The Golden Horn did not inherit the bold beauty of luxurious mansions, trendy cafés and indulgent restaurants. What it did inherit, however, is Pierre Loti, a lookout point and café that overshadow a hillside cemetery. This tranquil retreat gives the best views of the Golden Horn and is particularly magical when the sunset gleams orange over the water. While a visit here doesn’t get you out of the tourist trap, it does show you a more ‘realistic’ glimpse of Istanbul. The little café that stood here in the 1900s was such a favourite of French naval officer and novelist Louis Marie Julien Viaud, who wrote under the pen name Pierre Loti, that the café was named after him. Here’s your chance to stand in the very spot where he is said to have contemplated the semi-autobiographical, romantic tragedy of ‘Aziyadé’. While there are currently no harem girls to fantasise about, the view is still spectacular for sipping tea or smoking nargile.
Buses leave from Eminönü and Taksim to Eyüp, but the most pleasant journey is by ferry, which leaves from Eminönü, to the left of the Galata Bridge. On arrival, seek out Eyüp Mosque, where there are signs to a funicular that takes you up the hill. Alternatively, you can come to terms with your mortality by taking a 20-minute walk through the cemetery.
|Venue name:||Pierre Loti Cafe|
Gümüşsuyu Caddesi Balmumcu Sokak 5
|Opening hours:||Daily 08.00-00.00.|