BEYOĞLU – GALATA – PERA - KARAKÖY
Also known as “Pera,” meaning “the other coast,” Beyoğlu is one of the first settlement sites in Istanbul. Located on the European side, Beyoğlu includes Galata, a mostly Genovese community and inhabited during the Byzantine Empire period. When Christian communities and expats in the Galata region started moving and settling into areas around the embassies and along Istiklal Street, then known as “Grand Rue de Pera,” the district emerged as a lively neighborhood with the looks of a European city.
Beyoğlu is the place where the idea of cosmopolitan comes alive. Istiklal Street and the surrounding alleys are the center not only of Beyoğlu, but of Istanbul, as well. There are several churches and synagogues in and around Beyoğlu -- more than any other district in Istanbul. In addition to all kinds of entertainment venues, Beyoğlu also hosts cultural centers like art galleries, cinemas, and theatre venues, as well as concert halls.
If you want to see the cosmopolitan face of Istanbul, we invite you to join us on this tour which starts with Taksim Square. We will visit Hagia Triada Church, which is the largest Greek Orthodox Church, and St. Anthony’s Church, which is the largest Catholic church of Istanbul, while we stroll along Turkey’s most famous street. We will discover the alleys of Nevizade and Asmalımescit, the center of entertainment. We will continue our tour by visiting Galata Dervishes House that was built in 1491 and is the first Sufi monastery in Istanbul; the building has been restored as a museum today.
We will visit the Pera Palas Hotel associated with the Orient Express and known for its decorations and historical fabric. The Galata Tower was built by the Genovese and is the best place to enjoy the panoramic view of Istanbul up and above the city.
The backstreets of Galata beg to be explored, and we will walk all the way down to the shore in Karaköy. You will encounter a different trace of the culture -- buildings with unique character, history, and architectural beauty -- on each street. You will next take a journey in the colorful world of Karaköy, the hippest district of Istanbul nowadays with its narrow streets, examples of graffiti street art, and its chic cafes and bohemian boutiques.