Arnavutköy and Bebek, Istanbul - elite and picturesque areas

Bebek and Arnavutköy - two historical districts (quarters) Istanbul, which are elite and one of the most picturesque areas of the city.

Arnavutkey and Bebek border each other (one district flows smoothly into another), are located on the European side of Istanbul, along the waters of the Bosphorus Strait, within the borders of the large district of Besiktas (Beşiktaş) and are surrounded by the same rich areas as Ortaköy and Etiler.

The districts are famous for historical and more modern buildings with an abundance of cafes and restaurants of different cuisines, including stylish and elite ones. Accommodation facilities (hotels, apartments) are also located in the districts booking

There are ferry berths of the same name in both districts.

Along the waters of the Bosphorus, an almost continuous strip (with the exception of an unoccupied section) runs an embankment with places to rest. There is a passing road behind the embankment, along which public buses run, including.

View from the waters of the Bosphorus

Arnavutkey district

The Arnavutkey district occupies a projecting promontory to the north of the central historical part of Istanbul.

Sometimes the name of the district is pronounced as "Arnavutkoi" and "Arnavutkei".

The very word "Arnavutkey" translates as "Albanian village". In 1468, Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror brought the Albanians and settled them in the districts of the city, where, among other things, they founded the place Arnavutkey, which received its name in their honor.

In 1863, Robert College, the oldest American school outside the United States, was founded on its current campus, which originally stretched from Arnavutkey to the neighborhoods of Bebek and Rumelihisari. In 1971, part of this campus became part of Bogazichi University.

Today, Arnavutkey cannot boast of sights. The most picturesque and photographed place of the area, in addition to the embankment, are rather narrow streets, along which wooden houses have been preserved, impressive not only with their architecture, but also having different colors, which makes the area even more picturesque. The very center of the charm of Arnavutköy is located near the ferry pier "Arnavutköy Iskelesi", where you can see fishing boats peacefully rocking on the waters of the Bosphorus.

The main mass of cafes and restaurants is concentrated in this place of the district; there are art galleries; there is a Greek church of Taxiarchis (Arnavutköy Aya Strati Taksiarhi Rum Ortodoks Kilisesi).

Streets and buildings of Arnavutkey

Do not confuse this area of Arnavutkey with another larger area, also called Arnavutkey, located 30 kilometers northwest of the historical center of Istanbul (Sultanahmed Square) and where the new Istanbul International Airport (Istanbul Havalimanı) is located.

Bebek district

Bebek district borders Arnavutkey district from the north.

The name of the area "Bebek" literally translates from Turkish as "Child", which is a reference to the attractive location of the area on the shore of the Bosphorus with its deep, sheltered bay and stunning views in both directions along the waterway. It is believed that the name came from the abbreviated form "Boaz'ın gözbebeği", which literally translates as "disciple of the Bosphorus" or, more appropriately, "apple of the eye (pupil) of the Bosphorus", or, more literarily, "Apple of the eye of the Bosphorus".

Bebek was a popular residential area during the Ottoman rule and remains so to this day.

The bay of the same name Bebek is the location of the ferry pier "Bebek" and a cluster of yachts and boats.

The main attractions Bebek include: mansion of Ali Pasha or Walid Pasha (Âli Pasha Mansion, now the Consulate of Egypt), which was designed by Raimondo D Aronco; mosque Bebek (Bebek Camii), built in 1913; and the Museum of Ashiyan (Aşiyan Müzesi) - the house of famous Turkish poet Tevfik Fikret, built in 1906 and was later converted into a Museum.

At the northern border of the Bebek district is notable Rumelihisar (Rumeli Hisarı) is a medieval fortress surrounded by defensive walls with towers and gates and with panoramic views of the Bosphorus. Today it is a museum. More about the Rumelikhisar Fortress...

Practical information

Coordinates of the center of the Arnavutkey district: 41°04'05.0"N 29°02'35.0"E (41.068056, 29.043056).

Coordinates of the center of the Bebek district: 41°04'32.0"N 29°02'39.0"E (41.075556, 29.044167).

The distance from the center of Istanbul (Taksim Square) to the center of the Arnavutkey district is about 7.3 kilometers, and to Bebek (ferry pier) is 8.5 kilometers.

You can get to the districts on foot, by public buses, ferries (they function as public transport in Istanbul; the Istanbul transport card is valid), taxi or rented car. There is a metro station "Boğaziçi Öiversitesi Istasyonu" of the M6 line in the Bebek district, and a metro station "Etiler Istasyonu" of the same line is located near the district.

All accommodation facilities in Istanbul, including in the Arnavutkey and Bebek districts, in the historical center of the city and more remotely from those, can be viewed and booked here booking

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