Adalar, one of the most precious districts of Istanbul, is a prominent location with its unique culture and population. The land particles in the middle of this Marmara Sea called The Princes’ Islands; It is located on the Anatolian side of Istanbul, offshore of the Kartal and Maltepe. Adalar, one of the districts with the lowest population density in Istanbul, consists of 9 islands and two cliffs close to the shore.
Each of the Islands, which stand out as the most unique locations of Istanbul, has a unique feature. It is one of the important attractions of the city with its phaetons, detached historical houses, mansions and promenade areas. Among the islands, locations such as Büyükada, Heybeliada and Kınalıada are the most popular places in the district.
History of the Adalar
The history of the islands dates back to ancient civilizations and the Hellenistic Period. One of the first known events in history about the Princess Islands is that Antigonus, one of the important commanders of Alexander the Great, had a large castle built in Burgazada. During subsequent excavations, a gravestone from the Hellenistic period was found in Burgazada, written in Latin letters.
When it comes to the Roman and Byzantine periods, the sources related to the Islands become more evident. Especially in the Byzantine period, the traces of palaces, monasteries and churches built in the region are still found today. After the 1450s, architectural structures belonging to the Turkish- Islamic civilization were built in the Adalar region, which was later under the protection of the Ottoman Empire.
Places to visit in the Adalar
When it comes to places to visit in the Islands, many locations that reflect the historical structure and cultural texture of the region come to mind. Among these, especially the Aya Yorgi Church draws attention. As one of the important architectural structures of Büyükada, it is a temple that attracts the attention of foreign tourists. Apart from this, for cultural activities, Sait Faik Abasıyanık’s house, which was converted into a museum, can be visited in Burgazada.
Adalar district, which is remembered with literary figures and artistic activities, is also known as the place where many important writers produced their masterpieces. In this context, areas such as Sait Faik Museum will be enlightening in interpreting their artistic journey. Another important work that should definitely be seen on the islands is the Greek orphanage in Büyükada.
Despite being in ruins today, this orphanage, which is still open to visitors, is one of the masterpieces of one of the important architects of the period, Alexandre Valluary. This building, which is also the largest wooden structure on the earth, has an ambiance that fascinates its visitors.
Food & Beverage & Restaurants in Islands
The Islands, which host many unique cultural activities, also have a wide variety of eating and drinking options. Eating and drinking venues representing different cultures in the region have a versatile cuisine culture that combines European cuisine with orientalist gastronomy. It is also possible to find breezes from Hatay and Mediterranean cuisine in the Islands, which stand out especially with its fish restaurants.
Fish Restaurants & Seafood
Cafes & Tea Houses
Kebab Houses & Fireside Ottoman Kitchen