Bursa Travel Guide
This content was last updated on 24.01.2024 22:20
Bursa is a city that draws attention both for being the former capital of the Ottoman Empire and for its beautiful natural structure. We have compiled the places to visit in Bursa, one of the most beautiful cities in Turkey, and the 4th most populous city in Turkey.
Where is Bursa
Bursa is a city in the south of the Marmara Region. It is one of the most crowded cities in Turkey. Bursa is surrounded by Bilecik in the east, Kütahya in the south, Balıkesir in the west and Yalova in the north.
For those who will go to Bursa, the kilometer and hour information from a few surrounding cities are as follows;
- The distance between Istanbul and Bursa is 149 kilometers and approximately 2 hours and 5 minutes
- The distance between Yalova and Bursa is 68 kilometers and about 1 hour and 5 minutes
- The distance between Kocaeli and Bursa is 132 kilometers and approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes
- The distance between Bilecik and Bursa is 96 kilometers and approximately 1 hour 37 minutes
- The distance between Balıkesir and Bursa is 153 kilometers and approximately 2 hours and 5 minutes
How to Go to Bursa
You can pass through Mudanya from Istanbul and easily reach Bursa center from Mudanya. The distance between Mudanya and Bursa center is only 30 kilometers and an average of 40 minutes by car. Even if you do not have a personal vehicle, you can go from Mudanya to Bursa city center by bus number F/3.
BUDO (Sea Bus)
The easiest way to get from Istanbul to Bursa without a car is with BUDO flights. The journey takes 1 hour 50 minutes. There are daily flights from Kabataş or Büyükçekmece, only for passengers (not for vehicles). Click for detailed information and timetable
IDO (Sea Bus)
IDO has a Beşiktaş-Kadıköy-Yenikapı-Bursa sea bus line between Istanbul and Mudanya. The journey takes about 90 minutes and there are two reciprocal flights on average per day. It is worth remembering that sea buses are only for passengers. Click for detailed information about IDO flight times.
IDO - Fast Ferry (Yenikapı - Mudanya Fast Ferry)
If you are going to Bursa from Istanbul by car, there is a fast ferry option to Mudanya. Click for detailed information about IDO ferry schedules.
Transportation from Istanbul to Bursa by Car
If you want to use the Osman Gazi Bridge to the Gulf of Izmit, it only takes 2 hours. However, tolls are somewhat expensive. If you try to wander around the bay, you can reach Bursa in 3 hours at best.
Transportation to Bursa by Air
There are scheduled flights to Bursa Yenişehir Airport from the surrounding cities. These provinces are Ankara, Diyarbakır, Erzurum, Muş and Trabzon.
When to Go to Bursa
If you are considering a city trip in Bursa, July-September are the best times. If you have a holiday plan for the winter, the best time is January-February.
Places to Visit in Bursa
Here is the list of places to visit in Bursa, which fascinates with its history and nature...
Uludag is the highest mountain of the Marmara Region with an altitude of 2543 meters, the most popular winter sports center of Turkey and the most touristic place of Bursa. Uludağ, which started to develop in the field of winter tourism with its first hotel established in 1933, is one of the most preferred places in Turkey for skiing today.
You can do many sports such as trekking, mountain biking, rock climbing, mountaineering and camping in Uludağ National Park, which is surrounded by its natural beauties. Uludag welcomes tourists from all over the world, especially in winter, with its ski resorts of international standards, 5-star hotels, forest mansions and bungalow hotels. You can explore Uludag, which is among the Bursa nature excursion routes, offering unique nature views with its lush green plateaus and glacial lakes on the mountain slopes, not only in winter but also in spring and summer with photo safaris, jeep trips and bicycle tours.
Mudanya is the most developed district of Bursa in terms of tourism and hosts thousands of tourists every year.
Mudanya is one of the most touristic districts of Bursa on the coast of the Marmara Sea. It is preferred for both weekend holidays and summer holidays, as it can be reached with a 1.5-hour journey from Istanbul by ferry. It attracts a lot of attention with its advanced tourism opportunities, boutique hotels by the sea, cafes, entertainment venues and seaside tea gardens.
The district, which has a deep-rooted history dating back to 700 BC, was conquered by Orhan Bey in 1321 and joined the Ottoman Empire.
There are many places you should see in Mudanya.
