Surrounded by the New Mosque, Egyptian Spice Bazaar, and Bosphorus Strait, Eminӧnü Square is one of central Istanbul’s main transit hubs. The tangled side streets that radiate out from the square lead to tucked-away mosques, clothing boutiques, and bazaars. The plaza’s central location means most visitors will spend at least some time here.
Eminӧnü has been a central district since the founding of Byzantium, when the city grew up around its natural harbor, and has remained a center of transport, shipping, and commerce throughout much of its history.
Many private and small-group city tours pass through Eminӧnü Square on their way to the Spice Bazaar, Galata Bridge, Sultanahmet district, or nearby mosques. It’s also a departure point for some Bosphorus cruises and ferries.
Things to Know Before You Go
Eminӧnü Square is a must-visit for history and architecture buffs.
The area gets very crowded in the afternoon.
Public restrooms can be found next to the Spice Bazaar and behind the New Mosque.
How to Get There
Eminӧnü Square is a transit hub and easy to reach by many forms of transportation. To get here, take a taxi, bus, or tram to the Eminӧnü stop. It’s also walking distance from the historical neighborhood of Sultanahmet. Eminӧnü Pier is one of the city’s main ferry piers, making the square easily accessible from the Asian side of Istanbul.
When to Get There
Eminӧnü Square is always active during the day and becomes downright bustling in the afternoon, so head over earlier to beat the crowds. After the Spice Bazaar closes in the evening, the square becomes very quiet, with most people passing through on their way to a ferry or bus.
Historical Attractions Around Eminӧnü
Stop in the Spice Bazaar when you pass through Eminӧnü Square to explore the historical market’s many shops and stalls. If you wander along the Bosphorus, you will reach Sirkeci Train Station, which was the terminal stop for the Orient Express. Up the twisting streets behind the Spice Bazaar, Süleymaniye Mosque is an Ottoman-era construction that towers above the square.