Some destinations have “must-do” experiences, visiting the Eiffel Tower, the Golden Gate Bridge, etc., but our favorite requisites tend to be food-related. One quintessential Turkish dining experience is enjoying a meal under the Galata Bridge that spans the Golden Horn in Istanbul. In terms of natural and architectural beauty, Istanbul is a grand city, and the Bosphorus plays a huge part in its history and the landscape. Though we found plenty of awesome cheap food in Istanbul, you can hardly beat the panoramic setting of the Galata bridge. It’s also the perfect place to take in some of the city and its people. The bridge is always bustling, full of pedestrians and fishermen. If you’re craving a Galata dining experience, there are two ways you can go, dining under the bridge itself, or dining on the neon-bedecked fishing boats docked on the Eminonu side of the river.
We chose to eat underneath the bridge, (partially because we ended up on the side of the river opposite of the neon boats). There we found a range of eateries serving seafood, from dirt cheap to more expensive, packing in both crowds of tourists and locals. The cuisine is not the draw though, the views are. We found a restaurant serving simple fish sandwiches for 5 Lire and a particularly potent Turkish coffee. Next time around we would love to try the neon fish boats, which were literally jumping and rollicking and blasting music as the sun set.