Eminönü which millions of tourists prefer as their first destination and even accommodation is one of the first places to come to mind when it comes to shopping or souvenirs. It houses hundreds of shops such as Jeweler, Electronic material, Eating, and Clothing. If you are new to Istanbul, then definitely go and taste the famous fish sandwich next to the Galata bridge.
Eminonu is one of the top places to visit in Istanbul. There are places where you can shop conveniently and eat famous fish products. Also, I would like to specify that Eminonu is a district that attracts the most tourists to Turkey. Many electronic goods, white goods, clothing, textiles, and many other products can be found in the stores here at very affordable prices and the famous Egyptian bazaar, historical Sirkeci Railway Station and New Mosque is also here. There are also several round trips around $ 3 – 5 per person.
Galata Bridge is the bridge connecting Karaköy and Eminönü districts. The first attempt to connect Istanbul with Galata was during the time of Beyazıt II. In 1827, the bridge was built on 500-meter long barges. After the bridge used for18 years, the second bridge was opened in 1863 during the reign of Abdülaziz. 12 years later, this bridge was replaced by the current Unkapanı Bridge. The third Galata Bridge, commissioned in England, was completed in 1875. This bridge was 480 meters long and 14 meters wide. After this one, which was used until 1912, a 462-meter-long and 25-meter-wide new bridge was opened to use. In 1987, the foundations of a new bridge to replace it were laid on the Golden Horn side of this bridge. The old barge bridge was established between Hasköy-Balat and was named as the old Galata bridge.
Today, people visit the Galata bridge for the restaurants under the bridge as well as fishing. If you know how to fish, take your fishing line and take advantage of the blessings of the sea. If you say you don’t like fishing, you can see the lighted view of the city while eating fish in the 30+ fish restaurants under the Galata bridge.
Galata Tower was originally built by the Byzantine Emperor Anastasius Oilosuz. When it was completed in 528, the wooden structure was benefited as a lighthouse tower. However, the fire disaster in the region has made the structure completely unusable.
The height from the ground to the end of the roof is 69,90 meters. The wall thickness is 3.75 m, the inner diameter is 8.95 m and the outer diameter is 16.45 m. According to the static calculations, the weight of the tower is about 10,000 tons, and its thick body is made of untreated rubble.
Galata Tower, which has hosted millions and maybe billions of guests, has become the symbol of Istanbul. It is a meeting point for lovers and it is one of the families’ preferred places for breakfast. Although it has a long entrance queue, it is worth the wait for a magnificent Istanbul view.
The Maiden’s Tower, which has become another symbol of the city, is one of the first stops of anyone coming to Istanbul as a tourist. You can sip your tea against the view that you can sit on the cushioned stairs. Also recommended for hookah lovers. Do not forget to request a shawl next to the services provided. We do not want you to be affected by the wind created by the waves. Add it to your favorites.
There are a restaurant and bar in the Maiden’s Tower which are open 7 days a week. The restaurant serves Dinner, Lunch, and Breakfast. Breakfast starts at 09.00 on weekdays and at 10.00 am on weekends, and ends at 13.00. The lunch service starts at 12.00. You can book your place in advance by making an online reservation from the official site of the Maiden’s Tower. You can book all the tables in the Maiden Tower in your private invitations, weddings, and other events.
It is also called the “pearl of the Bosphorus” with its elegant architecture, which provides road transportation between the Asian and European continents. Although it is not a place to have a trip around, it is definitely a must see sight.
In this article, I will touch on a lot of points where you can enjoy the sight of the Bosphorus bridges.
Rumeli Fortress is located in the district of Sarıyer in Istanbul. It was built by Fatih Sultan Mehmet directly opposite the Anatolian Fortress on the Asian side to prevent attacks from the north of the Bosphorus before the conquest of Istanbul. This place is the narrowest point of the Bosphorus.
You can visit this historic building coming from the Ottoman period for a weekend breakfast. During the conquest of Istanbul, it was adhered to the Anatolian Fortress in order to attract the rope. In fact, many Turkish classical movies were filmed here. There are many attractions in the vicinity where you can enjoy the view of the Bosphorus.
