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Bursa in One Day: Self-guided Tour

Here’s how to see the top sights of Bursa, Turkey, on a day-trip (or overnight) from Istanbul.

Historic Bursa is spread across the slopes of Uludag (the Bythinian Mount Olympus), its major sights in five separate districts, plus the mountain summit.

The most important for visitors with limited time are Green MosqueCity Center and Citadel, which you can easily tour in about three hours. You can spend any remaining time (especially if you stay overnight) visiting the last two and the summit of Uludag.

Here are the major sightseeing districts, from east to west across the mountainside:

1. Green Mosque (Yesil Cami)
The district centered on the historic Green Mosque (Yesil Cami, YESH-sheel jah-mee) includes the mosque itself, the imperial tomb (Yesil Türbe)next to it, the Turkish & Islamic Arts Museum in a historic medrese(theological college), and to the east of the Yesil complex, the Emir Sultan MosqueMore…

2. City Center (Sehir Merkezi)
The heart of historic Bursa, which is also the commercial and cultural center of the modern city, stretches from Heykel, the plaza marked by the equestrian statue of Atatürk, then westward along Atatürk Caddesipast the shady Koza Park by the Koza Han (Silk Cocoon Caravanserai) and Kapali Çarsi (Covered Bazaar), to the Ulu Cami (Great Mosque). More…

3. Citadel (Hisar)
A ten-minute walk west uphill from the Ulu Cami, Bursa’s former citadel is the oldest part of the city, with some fine old Bursa houses, the tombs of Osman and Orhan, founders of the Ottoman dynasty, and panoramic views of the valley below. More…

4. Muradiye Mosque Complex
A quiet neighborhood centered on the Muradiye Hüdavendigâr mosque complex, tombs of the sultans, and Old Ottoman House museums. More…

5. Çekirge Hot Springs
Known for its hot mineral waters—and lots of hotels built to house those who have come to bathe in them—Çekirge also boasts the interesting old Mosque of Murat I and the tomb of its founder. Çekirge is well to the west of the other districts, and requires a bus or taxi ride. If you have an intense interest in early Ottoman mosque architecture, or if you intend to spend some time in one of Çekirge’s famous mineral baths, you’ll want to visit here. More…

6. Uludag
Uludag (OO-loo dah, “Great Mountain”), the Mount Olympus of the ancient province of Bithynia, rises 2543 m (8343 feet) to the south of the city, which is built on its slopes. A teleferik (cable car) east of the city center takes you to the half-way point, then another takes you to the summit for hiking (or just some fresh, cool air) in summer, and for skiingin winter. Minibuses also depart from the city center and drive the 23 km to the summit, but the cable car is a lot more fun. More…


What to See & Do in Bursa

Istanbul-Bursa by Ferryboat

Istanbul-Yalova by Ferryboat

Bursa Transport

Bursa Homepage

Istanbul

Where to Go in Turkey

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