If you are planning a trip to Istanbul, this is the perfect time of year to visit. Autumn months are warm and pleasant but not too hot to get out and enjoy all the sights and sounds in this amazing city that is home to approximately 14 million people. Summer months are when most locals will head off to the beaches close to this most populous city in Turkey, so you are arriving just in time to avoid the brunt of the crowds. Take a few hours off to relax in the glory of a true Mediterranean climate overlooking a lovely body of water that has seen literally billions of travellers over the centuries.
Knowing Where to Go by Season
One of the most astonishing aspects of trying to find the perfect beach by season in Istanbul is the fact that it is just so large geographically that you can find a variety of ‘sub-climates’ all within the actual borders of the city. For example, a Mediterranean climate will dominate beaches around the Bosphorus Strait so that summers will be hot and dry but autumn and spring will most likely be quite mild and comfortable.
In the north of the city you will find the Black Sea to be a region that is quite wet and rainy whilst there are temperatures that can get extremely cold in the west as that is in what is called a Balkan climate. It is suggested that you check with the concierge at your hotel to find the beaches nearest your location with weather conducive to beach-going.
Most Popular Beaches in and around Istanbul
As a starting point, many visitors look to the most popular beaches in and around Istanbul because they are often easily accessible by city busses. Why not see some of the city on your way to the water? The three most accessible for non-residents who don’t know their way around the area would be:
All of which are on the Black Sea. There are a number of ways to reach Kilyos besides getting on the bus as you can also take a traditional or fast ferry to reach the beach but be aware that the water can be a bit cool, even in the hotter summer months. Still, a nice place to get in a little time in the sun.
Afva and Sile are also on the Black Sea and these are said to have nice wide areas of sandy beach to relax on. Again the water may be cool but few tourists really want to spend all their time in the water. Most want to sit back and enjoy life in the Mediterranean, Istanbul style.
One final set of beaches you may wish to explore would be those on the Princes’ Islands. However, it is suggested that you don’t set out to areas where the locals bathe unless you have someone with you familiar with the waters and the surrounding areas. Even so, these do offer some of the loveliest views, so if you are looking for an authentic day at the beach, the Princes’ Islands may be what you are looking for. Enjoy Istanbul, but take some much needed R&R on beaches in and around the city.