The Bar District of Istanbul

Istanbul, Turkey

7 places

Ksenia Mardina

Turkish wine, local vodka and cocktails and more adventures await you in the city's bar district. Just don't forget the way home.

Limonlu Bahçe

A lemon garden hidden in the Galatasaray school area – watch out and don't get lost amid steep stairs – just dream of a jar of ice lemonade – this will help to find the way. And don't plan anything for this day – you can easily spend six hours in this place. Order anything – their wines and shots are all good. Hammocks, shade and lounge music will distract you from sightseeing. And by the way they have great breakfasts served up to 3 pm.


The hottest spot in Asmalimescit bar area – just one room that used to be packed with poets and liberal types and now is taken by partygoers. If you are lucky and it's Wednesday, you'll have the craziest gypsy music night. Bade is the cradle of Asmalimescit bar-hopping – now the district and its narrow streets are crowded with pub crawlers. Though the place is nothing different from other bars – the same beer, prices and folk.


Artistic bar where days are calm and nights are funky. In summer, enjoy the shade outside – the tables are bathing in a sun shade made of trellised vines and ivy. Great lounge after a walk in Beyoğlu. The interior is cosy, old-fashioned Parisian with olive walls and the 1960s stools. Don't even try to get a table after dawn – all are taken by artsy types, laughing, moving tables together and dancing on their stools.

Büyük Londra

Time-travel bar at the Grand Hotel Londra that opened its doors 133 years ago. Since then the interior and prices remained intact – a gramophone, a crystal chandelier and a 100 year-old talking parrot. Gold everywhere reminds of the time when the hotel was almost equal to the famous Pera Palace (though not that fancy). Now it's not in demand and that's good – you can wear a cocktail dress and no one will step on its train. Bow-ties, tuxedoes and cleavage are also welcome – just a perfect outfit for retro chic settings.


A fancy rooftop bar with a stunning panorama – even the Black Sea is in focus. Come at dawn to watch colors changing every 5 minutes – so impressive. But quit before dinner – prices are high and the degree of glamour is skyrocketing as it's getting darker. Though they play some groovy funk, no one dances, so enjoy the view and go for a nicer atmosphere.


Impossible to pass by – the entrance is packed with stylish and vibrant crowd. A must-go for a fancy night-out – lovely interior, Istanbul Boheme and festive mood. Plus – fab cocktails – begin with ginger vodka or melon caipiroska. Have a couple for dance readiness.


An awesome gastropub that turns into one of the best Cihangir bars at night. A lantern-lit patio, music, colored sofas – Kiki is everyone's darling – from hipsters to bikers. The venue is famous for its daily events – the 1980s party, aperitif hour, Girl Power Night or a DJ set – so groovy. Their cocktail hit is vanilla and pomegranate vodka. Vodka is really the number one Istanbul party drink though the weather is not cold at all.


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