"Istanbul New Year Countdown Party @ TAKSIM!" Top 5 Page for this destination Istanbul Ili Travelogue by June.b

Istanbul Ili Travel Guide: 8,513 reviews and 22,548 photos

Istanbul R.O.C.K.S.!

We landed on a chilling morning at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport, took the metro and tramvay combi to our hotel in Sultanahmet area (Cordial Hotel or hostel). Took us twice going up and down the road looking for this hotel, found it after a tiring search. It's difficult to find something when most of the people awake aren't speaking the same language.

Well, that was part of the fun-filled experience. After all, this is Istanbul.

We did not waste the time, no rest from the 6 hours flight, I took my friends to the Blue Mosque and the surroundings. I've seen most of it two years back. But never cease to fascinate me.

And by the way, Istanbul looks different during winter. I was there in summer last time.
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The Street Party at Taksim.

After getting tired of roaming the area. We took a recharging nap for the whatever stuff in-store for tonight.

Woke up at 6PM.

We went to Taksim to have our dinner, most restos were full and the whole street of Istiklal Caddessi was unbelievably crowded that you have to jostle with the bustling crowd mostly locals. Don't want to move far with the maddening crowd at a New Year's eve, so we decided to take our dinner at the resto just beside Burger King. Food was OK.

After the dinner, we moved on and hey they're having this New Year Countdown Party in Taksim, just at the square where all the buses starts and stop. They made a huge stage at the bus stop and cordone a big area surrounding it, policemen are everywhere.

Everyone's invited! YAHOOOOOOO!

Twas still early in the evening but the whole Taksim area including the whole length of Istiklal Caddessi is full of people. The mood is very festive. Hard to move along the main Istiklal Cad., but that was the fun of it.... jostling and bustling among the crowd on a New Year's eve.
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Center of the World!

I thought so.... this was the center of the whole universe of Turkey.

Everybody's here. We left Sultanhmet which was less noisy and crowded to join everyone here in Taksim. Well, seems like the half of Turkey's population are here waiting for the countdown.

There were lots of policemen and there is this big area which they had put some steel barricade - that's in fact the circle ground where most people get in cuz that's where the action takes place - nearer to the huge stage, nearer to the giant screens, the strobes and lights and the music and the spinning DJ.
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Join in the fun!

We were outside of the barricade, most people wanted to get inside becoz there're a lot more people dancin' in there near the stage and the pounding soundz. We were contented juz watchin' group of people here and there dancin' on the street holding big cans of beers, then suddenly, hey I felt like, we should blend.

We went inside the barricade, the entrance is right at the side of the road where on normal days, the buses are making a U-turn. Tight security, the police have to make body search before they allow you to enter - no sweat!

So we were the inside near the stage already and we joined in the fun.
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The Countdown

The clock ticks and it's almost 12Midnight!

10 Seconds before midnight, the party host appeared onstage and leads the countdown from 10 to 1 .... It was fun and everyone was counting loud.

Then it reached 1 and midnight... the fireworks started and it's a big bang that you could hear if you're within 5 miles radius of Taksim or maybe 10.

The huge screens were flashing 2007 and in green lasers moving up and down the whole Marmara Hotel facade.

It was fun and people started to really dance to the non-stop tunes spinned by the DJ, mostly Turkish pop dance hits, though I heard couple of english and spanish tunes.
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Happy New Year!

It was fun.

At past 1:00am I felt like we have to go, just wanting to avoid any untoward incidents, as there are lots of people already drunk.

Funny thing - my friend bought 1 big can of Efes Beer (he's not used to drinking alcohol bev), he got tipsy - looks to me like he's drunk - limping while walking, and his talks began slurring......i smell trouble!!!!

So we really have to go home.

The party went on until past 2:00am.

I saw some police in a cordoned (blood on the ground) area in McDonlads, there might have been some brawl over there.

Twas so hard to get a taxi as the crowd of people along the streets waiting for taxis are getting more and more.
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Dolmush saves the day!

We were standing waiting for a taxi for almost an hour, then we moved a bit down the road, but people are everywhere, then I saw this Dolmush with the sign "Aksaray"... hey...I know our hotel is not very far from there.

The best opportunity I happen to spot so far - taxi is out of option - so I dragged my friends along and hop on the Dolmush - cheaper and what else? - no other option.

We got off Aksaray and took a 5-minute ride taxi from there to Cemberlitas for 8 Lira.

Got to our hotel finally and slept for I guess less than 2 hours - catching the Turkish Airlines early morning flight (8:30AM) to Kayseri.

  • Page Updated Nov 2, 2008
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