EMINONU TRAVEL GUIDE

Eminonu is the mirror of Istanbul, it reflects the complexity of this amazing city. It is the transport hub of the city where bus, rail, tram and ferries connect. Probably, 'cosmopolitan chaos' would best describe Eminonu. In daytime, you can see all kinds of people hurrying on the streets of Eminonu: enthusiastic tourists from all around the world, insistent salesmen, bargain huntingshoppers, hurried commuters, singing beggars... And of course pidgeons in front of Yenicami mosque. At night, apart from Sirkeci area where the hotels are, it is deserted.

Formerly it was an independant municipal district of Istanbul, Eminonu is now a neighbourhood of Fatih district. From the beginning, Eminonu has always been a trade hub. Therefore its resident population is low (around 30.000) but with around 2 million population in daytime it is the most crowded area of Istanbul. In Byzantium and than Ottoman Empire periods, Eminonu port was the shipping center of Istanbul. Thanks to the construction of railways and building of Sirkeci Train Station serving trains to European destinations, it has further gained importance.

THINGS TO DO IN EMINONU

It is thought that Eminonu is the place where Byzantium was founded. Eminonu is home to Spice Market, Rustem Pasha Mosque, Yenicami Mosque, Galata bridge that connects Eminonu to Karakoy over the Golden Horn among many other sights.

A 10-15 minutes walk up the hill from Eminonu, Sultanahmet hosts many of Istanbul's highlights such as Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, and Basilica Cistern,

Besides, in Sirkeci part of Eminonu, you can find various and cheap electronic goods and photography equipments at Hayyam Pasaji. In Tahtakale area, a lot of interesting handmade wooden stuff can be found. Cagaloglu is the place, the media center of Turkey until mid-1990s, now there still are some bookstores and print houses where you can buy books cheaper than other stores. Eminonu is also home for the first university of Turkey, Istanbul University. Next to this campus, with its beautiful trees, Gulhane Park where 'Tanzimat Fermani' declared is located.

Eminonu is abundant with local foods. You can find delicious Turkish doner, lahmacun or meatballs(kofte in Turkish) amog any others. The restaurants are quite small but many of them serve tasty foods. Or if you do not want spend much money on food, you can try grilled fish sandwiches, Norvegian mackarel (Balik Ekmek in Turkish) sold on the boats by the ferry dock.

HOW TO GO TO EMINONU

Eminonu is as central if not more than Taksim in terms of transportation.

You can take ferries from main districts of Istanbul such as Besiktas, Kadikoy and Uskudar. There are also car ferries to Asian-side port of Harem. For more information see ferry hours for boats serving the Bosphorus.

Tram is the another easy way of transportation to Eminonu.

Or you can also take any bus with Eminonu name on its sign panel, from almost every point of Istanbul.