Istanbul used to be considered a great budget destination, but things have changed a bit recently and now it’s nearly as expensive as many other large cities in southern Europe. It’s true that there are individual bargains to be had still, though if you want to live it up a bit it will definitely cost you.
Hotels in Istanbul are more expensive than you might have guessed, at least during prime tourism season in the warm months. Hostel beds continue to be a great deal, as do private rooms at many of these hostels, so that’s an area where you can keep costs lower. For some great bargains with excellent central locations check out our recommended Istanbul hotels list.
The main attractions and the popular tours are also fairly expensive, so it’s a good idea to figure out the highest priorities rather than just rushing around trying to do it all. Food and drinks are relatively cheap, and especially if you go for street food or the places aimed at the local crowd.