İstiklal Avenue

İstiklal Сaddesi

İstiklal Avenue is the symbol of European Turkey and the centre of the night life. The avenue stretched out from Taksim Square right in the direction of the Golden Horn, being approximately 1.4 kilometres long. In the morning the avenue is still sleeping and there is just a few people. Closer to the night the avenue becomes crowded with local youngsters and thousands of tourists. When the heat is over, one can really enjoy a walk along the avenue, listen to local musicians, dance right in the street or watch how street craftsmen create their pieces of art.

İstiklal Avenue houses numerous boutiques, music stores, bookstores, art galleries, cinemas, theatres, libraries, cafes, pubs, night clubs with live music, historical patisseries, chocolatiers and restaurants. Coffee houses and patisseries attract passers-by with delicious deserts exhibited in the shop-windows. The avenue is for any taste and class, one can find rather cheap dwelling here. But be prepared that you will hardly have quite and peace, evening here is just the beginning of everything!

Buildings standing on the avenue are not either typical or traditional for Istanbul architecture. They mostly date back to the end of the 19th and early 20 century and were designed in Neo-Classical, Neo-Gothic, Renaissance, Art Nouveau and a few even in Art Deco style. Among Europeans who once inhabited this district the avenue got the name Grand Rue de Pera. When the Republic of Turkey was proclaimed, the avenue was renamed into İstiklal which is translated from Turkish as Independence Avenue.

İstiklal Avenue is also home to consulates of numerous states, in particular, France, Greece, the Netherlands, Russia, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Another typical feature of İstiklal Avenue architecture is passages designed in the European style. One of the them is the Flower Passage which is very popular among tourists. People come here to feel the spirit of the old Istanbul.

One more symbol of İstiklal Avenue is the old wooden red tram. This is the only public transport available on the avenue. There is another type of public transport that is worth visiting and trying in Istanbul - Tünel, an underground funicular that was built back in 1875 and has only two stations. You should certainly ride it if you are in Istanbul!

Address: İstiklal Сad.
How to reach: Tünel (NT1)
Coordinates: 41.034261, 28.979106