Where to Stay in Istanbul 2019
Best Areas to Stay in Istanbul > Beyoglu, Sultanahmet, Bosphorus
It’s not easy to decide where to stay in Istanbul, considering that Istanbul offers variety of options to its visitors.
Should you stay in Modern Istanbul “Beyoglu” (Taksim, Galata, Karakoy) or Old City “Fatih” (Sultanahmet, Eminonu, Beyazit) or Bosphorus (Besiktas, Ortakoy). These choices have its own pros and cons. Let’s review them in this blog post.
Considerations about Taksim, Sultanahmet, Bosphorus
- Taksim is closer to action and nightlife. (sometimes noisy)
- Sultanahmet is so near to main tourist attractions (no fun at all)
- Bosphorus area is absolutely beautiful and classy. (but too expensive)
Modern “Beyoglu” vs Old City “Fatih”
A Brief Information About Golden Horn
The Golden Horn is a natural inlet connected to Bosphorus. The Golden Horn separates the modern Istanbul and Historical Peninsula (Old City or Constantinople).
Many new hotels have been opened around Golden Horn shores recently. Those luxurious hotels could be alternative to Sultanahmet, Taksim and Bosphorus hotels.
Best Neighborhoods to Stay in Istanbul
Where To Stay in Istanbul > Best Area 2019
Staying in Old City: Sultanahmet, Sirkeci, Eminonu, Beyazit
Best Area to Stay in Istanbul for Families with Kids
Sultanahmet is obviously closer to top tourist attractions such as Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Topkapı Palace and Grand Bazaar. These attractions are located within a walking distance from the Sultanahmet hotels.
The downside of booking a hotel in Sultanahmet is that the area is not lively when it’s dark. Streets get empty and there is almost no nightlife in the area.
This place is to find the peace and take a safe & quiet walk in the night.
Best Area To Stay in Istanbul Old City:
+ Pros: The area is closed to traffic, silent and safe neighborhood. It is nearby the must-see tourist attractions. You can easily get the tram to reach out to Modern Istanbul (Galata-Taksim neighborhoods)
– Cons: The only disadvantage of this area is that there is almost no nightlife here. After 23:00 in the evening, almost everywhere becomes silent and empty.
Recommended hotels to stay: Best Hotels in Sultanahmet
Best Places to Stay around Sultanahmet
Staying in Beyoglu: Taksim, Galata, Cihangir, Karakoy
Best Area to Stay in Istanbul for Young Couples.
Where to stay in Istanbul Sultanahmet or Taksim? A very common question. Let’s check the latter.
Taksim (district name Beyoglu) is nearby Istiklal Street, Galata Tower, Taksim Square and Dolmabahce Palace. There are also trendy neighborhoods around such as Cihangir, Galata and Çukurcuma. These places are adorned with cozy cafés and busy nightlife.
Istiklal Street is a lively area bustling with people 24 hours a day. You should note that some hotels are located in noisy areas. If you are looking for a peaceful night, perhaps you should choose a hotel a few streets away from Istiklal Street.
The fashion boutiques (in Nisantasi), the largest shopping malls (Levent, Sisli, Mediyekoy) located near to Taksim Square. They are accessible with a simple metro ride.
Best Neighborhoods to Stay in Istanbul Beyoglu:
- Istiklal Street
- Taksim Square
+ Pros: It’s where the heart of the city beats. It is closeby both Istanbul Old City and the Bosphorus. Art galleries, cinemas, cafés and bars all around Istiklal Street.
– Cons: Taksim Square and its surroundings are overcrowded during the weekend. The noise of people and cars may disturb you. It’s less safer than Istanbul Old City.
Recommended hotels to stay: Best Hotels in Beyoglu
Best Neighborhoods to Stay in Beyoglu
Local Advice About Where To Stay in Istanbul
You will spend time in both areas for sure. You can easily use the tram, funicular and taxi to commute between Sultanahmet and Taksim.
My personal experience tells me that the best place to stay is the Sultanahmet. Almost everything related to history exists in the Sultanahmet. You can just walk back to your hotel after sightseeing and have a good rest.
You can visit the Taksim after a short taxi ride. You simply join the nightlife around Taksim and Istiklal Street then you can come back to Sultanahmet to have a good sleep.
Staying in Bosphorus: Besiktas, Ortakoy, Bebek
Best Area to Stay in Istanbul for Sea View and Luxury
If you want to be close to the unique beauty of Bosphorus, you can choose hotels located in this area. In general terms, these hotels are in the most expensive category.
Best Neighborhoods to Stay in Bosphorus:
- Beylerbeyi (Asian Side)
- Cengelkoy (Asian Side)
+ Pros: Districts alongside Bosphorus provide a wonderful scenery. Besides the life quality is considerably higher than other areas. Best restaurants & nightclubs are nearby. There is cozy Ortakoy & Bebek neighborhoods.
– Cons: The hotels are expensive and far from the major tourist attractions. It might take a long time to get Sultanahmet because of busy traffic. The roads that lead to Besiktas, Ortakoy and Bebek always busy.
Recommended hotels to stay: Best Hotels in Bosphorus
Best Neighborhoods to Stay in Bosphorus
Both Asian And European Sides. This is a matter of preference after all. All areas are nice; some lively, some beautiful, some quiet.
I hope this short article help you decide about where to stay in Istanbul. I also recommend you to read Best Places to Airbnb in Istanbul post for further information.
Latest Update: 27.05.2019
Written by By Serhat Engül