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Top things to do in Istiklal Street

tags: İstiklal Street

Top things to do in Istiklal Street

Editor: Rasim Terzi (Tue, Sep 5, 2023 3:43 PM)

Let's explore the most crowded street of Istanbul

Top things to do in Istiklal Street

Istiklal Street, which is approximately one and a half kilometers long between Tünel Square and Taksim Square, is the most famous street of Istanbul. In the past, vehicles were passing on Istiklal Street. In the 1990s, it was closed to vehicle traffic as part of the pedestrianization project. Historical nostalgic tram services continue on Istiklal Street as transportation. And just like that, thousands of people started to go from one place to another on Istiklal Street. Generally, Istanbulites meet in Taksim Square and then they take the nostalgic tram on Istiklal Street as their guide and enter Istiklal Street.Since there are historical theater and cinema halls on Istiklal Street, men in general ties and suits and elegantly dressed women used to go to such places. Therefore, going to Istiklal Street did not mean wearing casual clothes. But this feature of Istiklal street can be seen today.

Nostalgic Tram

The Nostalgic tram, which was built in 1914, is an important transportation line that everyone who comes to Istiklal street takes a photo of.

Hagia Triada Church 

Hagia Triada church, which means holy trinity in Greek, was built in 1880 with the permission given by Sultan Abdulaziz.With its Gothic style bell towers, everyone entering Istiklal Street can easily see the Hagia Triada church.

Rebul Pharmacy 

Rebul Pharmacy was founded in 1895 by Jean Cesar Reboul on Istiklal Street under the name of Grand Paris Pharmacy. It is the only pharmacy that witnessed the last period of the Ottoman Empire and continues to exist in the place where it was founded until today. But what makes Rebul Pharmacy famous is the colognes with different essences that they have been selling since 1934. Especially Lavender cologne has been in demand by Istanbul men for years.

French Consulate 

There are several foreign consulates on Istiklal Street. The building you will see on the right as soon as you enter Istiklal Street is the French Consulate. In this building, which was built in 1898, in addition to consular operations, French courses and French film screenings are also held. Before this building, there was a plague hospital in this place.Right behind the French consulate, there is the Armenian Catholic Surp Hovhan Vosgeperan church. The church of John the Golden Mouth.

Incı Patisserie

İnci Patisserie used to be located on Istiklal Street. It was one of the patisseries that Istanbulites visited the most. But when the rent for the shop on Istiklal Street became too high, İnci Patisserie moved from Istiklal Street to Mis Street. The most important dessert that makes the patisserie famous is the profiterole dessert. If you are a chocolate lover, you should add İnci Patisserie to your travel itinerary.


Rumeli Passage 

There are many passages on Istiklal Street. The first passage you will see while walking on Istiklal Street is the Rumelia passage. It was built in 1894 by Ragıp Pasha, one of the ministers of Sultan Abdulhamid II. Ragıp Pasha named the passages he built as Africa, Anatolia (Asia) and Europe (Rumelia) because the Ottoman Empire had lands on three continents.There is a tunnel structure under the Rumelia passage, similar to the cisterns in the Roman period.

Agha Cami

It is one of the oldest mosques built in Istanbul. It was built in 1596 by Hüseyin Ağa, one of the lords of Galata Palace. Next to the Aga Mosque is the dated tomb of Davud Agha, one of the lords of the Galata Palace. The mosque, which was destroyed by fire in 1934, was rebuilt.

Emek Passage Circle D' Orient Serkldoryan

Another important passage on Istiklal Street is the Emek passage. The structures in this region were destroyed by the great fire that occurred on June 5, 1870. Sultan Abdulaziz's vizier, Abraham Pasha, decided to buy this destroyed area and build a passage here. Architectural works started in 1875 under the direction of architect Alexander Vallury and were completed in 1883. This building was operated as an Entertainment club called Circle D'Orient. Important statesmen of the period, businessmen, bankers, Levantines and rich people from Istanbul were members of this club building. After the First World War, it became an entertainment venue for British commanders. Due to the financial problems experienced by Abraham Pasha, the Ottoman Bank seized the buildings. The halls of the building, which was purchased by Emekli Sandığı in 1958, were used as comedy scenes for Rüya Cinema, Emek Cinema and City Theaters. For this reason, Yeşilçam, the street name next to this building, is the special name of Turkish Cinema.