It is one of the oldest open-air museums in Istanbul. However, it has been amended by the Ministry of Tourism for 3-4 years and is still closed to visitors.
Yedikule Fortress, also known as the Yedikule Dungeons, became a historical venue where concerts, events and various organizations were organized. We hope that we share the information that it is opened soon.
Anatolian Fortress was built by Yıldırım Beyazıt in the 1300s. The fortress, which was built for the purpose of security of the Bosphorus, gave its name to the neighborhood with its workers settle around it.
In the castle where Göksu River flows to the Sea of Marmara, you can still feel the old textures.
Grand Bazaar which comes into prominence with its large and magnificent architecture, stands out as one of the most important commercial centers of Istanbul for over 500 years.
Thanks to its content, the bazaar, which attracts all ages of shopping enthusiasts, also have a rich cultural structure that dates back to the Byzantine period and developed during the Ottoman period.
Hz. Yuşa Hill
You can stop here at the return of Anadolu Kavağı, you can pray at the shrine of Hz Yuşa.
You can watch the sunset and perform the evening prayer there and enter the road of return.
Pierre Loti Hill
I’m taking you to one of Istanbul’s most beautiful landscapes. This is Pierre Loti Hill. You will be fascinated by the magnificent view. I want you to know that it’s very crowded in good weather. I had tea with pancakes when we went. Add it to your favorites.
Pierre Loti, a French writer who came to Istanbul, had a coffee house in Eyüp district. The name of this place, which has a view of the Golden Horn, is known as the Rabia Woman Coffee House. He falls in love with the woman whom he named its novel. It is said that this woman named Aziyade, who was married to one of the Selaniks, was the one who made him a frequent visitor. Ever since that coffee was called Pierre Loti coffee and the hill was called Pierre Loti Hill.
July 15 Martyrs Memorial Forest
I’ll take you to the 3rd bridge view that most people don’t know about. When I discovered this place, I was fascinated.
I was lucky to witness a marriage proposal. It is very difficult to go without your vehicle. Wear tight as it has quite harsh air.
Çamlıca Hill is the name given to the two highest peaks of Istanbul. This region which is divided into two as Small and Large Çamlıca Hills is a beautiful place to enjoy the city view in Istanbul. I want to take you to all the hills of Istanbul. But the best one is the famous Çamlıca Hill. In the service of İBB social facilities, you can have breakfast in the morning, you can breathe the fresh air, you can observe the city with the help of binoculars by 1 TL.
On weekends it is very crowded and you should go early. Kumpir and pancakes are good, do not return without trying. If you’re going to sit outside, take a shawl.
It is one of the peaceful gardens of Istanbul that you should add to your favorites. I like it when I visit, I’m sure you will like it as well. Weekends it may be quite crowded.
Remember to request a forest map when you pay an entry fee before you start to cruise. Right on the right side of the pool, you can see the pond. The water is a bit dirty to me and there are lots of fish and turtles.
You can calculate the age of the trees according to the ring-shaped lines inside the inner section of the trees. You can take a closer look at the rings using the lenses in the chains.
When we talk about Emirgan Grove, there are tulip gardens, pavilions, and Bosphorus views. Thanks to the annual Tulip Festival, which is held every year in April, the place is swarm with visitors from all over the world.
Thanks to its clean air and wonderful atmosphere, the Emirgan Grove offers visitors an environment where you can have a picnic in the Bosphorus view, a breakfast option in one of the 3 pavilions, and jogging opportunity in the hiking trails.
Gulhane Park and Yildiz Park are other important places among the most popular locations of Istanbul Tulip Festivals. The Emirgan Lale Festival, held between April 1 and 30, exhibits approximately 190 different types of 2.8 million tulips. Within the scope of the Istanbul Tulip Festival, you can come across local music bands every day.
Fatih Korusu TEMA Vehbi Koç Natural Culture Center, known as Otağtepe, is the favorite of many visitors with its magnificent nature in Kavacık town of Beykoz district which is the natural paradise of İstanbul. You can have a wonderful day in Otağtepe, which has its present appearance with its landscaping by the Metropolitan Municipality in 1997.
