"Buyukada" Top 5 Page for this destination Buyukada by morgr

Buyukada Travel Guide: 73 reviews and 170 photos

A welcome break from noisy Istanbul

The first thing you will notice, or at least the first thing that I noticed, was Buyukadas complete lack of cars. Apart from a few exceptions (cop car, ambulance etc.) cars are banned on the island. After spending a few days in Istanbul, the relative tranquility of the island will be a welcome change, as Istanbulers well know. Buyukada is a popular weekend destination for locals to get away from the city.

As you disembark the boat in Buyukada you walk up the pier wich puts you into the town centre. A square flanked with small fish restaurants and tourist post-card type shops. Up the road to the right you find a square with lots of horses and carriages for rent.

Also, as you walk around, mainly out of the town centre, you will notice some pretty impressive old wooden mansions.

Buyukada, meaning 'great island', is the largest of the four islands known as the 'princes' islands'. They are located in the Sea of Marmara about 15-30km south-east from Istanbul.

The 'great island' has two main peaks, on both of wich rest monasteries. The southern hill, Yuce Tepe, is were you can find the Monastery of St. George. This is the easiest accesible for the two, either by horse carriage, bike, or as I did, on foot.

The northern hill called Isa Tepe also has a monastery atop it. This one, however, apparently is still inhabited.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:No cars, no horns.
  • Cons:Easy to get lost.
  • In a nutshell:Great place to escape Istanbul for a day
  • Last visit to Buyukada: Sep 2004
  • Intro Updated Dec 10, 2004
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