Last week, Abby and I went to Kilyos, a beach north of Istanbul on the Black Sea. We were worried because it looks really far away, but it was actually quite easy to get there. It took us a little more than an hour, and that included waiting for the Metro and the bus from the Metro to Kilyos.
We went to the public beach and paid 10tl each, which is totally reasonable for hours of beachtime fun! I've been told by many people that the Black Sea has a pretty ridiculous rip tide and very strong currents, but I'm a wader and not really a swimmer, so it was cool.
We hung out on the beach, reading and listening to music. The vibe was very chill: mostly families and some groups of dudes who kept to themselves. Overall, it was a quick, easy escape from the city and a Sunday well-spent.