Turkish Airlines is now flying out of Miami to Istanbul. Tickets start at $599, and members of Miles&Smiles, the carrier’s frequent flyer program, can get award seats and upgrades on this route at a 25 percent discount.
Turkish Airlines is also part of the Star Alliance, so you can buy award tickets with miles from other alliance members—such as United, Lufthansa and Air Canada—even if you don’t belong to Miles&Smiles. And if you fly on Turkish, you can also earn miles for any member airline.
There are a lot of business class award seats available on this route for 2016, even during the hottest travel times. If you’re planning a trip to Istanbul, you might want to snag your award tickets now.
Miami is the carrier’s 12th destination in the Americas. It also flies to Washington, D.C., Boston, San Francisco, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, Montreal and Toronto in North America, and to Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo in South America.
Let’s Go to Istanbul
Istanbul has a mix of both European and Middle Eastern influences. It’s transcontinental, with half of the city located in Europe, and the other half in Asia. The area’s long, complicated history is reflected in the city’s culture and architecture. This amazing mix offers sites as diverse as the Hippodrome, where Romans raced chariots, to ancient Egyptian obelisks and the famous Blue Mosque.
You can soak in the city’s history by simply walking the streets, where you’ll find plenty to explore. The covered markets, like the Spice Market and the Grand Bazaar, are great places to pick up everything from typical souvenirs to authentic glass lamps and local crafts. Or stop by the Istanbul Archaeology Museum or the Topkapi Palace, where sultans once lived.
Eating Like a Local
While there, you’ll probably notice that Istanbul is all about food. If you’re adventurous, try the Chicken Breast Pudding. It’s a unique and delicious dessert that is, in fact, made with chicken.
Then there’s kumpir, which is Istanbul’s version of a loaded baked potato. It can be topped with almost anything, including pickles, peas, corn and even hot dogs. If it’s hot out and you want to quench your thirst, order the Ayran, a yogurt drink that’s a favorite throughout Turkey.