This trip to Istanbul was my family's first, and we found the city pretty overwhelming. So many people, so many choices, so much chaos. It was hard to know what to do and what to skip, especially since we were only there for a few days.
For all those reasons, this food tour was a perfect choice for us. Our guide Benoit showed us around neighborhoods on both sides of the Bosphorus, including a ferry crossing between them, and he explained a lot to us about the history and culture of Istanbul. We couldn't have asked for a better guide. It was just the three of us and him, and he was very personable and helpful.
We ate a lot, as we knew we would, and Benoit gave us tips on how to pace ourselves. ("Be careful with the bread!") Basically, we had three small meals with snacks in between, and the final stop was a cafe that specialized in traditional Turkish desserts. For me, the highlights were the breakfast in Beşiktaş and the homestyle meal in Kuzguncuk. It was also cool to visit a place where they make the pastry sheets that are used in making borek and a library that serves as a community gathering place, cafe, and prayer room.
Benoit was so knowledgable, and we learned a lot from him not just about Istanbul, but about the politics and cultures of Türkiye as a whole.