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Hills, Bosporus, history: Most breathtaking scenes of Istanbul

Özge Şengelen

The seven-hilled Istanbul, a city of dreams, one that has been a darling of literature and poems, fascinates you to wander around step by step in each of its streets and cobblestone pavements, to gaze upon it from each of its hills, to be filled with awe at its millennia of history

Istanbul, which has hosted many civilizations from the past to the present, is one of the most important cities of Türkiye in every sense, as it was for any nation that it housed throughout history.

Istanbul, which is a special city in terms of its geographical location, deserves to be visited step by step with its bridges, fortresses, castles, mansions, fountains, squares and palaces that unite the continents of Asia and Europe and adorn the city like a pearl necklace. At the same time, having a bird’s-eye view of the history of Istanbul from its high points and watching unique landscapes is one of the must-do things in Istanbul.

Without further ado, I would like to introduce the places where you can gaze upon Istanbul from a bird’s-eye view, where you will feel as if you have visited Istanbul without getting lost in the crowd, and which will offer wonderful views that you can’t get enough of.

Do not forget to take your camera along. Have a great time!

Golden Horn panorama from Pierre Loti Hill, Istanbul, Türkiye, July 4, 2017. (Getty Images Photo)
Golden Horn panorama from Pierre Loti Hill, Istanbul, Türkiye, July 4, 2017. (Getty Images Photo)
Pierre Loti

Of course, the hill of Pierre Loti is the best place to get a nice glimpse of the view of the Golden Horn. Pierre Loti, which is approximately 55 meters (180 feet) high, takes its name from the famous French novelist and traveler who lived in Istanbul at the time. You should enjoy the beautiful view with a Turkish coffee at the facility located on the hill in the Eyüp district. You can also consider the alternative of climbing the hill by cable car to witness wonderful views.

Galata Tower

Galata Tower, which will appear in all its grandeur as you descend from Beyoğlu to Karaköy, is one of the most popular places in Istanbul. It is very pleasant to behold the tower from the outside, but it is equally fascinating to go to the top and behold Istanbul. Besides its historical importance, the reason the tower is visited so much is that it offers you a unique view of Istanbul when you go to the top.

When you go up to the Galata Tower, you will witness the landscapes of the historic district such as the Golden Horn, the Bosporus, Eminönü, Topkapı and Sultanahmet. At the same time, you can dine or have a drink at the restaurant on the top of the tower, accompanied by the view of Istanbul.

Anatolian Fortress

You can see the magnificent Bosporus view by climbing the hills from the narrow streets of the Anadolu Hisarı district, which is in the Beykoz district. At the same time, you can go up to Anadolu Hisarı Fortress, which gives its name to the district – its other name is Güzelce Hisar – and watch a wonderful view. In addition, you can devour breakfast, food and beverages in cafes and restaurants around Anadolu Hisarı pier.

Ulus Park

Ulus Park, located on the European side of Istanbul, is a destination where you can see the historical peninsula and the Bosporus from the most magnificent angle. From Ulus Park, which was established on the top of the Ulus district. You can photograph the coastline stretching from Kanlıca on the Anatolian Side to Üsküdar. In addition, you can have a pleasant time by breathing the fresh air in the lush nature of the park, which covers a very large area.

Aydos Hill

Aydos Hill, the highest point in Istanbul, has a height of 537 meters. As seen from the height of Aydos Hill, located between Sultanbeyli and Sancaktepe districts, Istanbul is under your feet. You can also easily see Heybeliada, Büyükada and Kınalıada from the top. You can spend a peaceful time away from the noise on Aydos Hill.

Beykoz Korusu

Located in Beykoz on the Anatolian side, the grove is a favorite of those looking for a peaceful place. The Sultan II. French garden architects arranged Beykoz Grove back in the days of Ottoman Sultan Abdülhamid II. There are birdhouses, mansions, centuries-old trees, pools and hiking trails in the grove. I can guarantee that you will take wonderful photos in Beykoz Grove, where you will be fascinated with its unique Bosporus view and 150 decares of green space.

View of Gülhane Park in Eminönü district of Istanbul, Türkiye, Dec.28, 2022. (Getty Images Photo)
View of Gülhane Park in Eminönü district of Istanbul, Türkiye, Dec.28, 2022. (Getty Images Photo)
Gülhane Park

Gülhane Park, connected to the Fatih district on the European side, is one of the locations in Istanbul where you can embrace nature and breathe. Gülhane, which was used to grow roses for the Topkapı Palace during the Ottoman Period, today serves as one of the most beautiful and impressive parks in Istanbul. You can have a pleasant time with the view from the cafes in the park, which impresses not only with its green areas but also with its Bosporus view. You can also visit the Istanbul Museum of the History of Science and Technology in Islam, which is located in Gülhane, while you’re here.

You can visit Istanbul step by step and admire the details of its streets and the delicacy of its architecture, as well as the majestic structures you see when you go up to the heights. No matter where you look in Istanbul, I am sure that you will encounter a dazzling view.

Galata, Süleymaniye, Otağtepe or Gülhane… There are countless places where you will witness wonderful views in Istanbul and they are waiting for you, to be discovered.

Courtesy: Dailysabah