Pierre Loti Hill & Café: what to expect, how to get, tips

Located in the Eyup district of Istanbul, Pierre Loti Hill and its Cafe is a famous hilltop that offers an enchanting view of the city. One of the best places to enjoy a panoramic view of Istanbul. The hill is named after the famous French writer and adventurer Pierre Loti, who fell in love with Istanbul and often visited the hill to enjoy the view. So, if you are just in Istanbul for a few days, you might want to reconsider going there for tea or Turkish coffee.

Fast Facts about Pierre Loti Hill

  • Named after a French Novelist: Pierre Loti Hill was named after a famous French novelist and naval officer, Julien Viaud, who used the pen name Pierre Loti.
  • Offers Panoramic Views: The hill offers panoramic views of the city of Istanbul, including the Golden Horn, the Bosphorus, and the city’s historic skyline.
  • Historical Significance: Pierre Loti Hill has a rich history dating back to the Byzantine era. It was once the site of a temple dedicated to Athena, and later, a Byzantine castle.
  • Popular Destination for Locals and Tourists: The hill is a popular destination for both locals and tourists alike, who come to enjoy the stunning views, cafes, and restaurants.
  • Accessible by Cable Car: Visitors can reach the top of the hill by taking a cable car from the bottom of the hill. The ride takes approximately 5 minutes and offers stunning views of the city.
  • Home to Pierre Loti Cafe: At the top of the hill, visitors can find the famous Pierre Loti Cafe, named after the French novelist. The cafe offers delicious Turkish cuisine and a relaxing atmosphere.
  • A Place of Inspiration: The hill and the cafe have been a source of inspiration for many artists, writers, and poets over the years, including Pierre Loti himself.

Quick Info

You may be wondering why a teahouse in Istanbul is named after a French naval commander and author. According to folklore, Pierre Loti glanced over the Golden Horn from this same point during his time in Istanbul in 1876.

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Pierre Loti looked out over the Golden Horn from this exact spot, looking for inspiration for his literary masterpiece Aziyadé. Loti’s clandestine love affair with an 18-year-old harem girl named Aziyadé is told in the semi-autobiographical novel Aziyadé. She was his greatest love, as evidenced by the gold ring bearing her name, which he wore for the remainder of his life.

Pierre Loti is represented by Istanbul’s only French school that adheres to the French educational system (i.e., same calendar and same holidays). It is a top school popular among the Turkish aristocracy and French ex-pats.

In his honor, the Pierre Loti café in Istanbul was opened in the European area of Eyüp, on Istanbul’s heights, where he liked to go to contemplate and write while admiring the spectacular view of the Golden Horn.

What to expect from your visit?

Pierre Loti Hill offers stunning panoramic views of Istanbul and the Golden Horn. The entire Golden Horn can be seen clearly from the hill.

You can explore the hilltop park and enjoy a cup of traditional Turkish tea or Turkish coffee. The café features a large terrace with comfortable seating areas that provide the perfect spot to sit back, relax, and take in the breathtaking views.

Additionally, you can explore the nearby Eyup Sultan Mosque, one of the holiest Islamic sites in Istanbul. The mosque features a beautiful courtyard and ornate interior adorned with intricate tile work and calligraphy.

The view from the viewpoint on the Hill of Pierre Loti in the district of Eyup to the Golden Horn with Halic Bridge, Istanbul, Turkey

Finally, you can take a ride on the cable car that connects the hill to the Eyup district below, providing a unique and exciting way to see the city from above. The cable car ride offers stunning views of the Golden Horn and the surrounding neighborhoods.

Visiting Tips

  • The hill is open throughout the day, but the best time to visit is during the late afternoon or early evening. The views of the city during sunset are simply stunning.
  • The hill involves a lot of walking, so wear comfortable shoes and clothes. During the summer months, it can get quite hot, so bring sunscreen and a hat.
  • While there are some cafes and restaurants on the hill, they may not accept credit cards. It’s a good idea to bring cash with you.
  • The cafe is a must-visit attraction on the hill. It’s named after the French writer and is a great place to grab a drink or a bite to eat while enjoying the beautiful views.
  • The surrounding Eyup neighborhood is also worth exploring. It’s a traditional area of Istanbul with a lot of history and culture.
  • The hill is accessible by cable car, which is a fun and unique way to get there. The cable car runs from the Eyup Sultan Mosque and offers great views of the city.
  • The hill is a religious site for Muslims, as it’s home to the tomb of a prominent religious figure. Visitors should dress modestly and be respectful of the local culture and customs.

Getting to Pierre Loti Hill Tips

Pierre Loti Hill is located in Eyup neighborhood through Golden Horn. See on google map.

For those coming from Taksim, Galata or Besiktas areas, can take the Kabatas-Bagcilar T1 tram line passing through Kabatas, Karakoy, and get off at Sirkeci stop. And than take the public bus for Eyup.

For those on the Asian side of Istanbul, can take the ferry to Eminonu or take the Marmaray line from Uskudar and get off at the Sirkeci stop. And than take the public bus for Eyup.


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Access to the Pierre Loti hill is provided via the TF2 Eyüp – Pierre Loti cable car line from Eyup.

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