Eminönü is one of the historical and touristic centers of Istanbul. Many historical centers belonging to the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman periods are located in Eminönü. This region has attracted the attention of all civilizations in history.
The name ‘Eminönü’ means ‘front of customs’. Customs Emirate was located here during the Ottoman Empire. It is thought that the name of the district comes from here.
It has been seen as the center of trade for more than 1500 years. Despite the increase in the number of shopping centers in modern times, this still maintains its commercial importance. Here is important because it is a point where the Bosphorus and the Marmara Sea and the Golden Horn meet.
Eminönü district is like the historical center of Istanbul. Many important architectural structures such as the Spice Bazaar, Sirkeci Train Station, New Mosque, Galata Bridge are here.
Eminönü region is very rich in places to visit and is a must-see district of Istanbul. Eminönü venues with original design will make you feel that you are enjoying the history. We have prepared a list of places to visit in Eminönü for those who want to visit this place.
List of places to visit in Istanbul Eminönü !
1) Gülhane Park
Gülhane Park, also known as “Sarayburnu Park”, has been serving as a park since 1912. It was used as the outer garden of Topkapı Palace during the Ottoman Empire.
In the park is the Goths Column from the Roman Empire. The famous Reform Edict was announced in this park.
Mustafa Kemal Atatürk introduced the Latin letters in this park and gave the first lesson here. In addition, Gülhane Park is known as the place where Atatürk’s statue was erected for the first time.
2) Spice Bazaar
The Spice Bazaar is one of the first places that come to mind when it comes to Eminönü. The bazaar draws attention with its nostalgic atmosphere. A wide variety of products such as flower seeds, spices, plant roots are sold. The scents of all these products are mixed together and create a very different world.
Spice Bazaar, which has an L-shaped architecture, is one of the oldest bazaars in Istanbul. Built in 1660 by Mehmet the 4th, the bazaar has 6 gates.
In the bazaar; there are souvenir shops, spice shops and jewelery shops. It is thought that this place was built with taxes collected from Egypt. Therefore, its name is the Spice Bazaar. The old name of the bazaar is Valide Bazaar.
3) Eminönü New Mosque
One of the most magnificent places to visit in Eminönü is the New Mosque. It is a unique mosque with its architecture, historical texture and location. New Mosque, frequented by local and foreign tourists, was built between 1597 and 1665.
The mosque features white, blue and turquoise colored motifs and Iznik tiles. There are three balconies in each minaret of the two minarets. Inside the mosque, there is a bath, madrasa and hospital.
The foundations of the mosque were laid by Safiye Sultan, the wife of Sultan Murat III. It was completed by the mother of Sultan Mehmet IV, Turhan Hatice Sultan.
Architect Davut Ağa started its construction, but the architect who finished the construction is Architect Başı Mustafa Ağa.
Among the mosques built during the Ottoman period, the mosque that took the longest to build is the New Mosque.
4) Basilica Cistern
The Basilica Cistern is known as the oldest cistern in Istanbul. It is located in the southwest of Hagia Sophia in Sultanahmet Square. It was built by the Byzantine Emperor Justinian I.
The name ‘Yerebatan’ was put by the people: because it is underground. However, it is also known as ‘Basilica Cistern‘ because of the Basilica inside the cistern.
The Basilica Cistern is a rectangular structure with a length of 140 meters and a width of 70 meters. It has a water transport volume of approximately 100,000 tons. There are 336 columns with a height of 9 meters.
The cistern, which was used for a while after Istanbul was conquered by the Ottoman Empire, was not used later.
The Medusa Head is located in the northwestern part of the cistern. We definitely recommend you to visit.
5) Galata Bridge
Galata Bridge is the bridge over the Golden Horn, extending from Eminönü to Karaköy. Attracting attention with its original architecture, it is possible to see people fishing with their fishing rods at all hours of the day. There are also many fish restaurants and cafes under the bridge.
Galata Bridge has a length of 490 meters and a width of 42 meters. There is a 3-lane road, pedestrian road and tram line on the bridge.
The 80-meter part of the bridge is in the form of a scale that can be opened. With this feature, it is one of the rare designs in the world.
It is also possible to see many touristic structures of Istanbul on the Galata Tower; Galata Tower, Topkapı Palace, Yeni Mosque, Beyazıt Tower and city ferries.
6) PTT Museum
PTT Museum is a 3-storey building with an area of 6500 square meters. The historical PTT building, which symbolizes the development of the communication network from history to the present, draws attention with its magnificence and architectural beauty.
On the ground floor of the museum building, objects that have been used since the establishment of PTT are on display. Guns, stamps, stamps, telephone and telegraph machines, mail bags and scales… hundreds of similar objects are exhibited. Stamps from 1900 are displayed in the main exhibition section.
Entry to the museum is free.
7) French Prison
The French Prison is one of the rare structures that have survived from the 1800s to the present day.
The French Prison, a building in Istanbul where French origin criminals are imprisoned, currently serves as a cultural center.
In the past, the prison had 20 rooms, a kitchen, dining hall and even a bath.
The prison, which has been turned into a culture and art center today, is used as theater, painting, music and exhibition.
8) Historical Gedik Pasha Bath
It was built by Ahmet Gedik Pasha in 1475 by Architect Hayrettin. The bath, which has a legendary atmosphere with its historical and mystical texture, is frequented by many tourists.
In the bath, service is provided for men and women in separate spaces.
In the entrance part of the bath, there are traditional Ottoman architect buildings. The washing areas here are made of marble.
There are also services such as scrub and massage in the historical hammam with sauna and pool.
9) Ahi Çelebi Mosque
Ahi Çelebi Mosque is located on the Eminönü coastline. It was built in the name of Doctor Ahi Çelebi, who lived in the heyday of the Ottoman Empire. The architect of the mosque is Mimar Sinan.
The building, which is seen to be divided into two equal parts when entering through the mosque door, draws attention with its different architecture. The first section of the mosque has six domes. The second section has a low dome, colored glass, small balcony and mihrab.