Istanbul is a large city, and there’s plenty to see. You might not be able to experience everything in one visit, but choosing the right area to go to can help to make your trip as memorable as possible. Kadikoy is a place that should not be overlooked by those who visit Istanbul. Because there are many things to do in Kadikoy regarding dining, shopping and nightlife.
Kadikoy has to be the best area to visit in the Asian side of Istanbul, offering a neighborhood where a lot is happening but there are fewer tourists to contend with. It really is the place to go if you’re looking for somewhere in Istanbul to live like a local, and it’s super easy to get to as well.
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Why Visit Kadikoy?
Anyone who would prefer to stay away from the more touristy areas of Istanbul should consider spending time in Kadikoy. It’s an excellent place to pick if you want to find out how locals live and discover some of the local population’s favorite places to eat, drink, shop and find entertainment.
This area is up-and-coming, and described by many as a hidden gem. With easy and regular connections helping you to get there and plenty to see and do, you don’t want to miss out on this atmospheric area that both offers some peace of quiet and has lots going on.
One thing worth noting about Kadikoy is that this district is home to “Ciya Kebap”, which is ranked among the best restaurants in Istanbul. However, what Kadikoy promises is of course much more than that. Especially for those who want to try street food.
How to Go to Kadikoy?
Going to Kadikoy is both easy and fun. You can take a ferry ride to reach Kadikoy from touristic places such as Taksim and Sultanahmet. It takes about 20 minutes to get to Kadikoy by ferry, and this journey promises wonderful Bosphorus views.
In order to get to Kadikoy from Sultanahmet (Old City), you must first go to Eminonu. You can get on the ferries that depart every 20 minutes from the Eminonu-Kadikoy ferry port, which is very close to Spice Bazaar.
In order to get to Kadikoy from Beyoglu (Taksim and Galata), you must first go to Karakoy. You can get on the ferries that depart every 20 minutes from the Karakoy-Kadikoy ferry port, which is very close to the Galata Bridge.
On the other hand, another way to get to Kadikoy is to take the Marmaray, a passenger subway that runs under the Bosphorus. However, as an insider, I recommend the ferry. Because you can watch the Bosphorus and take beautiful photos during the ferry ride.
Top Things to Do in Kadikoy
There are so many great things to do in Kadikoy, whether you want to shop, enjoy food and drink, or perhaps just explore the area on foot. Shopping is a great way to experience the neighborhood like a local.
The fish market is where you can find everything from delicious sandwiches and nibbles to fresh fish to take away and cook. If you prefer a different type of shopping, Bahariye Street is fantastic for clothes shopping. Let’s go into detail about how you can have a great time in Kadikoy.
Shop Like A Local in Kadikoy
One of the top reasons to visit Kadikoy is that it’s a superb area for living like a local. Many travelers don’t want to experience a city like a tourist. They want to see how the locals live, watch them going about their days, and perhaps try to get a taste of what it’s like to live in the city permanently.
If you count yourself among these people, you should spend some time in Kadikoy. It’s welcoming to visitors but still retains its local flavor, so it’s ideal for observing local life.
You can shop like a local in Kadikoy, especially at the Fish Market. You can buy Turkish baklava from Sekerci Cafer Erol here. You can also buy Turkish delight from Ali Muhittin Hacı Bekir, an 18th century lokum shop. You should also visit the pickle shops and taste the varieties.
If you want to taste Turkish coffee, you are in the right place! Because there are many delicious cafes that cook Turkish coffee on embers near the Fish Market. Among them, Fazil Bey’s Turkish Coffee is quite famous.
Bahariye Street is an ideal place if you want to shop like the locals in Kadikoy. Here, you can buy clothing made of quality materials for cheap. You can find designs of famous brands for cheap in the passages of Bahariye Street.
Additionally, some of the best shopping malls in Istanbul are located in Kadikoy. For more information on this subject, you can review the shopping streets and malls near Kadikoy. You can also find the streets to shop for cheap clothing in this article.
Strolling in Moda Neighborhood
Or if you’re looking for more food and drink, Moda is an amazing area for a stroll, with some of the best speciality coffee shops and the best breakfast places in Istanbul. Coffee shops are excellent places for a break, when you need to sit down and catch your breath.
Moda, as one of Istanbul’s liveliest districts, has its own unique vibe. There are creative next-generation cafes here, such as Walter’s Coffee Roastery, inspired by the Breaking Bad series.
On the other hand, if you are looking for a more traditional Turkish patisserie, you can choose Asuman. This patisserie is popular enough to be in the top 10 among the best dessert shops in Istanbul.
Nightlife, Food and Turkish Bath in Kadikoy
Many famous bars of Istanbul have moved to Kadikoy for the last few years. For this reason, Kadikoy is one of the most colorful places of nightlife in Istanbul. There are many bars especially in Kadife Street and its surroundings.
Ciya Kebap is one of the best restaurants in Kadikoy. Ciya is so popular that it has three branches on the same street. You can see this restaurant highly recommended in guidebooks like Lonely Planet.
Kadikoy has been one of the popular places for street food tours in Istanbul in recent years. Popular food tours such as “Taste of Two Continents” highlight Kadikoy on the Asian Side.
You can find the most popular street foods of Turkish cuisine such as doner, kofte, kokorec and pide in Kadikoy. For more information on this subject, I can recommend the article on best street food in Istanbul.
Fenerbahce and Bagdat Avenue
Fenerbahce is a popular neighborhood within Kadikoy. It’s one of the best area to have breakfast in Istanbul with the seaview. Midpoint in Fenerbahce is my favorite breakfast place as an Istanbulite. After breakfast here, you can walk in Fenerbahce Park and enjoy the wonderful sea view.
Badgat Avenue is a 15 kilometer shopping street stretching from one end of the district to the other. The street has shopping malls, department stores, clothes stores and much more for you to explore.
It’s also where you will see some excitable celebrations, including a cultural parade on Republic Day on October 29. When the local football team Fenerbahce SK wins the Turkish Super League championship title, you’ll also find fans celebrating here.
There’s plenty to do in Kadikoy when you visit Istanbul. If you’re looking for a more accurate look at what living in Istanbul is like, Kadikoy is the place to be. You can live like a local and go home with some great memories.
In the picture above, you can see the Kadikoy pier and its landmark, Haydarpasa Train Station. At the beginning of the article, there is another image where this structure is seen more clearly. Also at the far end of the picture are the Princes’ Islands.
Written by Serhat Engul