With its two available international airports (Atatürk Airport on the European side and Sabiha Gökçen Airport on the Asian side) and a third one expected to be available for 2015, İstanbul is served by more than 300 international airlines. The city is from 2 to 5 hours from European destinations and 9 hours from North America.

Atatürk International Airport (IST)

  • 650-700 aircraft handled every day.
  • Approximately 70.000 passengers are served daily.
  • In peak periods, these figures rise to 95.000-100.000 passengers and 900-950 arrivals and departures daily.
  • Avoiding the necessity to check-in baggage separately for transfers and is capable of handling 15.000 pieces an hour automatically.
  • Two golf cars are currently in service between the Domestic and International Terminals for passenger transfers. The elderly and disabled take priority.

Sabiha Gökçen International Airport (SAW)

  • 650-700 aircraft handled every day.
  • Located on the Anatolian shore of İstanbul at Pendik / Kurtköy.
  • At a distance of 40 km to Kadıköy.
  • 12 km to Pendik and 50 km to Taksim.
  • It has a really convenient traffic in terms of transportation with its 1.5 km connection to the TEM motorway.

BY TRAIN (From Europe-Sirkeci Station)
The train is a great way to get to İstanbul. İstanbul has two railway stations: Haydarpaşa on the Asian side and Sirkeci on the European side. The Sirkeci Station constitutes the main connection node of the Turkish railway network with the rest of Europe. Main services are;

  • Bosphorus Express: from Bucharest,
  • TransBalkan Express: from Kischinev,
  • Balkan Express: from Belgrade via Sofia,
  • IC 90/91: from Pythion via Thessalonica,
  • İstanbul Express: from Munich via Slovenia, Croatia, Yugoslavia and Bulgaria.

The Turkish Railways (TCDD) website has an online booking facility and available in English:

As the turnaround port for many cruise ships, İstanbul is mostly reached from the Aegean Sea. Besides, Karaköy Sea Port is also used as a stopping point for a number of international ferries. The Bosphorus is an important passageway for international cargo ships and tankers, and a crucial stopping place for mediterranean cruises.
Foreign cruise ships and international ferries dock at the Yolcu Salonu in Karaköy at the northern end of the Galata Bridge over the Golden Horn, right in the center of the city, and at Salıpazar just to the northeast.