Welcoming over 39 million tourists per year, Istanbul is a city that has captured the attention and hearts of many wandering spirits. Big, complex and fascinating, there’s so much more to this metropolis city than meets the eye. Here, we’ve put together some facts about Istanbul, Turkey that we think you might find interesting!

Istanbul at a Glance

Population: 15.52 million

Language Spoken: Turkish

Distance from Ankara: 448km

With one foot in Europe and the other in Asia, Istanbul is the only transcontinental city in the world.

With a population of 13.9 million, it’s also one of the largest urban agglomerations in Europe and is the second-largest city in the world by population within city limits.

The Grand Bazaar is one of the oldest and largest covered markets in the world. 

Having operated since 1461, the market is home to 5000 stalls, stretched over 60 streets and attracts between 250, 000 and 400, 000 daily visitors!

Built in 1875, Istanbul is home to the world’s third-oldest subway.

Located in the Beyoglu district, the subway is 573 metres long.

Despite being the ancient capital of many empires, Istanbul is not the modern capital of Turkey; Ankara is!

In its thousands of years of history, Istanbul has been the capital of three ancient empires – Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman.

The famous symbol of the Netherlands – tulips originated in Istanbul!

Originating in Istanbul, tulips were first sent to the Netherlands in the second half of the 15th Century.


Experience the wonder and charm of Istanbul when you travel with Undiscovered by Globus – new Mediterranean Undiscovered tours out now!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *