The Bosphorus is the pulse of Istanbul. Without it, Istanbul would not be Istanbul. Embrace the sea, like so many have done and do, and get on a boat. Take a ferry to the Asian side (Kadıköy) and enjoy the less-hilly and more relaxed vibes of Moda. Or take the ferry to the Princes’ Islands, and hop off at Burgazada for a meyhane dinner by the sea in a more peaceful part of the city (in Burgazada there are no cars and significantly less people). The other option is taking a private boat along the Golden Horn. Some boats are marked for the purpose and easy to come by along the shores in and near Karaköy, but sometimes a fisherman will offer you and your friends his smaller boat if you’re lucky. Hang around by the sea, try to see if any of the fisherman do this and get on their boat for much less than other private tours. Taking in the city from the water is essential to truly appreciate the beauty of Istanbul.