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An update from Evaneos
İstiklal Avenue

İstiklal Avenue (Turkey)

Practical information on İstiklal Avenue

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5 / 5 - 3 reviews
How to get there
A one-minute walk from Taksim Square
When to go
All year round
Minimum stay
A few hours

Reviews of İstiklal Avenue

Olivia Merlen Seasoned Traveller
20 written opinions

Istiklal Avenue is located in the center of Beyoglu, the "modern" district of Istanbul. It is famous for its trams, its shops and its crowds.

My suggestion:
Buy a ticket to ride on one of Istiklal's old-fashioned trams, which are used as much by tourists as they are by the locals.
My review
Along with the Grand Bazaar, the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, etc., Beyoğlu, a district of Istanbul dating from the 19th century, is also one of the city's must-see places. To get there you need to cross a bridge over the Bosphorus, under the watchful gaze of the fishermen, then head for the Galata Tower. After a climb up through the steep streets, you finally arrive at Beyoğlu's famous pedestrianized thoroughfare.
Istiklal avenue's old-fashioned tram system
Seasoned Traveller
13 written opinions

A long pedestrianized thoroughfare running from Taksim Square to Galata Bridge, Istiklal Avenue is one of the essential places to visit in Istanbul, and contains some beautiful modern architecture exhibiting a wide variety of influences.

My suggestion:
Personally, I prefer to visit other districts during the day, such as the splendid Sutlanahmet, before returning to "Independence Avenue" in the evening to make the most of its vibrant, lively atmosphere.
My review
Istiklal Avenue always has a lively atmosphere to offer; it's a place where can spend the day browsing the shops (in which you can find just about everything you could possibly imagine!) then in the evening go out and party until the early hours. Street traders selling fresh fruit juices and, in winter, delicious 'salep' drinks are also to be found there.
Istiklal Avenue's tram system
Clemence Zisswiller Seasoned Traveller
34 written opinions

Covering 1.5km, Istiklal Avenue stretches from Taksim Square to the Galata quarter.

My suggestion:
Take a stroll at the end of the day, when the shops are still open and the bars are beginning to wake up.
My review

It's estimated that a million people a day pass through Istiklal Avenue. Join in the buzz and have a stroll through this fun, commercial hub. Bars, restaurants and shops selling European and American brands sit next to religious centres and numerous consulates. You'll come across fal evi or fortune tellers who'll read your coffee grains. If you're with an interpreter, give this culturally engrained activity a go!

I have and always will be charmed by the red tram that crosses Independance Avenue. With its retro look, it links Taksim Square to the Sirkeci Railway Station. A trip on the tram will give you the chance to see some magnificent 19th Century buildings. The atmosphere along the avenue is only enhanced by all the buskers, who are invariably out in force.

Don't move on from the erstwhile named Pera Avenue without snacking on an Islak hamburger, a local speciality. The donner kebab restaurants at the end of the avenue (opposite the French consulate) serve them. Personally, I'm a fan of the stuffed mussels that are sold on street stalls. A real culinary delight!

Istiklal Avenue is a must during a holiday in Turkey or trip to Istanbul.

The tram crossing Istiklal Avenue.