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Last Post This thread is marked as being about Turkey
1. Posted by karlspinnt (Budding Member 20 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

Major cities are quite frequently heavily polluted. Is this the case with Istanbul?

2. Posted by gocebe (Inactive 48 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

It is a relative question. It depends on what cities you are comparing to. It also depends on what time of the year you are visiting Istanbul. Since you are from the States, compared to New York especially Manhattan, Istanbul isn't that polluted. I am in Turkey but not in Istanbul right now and I have recently seen on the news that the pollution problem in Istanbul is getting worse due to increase in the price of natural gas. The residents have started choosing coal over natural gas for heating since the natural gas prices have doubled.

Of course this is just the air pollution part of it. If you are visiting April-October you won't feel the air pollution unless you visit the outer skirts of Istanbul where there are factories.
I will be in Istanbul in two weeks. I can give you more information if your trip is after that date.

3. Posted by karlspinnt (Budding Member 20 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

I HAD MEANT TO MENTION THE EXTREME POLLUTION I EXPERIENCED IN BANGKOK due to Automobile and Bus and Tuk-Tuk Traffic. In that city, any chances to go outside were "lost" between NOON and Sunset (May/June).

From what was just written, my planned trip to Turkey ranging sometime between March and May 1st should be O.K.

4. Posted by t_maia (Travel Guru 3290 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

You get similar pollution in Istanbul too, but the wind and the weather all blow it away from the city. Unfortunately this doesn't really work in winter when it is mainly wet, cold and foggy. At this time you also have the aforementioned problem of pollution from heating. So a lot depends whether there is mostly sunshine and temps above 18 C when you go there.

5. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5635 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

So, what's the actual problem with pollution?
I mean, most people don't react upon it or something, other than some thick black fumes at the end of the day
I have been to Bangkok and haven't actually noticed things regarding my health, physical condition at the time etc. etc.
Do you have astma maybe?

6. Posted by nesli (Budding Member 19 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!


Istanbul is a windy city, so the air polution is not extreem, but as the others said, it increases in winter. If you do not have to be in Istanbul in March I suggest you to start your trip in second part of April. Because March is generally the coldest month of the year in Istanbul. Actually cold is a very relative thing. I know NY is also a cold city, so maybe it won't be annoying for you, but still the best time to visit Istanbul is term covering late April, May and beginning of June.

Have a nice trip


7. Posted by cempasha (Full Member 2 posts) 8y Star this if you like it!

I do agree with Nesli about the visiting times. Also Istanbul is a little polluted however I've been to Bangkok couple of times and can easily say that Istanbul is not even close to Bangkok in means of pollution.