HAcı Abdullah Restourant 

Halep ( Aleppo ) Passage 

It was built by M. Hacar from Halep in 1885. At the back was the famous Variety Circus Theater (Cirque de Pera). The passage was restored by architect Campanaki in 1904. It has also hosted Beyoğlu Cinema since 1989.A corner of the Aleppo passage belonged to a Greek family with the surname Şişmanoğlu. Since this family left this building to the Greek state, it is currently used as the Greek consulate general building.

Atlas Passage 

There is the Turkish Cinema Museum inside the Atlas Passage. In fact, this building was the mansion of the Köceoglu Family, the rich Armenian Family of the 19th century. Agop Koceyan, who was a very close friend of Sultan Abdülaziz, hosted his friend Sultan Abdülaziz in this mansion that he had built. For this reason, great importance was given to the decorations of this building. The section that is entered as a passage today was the stable section of this mansion. Later, this stable section was converted into a horse acrobat. Before the Koceyan family died, they donated this building to the Vosgepeyan church behind the French consulate. After the first world war, this mansion was used as the British Military Court. After the establishment of the Republic of Turkey, this mansion was used as the Post Office Directorate. Later, this mansion was opened as an entertainment venue called "Moulin Rouge". Later, theater or cinema screening halls were added to the building.

Flower Passage 

The Naum Theater, the second theater established in Istanbul, was located where the Flower Passage is today. Naum Theater was destroyed due to the great fire that occurred in Beyoğlu in 1870.This burned land was purchased by Hristaki Zografos Efendi, one of the richest people of the period. It was built as a new type of market building under the name of Cité de Péra, under the architecture of the Greek Cleanthy Zanno.Many flower shops were opened in this passage during the Armistice years, and the place, which until then was mostly known as Hristaki Pasajı, began to be called Çiçek Pasajı.Starting from 1940, taverns began to be opened in Çiçek Passage. Today, the tavern culture continues in the Flower Passage.

Galatasaray High School 

In the 15th century, a palace was built in Galata for the education of non-Muslim Converts.According to legend, one day, while hunting on the ridge of Galata, Sultan Beyazid II encountered a dervish named Güllü Baba. Sultan Beyazıt II, who loves his conversation with Güllübaba, says he will do whatever he wants. Güllü Baba also asks Sultan Beyazıt II to build a school in Galata. Thereupon, Beyazıt II builds a school for the education of the converts.This school trained administrators for the Ottoman state for years.Later, in the 19th century, today's Galatasaray High School was built under the name of Mekteb-i Sultaniye, where the school is located.The awards won by this Galatasaray Sports club are exhibited in the building opposite this school.There is a statue in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Republic of Turkiye on the left side of Galatasaray High School.

MIsır Apartmanı Egypt Apartment

The Trocadero theater used to be located where Mısır Apartment used to be. In place of this theater, Egyptian Ottoman Statesman Abbas Halim Pasha had a winter mansion built. It was built in Art Nouveau style between 1905 and 1910 by the Armenian architect Hovsep Aznavuryan.Turkish national anthem poet Mehmet Akif Ersoy lived in this apartment, and Atatürk's dentist, Sami Günzberg, also had his office in this apartment..

Saint Antuan Church 

Although the Saint Antion church was built in 1910, it is the first church that comes to mind when it is called the Catholic church of Istanbul, thanks to its location on Istiklal Street. For this reason, it is a church whose doors are open and active seven days a week.On different days, services are held in different languages ​​at the Saint Anthony church, accompanied by an orchestra.The Neo gothic architecture of the Saint Antion church reminds you of the burned Notre Dame Church in Paris.In the mosaic at the entrance door of the church, the middle Virgin Mary and Saint Anthony, who gave his name to the church to the right of the Virgin Mary, are shown presenting a white lily to the Virgin Mary. To the left of the Virgin Mary is St. Francis, the leader of the Fransizken Catholic community.There is also a statue of former Pope Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli (Ioannes XXIII) in the garden of the church. Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli (John XXIII) preached in the church of St. Anthony before being elected to the papacy.

Syrian Passage

Holland Consulate 

Russian Consulate 

Santa Maria Draperis Church 

Botter House 

Narmanlı Han 

museum of illusion

Sweden Consulate 

Hasan Fehmi Özsüt Breakfast 


Galatasaray Turkish Bath 

50th anniversary Memorial


Fish Market and Nevizadde 


Merkez Khan 

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Tue, Sep 5, 2023 3:43 PM

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