Fish Bread

Customized Tour Istanbul

Customized Tour Istanbul – Fish in the Bread, what an attractive couple

The attractive couple, Fish and Bread, just like Bosphorus is the symbol of Istanbul. Customized tour Istanbul will introduce you to it.

The fish sandwich – an Istanbul institution. You simply need to go to the Eminonu end of Galata Bridge, then to the side of the bridge where Golden Horn is and then just follow the smell of freshly grilled fish…

istanbul fishing for balik ekmek, customized tour istanbulFor a century, maybe fishermen brought their catch from the Bosphorus and the Sea of Marmara to Istanbul’s Galata Bridge over the Golden Horn for sale.

Istanbullians have always made the most of the city’s seaside position. Walk along the Galata Bridge and you will always see people fishing, no matter what the weather is like. Local people know it and whenever they have the chance, they would enjoy the balik ekmek (fish and bread). For tourists, it is something they must learn and experience, though at first they might find it a bit fishy. After visiting the places of interest in customized tour Istanbul and especially after a Bosphorus boat trip; a fish sandwich is a great hunger reliever.

A grilled fish fillet inserted in a half loaf of bread

istanbul balik ekmek fish frying, customized tour istanbulBalik ekmek – a grilled fish fillet inserted in a half loaf of bread with some lettuce and onion. A cheap and definitely healthier substitute to fast food.

Fish, just like Bosphorus is the symbol of Istanbul, fishermen, fishing boats, fish and bread are another thing that characterizes this cosmopolitan city.

A few fishermen came to the idea of cooking the fish they had caught. Right then and right on their boats and sell it to the passers-by ready-to-eat. They built grills and fryers on their boats and started feeding Istanbullians. There are many small restaurants that serve not only fish and bread, but fish plates as well. Fishing boats, though, anchored at the pier, add to the itself romantic adventure and experience of eating outside (not in a restaurant) by the sea. But first, you get your balik ekmek off the boat itself as it rocks to the waves in the sea. There are nice nooks with small plastic tables and chairs at the pier, and quick, friendly staff dressed in local outfits.

If you ask older locals about balik ekmek, whether they remember it from their childhood, the answer will be ‘Yes, of course’. There are small differences, maybe from that time but still fish and bread is here to relieve people’s hunger and to attract tourists who have never tried it and new ones who are hesitating if it’s worth fish and bread, customized tour istanbul

Definitely worth trying

It is definitely worth trying in your private tour of Istanbul. It is tasty, delicious, challenging… Why challenging? Because, what goes best with balik ekmek- mackerel fillets  generously proportioned and the bread perfectly sized, so that fish is not lost in a sea of dough, is salgam (a blend of water, juice of salted, pickled black carrots and celem turnips, and boiled, pulverized bulgur wheat). Another good accompaniment to this lovely fish sandwich is tursu (as Turkish people call it) – pickles.  If you don’t like pickles, though, you can have water or a soft drink, instead.

If you happen to be at Eminonu in the evening and the weather is good, you can enjoy a sunset view of the Golden Horn, and a good, cheap diner – balik ekmek (‘balik’- fish and ‘ekmek’- bread).

‘Balik ekmek! Balik ekmek! Buyurun!…’ or ‘Fish and bread! Fish and bread! You are welcome!…’ And the tasty smell of grilled fish will definitely take you to the Eminonu end of Galata Bridge; then to the side of the bridge where Golden Horn is.

Try it at least once and I can assure you; you would go back again on your own or on another customized tour Istanbul for more.

I am specialist on tailor-made tours like personal Istanbul tours. For more information please contact me with the size of your group for a free quote with no-obligation.

I am also so happy to introduce Ephesus and Turkey tours and to all our visitors to get more about Ephesus please check walking tour Ephesus, about Turkey please check private tour Istanbul.


  1. Mmmmm, my favourite!!!:-) Everybody visiting Istanbul should try it. It’s in Eminonu where you get boats for a Bosphorus cruise.


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