Uskudar District, Istanbul
Like the Edirnekapı Mihrimah Sultan Complex was built by the instructions of Mihrimah Sultan, the only daughter of Süleyman the Magnificent.
Uskudar Mihrimah Sultan Complex, which was built in the same year with Edirnekapı Mihrimah Sultan Complex, is located at the opposite of Uskudar port.
In addition, this complex was also built by the famous architect Mimar Sinan. It consists of a school for children, mosque and madrasah. The tombs of Sinaneddin Yusuf Paşa and Ibrahim Ethem Paşa are in this complex.
The diameter of the dome of Uskudar Mihrimah Sultan Mosque is 10 m. There are two huge minarets having one balcony reflecting Ottoman Architecture. Its decorative niche was built from marble.
Uskudar Mihrimah Sultan Mosque is one of the most magnificent structures preserving the traces of Ottoman style. There is also a twenty-cornered fountain on the seaward side that is charming people.
There are many sections of the mosque that do not exist today. The madrasah is being used as a health center. This health center consists of 16 rooms and it is called “Mihrimah Sultan Medical Center”.
There are two tombs that exist today. These tombs belong to the two sons of Mihrimah Sultan, Osman Aga and Sinan Pasha.
The only structure that has survived until today is elementary-primary school (Sıbyan Mektebi). A big fire which broke out in the last quarter of 18th century destroyed other buildings.
The other big district at the Asian side is Üsküdar. I used the boat from Besiktas and I strolled around looking at the mosques (the district is full of them) like the big Mihrimad Sultan Camii (1547, pic 1), the Yeni Valide Camii(1710), and the Semsi Pasa Camii(1580).
There were many women having their heads covered, it seemed to me an area full of religious people, it was lovely to stroll around for a while, I had my tea there and it was peaceful to check some peaceful side streets (pic 2). There was no sign of tourists around of course, only locals, most of them kids or old people(pic 3). I also checked the local fish market (pic 4) but I got bored after an hour of walking in the area so I took the bus to Kadikoy, all the buses are located near the port(pic 5), just ask a local
With bus N.15 you can visit some other sights, a few kilometers away from Uskudar like the Beylerbeyi palace (stop at Cayirbasi) and the Kucuksu Kasri.
Among the first things you see upon arriving by ferry at Uskudar are the two mosques on either side of the ferry port, both designed by Sinan. The larger one is the Mihrimah Sultan Mosque, sometimes called the Iskele (Dock) Mosque, built by a daughter of Suleiman the Magnificent; and this smaller one which was built in 1581. Unfortunately, it was in the process of being renovated when I visited in early January 2010. In front, fishermen are busy at all hours plus there's some teahouses that cater for visitors. A great spot.
This large mosque is just inland on the left as you arrive by ferry in Uskudar. It was built between the 1708 and 1710 by Emetullah Rabia Gulnus Sultan, mother of Sultan Ahmed III. The main part of the building is square in shape and covered with a flattened main dome and four half domes. The mosque has two minarets with two balconies each.
Ûskûdar is the only place I visited on the Asian side of Istanbul. The first noticeable difference for me was the much more relaxed atmosphere. There are beautiful old mosques worth visiting and also a very nice market area.
At the time of our visit, there major construction is being done at the waterfront. Because of this, we were not able to visit some of the historical mosques.
It is easy to get there with the sea boat/ ferry.
Uskudar is the old Anatolian (i.e., Asian)-side of Istanbul, the former suburb of Scutari. While most of the Anatolian side is largely newer and, aside from a few buildings here and there, dates from the late-19th century and up, with the largest part by far being later 20th century, Uskudar has a lot of old buildings and is similar to the old city.
The ferry landing is at the core of the old commercial area along thw waterfront, with a number of old mosques, as well as some other very old buildings, fountains, etc., scattered about, and other places nearby throughout Uskudar, along the Bosphorus and inland. There are many resaurants and shops here as well.
In the central market area of Uskudar (the old part of the Asian side of Istanbul) near the waterfront and the Uskudar ferryboat terminal is the Mihrimah Sultan Camii complex. It was designed by Mimar Sinan and built in the 1540s. Like some mosques, it is raised up, requiring one to walk up steps to its courtyard, since it is in the centre of what has for centuries been a densely packed, busy area.