- You can visit the building where the Mudanya Armistice was signed in 1922 between the Allied Powers and the Turkish Grand National Assembly as a museum.
- You can visit the Old Crete Quarter, which is famous for its historical mansions and cute roadside cafes, which are among the most beautiful examples of 18th century architecture.
- You can watch the panoramic view of Mudanya from Yıldıztepe.
- You can take evening walks at Güzelyalı Beach and Mudanya Beach.
- Mudanya Orthodox Church and Uğur Mumcu Cultural Center are among the places worth seeing in Mudanya.
The most beautiful beaches where you can swim in Bursa are also in Mudanya. The most popular Mudanya Beaches where you can enjoy the sea and the sun are as follows;
- Eşkel Beach
- Kumsal Beach
- Eğerce Beach
- Burgaz Altınkum Beach
- Coşkunöz Public Beach
- Kumyaka Public Beach
There are also rows of beautiful fish restaurants along the coast in Mudanya. If you want to taste seasonal fish and local appetizers accompanied by the view of the Marmara Sea, you can choose these places.
3. Ulu Camii
Bursa Ulu Mosque, with its 20 magnificent domes, is one of the first symbols that come to mind when Bursa is mentioned. It is located in the Hanlar District, one of the most visited places in the city, on Ulucami Street in Osmangazi district. Bursa Grand Mosque, which fascinates local and foreign tourists with its magnificence, was built in 1400 and was renovated after the earthquake in 1855. The mosque, where the silk cover decorated with pure gold covering the door of the Kaaba is also exhibited, is considered one of the most beautiful examples of Ottoman multi-legged mosque architecture.
Bursa Grand Mosque, which was built after the Niğbolu Victory in Yıldırım Beyazıt period, has a beauty worth seeing with its 20 domes, 16-cornered fountains, tiles adorning its 3.165 m2 interior, miniatures and wood carvings. Bursa Ulu Mosque, which is considered one of the most beautiful mosques in Turkey, where you can examine examples of tiles made with the Kündekari technique and Ottoman calligraphy, is one of the must-visit places in Bursa as both an architectural masterpiece and a peaceful sanctuary.
The district of İnegöl, 47 kilometers from Bursa city center, is known for its magnificent forests spread over an area of 10 hectares, its healing spas and dishes (especially İnegöl Meatballs).
One of Turkey's largest districts with a population of more than 250,000 and Turkey's 16th most developed industrial center, İnegöl has a highly developed culinary culture due to Caucasian, Balkan and Anatolian immigrants. You can see many quality restaurants serving Caucasian and Balkan dishes as well as delicious İnegöl meatballs in the district, which should be visited by those looking for new tastes.
Inegol forests of 100,000 hectares, decorated with linden, fir, beech, pine and oak trees, are among the most beautiful places in Bursa where you can enjoy nature with its hiking trails and recreation areas. After tasting the delicious meatballs of İnegöl, we recommend you to visit the historical and natural beauties of İnegöl such as Oylat Hot Springs, Oylat Cave, Oylat Waterfall, İshakpaşa Complex, İnegöl City Museum, Alaçam Waterfall and Canyon.
5. Koza Han
Another building group that comes to mind when talking about places to visit in Bursa is inns. Especially the reputation of Koza Han has spread widely among those who make touristic trips.
At the end of the 15th century, II. Koza Han, built by Bayezid, is known as the historical shopping center of Bursa.
Today, there are silk fabrics, scarves, shawls, accessories, handcrafted products, home textile products and souvenirs in the shops in Koza Han.
Koza Han can be visited between 08:00 – 19:30 on weekdays, 08:00 – 20:00 on Saturdays, and 10:30 – 18:30 on Sundays.
6. Cumalıkızık Village
Cumalıkızık Village, which was included in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List in 2014, is literally an open-air museum with its more than 700 years of history and village houses where you can see the best examples of Ottoman architecture. Cumalıkızık Village, which is an important address for historical and cultural trips in Bursa and attracting the attention of photographers from all over the world, will take you back to the Ottoman period from the chaos of the modern world.
Cumalıkızık Village, located at the foot of Uludağ and ideal for visiting with its cool air in summer, with its hundreds of years old historical houses with wooden, adobe and stone architecture, small restaurants where you can taste local Bursa dishes, and small pensions where you can stay in the comfort of home, both for a day trip and for a few days. It can be preferred for accommodation.
