Istanbul's parks and gardens are - the best: for walking, relaxing and entertaining

Istanbul is full of sights and interesting places, some of which the city has inherited since the time of the sultans.

Palaces, mosques, hammams, as well as parks and gardens, some of which are now public parks of the city, remained from the sultans in the city. Also in the city there are parks and gardens of palaces, green areas, amusement parks, and in the vicinity of Istanbul there is a nature reserve with a botanical garden.

Among all the parks and gardens of Istanbul, there are several particularly noteworthy and located on the main tourist routes around the city.

Some parks offer wonderful panoramic views of the urban development, the Bosphorus Strait and the Golden Horn Bay. Hotels in Istanbul booking

Istanbul Parks and Gardens - the best

Gulhane Park

Gulhane Park is a public park, which is the oldest and largest park in the historical center of Istanbul.

Today, Gulkhane Park is a gentrified area with a "forest" area with trees, paths and alleys for walking, places for recreation, cafes, park pools with bridges, fountains (including a light fountain), as well as museums, sculptures and historical objects.

The most famous attraction of Gulhane Park is the Gothic Column (Gotlar Sütunu), which dates back to Roman times (3rd century) and was erected in honor of the victory of the Romans over the Goths.

Gulhane Park is located next to the walls of the Topkapi Palace (Topkapı Sarayı).

Entrance to the park is free (free of charge). More about Gulkhan Park...

Pierre Loti Hill

Pierre Loti Hill (Pierre Loti) is a hill with a height of 53 meters, which is one of the best and most famous viewing platforms in Istanbul.

Panoramic views of the Golden Horn and the European part of Istanbul open from the observation deck of the hill.

In addition to the observation deck on the hill there are also: a panoramic cafe of the same name, a couple of souvenir shops, a toilet, a restaurant and the hotel Turquhouse, which overlooks the 7 hills of Istanbul and the Golden Horn Bay. Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the hotel. Guests can make use of a sauna and a hammam. Link to the hotel booking

Pierre Loti Hill is located on the European side of Istanbul, in the Eyup area near the waters of the Golden Horn.

You can go up (down) the hill on foot or by using the Eyüp-Piyer Loti Teleferik Hatt (TF2) gondola cable car, which is the public transport of the city (Istanbul transport cards are valid). More about Pierre Loti Hill...

Machka Park

Macca Park (Maçka Park, which means Democracy Park) is a small park on a hill in the European part of Istanbul.

The central part of the park is occupied by a wide staircase, a walk along which is accompanied by a tour of local attractions.

The park also has running tracks, places for walking and walking dogs, children's areas, recreation areas, decorative pools and cafes.

Entrance to the park is free.

A gondola cable car passes over the park.

Dolmabahce Palace Park

Dolmabahce (Dolmabahçe Sarayı) is a magnificent palace complex of the 19th century, which previously served as the residence of the Ottoman sultans.

The palace is surrounded by a garden divided into 4 sections: Hasbakhche (Selamlyk), Kushluk or Bird Garden, Harem Garden and the Garden of the Crown Prince. These gardens are arranged and classified according to the function of the surrounding buildings.

For the design of the gardens, rare plants from the regions of Asia, Europe and America were selected and brought, which was designed to create a magnificent collection in garden design.

Today, the gardens are used for walks by visitors to the palace. They have paved paths and alleys, there are places to relax, pavilions, sculptures, fountains, lawns, flower beds and cafes. The gardens offer views of the Bosphorus.

Entrance to the park is paid (with entrance tickets to the Dolmabahce Palace).

Dolmabahce Palace is located on the European side of the Bosphorus in Istanbul, in the Beşiktaş district, at: Vişnezade, Dolmabahçe Cd., 34357 Beşiktaş/Istanbul, Turkey. More about Dolmabahce Palace and gardens...

Yildiz Park

Yıldız is a large historical palace and park complex of the 19th century, located on the European side of Istanbul, in the Besiktas district, near the waters of the Bosphorus Strait.

