Istanbul is the world's only megalopolis that spans two continents. The Bosphorus Strait, which links the Marmara Sea with the Black Sea, separates Europe from Asia. There are three major suspension bridges connecting Istanbul's European and Asian coasts, as well as vapors that run all day.
The Asian side of Istanbul is mistakenly thought to be more "oriental" than its European counterpart in the collective consciousness. The coexistence of different and varied people is what truly stands out in Istanbul and, in our view, is its primary charm. You may go from a traditional area like Üsküdar to a contemporary neighborhood like Moda in a matter of minutes. Because traditional tourist guides typically ignore this area of town, we decided to compile a list of what you can see there.
The Maiden's Tower (Kiz Kulesi) is a must-see landmark in Istanbul's Asian side. It was constructed in 408 BC on a tiny island in the Bosphorus by the Athenian commander Alcibiades to monitor enemy ship movements. Over the years, the Byzantines and Ottomans modified and restored it. After centuries as a lighthouse, it is now one of the city's most iconic attractions, as well as a restaurant accessible only by boat. Maiden Tower is like Galata Tower, but it’s in the middle of the water!
The Asian side of the Bosphorus is extremely lush and residential. By boat, you may see magnificent homes and yalıs (seafront villas). You get the feeling of going from town to village as you ascend the neighborhoods of the Bosphorus.
Üsküdar's district is located on the outskirts of the city. Usküdar is one of Istanbul's most conservative and historic neighborhoods. Unlike Galata, Nisantasi, Kadikoy, or the European Bosphorus, religion is openly exhibited here. There are about 180 mosques in this region. The mosque of Mihrimah Sultan, constructed by the renowned architect Sinan and opened its doors in 1548, is the biggest and best known; another huge and extremely beautiful mosque is that of Yeni Valide, erected between 1708 and 1710.
The neighborhood of Kuzguncuk is located farther north. It's a tiny neighborhood of wooden homes nestled in a valley surrounded by trees. Kuzguncuk takes you to a world where time has seemingly frozen. It was first the Jewish quarter, which left Europe during the Inquisition, and later the Armenian and Greek communities. The majority of its residents are Turks who fled the countryside. There are monuments commemorating the community's history, and it is one of the few locations in the world where mosques coexist with churches and synagogues. The Bet Yaakov (constructed in 1878) and Bet Nissim (built-in 1840) synagogues, as well as the churches of Surp Krikor Lusavoric, Avios Yorgos, and Avios Panteleimon, are among the most well-known.
Bagdat Street is one of Istanbul's most popular tourist destinations. Bagdat Street is a retail center that is open to the public. You'll be able to discover whatever you need there!
A must-see in Istanbul's Asian side, with its magnificent restaurants, cafés, and theme bars! Every year, during fashion week, which takes place in the fall, businesses host large events. During this fashion week, a slew of celebrities goes to Bagdat Street.