Flying into Turkey’s Ataturk Airport will be the start of your exciting trip to Istanbul. Ataturk Airport is located a mere 15 miles west of Istanbul’s downtown and is a widely accessible regional hub and fully featured international airport.
In our experience at Skyscanner, Istanbul is one of the world’s most vibrant destinations for tourism, and hopefully, you’ll find your path there cheaply and easily with our help.
Airlines That Fly To Istanbul Ataturk Airport
There are quite a few airlines that fly into Ataturk Airport, including Air France, Air Moldova, AtlasGlobal, Aegean Airlines, British Airways, KLM, Middle East Airlines, Lufthansa, Iran Air, Turkish Airlines, Turkmenistan Airlines, and many others. Ataturk Airport is a gateway that connects Europe to Africa as well as Central Asia.
When To Book A Flight To Istanbul?
Istanbul’s climate is temperate, so you won’t be subject to freezing or scalding temperatures any time of the year. With that being said, tourism is at its high point in the summer, which corresponds to June, July, and August.
Booking during this period of time will be the most expensive, but you’ll also have the longest, sunniest, and warmest days that Istanbul can offer. For a budget trip, book in the dead of winter&mdash, especially December, as Christmastime travel isn’t a large factor in flight prices because most Turks are Muslim.
To make sure that you don’t miss out on any irregularly cheap flights, you should always use our price alert tool.
Airport Facilities At Istanbul Ataturk Airport
Ataturk Airport is cramped, but is actually very large and will have every feature you might need, ranging from shops, currency exchange, restaurants, tour guides, and even religious services. There is a fair amount of English speaking ability among the airport workers, but don’t expect the same to be true elsewhere in Istanbul.
Leaving Ataturk Airport is possible via rental car, taxi, the Metro M1A line, public pus, or the Havatas private shuttle service. Your hotel may also have a shuttle, though there are also pooled hotel shuttles that you can purchase tickets to ride on.
To rent a car, check out our page on rental cars from Ataturk.
What To See And Do In Istanbul
Istanbul is one of the world’s richest cities in terms of culture, being settled since 600 BC. As you may know, Istanbul has had several names throughout its lifetime—founded as Byzantium, then changed to Constantinople, and now finally, Istanbul.
For each of these names, there is a corresponding historical guided tour of the relevant areas of the history, with added context, in English—just grab a brochure from the tourism center at Ataturk Airport before you leave.
Once you’re situated in your hotel (which we can help you book to get a good rate), there are several ways to approach touring around Istanbul. There are a handful of excellent historical museums in Istanbul, including the Modern Art Museum, the Pera Museum, and the Sakip Sabanci Museum.
Though the museums are interesting and a vital part of Istanbul’s heritage, a visit to Istanbul is incomplete without a visit to the Grand Bazaar, where you’ll find all manner of things on sale for cheap. Haggling is expected, so don’t be afraid to drive a hard bargain.