Istanbul has always wowed its first time visitors, the streets shaped by numerous empires and sultans. Lavish architecture leaves the first impression, the city dotted with memories from 2,000 years. Now come sounds; the harmonic call to prayer resonates across rooftops, a tea seller sends shouts into the air, old women chat on a city bench. Whiffs of fragrant spices seem to come around every corner while barbecue stalls add smoky grilled fish aromas into the mix. You'll be met at the airport and transferred to your boutique hotel in the city. The unique impressions are all around and, while Istanbul bursts with famous sights, there's little better introduction than walking around and opening your senses.