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travel time to airport in Istanbul

We traveling to Istanbul in September of 2016. and are planning on spending 9 days. At the end of our stay we are flying to Paris on a morning flight. I am interested in knowing the travel time to the both airports from The Old Town as well as from the Asian side as I am trying to figure out where to stay our last couple or nights.

Posted by
6858 posts

On the tram, it took me about 45 minutes from the Old City/Sultanahmet (Gulhane stop, close to all the sites) this September. If you go by taxi/shuttle, the time will really depend on traffic (if it's really early in the morning or the weekend, I doubt there will be much traffic. I had to leave at 5am one time many years ago, and it was very quick getting to the airport, about 30 minutes or so). I would confirm with any hotel you ultimately choose; some hotels will offer a free shuttle service if you stay there "x" number of days.

Posted by
11280 posts

I found the Turkey Travel Planner website very helpful for my trip. Here's his page on getting between Atatürk Airport and central Istanbul locations:

And here's the equivalent page for Sabiha Gökçen Airport:

Note that if you are staying 9 nights in one hotel, many of them will provide a free transfer to and from Atatürk Airport but not to or from Sabiha Gökçen.

Posted by
62 posts

Thanks for the helpful responses. We are going to spend 4 nights in Sultanahmet and then travel to Capadoccia and then return to Istanbul for a couple of nights. As we are taking an early flight to Paris thereafter I am trying to figure out where to stay the last few nights. I will check out the website.

Posted by
4 posts

Richard - there isn't a great answer to your question as it really depends on what time a day and what type of transportation you're using. I am guessing that you are flying into Ataturk airport and flying out of Sabiha Gökçen airport.

If you're talking about Ataturk airport to "Old Town" on the European side its 1hour+ by metro. If you're taking a taxi then it's completely dependent on traffic and time of day. It could be 25 minutes (2 AM) or it could be 2 hours (5 PM).

From the Asian side getting to the Sabiha Gökçen airport also depends on where you are coming from and what time of day. If you are staying at Green Park Hotel near the coast in Pendik then you're 20-30 minutes away no matter the time of day. If you're staying at a hotel in Uskudar or Kadikoy somewhere it could be 45 minutes or it could be 2 hours. If you're coming from the other side then it would greatly vary. Depending on your mode of transportation. Traveling in Istanbul is dependent on traffic. Nothing is actually all that far. But it takes forever to get places sometimes. If you're coming from the European side to Sabiha Gökçen airport then it's best to take the Marmaray and Metro all the way to the end stop (Kartal) and take a taxi from there.

Check out the Havataş bus transfers. Just google it. You can take one from Ataturk airport to Taksim. And you can take one from Kadikoy to Sabiha Gökçen. You can get from Ataturk places via the Metro (subway). But there is no metro to Sabiha Gökçen airport. Only taxi's or buses.

Hope that helps.