Galata Bridge

Galata Köprüsü

You might have never heard of the Galata Bridge but you have most certainly seen it in the movies. Sean Connery and Lotte Lenya stand on Galata Bridge in the movie From Russia with Love. In the final scene character of Girl on the Bridge played by Daniel Auteuil was going to jump down Galata Bridge.

Contemporary Galata Bridge is the fifth in this location. At the beginning of the 16th century Sultan Bayezid II considered various designs of the bridge. One of the designs was developed by Leonardo da Vinci but Sultan found the design too ambitious and did not approve it. It is worth mentioning that architects returned to Leonardo da Vinci’s design in the 21st century but the effort to put the project into life was no success again. Another Italian artist, Michelangelo was also invited to design a bridge for Istanbul, but Michelangelo rejected the proposal.

In 1845 when Sultan Abdülmecid moved to the shores of Bosporus he ordered to construct a wooden bridge across the Golden Horn. The mother of Sultan, Valide Sultan, took an active part in construction of the bridge. For crossing the bridge that at that time was called Sultan Valideh Bridge or the New Bridge the toll was charged. This bridge was replaced by a second wooden bridge in 1863, built on the orders of Sultan Abdülaziz during the infrastructure improvement works prior to the visit of Napoleon III to Istanbul. The toll was also charged for crossing this bridge.

From time to time the bridge was repaired and extended until in 1912 it was finally replaced by the steel floating bridge constructed by the German firm. It is the bridge, still familiar to many people today, that was badly damaged in a fire in 1992. The fifth Galata bridge was opened in 1994 and is still used today. In 2005 the electrified rails tracks were installed on the bridge. In the rush hour the tram interval is only a little over 1 minute.

Galata Bridge consists of two floors: the upper floor is for vehicles and pedestrians but in any weather you will also meet there fishing fans. The lower floor houses numerous stores, fish restaurants, coffee shops, hookah bars and tea rooms. Visitors come here to spend a lovely evening enjoying the sun slowly falling behind the roofs of the old Istanbul. In October guests of the city can participate in the Fun Run and take the opportunity to walk across the bridge over Bosporus. Many people come to the bridge to picnics to enjoy the food and splendid views together.

Address: Hobyar Eminönü Mh., Hoca Kasım Köprüsü Sk.
Coordinates: 41.019947, 28.973102