A nice location in Istanbul is Otakoy-stroll the local neighborhood and enjoy a mint tea and sheesha on the waterfront. Local fisherman bring in their catch and even toss the cats hanging around a few treats. In the evening, young couples walking hand in had come out to enjoy the cooler temperatures,often going to the local vendors selling baked potatoes overflowing with toppings.
I typically like to run or ride to find my way in new places. The heart of Istanbul was one of the trickier spots to do this BUT, with a little dedication and planning you, too, can enjoy running in this fascinating and beautiful city! Running is best on the outskirts of town (I enjoyed sleepier Ortakoy), and outside of the city center where the traffic is less imposing, and it seems to be an environment more welcoming runners (especially we avid women!) Nike has published a great guide for running in Istanbul that I used as a primer for my own trainer adventures (which occasionally required a taxi to my run start.)
Go to the Sehir Hatlari ticket office (to the left when exiting the Galata Bridge) and buy a ticket for a one-way Bosphorus Strait cruise for $8.
Disembark closest to Rumeli Hisari (pictured). Check out the fortress, then walk south.
You'll first encounter Bebek, an upscale village, swarming with Istanbul's well-off out seeing and being seen.
Continue walking south to sleepy Arnavutkoy ("Albanian Village"), a quaint antidote to Bebek.
Forge on to Ortakoy, a fun, friendly neighborhood bustling with cats, street vendors, tourists and locals alike sitting at outdoor cafes and eating giant baked potatoes (an area specialty).
Turkey Trip Report: http://bit.ly/ONKIN7