The Bosphorus Bridge is one of two bridges that spans the Bosphorus Strait, connecting the European and Asian sides of Istanbul. It stretches from Ortakoy on the European side to Beylerbeyi on the Asian side and is sometimes referred to as the First Bosphorus Bridge.

At 1560 meters long, the Bosphorus Bridge was the fourth longest suspension bridge in the world when it opened in 1973 and was the first bridge to connect Europe and Asia since a bridge spanning the Dardanelles in 480 B.C. Today, it is the 21st longest suspension bridge in the world. In 2007, an LED lighting system was installed to illuminate the bridge at night and the computerized system is now used to create a colorful light show every evening.

While the bridge is typically closed to pedestrians, it opens each October for the Istanbul Eurasia Marathon – the only marathon that crosses from one continent to another.

Practical Information

The Bosphorus Bridge is closed to pedestrian traffic, so unless you are running the marathon or participating in one of the related fun runs, you won’t have a chance to cross it on foot.  For the best views of the structure, book a Bosphorus cruise that will likely pass under it twice. At night, you can take in the light show on the bridge from a cruise or a waterfront restaurant.

If you plan to rent a car while in Istanbul, note that the Bosphorus Bridge is a toll bridge and the toll can only be paid with a smartcard purchased in advance, not in cash. If you cross the bridge by taxi, your driver will add the cost of the toll to your fare.

Tours & Tickets

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Big Bus Istanbul Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

4 star rating: Recommended 16 Reviews

There is no better way to see Istanbul than on a double-decker, hop-on hop-off bus! See top Istanbul attractions on this comprehensive sightseeing tour, such ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: Varies

From USD $38.98

Bosphorus Strait and Black Sea Half-Day Cruise from Istanbul

4.5 star rating: Recommended 19 Reviews

Take a leisurely afternoon cruise along Istanbul’s Bosphorus Strait, and enjoy an onboard lunch and visit to the Black Sea, too! After savoring delights such ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 5 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $58.47

Bosphorus Strait Cruise with Rumeli Fortress or Kücüksu Palace Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 5 Reviews

Combine a Bosphorus Strait sightseeing cruise with a tour of Küçüksu Palace or Rumeli Fortress on this exciting 2.5-hour Istanbul experience! ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $32.48

Private Tour: Romantic Bosphorus Cruise at Sunset

See some of Istanbul’s top attractions from the water on this private 1-hour sunset Bosphorus cruise! Sail along the famous Bosphorus Strait that divides ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 60 minutes (approx.)

From USD $102.09

Bosphorus Bridge, Camlica Hill and Dolmabahce Palace Tour in Istanbul

4.5 star rating: Recommended 4 Reviews

Cross Istanbul’s stunning Bosphorus Bridge, take in spectacular city views from Çamlıca Hill and explore ornate Dolmabahçe Palace on this 5-hour ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 5 hours (approx.)

From USD $45.48

Istanbul Two Continents Half-Day Tour

4 star rating: Recommended 60 Reviews

From the opulent palaces of Istanbul's European shore to magnificent views from the city's Asian side, this leisurely four-hour afternoon tour shows you the ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $48.00

Istanbul City Tour with Bosphorus Strait Sightseeing Cruise

4 star rating: Recommended 24 Reviews

See Istanbul from dry land and water on this 3-hour sightseeing experience that combines a coach tour with a Bosphorus Strait sightseeing cruise. Travel round ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $45.48

Private Half-Day Tour: Istanbul's Two Continents

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 7 Reviews

From the opulent palaces of Istanbul's European shore to magnificent views from the city's Asian side, this leisurely four-hour private afternoon tour shows ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $36.25

Private Tour: Bosphorus Cruise and Istanbul's Egyptian Bazaar

4 star rating: Recommended 14 Reviews

Begin the tour with a brief visit to the 17th century Spice Bazaar, one of Istanbul's most colorful and bustling attractions. Then take an unforgettable cruise ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $36.70

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