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Galata bridge to Galata Tower

planning upcoming trip and wondering if 4 hours enough time to walk from Sultanahmet District to Suleyman Mosque, then Rustum Pasha Mosque, walk across Galata Bridge to Galata Tower and then up for views and then walk back across bridge to Sultanahmet District.

Posted by
1195 posts

We have visited these sites but not on the same day. I put them into google maps and it supposedly takes about 2 hours to walk round trip with no stopping. Can't remember how much time we spent in each of the mosques. We visited Galata Tower in early October. There was a 15 minute line to enter, we spent about 20 minutes walking around the top to see all the views, and a few more minutes inside the tower. As to whether 4 hours is enough time to do this walk, you would have to figure out how much time you plan to spend inside the mosques and how much time you will spend while walking to stop and see the beautiful views and sights.

Posted by
11262 posts

Unless you want to "power walk" through the entire route just to say you did it, I'd allow more time, so you can actually enjoy these places.

Posted by
3523 posts

Remember that the mosques are not open all day all the time for tourists. You can only go in at specific times designed around the prayer schedule. So you want to research those two mosques to see when you will be allowed in and build your walk around that. Also remember that you must have your head, arms and knees covered. And you will have to remove your shoes and carry them in a bag while inside, then put them back on outside.

Good news is that the cleanest toilets are often near or on the grounds of the mosques. There are both squat and seated toilets, but you cannot put used TP in either. You must put it in the basket in the stall, just like all over Istanbul. The city has grown to about 17 million people and the sewer system simply has not kept up with the growth.

We did not go up into Galata Tower. Even in October, the exterior stairwell was full of people. We did walk back across Galata Bridge after taking the tram to the area. That was great fun. On the Sultanahmet side of the bridge, we took a tram back to near our hotel. Do check out Google maps/directions walking options for what you want to do. You may not want to spend that much time walking.

Be sure to stop by the Saray Restaurant. Absolutely the best profiteroles I have ever had anywhere, although Trip Advisor does list some other places in town.

Posted by
338 posts

My answer is yes. 4 hours is sufficient to see all of the sites. It will be about 4 miles round trip (depending on the route you take). Figure you can walk a mile at an easy pace in about 20 to 25 minutes, add in some delays and a bit of getting lost time and you're at about the 2 hours noted in one of the other replies. That leaves a solid 2 hours for your three sites. The Suleyman Mosque will take about 30-40 minutes. The Rustum Pasha mosque is small and will only take about 15 minutes. The Galata Tower will take about 15-30 minutes depending on how long you linger at the top. There was no line the only time I've gone to the top, so I can't speak to how long that might take.

As noted in an earlier reply, the mosques will be closed during prayer times. You should be able to get that information in advance from your hotel. I think they are also posted outside of the Blue Mosque (since you indicated that you're starting in Sultanahmet).

When you're down by the Rustem Pasha mosque you'll be near the Spice Bazaar. It only takes about 15 minutes for a quick walk through if you haven't seen it before. There is also a neat fish market on the opposite shore once you cross the Galata bridge that's worth a side visit for a few minutes.

I'd suggest you take different routes up and back between the Galata Bridge and Galata Tower. The neighborhood markets and shops are interesting in this area. There is also a neat mosque nearby (Arap Mosque) if you have a few minutes to spare. It used to be a gothic style church and is essentially unchanged execpt that the top of the bell tower was replaced with a minaret.

Have fun!

Posted by
88 posts

Thank you so much for the replies! They are very helpful. I have actually been to the two Mosques before so just wanted to go back for a brief visit. I have not walked across the bridge to the tower so had no idea how much time for the walking.

Posted by
78 posts

You can make it sure in 4 hours. To make your return faster to Sultanahmet, take light tram at Karakoy.You will save a lot of walking time by returning with tram. There are always people waiting on entrance to go on top but If you take tram, you are ok as long you dont oversee!