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ISTANBUL GAY GUIDE



GENERAL INFORMATION

Majority of gay bars & clubs get busy after midnight. The venues listed under Cafe section are also open busy in day time, but still more busy in the evenings.

The busiest night is Saturday in all bars and clubs. The second busiest night is Friday. Wednesdays are usually more vibrant compared to other week-in days.

Most of the gay clubs requires entrance fee on Saturday nights and some on Friday nights. (10 to 15 Euro, approximately) Entrance fees are usually a little more expensive than the usual price, and you can have one "local drink" with your ticket.

In winter, you have to leave your coats or jackets at the cloakrooms in most of the gay night clubs.  and pay for it when you leave.

There is not any place with a dark-room. No bars or clubs provide sex-partner or sex place as a part of the service. You have to find your own partner, place and take your own responsibility.

Credit cards are accepted by some clubs, but not all. So it is recommended to have some cash on you. Turkish Lira is better. They accept US Dollars or Euros as well but the exchange rate will be very low.

The price for one drink approximately varies from 5-7 Euro for local drinks (beer, gin, vodka etc); and from 10-15 Euro for "export" drinks (such as whiskey, safari, Malibu etc) These are just estimated rates otherwise the prices are actually in Turkish Liras.

The Turkish baths (Hamams) and cinemas are not obviously accepted as gay venues by their owners.  They rather play the "three monkeys". So, you are advised to be discrete in a reasonable way.

 

GAY NIGHT CLUBS

Tekyon Club (23:00-05:00)
Address: Siraselviler Caddesi, No 63/1 Taksim/Beyoglu. Istanbul.
The most popular gay night club of the recent years, packed up on Friday and Saturday nights. It is also a favorite place for middle-aged gay men and bears, but it is also populated by a mixture of various styles/ages of local gay and bisexual men as well as many gay tourists.

Neo Bar & Club   (23:00 - 05:00 ; Friday & Saturday)
Address: Halaskargazi Caddesi No: 113 Osmanbey, Istanbul
The club is located very close to Osmanbey exit of metro station (next station after Taksim), some 300 meters further away from Love club, if you come from Taksim direction. It is a Western style night club similar to Love Club and X Large, busy after midnight.

Love Club (23:30 - 05:00 (Open Wednesday, Friday and Saturday)
Address: Cumhuriyet Caddesi no: 349 Harbiye Istanbul.
This one is located out of the major night life area, in Harbiye district, accross military museum (Askeri Muze). You you need to take a short taxi. Although it is locates on a central street, walking is not recommended at night. There are many straight people now so it became a gay friendly/mix venue rather.

Kappak Club (23:00 - 05:00)
Address: Buyukparmakkapi Sokak No 26 (entrance floor) Taksim-Beyoglu/Istanbul
A brand new gay club opened in late July, 2024 by the owners & managers of Pinokyo Cafe Bar at the entrance floor of the same building.

Cheeky Club (23:00-05:00)
Address: Tarlabasi Bulvari, No 32 Beyoglu, Istanbul.
It is near Taksim square on Tarlabasi avenue, next to Club No Name (a transgender club, former Prive Bar ) and Carlton Hotel.

Super Fabric (23:00 - 05:00)
Address: Cumhuriyet Caddesi No:42 Elmadag / Sisli, Istanbul, Turkey - Google Map
It is located at some 10 minutes walking distance away from Taksim Square somewhere on Cumhuriyet Caddesi avenue that goes towards Harbiye / Sisli districts, roughly across from Konak Hotel. The entrance gate is not facing the main avenue. It is on a very small blind-street off the Cumhuriyet Caddesi.

Club 17 (23:00-05:00)
Address: Istiklal Caddesi, Zambak Sokak No:17 (Close to French Consulate)
This is a fun place to visit but you need to be very selective with the boys you meet here. Most of them are hustlers or rent boys. Because there are so many of them, the place always looks full. You will also see many transvestites in this "gay club". Do not pay any entrance fee at the door, unless it is Saturday.

