Istanbul

Operated by Turkish Ailines all year round

Istanbul, historically known as Byzantium and before 1924 as Constantinople, is the most populous city in Turkey and the country's economic, cultural, and historic center. Istanbul is a transcontinental city in Eurasia, straddling the Bosporus strait (which separates Europe and Asia) between the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea. Its commercial and historical center lies on the European side and about a third of its population lives on the Asian side. The city is the administrative center of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (coterminous with Istanbul Province), both hosting a population of around 15 million residents. Istanbul is one of the world's most populous cities and ranks as the world's fourth-largest city proper and the largest European city. Istanbul is viewed as a bridge between the East and West.

Founded under the name of Byzantion (Βυζάντιον) on the Sarayburnu promontory around 660 BCE, the city grew in size and influence, becoming one of the most important cities in history. After its reestablishment as Constantinople in 330 CE, it served as an imperial capital for almost 16 centuries, during the Roman/Byzantine (330–1204), Latin (1204–1261), Palaiologos Byzantine (1261–1453) and Ottoman (1453–1922) empires. It was instrumental in the advancement of Christianity during Roman and Byzantine times, before the Ottomans conquered the city in 1453 CE and transformed it into an Islamic stronghold and the seat of the Ottoman Caliphate.

The city's strategic position on the historic Silk Road, rail networks to Europe and the Middle East, and the only sea route between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean have produced a cosmopolitan populace. While Ankara was chosen instead as the new Turkish capital after the Turkish War of Independence, and the city's name was changed to Istanbul, the city has maintained its prominence in geopolitical and cultural affairs. The population of the city has increased tenfold since the 1950s, as migrants from across Anatolia have moved in and city limits have expanded to accommodate them. Arts, music, film, and cultural festivals were established towards the end of the 20th century and continue to be hosted by the city today. Infrastructure improvements have produced a complex transportation network in the city.

Approximately 12.56 million foreign visitors arrived in Istanbul in 2015, five years after it was named a European Capital of Culture, making the city the world's fifth most popular tourist destination. The city's biggest attraction is its historic center, partially listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and its cultural and entertainment hub can be found across the city's natural harbor, the Golden Horn, in the Beyoğlu district. Considered a global city, Istanbul has one of the fastest-growing metropolitan economies in the world. It hosts the headquarters of many Turkish companies and media outlets and accounts for more than a quarter of the country's gross domestic product. Hoping to capitalize on its revitalization and rapid expansion, Istanbul has bid for the Summer Olympics five times in twenty years.

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London

Operated by Wizz Air all year round

London is the capital and largest city of both the United Kingdom and England. Standing on the River Thames in southeastern England, 50 miles (80 km) upstream from its estuary with the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans The City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles (2.9 km2) and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains its medieval boundaries. The City of Westminster is also an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of London and the London Assembly.

London is often considered as the world's leading global city and has been termed as the world's most powerful, most desirable, most influential, most visited,most expensive, innovative, sustainable, most investment friendly, most popular for work, and the most vegetarian friendly city in the world. London exerts a considerable impact upon the arts, commerce, education, entertainment, fashion, finance, healthcare, media, professional services, research and development, tourism and transportation. London ranks 26 out of 300 major cities for economic performance. It is one of the largest financial centres and has either the fifth or sixth largest metropolitan area GDP. It is the most-visited city as measured by international arrivals and has the busiest city airport system as measured by passenger traffic. It is the leading investment destination, hosting more international retailers and ultra high-net-worth individuals than any other city. London's universities form the largest concentration of higher education institutes in Europe. In 2012, London became the first city to have hosted three modern Summer Olympic Games.

London has a diverse range of people and cultures, and more than 300 languages are spoken in the region. Its estimated mid-2016 municipal population (corresponding to Greater London) was 8,787,892, the most populous of any city in the European Union and accounting for 13.4% of the UK population. London's urban area is the second most populous in the EU, after Paris, with 9,787,426 inhabitants at the 2011 census. The population within the London commuter belt is the most populous in the EU with 14,040,163 inhabitants in 2016. London was the world’s most populous city from c. 1831 to 1925.

London contains four World Heritage Sites: the Tower of London,; Kew Gardens; the site comprising the Palace of Westminster, Westminster Abbey, and St Margaret's Church; and the historic settlement in Greenwich where the Royal Observatory, Greenwich defines the Prime Meridian, 0° longitude, and Greenwich Mean Time. Other landmarks include Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, St Paul's Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Trafalgar Square and The Shard. London has numerous museums, galleries, libraries and sporting events. These include the British Museum, National Gallery, Natural History Museum, Tate Modern, British Library and West End theatres. The London Underground is the oldest underground railway network in the world.

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Tallinn

Operated by LOT/Nordica between 15th June - 28th September 2019

Tallinn is the capital and largest city of Estonia. It is on the northern coast of the country, on the shore of the Gulf of Finland in Harju County. From the 13th century until 1918 (and briefly during the Nazi occupation of Estonia from 1941 to 1944), the city was known as Reval. Tallinn occupies an area of 159.2 km2 (61.5 sq mi) and has a population of 440,776.

