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In Istanbul, how do I get to _____?

Old Feb 21st, 2009, 07:40 AM
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In Istanbul, how do I get to _____?

I'm going to have a whole week in Istanbul so I hope to be able to get to some of the more out of the way places. I hate taxis in general, so with all the stories I've read about getting ripped off I'm pretty sure I won't want to take any in Istanbul. Plus taking a taxi leaves you with the dilemma of how to get back. Soooo - by walking or public trans - preferably tram or metro as opposed to bus, how do I get from Sultanahmet to the following?

The city walls
Chora Church
Ortaköy
Café Pierre Loti

Thanks
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Old Feb 21st, 2009, 09:39 AM
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isabel, public transport is fine in Istanbul, and quicker than a taxi if you are in a congested area (meaning most of the urban center.) You can find good info on getting to the places you mention at http://tinyurl.com/ascmkx

If you decide to take a taxi, don't worry. Taxi rip offs can happen, but that's true anywhere. Taxis are metered and pretty inexpensive. There are two rates - gündüz [GURN-durz] is the daytime rate (6 am to midnight) and gece [GEH- jeh] is the night rate (midnight to 6 am). Just be sure that when you get in the taxi the driver turns on the meter and it displays the right rate. If not, point to the meter and say the fare rate that should be displayed - impossible to tell if it is an honest mistake or an attempted fleecing of a few lira.
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Old Feb 21st, 2009, 09:46 AM
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I was in Istanbul in September and took a taxi ride to Chora Church--I don't remember the cost, but it wasn't crazy. For the taxi ride on the way back I had a lovely driver who would stop on the side of the road so I could take photographs. He also told me about some local history. I was very happy with my taxi rides.
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Old Feb 21st, 2009, 10:04 AM
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Rather than giving direction to each, I suggest that you get the Rick Steves Istanbul book. It has excellent walking tours and also gives information on how to get to different places such as the Chora Church via public transportation. Click on my name and you will find my Turkey trip report. The last part is on Istanbul.
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Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 04:15 AM
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Thanks for the replys. Seamus, that link you gave was good, it gave some specifics for taking the train out to the walls which sounds like a good idea.

Michael, I do have the Rick Steves book but while it gives a nice walk "along the walls" the directions for getting "to" them (and Chora Church) are just by bus. Is that how you got out there? My maps make it look like it's quite doable by tram or metro but I can't find any first hand info on doing it that way, and that's what made me wonder if there was something I was missing. I had previously read your trip report but re-reading it and looking at your photos really helped to get me psyched. Thanks
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Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 05:10 AM
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Isabel, I'm also planning a trip to Istanbul. From what I can see there are two ways of getting to Chora. Either way, I think, requires the use of a pocket compass and a good map.

1) Take the tram to a stop near Askary, walk over to the Metro station, and take the Metro to
the stop Topkapi-Ulubath. This leaves you with a healthy walk to the Chora church. The church is close to the Theodosian wall, if you want to see it, but my understanding is that the neighborhood around the wall is a little unsafe.

2) Take the tram to Eminonu and then take one of the buses recommended in the Rick Steves guide or some other guide book. I'm not sure of the stop, and if we go this route we'll have to ask our hotel clerk for help. One option is to take the bus to the wall, which I imagine is easily recognizable, then walk the short distance to the church.
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Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 07:39 AM
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Is that how you got out there? Yes. And we had no problems.
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Old Feb 23rd, 2009, 06:26 AM
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Isabel, in case you're still interested, this web site,

http://www.titustravel.com/index1.html

gives bus routes to a number of Istanbul tourist attractions, including Chora church. Click on the link to "western districts" on the home page, and then click on the Chora link.
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