Common Questions – Istanbul

  • Should I book in multiple areas in Istanbul?

This was something I was wondering about and was really not sure what to do. So after asking around we finally decided to book in two places. We heard that each area had its own unique vibe. This was very true and as a first time tourist we enjoyed the experience. Drawbacks to staying in two different areas were: 

  • Cost of transport to get to the next area. 
  • Packing up all our things to move to the next area. 
  • The transport system in Taksim was a bit confusing and not as easy to find the correct buses to use.
  • Is it safe with my kids?

Definitely proved to be a kid friendly holiday. Click here to find out more about travelling to Istanbul with your kids.


  • Can I sort out my own visas?

Yes indeed you can. You are most welcome to DM or email us for more information on the visa process.


  • What is the best mode of transport to use?

Walking, Trams, Metro and buses.


  • Should I get a sim card?

Yes. I would highly recommend you get a sim card as it helped us find exactly where we needed to get to. There are two main sim card companies (Turkcel and Vodafone). We heard Turkcel is the better option although a bit more expensive than Vodafone. I do not recommend to purchase the sim card at the airport or at chain stores as they are much more expensive than the street shops.


  • Where is the best place to exchange my currency?

Outside the grand bazaar had the best rates at the time when we were there. 


  • Is pickpocketing a real issue?

Yes, you have to be vigilant. Get an anti-theft bag to be extra safe. It is safer to keep your cash in a pouch that you can keep around your waist. By taking these precautions you will have peace of mind as you explore the beautiful city of Istanbul. Click here for more things to be aware of when travelling to Istanbul.


  • Can my SA plugs work in Istanbul?

Yes it works. In our hotel and other places we have seen 2 pin plug sockets. We only traveled with electronics that could be charged with 2 pin plugs. This is the safer option. Istanbul uses the same voltage as SA which is really convenient.


  • Can I take my kids to Cappadocia?

This depends on the age of your kids. No under 7’s are allowed in the hot air balloons. Since our kids were too young we did not visit Cappadocia.


  • How many days is enough for Istanbul?

Istanbul is a really beautiful city with so much to do and explore. You could literally spend 3 weeks just in Istanbul and have enough to do. However, this depends entirely on your style of travel, the reason you are visiting Istanbul and whether you have kids with you and also what their ages are. Click here for more insight on travelling to Istanbul.


For more relevant posts that would be valuable to read before planning a trip to Istanbul, see below:

What can you see and do in this magnificent city

Can you take your kids to Istanbul

What we were told not to do when visiting Istanbul