Is it a a subway or not?Yes it s too short but still a subway :) It s about 500metres but we proud with it.
The Tünel is a short subway line in Istanbul, Turkey. It is an underground funicular with only two stations, and an uphill track of approximately 573 meters. The Tünel is the second-oldest subway line in the world, after the London Underground.
The Tünel was opened in January 17, 1875 to provide an easy ride between the two neighborhoods of Pera and Galata, both in the new district of Istanbul on the hill north of the Golden Horn. Many people used to work in the low Galata, and live uphill in Pera. The Tünel, climbing about 60 meters, saved them this difficult walk.
Galata and Pera are now called Karaköy, and Beyoðlu, respectively. The lower station is named Karaköy, and the upper station Tünel Meydaný - Tünel Square (located on the lower end of Istiklal Avenue). A trip between the two stations now takes 1.5 minutes, with an extra two minutes of waiting between operations to allow passengers to board the train. The Tünel has two trains running simultaneously on the same track with two steel cars (with pneumatic tires) attached to each, and their cruising speed is roughly 25 km/h. There is a short duplex part of the track in the middle, where two trains pass side by side and continue their ways to opposite directions.
Today, the tiny Tünel is rarely useful for most of Istanbul's population, although it is still part of the municipal transport network and integrated tickets are valid. A larger (but separate) metro system is available, and other public transportation options include buses, cabs, and even a cable car (see article on Public transport in Istanbul
The Tünel was originally conceived by the French engineer Henri Gavand in 1867. Two years later, in November 6, 1869, he received permission from the Ottoman sultan Abdülaziz to start the project. After finding foreign funding, construction began in July 30, 1871 and ended in December 1874. The Tünel was finally opened for service in January 17, 1875.
When it opened, the Tünel was powered by horses. The line began being powered by electricity in 1910. The Tünel was nationalized in 1939 to become part of the new IETT (Ýstanbul Elektrik Tramvay ve Tünel) transportation organization. In 1971, the Tünel was renovated and modernized, and the original wooden cars were replaced by metal ones.
Nurbanu Sultan, a Venetian in origin, and the wife of Sultan Selim II, was one of the most influential women of the Ottoman Palace. Thus, the Complex built in her name is one of the largest in Istanbul, with features that attest to her reputation. The Complex is also popularly called Eski Valide or Valide-i Atik. It is composed of a group of buildings: mosque, madrasa, convent, boys’ school, caravanserai, bath, Darülkurra, and hospital. Of these, only the mosque and the bath house have retained their original use to date. The mosque interior was enlarged after Sinan completed the Complex. Later additions to the mosque include a royal tribune and a royal mansion, which can be dated to the period of Mahmut II
It was constructed in 1570-1579 .
Catch the ferry to Uskudar and walk up the main street in this bustling suburb. We did, hoping to get to see where Florence Nightingale worked. We did not end up finding it but what we did do was catch a brief glimpse of normal Turkish life away from the tourist area. Walk through the Aga Camii to the main street. We also managed to buy some tea glasses for 6 YTL in a shop (see shopping tip), have a great coffee and pastries and have a fantastic meal at Kanaat Lokantasi. (see restaurant tips).
The ferry costs 2YTL return and leaves Eminonu every 15-30mins up to 11pm.
We didn't have the time (or the energy) to take a full-blown trip up the Bosphorus, but we did want to see Asia, so we took a quick ferry trip from Eminonou (terminal 1) to Uskudar, directly across the way. Refreshments (Turkish tea and water) are served on the ferry, and from there you get some great views of Sultanahmet, the new city, and the bridge that spans the Bosphorus (connecting Europe and Asia.) There are some beautiful mosques right near the ferry port, but we explored a bit further by taking a Dolmus (shared taxi/bus) to Camlica park, or to the base of the hill on which the park sits. A 15 minute walk up the hill (following signs) takes you to the park, where you can catch great views of the city, grab a bite to eat, or just sit and relax.
When you come back, you can get a great economical bite to eat at the pier from the men in the fishing boats - they fry up freshly caught fish and serve it on a roll for 1 million lira (about $.66)
This is a tiny mosque, built in 1506, that's located near the Mihrimah Sultan Mosque in Uskudar. So small, in fact, that men were praying outside on the street at prayer time.