If your Istanbul hotel is in Beyoğlu, near Taksim Square, Elmadağ, Talimhane, Cihangir, Galatasaray, Tepebaşı, Tünel, or in another district on the north side of Istanbul's Golden Horn, here's how to travel there from Istanbul's Atatürk Airport (IST).
By Airport Bus
Havabüs airport buses connect Atatürk Airport with Taksim Square. If your hotel is within an easy walk of Taksim (as are the hotels in Elmadağ and Talimhane), this is a fine way to go. If, however, your hotel is on or off İstiklal Caddesi, in Galatasaray, Tepebaşı, Tünel, Harbiye, Nişantaşı or Şişli, you may want to use a private transfer or a taxi.
The airport buses depart the Arrivals level of both the International and Domestic terminals at Atatürk Airport. The Taksim bus stop is in front of The Point Hotel, on the west side of Cumhuriyet Caddesi across from the Divan Oteli (map).
The trip takes between 45 and 65 minutes, depending upon traffic, and costs TL10 per person, one-way, payable on the bus in cash.
If your hotel is not within an easy walk of the Taksim Square/Elmadağ airport bus stop, if you have three or more people in your group, or if you have more than two suitcases, a private transfer is the logical and cost-effective way to go. More...
A taxi from Atatürk Airport to Taksim Square may cost about TL70 to TL90 and take between 35 and 75 minutes, depending upon the exact location of your hotel, the weight of traffic at the time, and the honesty (or lack of it) of your taxi driver. First, read about Istanbul taxis.
Taking a taxi from your hotel—a reliable one summoned by your hotel—is a better bet than taking one from the airport. More...
By Metro, Tram & Funicular
You can take the Metro right from the Atatürk Airport terminal to Zeytinburnu, change to the Kabataş tram, ride that all the way to the terminus at Kabataş, then take the Füniküler up the hill to Taksim.
An alternative is to take the tram from Zeytinburnu to the Yusufpaşa stop, then walk south along to the M2 Metro Yenikapı station (map) and take the Metro to Taksim.
The entire trip from the airport to Taksim may take nearly two hours, at a cost of TL9, but you may have to carry your luggage up and down some stairs.
By City Bus
IETT express city bus 96T departs Atatürk Airport and travels along the shore of the Sea of Marmara stopping at the Yenikapı Fast Ferry Terminal and Aksaray Square on its way to Taksim Square. This is among the most inexpensive ways to go, but also the slowest and least convenient.
—by Tom Brosnahan
|Havataş Airport Buses|