Buyukada Island What To Do
You may reach Büyükada, the biggest of the nine islands called The Prince Islands, by sea bus or ferry from Kadiköy, Bostancı, Sirkeci and Kabataş. Although you may save time by sea bus, we recommend you travel by ferry, which is an indispensable aspect of this tour. Because it is an authentic taste to watch Istanbul behind you, while you drink tea and share your bagel with the seagulls sailing by delightfully.
buyukada island what to do
Is Buyukada island safe to swim? Most Istanbulites refrain from swimming in the Marmara Sea, except for the locals of Buyukada who pretty much swim everyday and it is pretty much their favorite thing to do.
Located just 200 meters from the shore, the Çenar Konak, with its lush gardens, is a small hotel with 7 rooms to let. The home, which contains its own cafe/bar, has a terrace that overlooks the island and the Marmara Sea. The establishment also offers breakfast. Click here for more details and to make a reservation: Agoda / Booking
Yes, very easy to get to the neighboring island from Buyukada. Both the governement run ferry and the private boat service mentioned in the article stop by the other islands. You can click those links to view the time tables.
How to Get to BüyükadaTo go from Istanbul to Büyükada, you have to take a ferry. The boats depart from Kabataş in central Istanbul. IDO operates the fastest ones that take an hour to reach Büyükada. The slower ones by Şehir Hatları take 1.5 hours. You can also take this tour directly to the islands.
Bike rental costs in Buyukada Island are very much budget-friendly and hence I would suggest you explore the island on your bike by yourself rather than going for the Buyukada tour on horse-driven carriages.It is way better to rent a bike, in this manner you will not only enjoy exploring the island yourself but you will also come across some really cool locations while you are roaming around town going for typical Buyukada tour.I urge all the visitors to be responsible travellers and not support such rides!
A lot of travellers seem to be worried about their safety in Turkey. Buyukada Island is extremely safe for travellers. Most importantly I can say that it is pollution-free to an extent because no cars are allowed on this island. While you are at Buyukada Island your experience will totally hassle-free. You do not have to worry about your safety while you are Buyukada Island at all.How much does the horse carriages cost at Buyukada Island?The horse carriages that conduct the Buyukada tour cost somewhere between 80-120 TL. However, it is not recommended to go for Buyukada tour on these buggies as they keep these horses under pitiful conditions and work them up to death. Please do not support such animal torture by booking for Buyukada tour on these horse carriages. Rent a bike instead.
If you have a lot of time and you wish to explore the other islands too then surely you should. If you are short on time then consider visiting Buyukada Island only because there is as such nothing you would lose out on not seeing the other three islands. But if you see the other three islands and not visit the Buyukada Island, it will certainly be a shame to lose out on it.What to eat on Buyukada Island?There are some really cute cafes and restaurants all around Buyukada Island. Do not miss to grab the Turkish breakfast over here. You must try Turkish tea, coffee and sunflower seeds too.Also, do not forget to have ice creams over here. You get 3 massive scoops in jumbo waffle cones just for 5 TL.
If you are wondering how to plan a day at Buyukada Island, we have a complete itinerary for the same. Consider doing the following things in the respective order.Get down on the ferry dock.Grab an ice cream and walk up to rent the bikes.Rent a bike and start exploring.Have a delightful Turkish breakfast along with Turkish tea or coffee.Go shopping at Buyukada Island.Head to check out the beautiful mansions on the streets.Go swimming at the beaches.Have lunch at a restaurant.Sit at the pier and introspect.Park your bikes and hike up the Aya Yorgi Hill to catch a spectacular sunset.Visit the Aya Yorgi Church and see its beautiful interiors.Head back to return your bikes.Have dinner at a restaurant Buyukada Island.Get an ice cream and head back to Istanbul on a ferry from Buyukada Island.Feel free to ignore any of the above-mentioned things if you do not wish to do them. You can curate your own itinerary on how to spend a day at Buyukada Island like the one mentioned above.Apart from the ice cream and breakfast, do try some authentic Turkish coffee at Buyukada island. It is simply wonderful.
