Things to do in Istanbul’s European side

Istanbul is one of the metropolises known and loved not only by Turkish people but by the whole world. Some say its stone and sand is gold, some like it too much to come on vacation and do not want to leave it behind. While it can be a mess with traffic jam and transportation frenzy for the locals of Istanbul, a cup of tea you sip on the shore of the Bosphorus after you leave work or school makes you forget everything, despite all the difficulties that Istanbul gives you during the day.

While its location is of great importance from a geographical point of view, it is one of the important factors that has managed to ensure that many cultures have passed over Istanbul politically for centuries. There is a very true saying for this city, which bears permanent traces from the Byzantine Empire, Ancient Rome and the Ottoman Empire: “Life ends, Istanbul never end.” Let’s examine together the places to visit, special tastes and tips you need to know about the city in Istanbul, which connects the continent of Asia and the continent of Europe, east and west.

Places to Visit in Istanbul

The places to visit in Istanbul are endless. Since it is not possible to mention all of them here, we would like to introduce the most important places to you which can be visited in a short time visit. 

Sultanahmet Square

When you take the tram from Kabatas, you are heading towards the center of old Istanbul. After passing Karakoy, Eminonu and Sirkeci, you reach Sultanahmet Square. You can get off at Karakoy on the way and enjoy the new generation modern cafes, and feel like a city dweller in the mixed layout of Eminonu. Eminonu’s daily pedestrian traffic is around 2.5 million on average. If you are looking for something, this area with thousands of different niche shops can offer you the best possible prices

In fact, you can find pleasant activities to do in every district of Istanbul or a cafe set up under the plane tree to drink tea and relax. Of course, they cannot compete with the fame of Sultanahmet Square. Sultanahmet Square is among the oldest districts of Istanbul since early ages. It contains important historical structures such as the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern, Topkapi Palace and many more.

Blue Mosque – Hagia Sophia – Basilica Cistern
The Blue Mosque was built in the architectural understanding of Mimar Sinan and is famous for its six minarets. The mosque, which was built in the 17th century, takes its place among those that come to mind when Istanbul is mentioned.

Hagia Sophia is a controversial building that is constantly talked about whether it is a mosque or a church. It was originally built as a church, but after the conquest of Istanbul, it began to be used as a mosque. It has recently been used as a mosque. As you can see the traces of past cultures can be found even in the same square.

The Basilica Cistern, on the other hand, is a functional structure built during the Byzantine period with the aim of providing water to the people living in the vicinity. Basilica Cistern, one of the most impressive museums you can see and see, also contains an inverted medusa head. You will smell the history and culture among the seemingly innumerable pillars.

Located at the stop after Sultanahmet Square, Cemberlitas takes its name from the monument from the Roman period. A long column wrapped in a circle is located right next to the tram stop. Cemberlitas is also famous for its baths. You can walk around and enjoy the delightful landscapes created by the melting of many cultures in the same basket.

Istanbul University- Historical Gate
Istanbul University, which is the first university of Istanbul and Turkey, is a very important education center still continuing education and hosting a very important door. The numbers 1453, the opening year of the university, are written on the historical door. While you’re at this door, I suggest you stop by the second hand shops in Beyazıt Square, right behind it. These stalls, where interesting things are sold, reveal once again that Istanbul is a colorful city full of secrets.

Grand Bazaar
After Cemberlitas, it’s time for the Grand Bazaar. The Grand Bazaar is a very important place for commerce in Istanbul. Apart from its touristic target, it also hosts thousands of big and small shops. You can buy jewellery, carpet makers, fabric makers and all kinds of things you wouldn’t even think of from the Grand Bazaar. You can enter the Grand Bazaar, which contains hundreds of restaurants and cafes, through the gate in Beyazit and exit from the back streets of Eminonu. We are talking about more or less 4500 shops. So be ready to get lost!

Istiklal Street-Taksim- Cihangir
Beyoglu, the iconic region of the European side, beats like a heart for Istanbul. In addition to being the center of all culture-art-cinema activities, the region, which is also the center of fashion-shopping, is also an important center in terms of food culture. You can walk along Istiklal Street or take the historical tram and breathe the air of the street. You can stop by Nevizade for nightlife, and you can draw new routes for yourself by walking down the right side of Galatasaray High School. As always said think the most beautiful streets of any city are its back streets with lots of cultural treasures but be carefull at the same time.

Galata tower
Being around Galata Tower, which catches your eye as you cross the ferry and plays an important role in Istanbul’s skyline, is almost enchanting. When such an ancient and immortal structure comes together with human mortality, the spirit of history emerges. You can drink tea in the modest places around it and enjoy this place where you can feel the spirit and breath of the city the most. Climbing to the top of the tower, you can experience a panoramic view of the city. Especially in summer and spring, the top of the tower gets really crowded.