İstiklal Avenue

Address: Tomtom, İstiklal Cd., Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey

From historical patisseries, international brand stores, cafés to hostels and more, the vibrant İstiklal Avenue is packed with tourists from around the globe. People make way for the bright red tram slowly riding along the avenue centre, creating a unique scenery exclusively for Istanbul.

This avenue, known as the “Grand Avenue” exuding half-European, half-Asian cultural aura, was a popular spot for Ottoman intellectuals and European expatriates during the Ottoman era. The “Grand Avenue” was renamed to “İstiklal Avenue” (“İstiklal” means“Independence” in Turkish) by the republic government in 1923 to commemorate the triumph at the Turkish War of Independence. It has slowly developed into a famous pedestrian street much loved by tourists worldwide. The cosmopolitan avenue, surrounded by consulate buildings of European countries, houses restaurants, cafés, boutiques, pubs, bookstores, art galleries, nightclubs and more. They fill this historical street with vitality and fashionable vibes. When you stroll down this 3-km-long avenue and reach the historic Karaköy district at the end of it, you will find the world’s second-oldest subway station that entered service in 1875, worth a visit. Last but not least, never should you miss taking a ride on the vintage red tram along İstiklal Avenue. Then, pick an outdoor café, order a Turkish apple tea, and watch people coming and going in the city with the kitten who just comes to sit by your foot.