Today, Yildiz Park is one of the largest public historical parks in Istanbul with lush vegetation, historical pavilions, gazebos, playgrounds and sports grounds, toilets, places for recreation and walking, reservoirs, artificial ponds with fountains, bridges, waterfalls, sculptures and cafes.

The park is located near the Dolmabahce Palace.

Entrance to the park is free. More about Yildiz Park and Palace...

Near Yildiz Park, near the waters of the Bosphorus, you can stay in beautiful complex hotels

5-star Çırağan Palace Kempinski Istanbul Hotel, located in the restored Ottoman Chiragan Palace.

At the hotel: garden area with infinity pool overlooking the waters of the Bosphorus, spa and wellness center, fitness center, restaurant, bar, lounge, gazebo, Turkish bath, free private parking and Wi -Fi.

Included in room rates: breakfast or breakfast + dinner. Link to the hotel booking

5-star Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at the Bosphorus, also located in a restored 19th century Ottoman mansion by the waters of the Bosphorus Strait and has a garden, views of the Bosphorus, panoramic outdoor and indoor pools, bar and spa. Hotel link booking

Ulus Park

Ulus Park (Ulus Parkı) is a small quiet park on the hill of the European side of Istanbul, from which you can enjoy views of the Bosphorus.

The park has panoramic cafes, places for walking and relaxing.

Entrance to the park is free.

Doatepe Park

The Doatepe Park (Dogatepe Parki) itself is not particularly remarkable, but since the park is located on a hill, there is a platform in the park that offers beautiful views of part of Istanbul, including the Bosphorus Strait, the Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge and the Asian side of the city.

Entrance to the park is free.

Doatepe Park is located on the European side of Istanbul, at: Rumeli Hisarı, Hisar Üstü Nispetiye Cd No:97, 34470 Sarıyer/Istanbul, Turkey.

Baltalimana Japanese Garden

Baltalimany Japanese Garden (Baltalimanı Japon Bahçesi) is a small beautiful botanical garden with sakura trees, roses and various types of shrubs.

The park was created in cooperation with Japan and Turkey, so it has Japanese features.

The garden has a gazebo, a pond, a waterfall, a rock garden and a tea room.

The garden is especially recommended to visit during the cherry blossom season (late April - early May).

We will not recommend this garden for a separate visit; only it is possible to combine a visit to the garden with nearby attractions, for example Rumelihisar Fortress (Rumeli Hisarı) or Emirgan Park.

Entrance to the garden is free.

Opening hours of the garden: summer schedule from 07:00 to 19:30 hours; winter schedule until 17:00 hours (every day of the week). We recommend checking the opening hours of the garden before visiting, as they may change.

Emirgan Park

Emirgan Park (Emirgân Korusu) is a large green public park with a variety of plants, ponds, a fountain, recreation areas, treadmills, a children's playground, sculptures, cafes, picnic areas, historical pavilions (Yellow, Pink and White), mosques and a tulip museum (Lale Müzesi).

From some points of the park there are views of the Bosphorus and the Asian part of Istanbul.

Emirgan Park becomes especially popular from the end of March to May (the month of April), when the Tulip Festival takes place in the city, the heart of which is this park, where numerous flowers decorate flower beds and form various compositions.

The park is located on the European side of Istanbul, near the waters of the Bosphorus.

Entrance to the park is free.

Otagtepe Fatih Park

Otagtepe Park is located on the Asian side of the city, near the Fatih Sultan Mehmet Köprüsü Bridge.

Although this park is located far from the main tourist routes and attractions of the city, but it is a very popular place in Istanbul, mainly due to the fact that the park is located on the Otagtepe hill and offers beautiful panoramic views of the Bosphorus Strait and the European side of the city.

In the park: walking paths, lawns, recreation areas, picnic areas and gazebos, observation terraces, a small pond with turtles.

Entrance to the park is free. More about Otagtepe Fatih Park...

