Although it is a pleasure to watch the Islands afar from Istanbul, it is a completely different pleasure to visit the Istanbul Islands. Istanbul Islands, which have been known by many names throughout the history, are also known as Prince Islands today. Four of the nine islands, each with a different historical, geographical and cultural wealth, are important settlements in terms of Istanbul tourism. These islands are; Buyukada, Kinaliada, Heybeliada, Burgazada.
Istanbul Islands are the places that Istanbul residents seeking peace and calm are preferred to get away from the city stress for a few hours.
Transportation to the Istanbul Islands is provided by Bostanci, Kadikoy, Kartal and Kabatas Docks by City Lines Ferrys. In addition, private transportation companies have island services from Cınarcik, Yesilkoy and Sirkeci piers. In addition, these private transportation companies organize Istanbul Islands excursions for groups.
Islanbul Islands – Big Island 2020
Buyukada is the largest and the center of the Istanbul Islands. Although it has received many names throughout the history, the best known is Kizilada. This name was used because of the color given by the iron mine in the soil.
With a surface area of 5.4 km, Buyukada consists of two hills. These are Yucetepe in the south and Isa Hill in the north. Greeks were mostly living in the Ottoman period. With the republic, most of the Greek origin migrated to Greece by exchange. Some of them stayed here, but especially the state bureaucrats have been the summer and resting places. However, the influence of Greek culture still appears. For example, in the Aya Yorgi Festival, which is celebrated every year on April 23, thousands of people from Muslim, Christian and all kinds of beliefs visit the Aya Yorgi Church for their wishes and wishes.
In Buyukada, it is forbidden to use motor vehicles other than official vehicles. Today, transportation is provided by bicycles and electric vehicles. The traditional icon of the island, phaetons, unfortunately have been removed from service in the recent past due to excessive workload and maltreatment to horses.
The first construction in Buyukada reaches the 6th century. Important structures to be seen;
The first historical building that welcomes those who go to Buyukada is the Clock Tower. The tower on the pier square became the symbol of the island.
Aya Yorgi Church was built in 1751 at the highest point of Buyukada. The two-floored, tiled-covered church has a magnificent view. Although it is tiring to go to the church, the view is worth seeing.
The Greek Orphanage is known as the world’s largest multi-storey wooden structure. It was built as a magnificent hotel in 1898, but it was used as a Greek orphanage because of not being licensed. The building, which is home to about six thousand orphans, is now under the control of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate.
The historic mansions of Buyukada attract attention with their architecture. In addition, the Islands Museum and the Famous Novel Author Reşat Nuri Guntekin’s House of Turkish Literature are among the places worth seeing.
Where is the Heybeliada
It is the second largest and green island of Istanbul Islands. Heybeliada got its name from its resemblance to the saddlebag when viewed from a distance. Turkish, Armenian and Greek all live together. As it has daily visitors from Istanbul, it is one of the most preferred Istanbul Islands for its tourists.
Heybeliada, which consists of 4 hills, has 4 ports. It is the island that is mostly used as a summer resort in the Istanbul Islands. It is one of the places preferred by those who seek calmness and peace with its magnificent nature, clean air, historical buildings.
Important buildings and places to visit in Heybeliada;
The Cliff Monastery, built in 1500, as the name suggests, has a magnificent view on the edge of the cliff.
Heybeliada Clergy School was built in the 9th century. The building, where the cleric was trained, hosts festivals and conferences today.
Beth Yaakov Synagogue and Aya Nikola Church, Ismet Inonu Museum, Huseyin Rahmi Gurpinar Museum are the structures that should be seen in Heybeliada.
For those who want to be in touch with nature, Degirmenburnu Promenade is a magnificent area by the sea, in pine trees. German Bay is the ideal place for those who want to swim.
How to get Kinaliada 2020
The closest of Istanbul Islands to Istanbul is Kinaliada. It got its name from a mixture of iron and copper in its soil which gives it the green color. Like many princes in the history, Romanian Diogenes who failed the wars during the Byzantine Period were exiled to this island.
The most striking in the streets of Kinaliada are the white wooden houses, which are made from judas trees. Unless other islands, it is not tiring to travel since it is less steep.
Places to visit in Kinaliada;
Surp Krikor Lusavoriç Church is the only Armenian church built in 1857. Today, in the summer months, it provides spiritual service to the crowded community who come to the islands for summer holidays. The Patriarchate summer residence and the Karagozyan Orphanage Resting House nearby have architecture worth seeing.
The Kinaliada Mosque has been converted from a church and has an interesting architecture.
You can click Beyoglu and Galata Terrace.