Bosphorus Ferries, Istanbul
I chose to do the Bosphorus cruise with the public ferry. It departed at 10.35am and back in Istanbul at 4.30pm.
This cruise is very popular, so make sure you arrive early.
I arrived half hour early, and already the queue was long. They started letting you on not long after I arrived, later, people were standing!
The ferry pulls in at a few wharfs on the way, to on/off load passengers, before its arrival at Anadolu Kavagi. This is as far as it goes. You have enough time here for lunch, and for a walk to the Castle ruins, so it works out just fine. The sights are wonderful from the water, you get to see so much.
On the ferry there is a kiosk where you can buy food & drinks. A steward also comes around selling tea/coffee and Yoghurt.
It is best to sit on the left hand side, this way you are not looking into the sun, so you can get good photos.
It departs from the Eminonu wharf.
There are three departures each day—10:35am, 12:00 noon, and 13:35 (1:35pm)
Leaves from Eminonu 10.35am, Besiktas 10.50, Kanlica 11.15, Yenikoy 11.30,
Sariyer 11.45 Rumeli Kavagi 11.55, Anadolu Kavagi,12.05
These are the times for the ferry that I caught.
COST IN 2009 was 20t/l
Departs 10.30 - Returns 4.30pm
Almost all the cities with a river have boat trips in it. Mostly times with good reasons, because people "live" the rivers and most interesting spots are at their edges.
Some other times, only... because!
Bosphorus is one of the first, where the main monuments in the hills show another perspective from distance, and the coast reveals new beauties we didn't notice inland.
One great and relaxing experience is to take a ferryboat trip up or down the Bosphorus on one of the old ferryboats. Ferryboats run from Eminonu pier and go most of the way up the Bosphorus, stopping at various places on both shores on the way. It's a great, relaxing way to visit the areas along the Bosphorus while it provides an interesting and different view of the city. There is also a constant supply of hot tea available (of course) and the boats are quite comfortable. They still use lovely old ferries as well as some newer ones.
I'm always taking the regular ferry going to the asian side of the city, also there are lots of private as well as the government run ferries that tour the bosphorous but the Turyol would be my pick. I juz took it in my recent visit of Istanbul.
It's a one and a half hour tour, the ferry goes around the bosphorous and you'll get to see sights near the shores - fortresses, castles, mansions, mosques etc., then goes back to Galata bridge where you started.
Cost is TL12 and it's a great way to see Istanbul especially if you have a limited time. The ferry leaves every hour from noontime til about 7:00pm (last trip).
Don't forget to bring your camera with you or videocam as there are really nice sights along the shores. Don't tell me I didn't remind you!
How to find it:
From Sultanahmet, take the tram and get off at the Eminonu tram station, walk underpass, take the the left stairs up and emerge at the iskelesi, continue walking under the bridge & ul see the floating fish sandwich boat, ticket booth (Turyol Bogaz Turu) is located next to it.
Take a boat ride along the Bosphorous straits. The Marmara Sea and the Black Sea meet at certain points. The Asian and the European sides are on either side and this entire stretch is so picturesque. Do take a guide along or hop on to a guided ferry. The ferries start from the Golden Horn area.
You can take the boat which makes a round tour in Bosphorus. It is the best way to see both Asian and European sides of Bosphorus while the boat goes quite close to the shoreline. The boat trip starts from Eminonu (European side), but it also collects passengers from Uskudar (Asian side). It takes about 90 minutes. Don't assume that it is only preferred by tourists. You will find the boats filled with locals who want to enjoy the fantastic Bosphorus panaroma with some sea breeze. The cruise costs 12 TL per person and only cash is accepted.
There are number of trips available. Unless you have money to burn or wish to do the night time photo shots, the day time ferry rides are worth it. We travel as four so the price will never be cheap. Turn up at the harbour side Eminönü ferryboat docks. Small ferries or large. Get there early if you want a good site and take the sun tan lotion. You will burn while waiting for the boat to fill. Be warned. Where you wait to board the boat does get really hot inside and packed.
We paid 100 lira (Turkish) round trip for 4. The ride of 90 minutes plus is excellent.
Anadolu Kavağı is the last stop. I mentioned hills and steepness! It prepares you for the climb to come. This one is really steep, like lean fore-ward and hope your legs take the strain. Its funny to! You do the walk in stages through some cafes and stall sellers, but the view is impressive and you can enjoy lunch. Is cheaper up the hill, than by the ferry dock. Do take your camera for this trip.
