Istanbul Tower: The Magnificent Galata Tower

Galata Tower

Galata Tower Istanbul was built as a lighthouse in 507 and is one of the oldest towers in the world. The Galata Tower, also known as the Istanbul Tower, took its name from the district in which it is located.

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The Galata Tower, which was made of wood in the medieval period, was rebuilt as a stone structure in 1348 by the Genoese living in the Galata region of Istanbul.

In addition to its history, Galata Tower is one of the most important touristic places where you can watch Istanbul with its 69.90 meters length. After visiting the Istanbul Museum in the tower, you can enjoy the magnificent view of Istanbul.

In this article, we will talk about the history of the Galata Tower, which is one of the important figures on the Anatolian map, the Galata Tower entrance price, the Galata Tower opening hours, and other issues you may need.

Istanbul Landscape: Why Should I Visit Galata Tower?

Thinking why should I visit the Galata tower in Istanbul? Galata tower has a very beautiful view where you can see the historical peninsula of Istanbul, known as old Istanbul, the Golden Horn location, and the Bosphorus.

Apart from the view, there is also a Galata museum that tells the history of Istanbul.

By climbing the Galata tower, you can see Istanbul panoramically and take beautiful Istanbul photos.

Galata Tower is located at the entrance of Istiklal street and is very easy to reach. By visiting this tower, which was also called the Istanbul tower by the Romans, you can see the Roman, Genoese, and Ottoman textures and enjoy the beautiful view of Istanbul.

Galata Tower Istanbul landscape
Galata Tower Istanbul landscape

Galata Tower legends

One of the first legends is that the first Genoese who came to Istanbul by sea followed the white seagull, which they believed was guiding them in the dark when they landed. Martı’yi Hz. The Genoese, who identify with Jesus, follow him home as a sign of their faith and then catch him, cook him, and eat him. They had the Galata Tower built in his memory at the place where his house is located, and it is believed that the story of the Galata Tower began like this. This legend is known as the legend of the White Seagull.

Another legend from the Roman period is; They say you will marry the person you will go to Galata Tower. It was believed that the couples who climbed the Galata tower together for the first time would get married. If the fate of the couple were not to get married, something would definitely happen and they would not be able to go up to the Galata tower together.

Galata Tower
Galata Tower

Galata tower and Hezarfen Ahmet Çelebi

Hezarfen Ahmet Çelebi, who lived during the Ottoman Empire, built himself wooden wings and climbed to the Galata Tower with the dream of flying.

Hezarfan Ahmet Çelebi, who took advantage of the Lodos, was able to fly through the Bosphorus and fly as far as Üsküdar. Hezarfan Ahmet is the first person to fly in the Ottoman Empire and the Galata tower is the starting point of this story.

Galata Tower legends
Galata Tower legends

Galata Tower Opening Hours

Galata Tower in Istanbul is open every day between 08:30 – 23:00 (8:30 AM–11 PM), but you can buy tickets from the box office until 22:00 (10 PM).

We recommend that you visit after dark, as the view will be more beautiful in the evening with the city lights.

Galata Tower Entrance Fee

The Galata Tower entrance fee is 650 Turkish Liras per person for 2023. Parents are required for persons under the age of 18. If you have a Museum Pass Turkey or Museum Pass Istanbul, admission is free.

If you want to visit historical sites in Istanbul and see historical artifacts, we recommend Museum Pass Istanbul.

Turkey Tower
Turkey Tower

How to go to Istanbul Galata Tower?

It is very easy to reach the Galata Tower, which is located in one of the most popular locations in Istanbul.

The easiest way to reach the Istanbul Tower, located in the Galata region between Istiklal Street and Karaköy, is to first come to Karaköy by ferry, tram, or bus and walk to the Galata Tower. The streets between Karaköy and Galata Tower are quite beautiful.

If you want to go to Galata Tower from Taksim, you can walk to Istiklal Street or use the tram on Istiklal Street. But you still have to walk a little. 🙂

We recommend you read the Istanbul Metro map and the Istanbul City Card articles you need to use public transportation in Istanbul.

