It’s the siren song of the water – cool and inviting waves lapping against the skins of our city's blessed and beautiful, every shade of blue the perfect antidote for those other kinds of weekday blues. Can you hear it calling to you? We’re here to help you answer, in a city that thrives by the water.
The large outdoor pool at the Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorus may not be quite Olympic-sized, but it sure has a gold medal view over the Bosphorus and Üsküdar on the Asian Side. Guests lie under red umbrellas or swing in hammocks above the marble floor.
A waterfront location transforms the swimming experience at Çırağan Palace Kempinski, where the pool seems like an extension of the ever-reaching Bosphorus.
The outdoor pool at the ultra-posh Hotel Les Ottomans is filled with seawater and overlooks the Bosphorus. It is usually filled with the international glitterati and catwalk models.
A little out of town, away from the big crowds and at the point where the sky meets the glittering sea is the beautiful The Grand Tarabya hotel with its equally grand outdoor pool.
Hyatt Regency Istanbul Ataköy has gone a step beyond with both an indoor (part of the Levana Spa complex) and outdoors pool. The pool outside is vast and fringed by palm-trees, so the Hyatt Regency becomes a tropical platform from which to survey the Marmara Sea.
Enjoy a day at the rooftop pool of Wyndham İstanbul Kalamış Marina, with a beautiful view over the Marmara Sea and Kalamış yacht club.
The Marmara Taksim is another rooftop option that elevates you above the hot and heady madness of Taksim during the weekend. Along with the a la carte menu specifically prepared for the pool area, pizzas are created to your liking after a refreshing swim.
You can experience a similar day at DoubleTree by Hilton Istanbul in Moda, especially if lounging is your thing. Here, the iridescent Bosphorus reflection meets with the glistening pool of the sky-high terrace and you won’t have to hang over the rails to see the Princes’ Islands.
Grand Hyatt Istanbul is a hidden gem surrounded by lush greenery. The decorated mosaic pool also boasts a mini-pool for children.
Another crystal-clear pool awaits you amidst the turmoil of Taksim at InterContinental Istanbul. The pool bar refreshes bathers with mists, and icy drinks. Daily entrance is complimentary for children under six years old and 50% discounted for children up to 12 years old.
A short drive to Kemer Golf and Country Club is like a vacation in itself, traveling to the comfort of towering trees and leaving the grey buildings behind. Visitors of all ages and pets are welcomed to the area that resembles a 1950s American country club.
Reclining in a cabana by the pool of Swissotel The Bosphorus is a definite upgrade from the average deck chair. After having a possible video shoot moment under the small water fountain in the pool, indulge in homemade ice cream, or a glass of rose wine from Oasis restaurant.
North Istanbul Beaches
If you're looking for more family retreat than party central, the half green and half sand shores of Uzunya Beach Club is a great choice.
Interested in a more active day where kite boarders mingle with volleyball players? Get moving at BURC Beach, an enterprise of Boğaziçi University, located in Kilyos.
Suma Beach offers yoga and pilates classes during the day, before it shifts into an outdoor ‘club’ at night. Gather all your friends, and after a day of tanning, end your night with cocktails and dancing. DJs play until daybreak.
With its special bay and sandy beach, Babylon Kilyos is one of the best beaches in the city. The spot offers large area to relax and enjoy the sun as well as coffee from Kronotrop and wide restaurant area.
Tranquil Çam Limanı Koyu, on a quiet and nostalgic part Heybeliada (already one of the sleepier Prince’s Islands) is home to Ada Beach Club. There are no cars on this island, so after a ferry ride from Kabataş, wait to be collected by speed boat from Heybeliada pier.
Club Ada Sedef and Elio Sedef, on Sedef Island, are two of the most peaceful spots you can find by the water, secluded by tall stone walls. Club Ada Sedef transforms into a party venue on Saturdays, with loud music and dancing guests. Elio Sedef maintains its peace and quiet, and you can also enjoy meze by the water at the Elio Restaurant. You need to be an early riser to get a spot on either beach.
A splendid view of the European and Asian sides, along with the two iconic bridges, frame the island of Suada by Kuruçeşme, with its popular pool, and several upscale restaurants and bars. Leaving Suada without eating at 360 Suada Restaurant and Bar would be a mistake.
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