel.Find one with a roof top terrace from where you can watch the light and firework display on the Bosphorus bridges,it is really spectacular!There are sure to be others who will spend the evening there if they are alone rather than venturing out on to what will be very busy streets.
If you do go out then avoid Taksim Square;this is where the largest crowds gather and is always the scene of petty theft,groping and generally unpleasant drunken behaviour.At the moment there are major construction works taking place in Taksim Sq. so I don't know how this will affect this traditional gathering but best to avoid it anyway,espcially as you are solo and (I think)female too.
Here are a few hostels with roof terraces worth looking at.All are clean,friendly places in good locations-
Of course there are many many others but this gives you a starting point.
There are organised NYE cruises which are usually dinner,dance,show etc.but they are top whack premium prices as you can imagine.Here is one example which will be pretty common to all of them-
The normal ferries are free that evening from 20.00 until 05.00 on the Beşikataş>>Üsküdar,Beşiktaş>>Kadıköy and Karaköy>>Kadıköy routes BUT they will be an absolute free for all scrum!No alcohol is served on them but sheer numbers will make them a bit unpleasant-it is free and there are 14 million Istanbullers wanting to take advantage!
There are two private ferry companies you could contact to ask about NYE cruises-Turyol and DenturAvrasya.These do regular Bosphorus tours in the evening but I don't know whether they will do them on NYE and if they do how much they would be.
So,what else can you do?Museums of course but also some the excellent art galleries around the city such as Istanbul Modern,Sakıp Sabancı Museum which has a Monet exhibition on until Jan.6th,Rahmi Koç Transport museum is a great experience.
Maybe one day go to LesArts and do a mornings ebru course.This is the traditional art of paper marbling,a nice course if you are arty.Or a cooking class at Cooking Alaturka.You learn how to make some famous Turkish dishes and get to eat them afterwards!I know many people who have done both of these activities and loved them,they are also ideal things to do as a solo traveller too.
How many days will you stay here?And do you intend to just stay in Istanbul or travel to other areas?
Nov 30, 2012 1:42 AM
2Good idea to let the TT advisors know how long you plan to stay. Since you have been in ole Stamboul before, this web page about Istanbul may or may not be of much help...
Dec 1, 2012 5:24 PM
3You won't find better prices in winter, by and large.
Heating is expensive in Turkey - it went up by about 25% last year, double and more than inflation - and of course it is only used in the winter, so costs of running a hostel are higher. You won't notice such a difference with hotels, where the cost of aircon and heating balance out. But there's no - or little - air con in the cheap places.
Dec 1, 2012 6:54 PM
4Wow. thank you for taking the time to write such an informative response. great advice to email individual places. I will check these links out. i am very excited that there are fireworks!! we don't have those in NYC for NYE; in fact i am so glad not to be in NY again this NYE, b/c it really sux.
i will take your advice about the rooftop place and avoiding taksim, which was already too crowded for me on the saturday night that i went there.
i have close to a month and i am just playing it by ear. not sure how many days i will stay in istanbul yet. thank you :)
Dec 1, 2012 6:57 PM
Dec 4, 2012 5:27 AM
6Spent new year in Istanbul once, it was absolutely manic! Echo whoever suggested giving Taksim Square the swerve, that is definitely not for the faint hearted! the fireworks are excellent though, real unexpected bonus.
Some good ideas/info on this site:
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