Sundays, when the weather is nice, it is very popular among people in Istanbul to spend the day along Bosphorus. If you are going to Ortaköy for example you should not be in a hurry. I walked between Ortaköy and Besiktas and moved faster then the traffic many times.
traffic is horrible in Istanbul.
my suggest is dont jump front of cars if there is no traffic lights.
Mostly of drivers are driving like a crazy like they have no rules, especially Minubus ( we just have it Turkey) they can be with yellow color or with any color. Bigger than Cab smaller than Bus.
hopefully, we wont have it anymore in 4-5 yrs untill the subway project will be done in anatolia side.
I don't even know where to begin when talking about the traffic conditions of Istanbul. At times, it is downright chaotic, other times, it is at a standstill. Cars whizzing in and out, dodging other cars and pedestrians, creating their own lanes, it's crazy! If you are driving yourself, good luck! If you are riding in a taxi, hold on and pray! And if you are walking around near a high-traffic area, watch out! There are just so many cars in this city, and not nearly enough street capacity to hold them all. I would definately suggest riding the trains and trams whenever possible. In many cases it is faster, and usually cheaper. Even walking is frequently faster here. But if you are driving or taking a taxi during the day, especially in the morning or late afternoon, make sure you leave plenty of time for traffic delays. I have personally sat in traffic for almost 2 hours in a drive from Sultanahmet to Besiktas, a drive that would ordinarily take 10 minutes. Good luck! :)
To my opinion the drivers in Istanbul are the worst drivers i've ever seen !!!.
They are not careful , dont pay attention to the pedestrians and dont care about them.
If you want to pass on a street be extra careful and try to pass when other pass or when there is no traffic and always on a crosswalk.
They dont fasten their seatbelts , bikers ride without helmets , they dont signal when switching lanes , horn all the time.
They are not fake all right , but almost no one respects it . People drive very fast, so when you cross the street , be very careful.
We used to have similar situation here in Yugoslavia untill recently , now we have to respect the law LOL . So my basic instinct got back in Turkey ...I was thinking hmm , maybe I should put this tip on Local Customs section LOL
Not so good, but also exotic feeling I got after learning some drivers’ behavior lessons. At first, if a car moves, doesn’t matter, it is fast or slow, it is necessary or not, it is always peeping. As local friend told me, it is just a warning to go away. In some situations it looked like cars don’t have breaks, just move into you. Even if it is crosswalk, you have to look a few times to walk, some cars are peeping you to move faster from street area or even crosswalk.
The road traffic jams in Istanbul are really terrific - only a few miles will take the bus/taksi sometimes hours.Comparable with Bangkok or even Brussels
Honda and it's security patroll might be a little help.
Riding the Istanbul highways is an unique experience.
First of all remember that some locals have to make money and do everything to maintain a high speed and take priority.
Secondly others will drive at a relaxed speed to keep their vehicles together and reduce the use of gas.
Than there are buses and taxi's all over the place end there is the repeating chaos at toll ports plaza's.
My advice: Have enough gas in your tank, a toll port card that is validated and just go with the flow and enjoy.
There are fixed traffic jams, but the advantage there is that you can buy bread and drinks on the highway in your own lane.
Turkish drivers don't have a great deal of patience. Be careful to cross the road where other people are crossing and I'd recommend you don't attempt to drive here yourself if you are a tourist. Traffic police are everywhere.
Like many other streets around TAKSiM, there is also a traffic jam in Siraselviler Street.
This photo is taken at 04:30 am in Sunday morning. Seems as if it islike in the evening at rush hour, isnt it?
One category drivers on the Istanbul roads is special: Bikers.
Be aware bikers will ride at the ultimate right or left of the road and sometimes go in between the lanes at traffic jams.
... and don't be surprised to see cyclists using the highways too.
I would like to write a list of most important things to check when driving in Istanbul.
1. Do not drive! Yes.. Do not drive unless you are experienced at drivining in Istanbul or similar places..If you desperately need to drive, please check the following
2. almost no one uses signals. so, be prepared to see drivers changing lanes frequently to get one car further.
3. do not expect cars to signal before leaving parking place.
4. when driving on the rightmost lane, continue checking your right mirror. emergency lanes are also frequently used by fast drivers.
5. buses, taxis, and minibuses are also have no sense of traffic rules. they are usually good in driving skills but do not obey rules also
6. do not cross at red light, never
7. when crossing in green light, check the road. A driver may dive in to the road.
8. do not argue with anyone, even if you are right. many people are beaten and killed in Istanbul due to this.
9. if you have accident, try to find someone who knows your language. Police will likely to report you as the guilty since you are foreigner
10. many police officers accept bribes. The exception may be sahins (hawks)..They have bikes and back of their jackets are partly yellow-white. bribe can be given in passport, licence or something like that but not openly.
11. If a police officers wants to fine you, he will eventually find something missing in your car, or against rules..In the worst case, you can be accused for something you do not do if you do not have a witness.
12. since walkways are limited, pedestrians tend to walk in roads. They can even try to cross highways so be very careful.
13. it is often to see a driver coming in the reverse direction on a one way road. Do not expect him to go back, he will not do but this will upset. Let him pass, pull over if it is needed.
14. Horns and flashes are mainly used to swear, not to warn. So be selective when using it..
15. bikes and bicycles are disrespected and sometimes hated. Be extra careful when using. Perverts who drive towards a biker are not seldom
16. Expect the unexpected. They can do happen.
Opinion seems to be divided amongst Turkish drivers as to how roundabouts should be treated, so beware and expect either approach. Many seem to favour the old French rule whereby those on the roundabout stop and allow those coming onto it to have right of way. This, of course, rather negates the point of the roundabout. I am reliably informed (a view provided to a colleague by the head of the Trafic Polis, no less) that they SHOULD be approached as we do in NW Europe - ie, those approaching the roundabout give way to those on it. This of course does not necessarily help if the Istanbul driver in question has not had the same message! So, be careful.
Also, it is worth noting that something that LOOKS like a roundabout is not necessarily a round about. Either way, the mantra when driving in Istanbul must be "anything can happen".
The traffic in Istanbul is quite heavy. You would do well to avoid taxis and use the tramway or walk, especially in the Sultanahmet area. Not only are the places situation nearby, it is interesting to walk around. The places such as the Topkapi palace, Blue Mosque, Agia Sophia,Hippodrome, Grand Bazaar -- can all be covered by foot.
Driving takes some getting used to. 3 rental cars and a police chase later I finally got the hang of it. This is the first place where people honk their horn at the policeman (everywhere) if he doesn't let their side of the traffic move, and he listens. Took me quite a while to adjust back to driving at home, how I miss it.