It is one of the most beautiful views of the Bosphorus. However, there are no places or businesses inside. And that means no food or drink. It is not crowded and you can even go for taking a selfie. Add this place to your favorite.
It is one of the most beautiful places on the Anatolian side. You can have a walk in the forest as well as sit on a café or a restaurant where you can sip your tea and coffee.
Besides, organizations like engagement and wedding are often held here.
This place you may be familiar with from televisions is one of the many places where movies and TV shows are filmed.
There are many cafes and restaurants inside the inn. Weekend breakfast is also available but you should go early.
Belgrad Forest was named after the village of Belgrade, where the Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent brought the Belgraders on his return from Serbia.
In the Belgrade Forests, there are six reservoirs to meet the city’s water needs. Topuzlu, Valide, and 2nd Sultan Mahmut Reservoirs, which were built one after another in order to meet the water needs of the city during the Ottoman Empire, are located here. These areas are also used as recreation spots.
Pine, oak, beech, chestnut, and poplar trees, as well as many different plant species, can be seen in the Belgrade Forest, which is located in Çatalca Peninsula and is a favorite place for those who want to spend time in a natural environment away from the city center of Istanbul. If you are looking for a quiet place to have a barbecue and a picnic, this is the place for you. If you are on the European side, you can use the running track waiting for you for your morning runs and you can use the sports equipment for exercise.
It is one of the most beautiful outdoor centers in Istanbul. It was one of the unique gardens of Topkapı Palace during the Ottoman period. Now it is an ideal green space for all those who want to spend a good time with their loved ones and take a walk.
I suggest you go in April and May. Don’t forget to add Gulhane Parkı to your favorites.
Sakli Göl, located in the Karamandere Village of Şile district of Istanbul, has a facility to be liked by nature lovers who want to get away from the crowds of the city.
You can enjoy a day of relaxation in Saklıgöl, as well as nature walks and nature photography accompanied by natural beauties, ducks and geese. You can also have breakfast at the lakeside cafes, sip your tea, breathe fresh air, and make self-catering barbecues or picnics on the lake-side tables. On the way to Saklıgöl or on the way back, you can also shop with natural products from the stalls set by the villagers on the way.
It is the largest lighthouse in Turkey. It was built on 60 meters high cliffs. You can sip your tea in the tea garden right next to it and enjoy the magnificent sea view.
If you go to Şile, I strongly suggest you visit the lighthouse.
Islands – (Buyukada / Heybeliada)
The most preferred place for those who want to get away from the crowds of Istanbul is the islands. Here, you can witness many beauties such as century-old mansions, pine forests, taverns, churches.
If you want to spend a day away from the crowds of the city, you can reach the islands after an average 1-hour ferry journey. There are 4 islands, namely Büyükada, Heybeliada, Burgazada, and Kınalıada.
Hidiv Pavilion is a structure on the ridges of Çubuklu in Beykoz district of İstanbul. In 1907, it was built by the Italian architect Delfo Seminati at the behest of Abbas Hilmi Pasha, the last khedive of Egypt. It is in the style of art nouveau according to the architectural fashion of the period.
The Hidiv Pavilion, which is in the middle of a wide grove covered with trees, each of which has a pedigree, is literally a palace cub. You can visit here to have breakfast within the IMM Social facilities.
Ortaköy beach is one of the most visited places in Istanbul. You can walk along the seaside with your loved ones.
You can taste the famous kumpir against the Bosphorus view in Ortaköy Square. Ideal for taking photos. Add it to your favorites.
Kuzguncuk is a very old neighborhood. Kuzguncuk, which is of great importance in terms of history, now decorates young girls’ Instagram albums with the doors of the houses in the district.
Even if it does not attract as much attention as it used to be, you should drop by if you can.
Süleymaniye Mosque was built by Mimar Sinan in Süleymaniye district of Eminönü İstanbul between 1551-1558 at the request of Suleiman the Magnificent. This work of Sinan’s 85-year-old was known as a work of his apprenticeship period.
Around the Suleymaniye Mosque, there are libraries, hammams, madrasahs, imarets, and shops. Together with the Suleymaniye Mosque, each of them is a part of the Suleymaniye Complex.
