Istanbul is a city that comes alive at night. From the bustling streets to the serene Bosphorus Strait, there are countless things to do in Istanbul at night that will take your breath away. Whether you’re a night owl or just looking for something fun to do after a long day of sightseeing, Istanbul has got you covered. So, let’s take a journey through the city’s most beautiful places at night.
Take a Bosphorus Night Cruise
One of the best ways to experience Istanbul at night is by taking a Bosphorus night cruise. You can choose between a private, group cruise or a moonlight public cruise during June-September.
As you sail down the Bosphorus Strait, you’ll be surrounded by the city’s stunning skyline, with illuminated bridges and buildings reflecting in the water. It’s a magical experience you won’t forget.
Enjoy a Turkish Bath
If you’re looking for a more relaxing experience, a Turkish bath might be just what you need. Many hamams are open late until 10 or 11 pm, so you can go after work like the locals do. A Turkish bath is an excellent way to rejuvenate your body and mind. You’ll be pampered with a traditional scrub and massage, followed by a steam bath and a dip in a cold pool.
Visit the Pera Museum
The Pera Museum is a must-visit for art lovers. The museum is free from 6 – 10 pm on Fridays, making it a great place to start your night out.
The museum’s collection includes Turkish and Ottoman art, as well as international works. You’ll be mesmerized by the beautiful paintings and sculptures on display.
Watch the Sunset and Maiden’s Tower from Salacak
For a breathtaking view of the sunset and Maiden’s Tower, head to Salacak in Üsküdar. It’s a popular spot for locals and tourists alike, and you’ll see why when you get there.
As the sun goes down, the sky turns into a canvas of vibrant colors. The Maiden’s Tower, which is located on a small island in the Bosphorus Strait, looks like a fairytale castle in the distance.
Read our article to find more places to see the sunset in Istanbul >>
Explore Arnavutkoy or Taksim Nightlife
Arnavutkoy is a trendy neighborhood with a vibrant nightlife scene. The streets are lined with chic restaurants, bars, and cafes. It’s the perfect place to have dinner and drinks with friends or go bar-hopping. You’ll feel the energy and excitement in the air as you walk down the cobblestone streets.
Climb Galata Tower
Galata Tower is one of Istanbul’s most iconic landmarks. The tower can be visited every day from 9 am to 8.30 pm, making it one of the best places to visit in Istanbul at night.
As you climb to the top, you’ll be rewarded with an amazing view of the city. The tower is especially beautiful at night, when it’s illuminated with colorful lights.
Enjoy the Dancing Fountain at the Sultanahmet Square
The Sultanahmet Square is one of Istanbul’s most famous landmarks, and it’s especially beautiful at night. The dancing fountain is a highlight of the square, with water jets that move in time with music and lights. It’s a mesmerizing sight that’s sure to leave you in awe.
Watch a Whirling Dervish Show
For a truly unique cultural experience, be sure to catch a whirling dervish show in Istanbul. These shows are inspired by the Sufi tradition and involve dancers spinning in a hypnotic trance-like state.
The whirling dervish shows at Hodjapasha take place every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday starting at 7 pm.
Enjoy the Lights of the Bosphorus Bridge from Ortakoy
The Bosphorus Bridge is one of Istanbul’s most iconic landmarks, and it’s even more breathtaking at night when it’s illuminated with colorful lights. Head to Ortakoy, a charming neighborhood on the European side of the city, to take in the stunning views of the bridge.
Have Fun at an Open Mic Night at Spoken Word Istanbul
If you’re in the mood for some live entertainment, check out an open mic night at Spoken Word Istanbul.
This event takes place every Tuesday at 8:30 pm at Arsen Lupen in Taksim and features a variety of performers, from poets to musicians to comedians. Best of all, it’s free to attend!
Experience Nightlife at the Bars of Moda
Moda is a trendy neighborhood on the Asian side of Istanbul that’s home to a vibrant nightlife scene. There are plenty of bars and clubs to choose from, and you’re sure to find one that fits your style.
Whether you’re in the mood for a chill rooftop bar or a high-energy dance club, Moda is a thing!
Read our Full Guide about Moda Neighborhood >>
Enjoy the View from Istanbul Sapphire
Istanbul Sapphire is one of the tallest buildings in the city, and it offers stunning views of the skyline. Head up to the observation deck to take in the panoramic views of Istanbul at night.
The observation deck is open daily from 10 am to 10 pm, with the last admission at 9:30 pm.
Go Meyhane-Hopping in Istanbul and Drink Raki
Meyhane-hopping is a popular pastime in Istanbul, and it involves going from one traditional tavern to another while drinking raki, a Turkish anise-flavored liquor. It’s a fun way to experience the city’s nightlife while getting a taste of local culture.
Dance at a Rooftop Bar
Istanbul is home to some of the best rooftop bars in the world, and they’re the perfect place to dance the night away while taking in stunning views of the city. Whether you’re in the mood for a swanky lounge or a laid-back rooftop bar, Istanbul has plenty of options to choose from.
Istanbul is a city that truly comes alive at night. From cruising along the Bosphorus to exploring the city’s nightlife, there’s always something to do after the sun sets. With so many beautiful places to visit at night, it’s easy to see why Istanbul is one of the world’s most captivating cities. Whether you’re looking for romance, adventure, or culture, Istanbul at night has got you covered. So why not take a walk on the wild side and explore this magical city after dark?
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some must-see places in Istanbul at night?
Some of the must-see places in Istanbul at night include taking a Bosphorus night cruise, visiting the Pera Museum, watching the sunset and Maiden’s Tower from Salacak, climbing Galata Tower, and enjoying the dancing fountain at Sultanahmet Square.
Is it safe to walk in Istanbul at night?
Safety is always a concern when traveling to a new place, especially when it comes to exploring at night. The good news is that Istanbul is generally considered safe for tourists, and many of the city’s neighborhoods are well-lit and bustling with activity even after dark.
More about safety in Istanbul >>
What are some things to do in Istanbul at night with family?
If you’re traveling with family, some of the best things to do in Istanbul at night include taking a Bosphorus night cruise, visiting the Sultanahmet Square to watch the dancing fountain, or exploring the city’s art scene at the Pera Museum.
If you are planning to visit Istanbul with kids, we recommend checking out the article Fun Things to Do in Istanbul: Best Places to See with Kids for some great ideas on how to make the most out of your trip with your family.
What are some things to do in Istanbul at night for couples?
Istanbul is a romantic destination with plenty of activities for couples to enjoy. Take a sunset stroll along the Bosphorus, watch the city lights from the top of Galata Tower, visit the Maiden’s Tower, or enjoy a Turkish bath together.