Tallinn's Old Town is one of the best preserved medieval cities in Europe and is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Tallinn is the major political, financial, cultural and educational center of Estonia. Often dubbed the Silicon Valley of Europe, it has the highest number of startups per person in Europe and is a birthplace of many international companies, including Skype. The city is to house the headquarters of the European Union's IT agency. Providing to the global cybersecurity it is the home to the NATO Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence. It is ranked as a global city and has been listed among the top 10 digital cities in the world. According to the Global Financial Centres Index Tallinn is the most competitive financial center in Northern Europe and ranks 52nd internationally. The city was a European Capital of Culture for 2011, along with Turku in Finland.

Tallinn is situated on the southern coast of the Gulf of Finland, in north-western Estonia. The length of the coast is 46 kilometres (29 miles). It comprises three bigger peninsulas: Kopli peninsula, Paljassaare peninsula and Kakumäe peninsula. The city has a number of public beaches, including those at Pirita, Stroomi, Kakumäe, Harku and Pikakari.

The largest lake in Tallinn is Lake Ülemiste (9.44 km2 (3.6 sq mi)). It is the main source of the city's drinking water. Lake Harku is the second largest lake within the borders of Tallinn and its area is 1.6 square kilometres (0.6 sq mi). Tallinn does not lie on a major river. The only significant river in Tallinn is Pirita River in Pirita, a city district counted as a suburb. Historically, the small Härjapea River flowed from Lake Ülemiste through the town into the sea, but the river was diverted for sewage in the 1930s and has since completely disappeared from the cityscape. References to it still remain in the street names Jõe (from Jõgi, river) and Kivisilla (from Kivisild, stone bridge).

A limestone cliff runs through the city. It can be seen at Toompea, Lasnamäe and Astangu. However, Toompea is not a part of the cliff, but a separate hill. The highest point in Tallinn, at 64 meters above sea level, is situated in Hiiu, Nõmme District, in the south-west of the city.

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Satu Mare

Operated by Tarom between 5th July - 13th September 2019

Satu Mare is situated in Satu Mare County, in northwest Romania, on the Someș River, 13 km (8.1 mi) from the border with Hungary and 27 km (17 mi) from the border with Ukraine.

Satu Mare is a city with a population of 102,400 (2011) and the capital of Satu Mare County, Romania, as well as the center of the Satu Mare metropolitan area. Mentioned in the Gesta Hungarorum as castrum Zotmar ("Zotmar's fort"), the city has a history going back to the Middle Ages. Today, it is an academic, cultural, industrial and business centre in northwestern Romania.

Satu Mare benefits from its proximity to the borders with Hungary and Ukraine, which makes it a prime location for logistical and industrial parks. Companies that have established production facilities in Satu Mare are Voestalpine, Dräxlmaier Group, Gotec Group, Anvis Group, Schlemmer, Casco Schützhelme and Zollner Elektronik in the industrial sector; FrieslandCampina in the food sector; Radici Group in the textile sector; and Saint-Gobain and Boissigny in the wood industry.

The city is served by the Satu Mare International Airport (IATA: SUJ, ICAO: LRSM), located 13 km (8.1 mi) south of the city, with a concrete runway, one of the longest in Romania, with TAROM and Wizz Air operating regular flights.

Major tourists attractions are:

  • the Administrative Palace, at 97 m (318 ft), one of the tallest buildings in Romania
  • the Capitoline Wolf statue
  • the Chain Church
  • the Dacia Hotel
  • the Decebal Street Synagogue
  • the Firemen's Tower, a 47 m (154 ft) tall tower
  • the Garden of Rome
  • the Roman Catholic Cathedral

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Cluj Napoca

Operated by Blue Air between 02nd July - 29th August 2019

Cluj-Napoca commonly known as Cluj, is the fourth most populous city in Romania, and the seat of Cluj County in the northwestern part of the country. Geographically, it is roughly equidistant from Bucharest (324 kilometres (201 miles)), Budapest (351 km (218 mi)) and Belgrade (322 km (200 mi)). Located in the Someșul Mic River valley, the city is considered the unofficial capital to the historical province of Transylvania. From 1790 to 1848 and from 1861 to 1867, it was the official capital of the Grand Principality of Transylvania.

Cluj-Napoca is an important economic centre in Romania. Local brands that have become well known at a national, and to some extent even international level, include: Banca Transilvania, Terapia Ranbaxy, Farmec, Jolidon, and Ursus breweries.

In 2007, the hotel industry in the county of Cluj offered total accommodations of 6,472 beds, of which 3,677 were in hotels, 1,294 in guesthouses and the rest in chalets, campgrounds, or hostels. A total of 700,000 visitors, 140,000 of whom were foreigners, stayed overnight. The largest numbers of foreign visitors come from Hungary, Italy, Germany, the United States, France, and Austria.

Cluj-Napoca hosts a number of cultural festivals of various types. These occur throughout the year, though are more frequent in the summer months.

  • "Sărbătoarea Muzicii" (Fête de la Musique)
  • "Septemberfest", modelled after the German Oktoberfest.
  • Electric Castle Festival
  • The Transilvania International Film Festival (TIFF)
  • Comedy Cluj, which debuted in 2009, is the newest annual film festival organised in Cluj-Napoca.
  • Toamna Muzicală Clujeană, Romania's most important classical music event after the George Enescu Festival
  • Untold Festival, which began in 2015, is Romania's largest music festival. Held mainly in the Cluj Arena, and also at the Polyvalent Hall, it drew over 300,000 in its second edition.

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