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You can’t really go hiking in Istanbul, but…
There are some very beautiful parks in Istanbul, places you can go for walks in Istanbul. That’s the places I’m going to talk about in this article. Apart from that I’m also sharing some of my favorite routes for sightseeing walks in Istanbul. Being the most populous city in Europe, Istanbul is a crowded place. So, if you are looking for some peaceful place in the city, then this is for you.
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Where to Go on a Walk in Istanbul?
What are the best options for “hiking” in Istanbul?
What are the best places for walking in Istanbul?
1. Gulhane Park
TIME: 1-2 hours
Not a very big park for other cities, but for Istanbul it’s huge.
Opened to the public in 1912, Gulhane park is one of the biggest parks in the city, and also the oldest park in Istanbul. Situated right behind the world-famous Hagia Sophia, it’s also a very accessible place. You can easily walk there from Sultanahmet and Taksim, two of the most popular districts in Istanbul for tourists
Read more: Gulhane Park in Istanbul is Beautiful
2. Area of Kadikoy (Asian Side of Istanbul)
DISTANCE: up to your preference
It’s just a perfect place for a walk, run or bike ride.
Once you arrive to Istanbul Asian side, you can start your walk. Nice pathways start right from the pier, and continue along the coastline for miles. You can easily rent a bicycle or electric scooter in several places along the way. It’s all flat, and you can do as you wish — walk for 30 minutes, an hour or several hours.
In most situations ferry will be the best and also the fastest option to get from Istanbul European side to the Asian side. It’s right there, next to the Galata bridge, and it’s cheap. Just walk to the Eminonu station / pier, and take a ferry going to Kadikoy.
Read more: Go On a Walk on Asian Side of Istanbul
3. Fenerbahce Island and Park
A small and beautiful park in Istanbul.
It’s a nice and relaxing place for a peaceful walk or chilling on Asian side of Istanbul. You can either take a taxi to get there, or take a bus and walk, or you can walk all the way from Kadikoy. There are a few cafes in and near the park, as well as a few public picnic tables, if you’re up for a lunch or dinner.
Read more: Fenerbahce Island and Park, Istanbul
4. Emirgan Park
TIME & DISTANCE: around 4.4 miles / 7.1 km in total (around 90 minutes). That includes walk to Ataturk Kent Ormani park.
For this one park alone plan some 45 – 60 minutes.
Emirgan park is one of the largest public parks in Istanbul.
It’s situated on the European side of Istanbul, and can easily be reached by public transportation. Most of travelers who have heard of it, know it thanks to the Emirgan Park tulip garden. This is the park where every year in April International Istanbul Tulip Festival takes place. Other than that, it’s just a very nice place for a walk in Istanbul.
5. Atatürk Kent Ormanı Park
It’s a huge public park in Istanbul.
The best part is that you easily reach this park by metro. There is a direct line going from Taksim, and it takes only minutes to get there. For long walks this is the best place to head to.
6. Area of Balat Park (on the Coast)
DISTANCE: up to your preference
A beautiful place for a walk on the coast.
It’s busy and can get crowded, but this is Istanbul.
7. Very Easy Walk Close to Taksim
DISTANCE: around 6.5 miles / 10.5 km
Istanbul is known as the City on the Seven Hills.
And it does feel that way whenever you’re walking somewhere. Especially if you’re staying in the area of Taksim square. However, it doesn’t mean that you can’t go on a walk which doesn’t involve walking up and down the hills, you can. Here’s one option — a beautiful and easy walk in Istanbul (without any hills). At the end we walked back to Taksim square, and that involved a couple of hills. You can take also a taxi or bus back.
Read more: Beautiful And Very Easy Walk in Istanbul
8. Craftsmen Park Viewpoint
All the noises, traffic, people, steep and narrow streets.
It can quickly get overwhelming in Istanbul, especially if you aren’t used to it. That’s just one of the reasons to love places like this one, where you can find a little bit of piece. Situated a short walk away from Taksim Square, Craftsmen Park offers both a bit of relaxation and beautiful views of the Bosphorus.
The park is small, and there are only a couple of benches. But you can still sit on the grass there, even if there aren’t any free benches, and enjoy your time watching the Bosphorus. Watching the ships coming and going from the Black Sea.
Read more: Craftsmen Park: Viewpoint Near Taksim Square
9. Fethipasa Sosyal Tesisleri and Nakkastepe Millet Bahcesi
There are two very beautiful parks on Asian side of Istanbul.
Fethipasa Sosyal Tesisleri and Nakkastepe Millet Bahcesi. Well, of course, these aren’t the only ones. They are just two of the closest ones to Taksim, they are close to each other and they offer beautiful views of European side of Istanbul. And if you love scenic city walks, you’ll enjoy visiting these two during your time in Istanbul.
Fethipasa Sosyal Tesisleri park is the nearest one. Nakkastepe Millet Bahcesi is about a mile / 1.6 km (and a few hills) away. Walking between them gives you a glimpse into what life on Asian side on Istanbul looks like. It’s a very lovely part of Istanbul.
Have you been to Istanbul? Did you go hiking in Istanbul or somewhere nearby? What was your experience? Did you go to any of these places mentioned above?
Book Your Trip Like a PRO
1. Book Your Flight. Find cheap flights using Kiwi.com, Momondo.com. Or subscribe to Dollar Flight Club, if you don’t want to be searching for the flights yourself. Momondo usually is my first choice.
2. Book Your Accommodation. Booking.com, Agoda.com and Airbnb. I use Booking and Agoda at least a dozen times a year, and Airbnb – when looking for a long-term stay. My best tip is to ALWAYS compare the price. Sometimes the same hotel is cheaper on Booking.com, other times – on Agoda. Always compare the price!
3. Buy Your Travel Insurance. World Nomads and SafetyWings are two companies I can recommend. World Nomads offers some extra benefits, that will be important for those doing some higher risk activities, while SafetyWings is significantly cheaper. SafetyWings is only $9.25 / week.
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