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Galata Tower (Galata Kulesi)

Istanbul’s medieval lookout point offers panoramic views across city’s historic district and the water of the Golden Horn.

When it was built, the stone Galata Tower was the tallest structure in Istanbul, its nine stories rising high to nearly 220 feet (67 meters).

The Galata Tower was known as “Tower of Christ” when it was erected in 1348. It was later used by the Ottomans as an observation tower from which to spot fires. The tower was damaged by two major blazes in the 18th and 19th centuries. Since its latest large-scale restoration in the 1960s, the tower has been opened to the public and now offers visitors a great vantage point from which to see the city and the Bosphorus.

Climb the tower to access the outdoor panorama balcony. From here you will get a different perspective of the landmarks that define Istanbul. Take in the strait that divides Europe from Asia, and cuts straight through Istanbul. The Galata Bridge connects the two continents and can be seen as well.

See if you recognize other famous sites, such as Topkapi Palace, the minarets and dome of the Hagia Sophia, and the Blue Mosque. The ambiance at the top of the tower is enhanced by the regular calls of the imam from the loudspeakers of the nearby mosques, reminding all Muslims to come to prayer.

It is clear where the Golden Horn, a natural harbor, get its name from when you view it from the Galata Tower at sunset. Relax at the restaurant and café on the upper floors and consider a visit to the nightclub at the top. Turkish night shows at the tower mix harem-style entertainment with folk dancing in a display of color and energy.

Galata Tower is on the north side of the Golden Horn, in Beyoğlu, Istanbul’s “New Town,” and is accessible by public transport. The balcony of the tower is open daily, with longer hours in the summer months. There is a lift to the seventh floor, but you will have to climb the last two flights of stairs to the top. The restaurant is very popular, so book ahead if you can. Entry to the tower is half price on Mondays.


Guide to Exploring Galata Tower


Map

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See all 3,213 properties near Galata Tower
Pera Palace Hotel £96
Pera Palace Hotel

Pera Palace Hotel

Mesrutiyet Cad. No. 52, Tepebasi Beyoglu, Istanbul, Istanbul
     
    5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Taksim, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Pera Museum, Istiklal Avenue and Galata Tower. Istanbul Cruise Ship Terminal is 0.8 mi (1.2 km) away. Tunel Square Station is 6 minutes by foot and Tophane Station is 10 minutes.

    Hilton Istanbul Bosphorus £90
    Hilton Istanbul Bosphorus

    Hilton Istanbul Bosphorus

    Cumhuriyet Caddesi, Harbiye, Istanbul, Istanbul
       
      5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      This family-friendly Istanbul hotel is located in the entertainment district, within 1 mi (2 km) of Acibadem Taksim Hospital, Taksim Square and Dolmabahce Palace. Galata Tower and Istiklal Avenue are also within 2 miles (3 km). Taşkışla Cable Car Station is 14 minutes by foot and Taksim Station is 16 minutes.

      Exe Adahan Galata £32
      Exe Adahan Galata

      Exe Adahan Galata

      Asmali Mescit Mah. General Yazgan, Sokak No:14 Beyoglu, Istanbul
         
        4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Taksim, this spa hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Istanbul Modern Art Museum, Galata Tower, and Pera Museum. Taksim Square and Istiklal Avenue are also within 1 mile (2 km). Tunel Square Station is only a 3-minute walk and Karakoy Station is 10 minutes.

        Novotel Istanbul Bosphorus £70
        Novotel Istanbul Bosphorus

        Novotel Istanbul Bosphorus

        Kemankes Caddesi No: 57-59, Karaköy - Beyoglu, Istanbul
           
          5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Istanbul City Center, this luxury hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Galata Tower, Istanbul Modern Art Museum and Spice Bazaar. Taksim Square and Grand Bazaar are also within 2 mi (3 km). Tophane Station is 5 minutes by foot and Karakoy Station is 7 minutes.

          Corinne Art & Boutique Hotel £47
          Corinne Art & Boutique Hotel

          Corinne Art & Boutique Hotel

          Turnacibasi Cad. Ayhan Isik Sok. No: 41, Beyoglu, Istanbul, Istanbul
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Taksim, this historic hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Demiroren Istiklal and Istiklal Avenue. Taksim Square and Pera Museum are also within 10 minutes. Taksim Station is 8 minutes by foot and Tophane Station is 11 minutes.

            Novus Pera Hotel £42
            Novus Pera Hotel

            Novus Pera Hotel

            Asmali Mescit Mahallesi Jurnal Sk. No:7, Beyoglu, Istanbul, Istanbul
               
              0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Taksim, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Istanbul Modern Art Museum and Pera Museum. Galata Tower and Istiklal Avenue are also within 10 minutes. Tunel Square Station is only a 5-minute walk and Tophane Station is 10 minutes.

              Grand Hyatt Istanbul £96
              Grand Hyatt Istanbul

              Grand Hyatt Istanbul

              Harbiye Mah. Taskisla Caddesi No.1, Sisli, Istanbul
                 
                5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Taksim, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Macka Park, Ataturk Cultural Center and Acibadem Taksim Hospital. Taksim Square and Istanbul Modern Art Museum are also within 2 mi (3 km). Taşkışla Cable Car Station is only a 4-minute walk and Maçka Cable Car Station is 9 minutes.

                The House Hotel Karakoy £80
                The House Hotel Karakoy

                The House Hotel Karakoy

                Emek yemez mh. Bankalar cd. No 5, Istanbul, Istanbul
                   
                  5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Istanbul City Center, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Galata Tower and Galata Bridge. Eminonu Square and Pera Museum are also within 15 minutes. Karakoy Station is only a 2-minute walk and Tunel Square Station is 7 minutes.