READ 🎯 Istanbul Museum

Galata Tower History

Galata Tower was built by the Byzantine Emperor Justinian in 507 as a lighthouse. The wooden tower, which was damaged over time, was rebuilt by the Genoese living in Galata in 1348, using the stone as it is today, and it began to be called the Tower of Christ.

After the Galata Tower was built for the second time, it started to be used for purposes such as shelter, surveillance, and fire warning and became one of the special symbols of Istanbul.

The Galata Tower, which was raised between 1445 and 46, started to be used as a shelter for the workers in the shipyard after the conquest of Istanbul by the Ottoman Empire in 1453.

It was damaged due to earthquakes in the 1500s and was repaired by Architect Murad bin Hayreddin.
Galata tower in Istanbul, damaged by fire in 1831, II. It was repaired by adding two more floors Mahmut and the top of the tower was covered with the famous roof cover in the form of a cone. With this upgrade, Galata Tower reached a height of 69.90 meters.

Galata Tower was repaired again in 1967 and finally restored in 2020.

Istanbul Galata Tower
Istanbul Galata Tower

The Tower in Turkey: Galata Tower Architecture

Galata Tower, also known as Turkey Tower, is 69.90 meters high. The outer wall thickness is 3.75 meters. Its inner diameter is 8.95 meters and its outer diameter is 16.45 meters (meter to inch converter).

Galata tower was built in the form of masonry, which we often see in Roman period works, and the total weight of the tower was calculated as 10 thousand tons.

When we look at the current situation in general, it is observed that the third floor of the tower has a Genoese character and the other floors have an Ottoman character.

Galata Tower Architecture
Galata Tower Architecture

Questions About Istanbul Galata Tower

We will try to answer some questions about the Galata Tower, which is called the tower in Turkey.

Is it safe to go to Galata Tower?

One of the first questions that tourists ask for a holiday in Turkey is whether Turkey is safe. Galata Tower is located between Istiklal Street and Karaköy and there are intense security measures. You can visit the Galata Tower with peace of mind. Please note that persons under 18 cannot visit Galata Tower without their parents.

What’s inside the Galata Tower?

There is a museum in the Galata Tower that tells the history of Istanbul. There are special exhibitions from time to time. The biggest reason to visit the Galata tower is that it has a beautiful view of Istanbul.

Who built the Istanbul Galata Tower?

It is known that the Genoese sailors who came to Istanbul in 507 built the Galata Tower. Later, it underwent maintenance and repair operations in the Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman periods and took its current form.

Is there a restaurant in Galata Tower?

The restaurant in the Galata Tower was closed in 2020 and turned into a museum.

Why can’t children enter the Galata Tower alone?

Unfortunately, there have been some cases of suicide in the Galata Tower in the past. In addition, since it is a high place, if something happens to a person under the age of 18, you take responsibility. For this reason, as a security precaution, persons under the age of 18 are prohibited from entering without a parent.

Which towers are there in Istanbul Turkey?

There are two towers in Istanbul that you can visit for tourist purposes. Galata Tower and Maiden’s Tower Istanbul were built on a small piece of rock on the Bosphorus.

How much is the Galata Tower entrance price?

Galata Tower entrance price is 650 Turkish Liras per person for 2023. We recommend you visit the Galata Tower for a unique Istanbul view.

Where is Galata Tower?

Galata Tower is in the Galata region of Beyoğlu district of Istanbul. It is between Karaköy and Istiklal Street.

Why is the Galata Tower famous?

Galata Tower is famous for its rich history, 360-degree panoramic view, and its important place in the Istanbul skyline. It was seen as an iconic symbol during the Byzantine, Genoese, and Ottoman periods. Although its view stands out today, it is an important building in the history of Istanbul.

What are the Galata Tower visiting hours?

Galata Tower accepts its visitors between 08:30 in the morning and 23:00 in the evening. The ticket office closes at 22:00.

If you are planning to spend Valentine’s Day in Istanbul, Galata Tower can be an important address.