Shorter boat ride is good to and prepares you for the photo opportunities on the longer ride. Look for the houses fashioned from wood on the right side of the boat as you depart. Pick up a leaflet before departing.
Don't get of the boat and just enjoy the ride there and back. Food and drink available or pack your own. Have ID if you wish to use the tapes available or you pay a big deposit, refundable.
All trips are booked without a third party involvement. Pay at the ferry station.
Recommend this ferry trip for anyone visiting Istanbul. The Government run ferry (Turkish Maratime Lines)departs Eminonu 2 or 3 times daily for the return trip along the Bosphorus. The 3 hour ferry trip we took stopped for 1 hour at Anadoulu Kavagi, the half way point, for passengers to alight to enjoy lunch or just enjoy the sights of this small fishing village on the Bosphorus.
The ferry provides the opportunity to quickly enjoy the Bosphorus waterfront, the many palaces from past times, the modern luxury villas and apartments built overlooking the Bosphorous. The ferry passed under some magnificent bridges, we also sighted an old fortress, countless marine craft including a submarine.
A most enjoyable 3 hours.
Cruising on the Bosphorus is an unusual experience.
Going up on the left you see Europe, on the right you see Asia.
The cruise lets you see many palaces, buildings, homes, slums etc of the area.
At the top end you are greeted by restaurant owners waving to get you to their restaurants for lunch.
The village is wonderful, the locals friendly and there is a Naval Commando Base just north of the village.
Ortakoy is a very lively spot on European side of Bosphorus. Many cafes, restaurants, shops and art galleries are located in this area. There are boat trips organized regularly which make a roundtrip between the two bridges on Bosphorus. The tour takes about 30-45 minutes. When you catch a good weather, don't miss this beautiful boat trip and you will definitely enjoy the fresh air and the sea.
Take a public ferry up and down the Bosphorus. Jump off if you want to eat, drink, or look around somewhere (wait till the boat stops at a pier, of course).
Very cheap, very fun. Just buy a token (jeton) each time you get on.
They have eats & drinks on the boats as well.
It's a great way to see outlying parts of the city and villages further up towards the Black Sea. You'll be amazed by the other traffic on the waterway, especially if you pass a big tanker. Impressive!
If you visit in the summer, the trip will be a great escape from the heat of the city. Any other time, make sure you have clothes to keep you warm enough!
I'm not keen on singling out "must do" things, but I'm inclined to make an exception for this
The Bosphorus cruise ferry goes from Eminonu, the boat takes the asian side oneway and the european side on return . Duration was 2 hours and fare 9 TL. The cruise i was on turned at the Fatih bridge, there is another cruise that takes 3 hours and goes further up past the 2nd bridge. A tea and orange seller is on board.
...this is juz a continuation of the previous Turyol ferry bosphorous tour. I took some photos of the sights along the shores of the mighty bosphorous.
So if you have limited time (or even not), don't miss this one, it's highly recommended.
At YTL 7.50, you'll see really great building, castles, fortresses and gorgeous mansions.
At some point in a trip to Istanbul, you have to get out on the water and see the city from a boat. There are cruises available but you can also just hop a ferry going from one of the city's three sides to another. I got on the wrong ferry and took about an hour after it landed to figure that out. But I got to see parts of the city I hadn't planned on seeing and still enjoyed the ferry rides.
This is a great boat trip up and down the Bosphorous, near the sides so that you can see things - it goes up to the Rumeli fortress and then turns around. It takes about 1.5 hours round trip, with only one stop of about a min, and only costs 7 TL - well worth the cost. The boat is large with two levels and a nice man walks around selling snacks and beverages. The tea is in big glasses and costs 1.5 TL. There is no commentary about what you are seeing, but if you have a guidebook there is no problem. We really enjoyed the trip, kids would too. I think the boats run every hour on the hour from noon until 4 or 5 pm. But get on the boat early if you can to get the best seats. These trips are also interesting to see cute Turkish couples cuddling - it seems a very romantic trip for them!
Go to the Eminonu ferry dock area, to the left of the Galata Bridge. (you can get to this area by using the underpass walkway from the tram station or across the street by the Yeni Mosque). Ignore the people trying to sell you boat trips and walk (not far) past the area where people are eating fish sandwiches sold out of boats until you see the little booth that says "Turyol" where tickets are sold. The boats are just behind this booth.
More info from the Turkey Travel Planner website: http://www.turkeytravelplanner.com/go/Istanbul/Sights/Bosphorus/turyol.html