If you are wondering how to plan a half-day trip to Buyukada Island, we have a complete itinerary for the same. Consider doing the following things in the respective order. Do not forget to start your day as early as possible.Get down on the ferry dock.Grab an ice cream and walk up to rent the bikes.Rent a bike and start exploring.Have a delightful Turkish breakfast along with Turkish tea or coffee.Go shopping at the Island.Head to check out the beautiful mansions on the streets.Have lunch at a restaurant.Sit at the pier and introspect.Head back to return your bikes.Get an ice cream and head back to Istanbul on a ferry from Buyukada Island.Feel free to ignore any of the above-mentioned things if you do not wish to do them. You can curate your own itinerary on how to spend a day at the island like the one mentioned above.
During the first half of the 20th century, the island was popular with prosperous Greeks, Jews and Armenians as a refuge from the summer heat of Istanbul. Nowadays the island is almost as solidly Turkish as any suburb of mainland Istanbul.
Historically, many residents of Büyükada were fishermen. However, by the late 2010s tourism to Büyükada swelled enormously as it became a favourite day-trip destination for visitors from greenery-starved Arab countries in particular. The surge in tourism was a major factor in bringing to an end the tradition of using phaetons as the only transport on the island in 2020.
Visitors have been writing about Büyükada since the Turkish travel writer Evliya Çelebi recorded in his Seyahatname (Book of Travels) that there were 200 Greek houses on the island in 1640 and that it was ringed with dalyan fishermen. In 1884 the French historian Gustave Schlumberger published Les Iles des Princes, describing his visit to the archipelago. Ernest Mamboury recorded the sites of the island in his Les Iles des Princes, published in 1943 and Jak Deleon updated his work in 2003 in his Büyükada: A Guide to the Monuments. After leaving the island in 1933 Trotsky wrote an essay called Farewell tp Prinkipo. In 1997 Çelik Gülersoy, who had worked to restore some of the island's buildings, published Büyükada Dün (Büyükada Yesterday). In 2007 John Freely's The Princes' Islands exhaustively listed the historic mansions on the island. In 2009 the poet and translator Joachim Sartorius published an exquisite short travelogue called The Princes' Islands: Istanbul's Archipelago which mainly focused on Büyükada.
Büyükada is 4.3 km (2.6 miles) long and 1.3 km (0.8 miles) wide. The centre of the island is dominated by two peaks. The one nearest to the ferry landing is the Hill of Jesus (Turkish: İsa Tepesi), which is164 m (538 ft) high. The second is the Great Hill (Turkish: Yücetepe) which is 202 m (663 ft) high. The island has several small strips of sand and pebble beach too, the most popular being Yörük Ali Plajı near Dilburnu.
Prinkipo was one of the last places that the Ottomans managed to seize from the Byzantine. It then settled down as a sleepy backwater until 1846 when the first ferry service made it easily accessible from mainland Constantinople/Istanbul whereupon it became an increasingly popular summer retreat for wealthier city residents. Most of its Greek residents left in the population exchange of 1923 or after the pogrom of 1955 and the expulsion order of 1966. Many of the Armenians were driven out in 1924. Just a few Jews still live on the island.
At one time iron mining took place on the island in the area now called Maden (Mine). International tourism to the Princes' Islands was relatively slow to take off but by 2015 was becoming the dominant economic factor.
Until 2020 the only transportation on Büyükada (as on the other inhabited Princes' islands) had been horse-drawn phaetons (fayton). However, the explosion of tourism on the island had made this increasingly unsustainable and, under pressure from animal-rights activists, the decision was made to replace the horses with electric vehicles, bringing to an end a tradition that had made the islands unique in Turkey.
Also on İsa Tepesi is what should be the pride and joy of the island but is instead on its very last legs, the huge Greek Orthodox Orphanage (Turkish: Rum Yetimhanesi) believed to be the largest wooden construction in Europe and the second largest in the world. Originally intended to be a casino, it was built for a French company in 1898 and was designed by the Levantine architect Alexander Vallaury. After Sultan Abdülhamid II refused to allow its use as a casino, it was bought by a woman who donated it to the Patriarchate to serve as an orphanage which it did until 1964 except during the First World War when it was used by the Kuleli Military School. The building was given back to the Patriarchate by the state in 2010 but nothing was done to protect it from decay. In 2021 plans to restore the building were finally announced. In the meantime it is off-limits to visitors. 041b061a72