A Vacationer’s Guide to Eating in Istanbul On a Budget

Istanbul combines a thriving atmosphere with a rich cultural heritage, but some activities in the city can be expensive.

Last minute holidays that will perfectly complement your budget are a must for those who want to have the time of their life without spending a lot.

While enjoying the sights of Istanbul, you can also make your food budget go that little bit further with these great tips.

istanbul fountain

Eating Like the Locals

Eating the local way can open your eyes to a much cheaper way of living in Istanbul, sidestepping the expensive tourist locations in the process.

By searching out local street vendors, you can “eat your way through Istanbul” without being left completely broke.

A ubiquitous sight in Istanbul is stands selling corn and chestnuts on street corners and in public squares. The price is often cheap, and the treats are a great, quick snack while moving between sights.

For cheap pastries such as doughnuts and pretzels, there are often pastry stands where crowds gather. Like most stands, the cheaper options are further from the tourist spots, so search around.

For a unique taste of Istanbul, there are many vendors that sell rice-stuffed mussels at low prices. Found often close to ferry stations, markets and cafes, the delicious mix of rice and orange mussel is one not to miss.

Cheap Eateries

Whether you’re a student or holiday-goer looking to save on money, the one eatery you should know about is a büfe, a type of corner store that sells cheap food choices such as soup and, of course, traditional kebabs.

These places also make grilled-cheese sandwiches, which are especially in demand at the harbour side eatery Güngör Büfe where they have perfected the art of this snack.

Also found at these corner stores is kuru fasulye, a dish of white beans in a tomato-based sauce. If you have the time, the best place to eat this is at the Black Sea restaurant Hayvore in Beyoğlu.

Take in the Real Istanbul While You Eat on a Budget

As you can see, eating on a budget is simple in Istanbul and may even enhance your experience of the city.

The various vendors and corner stores are what Istanbul is all about and sampling their delights will make your trip all the more memorable.

Best of all, the extra cash left over from eating smartly will also provide more opportunities to gain entrance to the various museums and attractions!

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