Although Istanbul is an equally festive and spiritual city all throughout the year, Ramadan in the city is an especially unique experience for Muslims. The city’s 15 million inhabitants celebrate this holy month with various activities, while the municipalities do their best to turn this month into a time of giving, sharing and celebrating together. Istanbul’s magnificent mosques are adorned with colorful lights, sayings and blessings, while iftar and suhur are times to taste the best of Turkish cuisine. Restaurants and patisseries serve the Ramadan-only desert of güllaç, rice wafers stuffed with nuts and cooked in milk, while Ottoman traditions of celebrating Ramadan are still kept alive throughout the city. For Ramadan in 2015, two main areas on the Asian and European side were set up, with all municipalities organizing activities aimed at their residents. This year will likely be similar, so be sure to check out our tips on enjoying the holy month of Ramadan in the beautiful city of Istanbul.
Yenikapı is the main activity area on the European side. There is big arena where various kinds of food, desserts, bagels and famous Ottoman sherbet are served. There are also booths for handcrafts, traditional artwork, books, clothing and accessories. Big tents with a capacity of 2000 people are pitched to allow room for tarawih prayer in the area. The performances for children, the famous Ottoman tradition of shadow play performance called Hacivat and Karagöz as well as concerts raise the spirit of Ramadan and enrich this unique cultural event. You can reach Yenikapı easily by metro from Taksim or with Marmaray, the first underwater metro of Turkey. The value of the district has increased dramatically due to its easy accessibility and it took its share from the rise of prices of the real estate in Istanbul. It is really worth visiting during Ramadan.
The biggest activity area at the Anatolian side is on the Maltepe shore. A similar bazaar for authentic food as well as artisanal creations, souvenirs, traditional Ottoman and Turkish artworks are presented. The performances for children before and after the iftar, concerts, Islamic tasavvuf music, theatre plays and shows take place each day. Thousands of people gather together to enjoy the evening activities. The municipality increases the number of the buses to provide easier transportation. You can also go by Kadıkoy- Kartal metro to Maltepe and take a bus or cab to reach the arena. The construction of the metro on the Anatolian side made life much easier for everyone living in the inner districts, adding more to the market value of Istanbul properties in the area. Maltepe is also a very trending zone for new residence projects and luxury investment providing a safe, calm and a beautiful environment for the families. The shore lies ahead with the gorgeous view of Marmara Sea and the Prince Islands, drawing the attention of people, who are looking for homes for sale in Istanbul.
Sultanahmet square is the historical, traditional place to visit during Ramadan. Thousands of people sit in the area in front of the Blue Mosque, break their fast with the food they brought from home to share this spiritual experience with thousands of others. There is a bazaar for centennial cuisine and artwork, where you will have the chance to see artworks of water marbling, traditional tile art and ornaments from the masters. Sultanahmet is the main hub for tourism with the countless historical sites around, and the center of the tourism business for business owners investing in Istanbul. Therefore, there are also many hotels and authentic, luxury flats for accommodation. The shopping options are unmissable as well.
Feshane Garden is in the shore of the Golden Horn, and is home to many festivals and celebrations throughout the year. During Ramadan, there are many festive activities of concerts, performances of whirling dervishes and other traditional activities. You can reach Feshane easily by metrobüs. Take your tour of Eyüp before iftar, where you can visit the holy Eyüp Sultan Mosque, constructed for the flag bearer of Prophet Muhammad. Eyüp, where modern Turkish properties blend with historical architecture is an important center for prayer and gathering during Ramadan.
Beyazıt Square is home to traditional Ramadan activities ranging from mystical music performances to theater plays, poetry and other traditional arts performances. There is also a book fair with great discounts throughout the month. There are Ramadan conversations after the iftar and the authors of many books come together with their readers on Layl-at al qadr, the holy qadr night. This district is historically unique and is also home to the Bayezid Mosque. There is a restoration project around the square and the area is redesigned, therefore the area will surely become popular both for local and international real estate investors.