Beylerbey Palace Park

Beylerbeyi (Beylerbeyi Sarayı) is a 19th-century palace in the Baroque style, surrounded by gardens and served as a summer residence and accommodation for high-ranking guests of the sultans of the Ottoman Empire.

Today it is a palace museum, where you can visit the palace halls, and in the adjacent territory walk through the gardens with pavilions and a terrace by the waters of the Bosphorus.

The gardens of Beylerbeyi can be divided into three sections: the garden on the side of the Harem part of the palace, the garden on the side of Mabein and the gardens that rise up from the palace in terraces.

The garden of the harem part is used as the entrance part of the palace complex. There is a fountain, a sculpture, a cafe and toilets.

The garden on the Mabein side is more extensive and impresses with trees, a fountain and sculptures.

The upper gardens are made in the form of terraces connected by ramps and stairs. In the gardens: fountains, swimming pools, places for walking and relaxing, as well as a Yellow pavilion, a Marble pavilion and former stables for the sultan's horses.

The gardens of the Beylerbeyi Palace also attract attention by the fact that they have access to a terrace near the waters of the Bosphorus, which is used as an observation deck.

Entrance to the palace gardens is paid (by entrance tickets to the Beylerbeyi Palace).

The palace with gardens is located on the Asian side of Istanbul, at: Beylerbeyi, Abdullahağa Cd., Istanbul. More about the Beylerbeyi Palace with gardens and a terrace by the Bosphorus Strait...

Nakkashtepe National Park

Nakkashtepe National Park (Nakkaştepe Millet Bahçesi) is a landscape park on the Asian side of Istanbul, which is a green oasis.

The park has lush vegetation, places for walking and recreation, gazebos, wooden pedestrian zones, a cascading waterfall, a pond, a bridge, picnic areas, a zipline, an adventure trail, playgrounds (open and closed) and sports grounds, a tennis court, cafes, toilets.

The park and its panoramic terraces offer beautiful views of the Bosphorus and the European side of Istanbul.

Entrance to the park is free.

Fethi Pasha Park

Fethi Pasha Park (Fethipaşa Korusu) is a large urban park located on the hillside of the Asian side of Istanbul, near the two previous locations.

The park was named after the Turkish governor, Ambassador and Minister Ahmed Fethi Pasha.

In the park: places for walking and recreation, a waterfall, suspension bridges, terraces, playgrounds, cafes, toilets.

The slopes of the park offer views of the Bosphorus and the European side of Istanbul.

Entrance to the park is free.

Chamlydzha Hill

The big hill of Chamlıca (Çamlıca Tepesi) is a high hill (288 meters) on the Asian side of Istanbul in the Usküdar district, on top of which the Chalmıca Mosque of the same name (Çamlıca Mosque) is located.

From the open terrace of the mosque and from the hill there are wonderful panoramic views of Istanbul.

In the public park on the hill with trees, flower beds and fountains there are historical teahouses, cafes and a restaurant.

On the Asian side of Istanbul, near the waters of the Marmara Sea, there are two more small public parks with places for walking and recreation, playgrounds and cafes - Fenerbahce Park (Fenerbahçe Parkı) and Gaztepe Park (Goztepe Parkı). It is not worth going to these parks specifically, but if you walk along the embankment along the waters of the Marmara Sea, then you can look in.

Ataturk Arboretum and Belgrade Forest

In the suburbs of Istanbul (near the northwest of the city) are: large Ataturk Arboretum (Ataturk Arboretumu) and the Belgrade Forest (Belgrad Ormanı), which is a large nature reserve.

Two park areas are located next to each other.

Amusement Parks in Istanbul

A separate category of parks in Istanbul includes amusement parks that are great for families with children.

Amusement park "Vialand"

Vialand Theme Park (formerly known as Isfanbul Park) is the largest and main entertainment venue in Istanbul for people of all ages.

This park is called Istanbul Disneyland.

The park consists of three thematic zones: the world of antiquity, the world of adventure and the children's world.