 

GAY CAFE SHOPS AND BARS  IN ISTANBUL


The venues listed under this category is recommended to people who don't like loud night clubs or do not want to stay up too late after mid-night. The prices of these venues are also more reasonable with respect to after-midnight gay clubs.

Chaplin Cafe
(12:00- 00:00)
Address: Istiklal Cad. Ipek Sokak 16, Kat 3, Daire 5 - Beyoglu/Istanbul
A gay cafe shop on the 3rd floor, Mostly patronized by younger gay men and the prices are fairly reasonable for now. You can access Ipek sokak from the other street on the left hand side of McDonald's on Istiklal Avenue.

Mor Cafe (20:00- 02:00)
Address: Istiklal Cad. Imam Adnan Sk. No:7 / 3 Beyoglu/Istanbul
One of the oldest of these kind of cafe-shops which you can visit at day time. Usually busy until midnight. Clientele is younger.

Pinokyo Cafe & Bar (15:00- 00:00)
Address: Istiklal Cad. Buyukparmakkapi Sk No: 26/1 Beyoglu/Istanbul
A new cafe bar opened in March 2011. It is located on Buyukparmakkapi street across the Benetton on Istiklal. It is a modest place on the 1st floor. You can observe live Turkish music and drag show performances on different days of the week.

Haspa Cafe & Bar  (12:00-02:00)
Address: Istiklal Cad. Ipek Sokak 16/2 Beyoglu/Istanbul
A senior straight cafe bar on a small street off the Istiklal avenue was undertaken by gay people in April 2011 specifically declaring that they want to welcome straight acting gay men. It is located at the same building with Chaplin Cafe.

Chianti Cafe & Bar (20:00-02:00
Address: Istiklal Caddesi, Balo Sokak No: 31. (2nd floor) Beyoglu
An exceptional gay bar in Istanbul where you can go early in the evenings. It is also different than most other gay bars and clubs of Istanbul with reasonable sound level and it's relaxed atmosphere,

Durak Bar (19:00 - 02:00)
Address: Murat Pasa Sokak, No 9, Aksaray, Istanbul
Durak bar (formerly called Pasam) is located in Aksaray district, about 5 kilometer away from Taksim. It is a meeting place for middle class bear and older/mature gay men, completely different from all gay-clubs in Taksim with a very traditional/exotic atmosphere. It is busy in late evenings, until 01:00/02:00 am. It may also busy until 4 am on Saturday nights.
 
 

Gay Friendly Restaurants


5th Floor
Address: Siraselviler Caddesi, Soganci Sokak, No:7/1, Cihangir-Beyoglu
Web: http://www.5kat.com/ 
Located on top of the building (Besinci Kat means 5th floor) housing also Club Barbahce. This is a very gay friendly restaurant, where you can eat your dinner with your friends on special days, or sip you drink at its reasonably priced bar, watching great panorama of Istanbul, including the Bosphorus straight and Asia

Cooking Alaturca
Address: Akbiyik Caddesi 72a, Sultanahmet, IstanbulTel: (90) (212) 458 5919
Web: http://www.cookingalaturka.com 
The concept is basically to offer a miscellaneous menu of all authentic Turkish dishes, some Ottoman classics, some home-cooking and some regional specialties. Open only for lunch and prices are average.

360 Restaurant
Address: Istiklal Caddesi, Misir Apartmani K:8 No:311, Beyoglu - Istanbul.
The restaurant is named 360, referring to a view 360 degree. It is a fancy venue located on the terrace floor of historical building (Misir Apartmani) on the right hand side after passing Galatasaray square

Cok Cok Thia Restaurant
Address: Mesrutiyet Cad. No:51, 34344 Beyoglu-Istanbul. Phone: +90 212 292 6496
Added to our list by the managers in July 2010. It is Thai restaurant located on Mesrutiyet street parallel to Istiklal avenue. When you walk from Taksim turn right from Galatasaray square, and take the first turn to left, and pass British Consulate.
 

