Etihad is marking the moment it turns 15 by giving travel agents the gift of a trip to Istanbul to see what make this Turkish city covering two continents tick.

ETIHAD is throwing a party to celebrate 15 years flying but rather than fairy bread, chocolate crackles and red lemonade on the menu it will be food gathered from the far corners of the globe.

That’s because Etihad is marking the meaningful milestone by sending lucky travel agents to places promising a party vibe – and celebrated culinary cultures – for fun times in fabulous far-away lands.

You could win one of 15 Etihad Airways return ticket prizes darting off to a destination around the airlines’ 91-stop network, with the really big gift two business tickets to Abu Dhabi with two nights luxury accommodation.

Istanbul is on Etihad’s party list, and we have come up with suggestions on how to fill the hours in a mega-metropolis that’s super serious about sightseeing as well as stuffing your face.

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MAKE IT ISTANBUL FOR INTRIGUING INTERLUDES

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Image: Turkey Home

The big and brash Turkish town straddles two continents, marking the location where Asia and Europe meet, so it’s no surprise the city that’s home to 15 million people blurs the lines between centuries and cultures.

And while Istanbul has more big-ticket attractions than mosques have minarets – and there are loads of spires marking this skyline – there’s also a long list of things to do away from the tourist trail that let holidaymakers see below the surface of a city that never stops.

So, the choice is all your, how will you investigate Istanbul?

 

THE CHOICES CONTINUE IN THE AIR

Etihad knows how vital it is to have choices when jetting off to places around the planet, so the Abu Dhabi-based airline is marking 15 years of flying by promising passengers more options than ever.

And that goes for every guest, sitting in every cabin, on every aircraft – whether it’s a suite in The Residence or an economy perch boasting extra legroom – with these decisions offered to guarantee one-of-a-kind journeys.

And with Etihad offering daily connections to Istanbul there’s also ample alternatives on when to fly to make the airline fit your itinerary, rather than the other way around.

So, what will it be in Istanbul? Asia? Europe? Or a blend of both?

 

1. SIGHTSEEING ON THE BOSPORUS

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The Bosporus – the ribbon of blue that splits the city by linking the Marmara Sea to the South and the Black Sea up north – is Istanbul’s main artery so a boat ride is as significant to a stay as a stop at the Blue Mosque.

Buy a simit – a circular loaf covered with sesame seeds – before boarding one of the ferries that dart across the waterway dozens of times a day then order a hot tea from one of the roaming vendors and snack while making the scenic 20-minute journey across the waves.

 

2. GRAZING IN THE GRAND BAZAAR

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Image: Home Turkey

Most tourists descend on the Grand Bazaar to engage in the serious sport of bargaining while meandering the maze-like alleys, but a better idea is to go when bellies rumble and graze on the world-famous market’s infinite offering of gourmet goodies.

Sit in a café where kebabs cook on hot coals, pluck pieces of fragrant Turkish delight from stalls flanked by spice sellers, refresh with the delicious apple tea that’s considered to be a national drink, and savour scoops of dondurma with Turkish ice cream the current culinary craze.

 

3. SIGHTSEEING SULTANAHMET’S STARS

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Visiting Istanbul and missing the Blue Mosque would be like touring Rome and not calling in to see St Peters but make a day of it by adding stops at Aya Sofya, Topkapi Palace and the Basilica Cistern onto a journey through Istanbul’s Old City.

For a treat set the alarm for a pre-dawn start, arriving at the Blue Mosque in time hear the call to morning prayers echo across the rooftops, then retire to a neighbouring café to indulge in the ritual of a traditional Turkish breakfast.

 

Feel like being inspired in idyllic Istanbul?

Or perhaps Cairo, London or Amsterdam? Etihad wants YOU to join the global party for their 15-year celebrations.

You could win one of 15 amazing Etihad Airways return ticket prizes to your choice of 15 different destinations including a grand prize of 2 Business tickets to Abu Dhabi and two nights luxury accommodation.

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You don’t need to blow out any birthday candles to have your travel wishes come true. All you need to do to be in with a chance of winning a return flight to your choice of destination is…

1) MAKE AND TICKET A NEW ETIHAD BOOKING BETWEEN 7 – 28 NOVEMBER 2018

2) FILL OUT THE INCENTIVE ENTRY FORM HERE INCLUDING YOUR TICKET NUMBER

Plus you can enter multiple times – so the more you sell, the more chances to win!

ENTER NOW

Hurry! Competition ends 28 November 2018!

 

READ: BLISS IN BARCELONA: Celebrate 15 years of Etihad Airways and WIN!

What Istanbul experiences would you choose to indulge in?