Hidden Gems In Istanbul For Tourists
There are dozens of guidebooks and tons of articles on the internet that you can figure out what to do while visiting Istanbul, however they keep repeating the same old cliches. Istanbul is a huge metropole with almost 20 million inhabitants and it has not revealed all of its secrets. Even the locals continue discovering the backstreets; it is not strange for Istanbul to surprise the tourists during their short visit. In this article, we would try to list some of the little-known places in Istanbul which deserve attention.
Balat solely stands as the former Istanbul as you will see all the elements that formed Constantinople in the Ottoman Era. The district was mostly inhabited by the Sephardics exiled from Spain in the Ottoman years and with the neighbouring district Fener where the Greek Orthodox are based the area was populated by the non-Muslim communities. That is the reason you will see many churches and synagogues besides the mosques that are built after the relocation of non-Muslim communities. By the Golden Horn, with unique architecture, streets now are full of antique stores, cafes and gift shops ready to welcome tourists. You may get a boat from Eminonu to get to Balat.
Cihangir and Cukurcuma
Located in Beyoglu, these neighborhoods became the new attraction center for the young, educated locals when Taksim is mutated and is no longer appealing. It is quite vibrant day and night, the cafes and bars are always packed with people seeking to relax and have fun. There are really nice antique stores and shops that you can buy a unique souvenir from Istanbul. Also, do not miss the ‘Museum Of Innocence’ if you have read the famous novel by Orhan Pamuk, Nobel Prize-winning writer.
Kanlica and Mihrabat Woods
Kanlica is a neighborhood on the Bosphorus Strait located on the Asian Side by the Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge. It is a historical district with a very modern vibe, has lots of cafes and seafood restaurants for locals. The quarter is famous for its sugar popped yogurt and reddish mushrooms. Once you climb a little bit from the skirts, you will reach the beautiful woods called Mihrabat. The scenery from the woods is amazing, you may see both bridges on the Bosphorus and take breathtaking photos. It is recommended to have a full Turkish breakfast if you head there before noon, it would be your best breakfast ever.
There is nothing related to the name, this is the perfect spot for the ones who are looking to try different foods mostly coming from southeastern Turkey. You will see various kinds of herbs, cheese and meat on the street, thus the place is a little bit smelly. If you are not much of a hygiene seeker, you can try the ones you like and buy things at very reasonable prices. Do not miss to have a Buryan from one of the restaurants there.