Suleymaniye Mosque is one of the most magnificent works of the Ottoman Empire. This mosque and all the mosques that I will mention are not subject to any entrance fees or visiting hours. You are only expected to pay attention to your clothing.
Sultan Ahmet Mosque
Among the most popular mosques in Istanbul visits. It has the first mosque in the world with six minarets. Two of the minarets have double balconies and four have triple balconies.
You can feed the pigeons in the garden with the bird seed you buy.
Fatih Mosque, which was built by Fatih Sultan Mehmet in his own name, is located in the Fatih district of Istanbul, which is named after him. We can say that it is one of the most visited places by the guests come to the city. It is also one of the seven hills of Istanbul.
Fatih Mosque, which includes a madrasah, a library, a hospital, a hammam, and a caravanserai, is among the most important mosques of Istanbul. I have included Fatih Mosque in my list of places to visit in Istanbul as it is an important historical building.
Fatih Mosque was built by one of the architects of the period, Sinaüddin Yusuf bin Abdullah between the years of 1462 and 1470 by command of Fatih Sultan Mehmet ten years after the conquest of Istanbul. Fatih Mosque also has the property of a social complex. (Social complex: a madrasa, imaret, library, hospital, etc. around a mosque) There are 16 madrasas, 1 bathhouse, library, cafeteria, guest house and one hospital in Fatih Mosque.
The construction of Çamlıca Mosque with a capacity of 63.000 was completed in 2019. I could not visit the Çamlıca mosque, which is actually very popular but I wanted to add it because I thought it should be included in the list.
Dolmabahçe PalaceIt is the most important building that sheds light on the last periods of the Empire. When visiting such palaces, if you do not have enough knowledge, you should agree with companies that provide tour services for the palace. Because each room, each engraving has a meaning. People should visit places like this for their meaning, not just for visual beauties.
One of the most visited palaces of Istanbul is Beylerbeyi Palace. It is a palace built by Sultan Abdülaziz in 1861-1865 by the architect Sarkis Balyan in the Beylerbeyi district of Üsküdar, İstanbul.
Add it to your must see list.
The Old Çırağan Palace, built in 1834, is one of the earliest representatives of the Neoclassical style to be added to the Istanbul landscape. It is the symbol of II. Mahmut’s broad reforms.
The architecture of the palace at that time caused a very different and even contrary effect in the Bosphorus environment. Now we have only some definitions and engravings about this. The main section standing at the center and the long side wings attached to it in two directions determine the composition of the palace.
Çırağan Palace, which was built by Sultan Abdülaziz, was also referred to as Beşiktaş Palace for a period of time. The palace, which has a grand splendor and legacy, has become a venue where organizations such as weddings, proms, and parties are held today.
Topkapı Palace is one of the oldest palaces with a very large area that has reached the present day. The construction of Topkapı Palace started in 1460 after the conquest of Istanbul by Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror and it was completed in 1478 after 18 years of construction.
It is located on a very wide area of 700,000 square meters in the Sarayburnu area at the edge of the Istanbul peninsula between the Bosphorus, the Golden Horn and the Sea of Marmara. The name of the palace was “Saray-ı Cedîd-i Âmire” which means the “New Palace”. It started to be called “Topkapı Palace” after the extension and renovation works.
This palace was used by the thirty sultans from Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror to Sultan Abdülmecid and was governed by the state for 400 years.
Surrounded by lush vegetation, Yıldız Palace has witnessed important events in the late Ottoman period. It has a very different structure from the other palaces.
Both the nature and the historical heritage of the palace receives appreciation by the visitors.
Hagia Sophia Museum
Hagia Sophia Museum is the largest Byzantine church in Istanbul. After the conquest of Istanbul in 1453, it was converted into a mosque. Then, it was converted into a museum in 1934 by the order of Atatürk. I can say that those who see the Hagia Sophia Museum, which has a tremendous atmosphere, will be absolutely fascinated. Although I find the entrance fee a bit expensive, I recommend for those who have never been there to go and see the museum.