There is also a cafe, a shopping center and other entertainment in the park.

On the territory of the park there is 4-star Vialand Palace Hotel with garden, terrace, free Wi-Fi, free private parking and a 24-hour front desk. Breakfast may be included in the room rate. Link to the hotel booking

Park address: Yeşilpınar, Şht. Metin Kaya Sk. No: 11/1, 34065 Eyüpsultan/Istanbul, Turkey.

The park's website:

Park Miniaturk

Miniaturk Park (Miniatürk) is a theme park created under the slogan "A small model of a big country" in which there are miniature copies of Turkish attractions, from the Blue Mosque and Topkapi Palace to the white terraces of Pamukkale, the temple of Armetida and the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus.

The park contains miniature models of 136 architectural works, including 60 works from Istanbul, 63 works from Anatolia and 13 works from Ottoman geography outside Turkey, reduced to a factor of 1:25.

Park address: Örnektepe, İmrahor Cd. No:7, 34445 Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey.

The park's website:

Recreation and entertainment center "Viaport Marina"

In the recreation and entertainment center Viaport Marina, which is located on the outskirts of Istanbul, you can walk, relax, buy things, have fun and eat.

The complex includes: shopping areas, cafes and restaurants, an amusement park with a Ferris wheel and large American (Russian) slides, a water park, an aquarium, a small zoo, a bowling alley, a game center, a cinema and a marina.

On the territory of Viaport Marina is located Crowne Plaza Hotel - Istanbul Tuzla Viaport Marina, an IHG Hotel with restaurant, bar, fitness center, lounge and 24-hour front desk. The room rate may include: breakfast or breakfast + dinner. Hotel link booking

Viaport Marina address: Cami Mh Balıkçılar Sokak U Blok 20 U, D:226, 34940 Tuzla, Turkey.

Viaport Marina

Ada Park

Ada Park (ParkAda) is a small amusement park (Lunaprak) with a Ferris wheel, a mini zoo, a pond with boats and other attractions.

The park is located on the territory of Bayrampaşa Şehir Parkı Adapark City Park.

The park's website:

Aqua Club Dolphin Water Park

Aqua Club Dolphin Water Park is a large water park in Istanbul with a variety of slides for children and extreme for adults, swimming pools, including children's, adult and wave pools, cafes and places for sunbathing.

Address of the water park: Su Oyunları Merkezi, Esenkent Mahallesi, Onur Güvener Cad, Bahçeşehir Girişi, 34517 Esenyurt/Istanbul, Turkey.

Aquapark website:

Extreme Aventures Park

Extreme Aventures Park (Xtrem Aventures Istanbul) is a theme park, which houses suspended rope trails of various levels of complexity and length, for children and adults. The trails are suitable for guests over 8 years old and over 120 centimeters tall.

The park also has network tracks for children from 4 to 8 years and from 3 to 5 years, a zip-ntrack, the possibility of jumping from a 15-meter height, a cafe.

The park's address is: Huzur Mh., Maslak Ayazağa Cd. No:4, 34396 Sarıyer/Istanbul, Turkey.

The park's website:

Faruk Yalchin Zoo

A small zoo Faruk Yalcin (Faruk Yalçın Hayvanat Bahçesi ve Botanik Parkı) with mammals, birds, reptiles and plants, as well as gazebos for relaxing and snacking is located in Darıca, a suburb of Istanbul.

The zoo is located on the Asian side of the Istanbul suburb, at the address: Piri Reis, Tuzla Cd. No:297, 41700 Darıca/Kocaeli, Turkey.

Zoo website:

In addition to these, there are other amusement parks in Istanbul for families with children, as well as lunaparks, aquariums (oceanariums), dolphinarium, zoos and interesting museums.

More information about where to go, what to see and where to have fun in Istanbul with a child can be found here →

All accommodation facilities in Istanbul, including in the historical center, on the European and Asian sides of the city, can be viewed and booked here booking

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