Sauna and Bath Houses


Please note that the bath houses listed on this page are not necessarily explicitly gay / gay-friendly venues. Please visit the following website for more information including location maps, visitor reviews etc: www.turkishbathguide.com/

Aquarius Sauna
Address: Istiklal Caddesi, Sadri Alisik Sokak, No: 29/1 Taksim-Beyoglu, Istanbul.
Web:  www.aquariussauna.com/
Friendly sauna & bath house located in Beyoglu district very close to Taksim square famous with young masseurs. It is open round the clock (24 hours) and everyday of the week.

Cihangir Sauna
Altipatlar Sokak, No: 14. Cukurcuma / Beyoglu / Istanbul
It is a senior gay friendly sauna but then they maltreated and dismissed gay people until new people bought the administration in late 2010. The new owners are trying hard to revitalize the venue and gain back the gay clients. Open in day time until around 9 pm.

Firuzaga Hamam
Address: Cukurcuma Cd. No: 6, Cukurcuma, Beyoglu/Istanbul
A small historical bath house in Beyoglu can be the one most recommended if you want to see the local ambiance. It is located at the end of the same street where (now-closed) Cukurcuma Hamam was. Cukurcuma street is well known neighborhood for antique lovers

Yesidirek Hamam
Address: Tershane Cad. Yolcuzade Sok. N:74
Very close to entrance of Ataturk bridge over Golden Horn (Halic), the second one after Galata Bridge. It is on the Taksim/Beyoglu side of the bridge and you can walk from Karakoy along the Golden Horn.

Cesme Hamam
Address: Voyvoda (Bankalar) Caddesi, Yeni Cesme Sokak, Karakoy, Istanbul
It is on a back-street (Yeni Cesme) hard to locate somewhere below Galata Tower; or above Galata Bridge to the left. (off Persembe Pazar- street). Not very clean. Mostly attended by middle aged/older men or bears

Davutpasa Hamam
Adress: Cerrahpasa Mah. Org. Nafiz Gurman Cad. No:21 Samatya Fatih Istanbul
Officially called "Tarihi Davutpasa Iskele Hamam-" it is located in Samatya ditrict, about 7 km away from Taksim, 4 Km away from Sultanahmet (old city)
 

Cruising Areas & Beaches


Like in other big cities cruising areas and especially parks are places where gay people should be very careful and selective with the people they meet. These places are discovered by some bad guys and pick-pockets who are always around in such places for robbing gay men rather than cruising for sex. Especially be careful if the person you meet proposes you to have sex in isolated outside places. We recommend you not to carry very valuable things a a lot of money with you when you go to such places, just in case.

Istiklal Caddesi and Taksim Square
Two-kilometer long pedestrian street/avenue starting from Taksim square and ending in Tunel (the upper end of historical mini-subway). It is very busy day and night mostly with people strolling or shopping. The street also connects Taksim square to the gay venues mostly located on the smaller back-streets crossing it, and you can see many gay men and related people along the way.

Taksim Park
The park at the above Taksim Mc Donald's, near Taksim Square. The part of the park closer to the sea-side is more cruisy especially in the summer evenings. It is busier on Sundays and Saturday evenings. It is not actually very much recommended to foreigners and new-comers for safety reasons. Since 2007 there is a very strict police control in the park.

Sultanahmet Park.
Especially the small park behind the Sultanahmet tramcar station and the corner of the park above Arasta Bazaar in the evenings. Sultanahmet is the famous tourist town of Istanbul and the parks are also comparatively safer, but there is not a very visible gay scene

Prince Islands - Kinaliada Gay Beach
A group of small islands close to the main land on the Asian side in Marmara sea. They consist of 9 islands, 4 of which are considerably popular and inhabited. There are regular ferryboats from Kabatas pier (accessible from Taksim by Funicular) which takes 30-45 minutes by boat stopping on each major Island. The isolated beach on the back sides of Kinaliada (walk right hand side when you get off the boat) and some less busy beaches in Buyukada are cruisy at season. Do not expect a visible gay-scene.




 

BHN MAVI TOURS
Address: Incili Cavus Sokak, No: 15,, Kat 4 (4th floor) Sultanahmet, Istanbul
Phone: +90 212 5270671 Fax/Phone: +90 212 5270672. .