During your tour, you can see pictures of hundreds of years of daily life and personal belongings of the village people at the Cumalıkızık Ethnography Museum or visit the historical Cumalıkızık Mosque, which has been in service for centuries. Cumalıkızık Village is also visited for the village breakfasts prepared with all organic products grown by the villagers.
7. Irgandı Bridge
Another touristic structure that we can recommend in the guide of places to visit in Bursa is the Irgandı Bridge with a bazaar, one of the four examples in the world. Structures similar to the Irgandı Bridge are located in Venice, Florence and Bulgaria/Lofça.
Irgandı Bridge, which is estimated to be the oldest bazaar bridge in the world, has a history of approximately 600 years. It is also possible to say that it is more ostentatious in general compared to its counterparts in other cities. It was built on Gökdere in 1442 and connects Osmangazi and Yıldırım districts.
Since it was built centuries ago, the bridge was damaged from time to time and was even largely demolished and rebuilt. Flood and earthquake disasters in the 19th century caused great damage to the bridge. In addition, during the War of Independence, the Greeks bombed the bridge and withdrew from the city.
Finally, Irgandı Bridge, which was restored in 2004, sells various handicraft products, especially tiles. There is a warm atmosphere on the bridge thanks to artisanal artisan shops and traditional folk arts workshops.
One of the most frequented spots by local and foreign tourists, Irgandı Bridge is one of the must-see places in Bursa.
8. Muradiye Complex
Muradiye Complex is among the most important historical places in Bursa. Included in the World Cultural Heritage List in 2014, the Muradiye Complex is the last complex built during the Ottoman period.
Built in 1425 during the reign of Sultan Murat II, the complex includes a hammam, mosque, madrasah and tombs. There are 12 tombs in a garden covered with lush trees. Ottoman period tombstones are quite remarkable.
Muradiye Complex, located in Osmangazi, can be described as the most important place to visit in the center of Bursa. Muradiye Neighborhood, where the complex is located, can also be reached by direct buses.
9. Bursa Castle (Gate of Sultanate)
Another historical building in the city is Bursa Castle, which has survived to the present day. It has approximately 3.5 km long ramparts. It also has 14 signs and 5 gates. The main entrance gate is the Sultanate Gate on Ortapazar Street.
Bursa Castle, which is said to be made of rubble stones and blocks, is within walking distance of Tophane Park and Ulu Camii. It rises right in front of Balibey Han.
The building, which remains from the Bithynians, also bears traces of Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman. It is estimated that its history dates back to the 1st century BC.
The Ulu Mosque and Bursa city view can be seen from the castle, which is subject to restoration work from time to time. Only the castle is not very safe in the evening, so I suggest you go during the day.
If you are already in the center, your transportation will be very comfortable. While you are in the center of Bursa, do not leave without seeing one of the oldest buildings of Bursa.
10. Green Mosque and Green Tomb
Green Tomb, one of the symbols of Bursa, is a religious structure that can be seen from all over the city and dazzling with its motifs. The Green Tomb, which is among the most important religious and artistic works in the list of places to visit in Bursa, is in the "Green Complex". The tomb, which was built by Çelebi Mehmet (1. Mehmet) in 1421, became his final resting place shortly after its construction was completed. In addition, there are the tombs of Çelebi Mehmet's family members in the tomb.
The mihrab, located in the two-storey Green Tomb, which also gives clear clues about the 15th century architecture, is among the few works of art of its period. The Green Tomb, the most important social complex of the Ottoman Empire, has eight facades (octagonal prism form). All its walls are covered with turquoise tiles, and with this feature, it is among the unique structures of the Ottoman period. In addition, the interior of the tomb, sarcophagi, mihrab, walls and facades are decorated with tiles.
11. Tophane Clock Tower
Tophane Clock Tower in Tophane Park is a structure that we can definitely recommend you to see, especially when you are in the region. Many cities are famous for their clock towers, Bursa's clock tower is Tophane Clock Tower. It is said that the building was built in honor of "Abdulhamid II" ascension to the throne.
The clock tower is a historical building that rises over 6 floors with its unique style with windows on each floor. There are round clocks on every façade of the top floor. Unfortunately, the watches are not original, but still fit well with the structure.
The main attraction of Tophane Clock Tower is that it offers a wonderful panoramic view of Bursa under your feet as soon as you climb to the top. It is worth climbing the 89-step wooden stairs to watch that beautiful view.
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