Taxim is the name of a neighbourhood of the district of Beyoglu in Istanbul.
It is located in the European side of Istanbul. It is considered to be one of the most important city centers of the city. Istanbul is a very big city with many city centers and city center is not literally center in this case. Taxim is not in the middle of the city but it has a very large number of people traffic everyday.
It is also considered to be the modern face of Istanbul and Turkey and called modern city center. It has a big square called Taxim square where people are used to meet to go to somehere together and the most common meeting point in Taxim Square is the door of big Burger King restaurant.
The formation of the neighbourhood is very similar to the formation of New York's Manhattan althoug Istanbul in general is not very well designed. Taxim has blocks and for a foreigner it is very easy to find theirr ways in Taxim area.
The main pedestrian street of Taxim is called Istiklal Caddesi – Street of Independence . It is a wide and long street without any car traffic and it is estimated that during summer, eveyday five million people is passing this street. On Istiklal Caddesi it is possible to find whatever you are looking for. There are many stores of big brands and also small boutiques. During the day time, there are tons of alternatives to eat something. You can find local restaurants or American fast food restaurants, pastries, pizza restaurants and many more. There are also more than two thousand bars and night clubs in Taxim area.
Most touristas that are travelling to Turkey prefer staying in Taxim hotels if they can afford it. The best places to stay in Istanbul are either Taxim or Sultanahmet-Beyazit or Sirkeci area. But the prices of hotels in Taxim are a little bit higher than other places. Actually we can say almost the double price. And if you can not afford to stay in Taxim, staying in Sultanahmet area and going to Taxim by tram and funicular system is a good option when you want to. If you need further information and recommendation about your accomodation in Istanbul, please ask us
If you are staying in Aksaray, Laleli, Beyazit, Sultahmet or Sirkeci and want to reach Taxim without taking a taxi, the best way to follow is taking the tram following the line to the seaside – KABATAS and Kabatas is the final station of tram from where you will take a subway to reach directly to Taxim Square. Do not get confused when you take the funicular – subway from Kabatas to Taxim area because it takes only 70 seconds and it has only one stop. Do not unnecesarrily go and come back several times.
If you miss the last train back to your hotel, just take a taxi and it will not cost you more than twenty Turkish Liras.
In Taxim area, you can wear whatever you want to. There is no need to worry about anything. It is a modern part of Istanbul but there is still every kind of people there and it is a good idea to be careful everytime. Especially in Taxim square, if someone tries to talk to you, just ignore them. Saying "no" is the beggining of the conversation and you will find yourself in their table to cheat you if you start talking! – please do not panic, it is a very rare situation but just be careful.
If you are going to Taxim only for shopping actually it is a better idea to go to a shopping mall where you can find more alternatives with better prices but for night life it is a good choise.
The avarage prices for alcoholic drinks in Taxim area are like; for a beer between 7 liras up to 20 liras depending on the club-bar-pub. For a glass of wine can vary a little bit more but similar to beer in you drink in bars. For a vodka, it starts from 10 lira up to 30 lira and a shot of tequila would cost you something in between 6 liras to 15 liras.
It is also allowed to drink something in the streets but as there is a bar almost in every point, the bar owners do not like it but you can do it anyway! It is not allowed to smoke in closed places in Turkey but most places find a way to let you smoke somewhere comfortable in the bar!
Have a good time!