BUYUKADA (Büyükada) is one of the nine islands in the Sea of Marmara in Istanbul. And it is known as the Princesses' Island, since the princesses used to visit this island for relaxation.

Buyukada which is half an hour from Bostanci or one hour from Kabatas by boat still is one of the most visited places by tourists. Apart from a monastery built by the Byzantine Emperor Justin II in 569, there are several other historical buidings in Buyukada such as Aya Yorgi Church and Monastery, Aya Dimitrios Church and Hamidiye Mosque. But the main attraction is beatiful old houses you can see while walking in the streets of the island,or enjoying a ride by a horse-drawn carriage (payton) although some prefer renting a bicycle.. The short tour around the Island is 50 TL (50 minut es) and long tour is 60 TL (app. $ 35) official price. There are no motorized vehicles in the Island accept the official ones.

There are several beaches where you can enjoy the blue waters of the Marmara Sea. Boats owned by the beaches can take you the beaches  free of charge.

There are also very nice old hotels and restaurants in the Island where you can enjoy especially local fresh fish.

Caution is advised, however. In this economic climate of Summer, 2011, it is not uncommon for the restaurants on Buyukada to charge a foreigner 10X the expected price for a meal.

Advise everybody to bargain before hand in every fish restaurant in Istanbul especially those ones in the Islands and in Bebek and Tarabya.