Being a beach person I always prefer to spend my vacation on islands or beaches. In my opinion, islands are more prepossessing than beaches in every aspect. Every country has its beautiful places that build the economy of the county and in Istanbul, there are multiple gorgeous islands that every individual should visit at least once.
It’s an exceptional experience to soak your soul in cool breezes from the top and feet in chilled water from the bottom. Believe me, the implicit view of the island coast in Istanbul will send shivers down your spine. The most famous island in Istanbul is the Princes’ Islands which is precisely a combination of 9 islands laying on the southeast of Istanbul. All islands that come under the Princes’ Islands are distinctively different from others. Some are ideal for soaking the sun while others are the best destinations for enjoying thrilling water sports.
So, let’s head on the journey to learn something new about Istanbul. Here, I am going to introduce you to some beautiful islands near Istanbul.
List of beautiful islands near Istanbul:
When we are on the journey to know about the Best Islands Near Istanbul, it is important to discuss Büyükada in the first place. It is the largest island in Istanbul and also part of the famous Princes’ Islands. The beauty of Büyükada can be damaged by the huge number of visitors. So, we recommend you to visit Büyükada island in the off-seasons, maybe in spring or winter, to witness that tantalizing vista. Apart from the freezing water of the island, the primitive houses and roughly paved paths through the coastline offer the best view.
There are multiple beaches on the Istanbul Coastline, though to view the actual beauty it is best to stroll the place barefooted. Also, it’s important to note that Büyükada is a carfree zone and only horse-drawn carriages and bicycles are the modes of transportation. It is the only island to visit near Istanbul with no cars. You can hire these modes at the ferry terminal after your arrival.
Location: Adalar/Istanbul, Turkey
Area: 5.4 km²
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Kınalıada island in Istanbul is located in the Sea of Marmara near the Prince Islands. The actual meaning of Kınalıada is “Henna Island”. It might get its name because of its reddish color that is due to the residual of copper and iron extracts in the water due to mining activity. This island can be easily accessed through a public ferry facility available on the coast. A regular ferry will take approximately 40 minutes to reach Kınalıada island whereas the fast ferry will take you there in just 25 minutes.
Once you are about to reach the Kınalıada island, the exotic view of the coastline will cause horripilation out of utter amazement”
Location: Kınalıada, 34977 Adalar/Istanbul, Turkey
3. Sivriada (Hayırsız Ada)
Sivriada, the useless island, is one of the major parts of the Princes’ Islands. It is located in the Sea of Marmara in Istanbul. This small island near Istanbul was considered a famous place of worship by Byzantine priests in ancient times. There is nothing much for tourists to visit on this island. Still, they can head to the monastery to know about the history of Byzantine and Roman culture.
There is an old wretched saga related to this island that in 1911, About 80,000 dogs were killed intentionally in an event called the “Hayırsızada Dog Massacre ” after the Governor ordered the exile of stray dogs. Most of them died due to hunger while others due to thirst, drowning, and the barren condition of the land. After this incident, the island has to suffer an earthquake that is perceived as a punishment by God for abandoning the dogs. This is the main cause for which this island is more of an inauspicious island.
Location: Adalar/Istanbul, Turkey
Area: .05 km²
4. Kaşık Island
There is an ideal island near Istanbul for a weekend getaway named Kaşık Island. The spoon-shaped Kaşık Island is grabbing all the attention of the visitors with its prospering beauty. This is a private island owned by the Danon family. Visitors only with special permission from the owner or the tourism company are allowed to spend overnight here. So, common people might not get a chance to witness the implicit beauty of Kaşık Island. By any chance, if you get an opportunity to visit Kaşık Island the 800 m long coastline with sandy beach and lush greenery will make your trip delightful.
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5. Sedef Island
Despite being part of the massive Princes’ Islands, Sedef Island is considered the smallest island near Istanbul, Turkey. The white buildings of this island look gorgeous, hence it is called ‘Mother of Pearl’ for obvious reasons. Like Kaşık island, This is also a partially private island in Istanbul. Most of the green area comes under private property and the lush greenery of pine trees is planted by the owner itself and is worth watching. The strict rules if this island doesn’t allow locals to construct more than two floors. This action is taken to maintain the beauty of this island and to protect the environment from human adulteration.
Location: Büyükada-maden, Adalar/Istanbul, Turkey
Area: 0.157 km²
6. Burgazada Island
Some people call it Burgazada while others call it Burgaz Adası but in short you can call it Burgaz. The actual meaning of Burgazada is “Fortress Island”. Yes, Burgaz is a part of the Princes’ Islands and it is the third-largest in the group. The island gets its name after a famous fort that was built by Demetrius I. The island features Sait Faik Abasıyanık Museum who was a famous Turkish story writer. It is the best island near Istanbul to go with family, friends, and kids.
Location: Burgazadası, Istanbul, Turkey
7. Akdamar Island
Akdamar Island in Istanbul is located in the middle of Lake Van. It is an absolutely stunning island in Istanbul. More of a religious destination, this location is widely chosen to visit by the disturbed souls to feel spirituality. In the middle of the island, there is a church that shows the passion of ancient architects. The walls of the church are decorated with stone carvings with Armenian artwork on them. Visitors can access this island by public ferry and boats that offer round trips and are available on the Ahlat coastline.
Location: Gevaş/Van, Turkey
Area 0.7 km2
8. Yassıada (Cassada)
Yassıada pronounced as ‘Cassada’ basically means the ‘flat island’ and it is completely justifying its name. Located at the level of a few meters from the Sea of Marmara, in southeast Istanbul, it is one of the most prospering islands in Istanbul. Surprising everyone with its beautiful vistas, it is spread in an area of .05 square kilometers in Adalar, Istanbul. There is an underground prison in Yassıada island, four cells of which are still open for visitors. So ensure to go to this prison during your visit to the Yassıada island in Istanbul.
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9. Tavşan Island (Tavşan Adası) – Discover Spirituality
Tavşan Island is another beautiful island in Turkey near Istanbul situated covering the shortest area. People often call it Rabbit Island because it is the home to innumerable species of rabbits. This small island hardly has any tourist destination to visit but if you are coming here with a tourism group then they will take you to some ancient churches built in the 17th century. People of Istanbul often come to this island to feel spirituality and aesthetic peace. Moreover, photogenic photographers will get multiple locations on Tavşan Island to capture beautiful pictures of nature.
Location: Adalar/Istanbul, Turkey
Gökçeada (former: Imbros or İmroz) is the largest island in Istanbul and even in entire Turkey is situated on the northeast of the Aegean Sea. People having a deep interest in visiting beaches and islands can definitely make a trip to visit this gorgeous island in Istanbul. Though the greenery on the coast blooms in the summer to the spring season, the view at other times of the year visitors can’t neglect as well. Moreover, the friendly natives of this island make your trip interesting by introducing you to their lively culture. The island is home to millions of pink flamingos. So if you haven’t seen a pink flamingo in real life then this island is the best place where you can go to witness the first-ever live flamingo of your life.
Location: Çanakkale, Turkey
Area: 279 km²
Istanbul is the largest city in Turkey with some exotic islands in the country. The striking vistas you get at the island in Istanbul, you will not get anywhere in entire Turkey. So choose a suitable time to quench the thirst of your adventurous soul by visiting some beautiful islands in Istanbul. One thing we can assure you is that the beauty of this middle east city will definitely leave you stunned with its panoramic beauty.