The name “Sofia” in the name of the building comes from the word “Sophos”, which means “Wisdom” in ancient Greek. Therefore, Aya Sofya means “Sacred Wisdom” or “Divine Wisdom” and is considered one of the three qualities of God in the sect of Orthodoxy.
It was built by Emperor Justinian in the 6th century, the most brilliant period of the Eastern Roman Empire. The cistern with a length of 140 meters and a width of 70 meters has a total area of 9800 m2.
There are a total of 336 marble columns where 28 of them arranged in 12 rows and spaced at 4m 90cm intervals. The height of each column is 9 meters. Column heads are usually a mixture of corent or ion. There are also a small number of columns in unprocessed doric style.
The walls of the perimeter thickness are 4 meters and it is covered with a waterproof mortar called Horasan, which is built with baked bricks. The water of the cistern was brought by Emperor Justinianus from the Belgrad forests located 19 kilometers away from the city.
The cistern which was restored by Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality since 1985, was reopened on September 9, 1987 as a cultural asset that has been renewed.
Panorama 1453 History Museum
Would you like to see Fatih Sultan Mehmet Han conquering Istanbul with animation and sound effects? An enormous atmosphere awaits you. Personally, I was very impressed.
Add to your favorites and don’t forget to go. You’re gonna be glad.
Rahmi M. Koç Museum
The Rahmi M. Koç Museum opened in 1994 and is located in the Hasköy district on the north side of the Golden Horn.
Rahmi Koç Museum has an area of approximately 27 thousand square meters. Car enthusiasts can add here to their favorites.
It is a place where many models of works are exhibited. You can see various works here such as Topkapi Palace, Anitkabir, and Mevlana Mausoleum as a model collectively and get information about them.
Since 2003, it has been one of the first museums preferred by tourists.
Madame Tussauds Istanbul
You can take a stroll in a historic Ottoman and Republican periods in Istanbul, and you can also meet with many names among the international music, sports, and movie stars as well as famous Turkish artists in Madame Tussauds Istanbul where 60 famous names will attend.
It was inaugurated in November 2016.
Istanbul Toy Museum
One of the most important features of the Istanbul Toy Museum is that it embraces the family with all its members. The museum is a place where 3 generations can spend time together and share common happiness.
It should definitely be on your list of places to visit.
Istanbul Maritime Museum
Istanbul Maritime Museum, a historical heritage, is one of the least visited museums of Istanbul. This museum which is located in Besiktas square attracts fewer visitors because of the lack of advertising and people cannot have much information about it.
I am planning to prepare detailed information on this subject in a short time.
Istanbul Archeology Museum
It contains more than 1 million works.
From North Africa to the Balkans, from Central Asia to the Near East, you can get detailed information about the many civilizations that were established in different periods.
Çinili Köşk Museum
In terms of construction date, the oldest building in the Istanbul Archaeological Museums complex is the Çinili Köşk. Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror built it in 1472 in the woods in Sarayburnu and the Topkapı Palace Mosque (Sur-’Sultanî); It is also known as “Glass Palace” or “Kasr-ı Kâşi” because of its tiles adorned inside and outside.
It is known that sports races such as javelin, tomak, and wrestling were made in the area called Ağa Çayırı around it. Çinili Köşk is the only example of Ottoman civilian architecture in Istanbul that was built under the influence of the Seljuks. The architect is unknown.
Vialand (isfanbul) Theme Park
It is one of the biggest shopping and entertainment centers of Istanbul.
Vialand Theme Park has the biggest amusement park of Istanbul.
Established in an area of 100 acres in Florya, Istanbul Aquarium hosts more than 15,000 inhabitants.
Be sure to stop by for a day to enjoy this pleasure with your family and children.
Guests of all ages will see the magical demonstrations of the Dolphins at this show center.
There are not only dolphins but also white whales, walruses and northern sea bears (feathered seals).
Silivrikapı Ice Rink
It has an ice rink with a capacity of 200 spectators and an Olympic ice rink with a capacity of 900 spectators.
There are also fitness, pilates, and gymnastics branches.
Aqua Club Dolphin
I would recommend it for those who are affected by the heat of the summer, who wants to cool off and skate off the slides.
It is among the most visited water parks.