|Ziya Gökalp Mah., Olimpiyat Stadı Yolu No:1, İstanbul
|Turkey national football team
|31 July 2002
|Michel Macary and Aymeric Zublena
|79,414 (Galatasaray – Olympiacos, 31 July 2002)
|Two steel roofs (west and east)
|Who is the owner of Ataturk Olympic Stadium?
|105 m × 68 m
|Where is Ataturk Olympic Stadium located?
|41°04’16.86″ N 28°45’33.91″ E
|Atatürk Olimpiyat Stadı
The largest stadium in Turkey is called the Ataturk Olympic Stadium. It was constructed in the western outskirts of Istanbul with the 2008 Olympic Games in mind. In fact, the country’s bid failed and eventually, the Olympics took place in the capital of China. The ground’s original capacity was 80,597 but this number slightly decreased after renovations in 2005 and 2019.
In the past years, the Turkish football clubs such as Galatasaray (2003–2004), Istanbul Basaksehir (2007–2014), Kasimpasa (2007–2008), and Besiktas (2013–2016) were the temporary tenants of the country’s main sports arena. It was due to renovations of their respective home grounds. Today it’s the main playing venue of the Turkish national football team, although they also play at the other arenas in Alanya, Konya, Trabzon, and the other cities.
The stadium’s shape is a bowl with identical one-tier shortside stands called the North and the South Tribunes. The longside stands are the East and the West Tribunes consisting of two and three tiers correspondingly. The seat categories are as follows:
- Premium or Superior seats located at the West Tribune;
- Cat 1 and Cat 2 seats located at the West and the East Tribunes;
- Cat 3 seats located behind the net.
The Ataturk Olympic Stadium is not only an outstanding 5-star football ground. It also hosted numerous European athletic competitions, truck fairs, fashion events, theatre performances, and spectacular concerts. For example, U2, Snow Patrol, and Phil Collins performed on stage there.
One of the most glorious days in the stadium’s history so far is 25 May 2005. The dramatic UEFA Champions League Final between AC Milan and Liverpool FC took place there. The 120-minute showdown ended in a draw, 3-3. Liverpool FC won on penalties 2-3 bringing the European Cup to their home for the fifth time. In 2017, it was announced that the Ataturk Olympic Stadium is going to host its second Champions League Final in 2020.
The Ataturk Olympic Stadium often gathers big crowds of avid football fans and the best tickets often sell out quickly. The Turkish fans are well-known for their loud and uncompromising behaviour and they often pack their home stadium during the big games. If you want to purchase the ticket to the event taking place at the Ataturk Olympic Stadium, Ticket Compare can become your best assistant. It is a wonderful timesaving solution which will allow you to buy tickets from your home country at a reasonable price. The intuitive interface, advanced navigation, and much more great features will make your ticket buying experience a cakewalk.
If you are looking for alternative ways to get tickets to the Ataturk Olympic Stadium, consider visiting the ticket office located at the venue. The official website of the ground doesn’t offer any other options at the moment. In fact, you can try to contact the stadium’s administration via email firstname.lastname@example.org or call +90 (212) 413 30 00.
Istanbul is a 2,500-year-old city offering a huge number of incredible landmarks and unique historical and cultural experiences. You’ll always remember the beautiful Bosphorus, Istanbul’s antique neighbourhoods, and its rich smells and tastes after the trip to this city. The list of the hotels below can help you to instantly book some of the best hotels Istanbul has to offer.
- Radisson Blu Residence, Istanbul Batisehir – is an extraordinary hotel with the rooms starting at £52. The property offers impressive city views, ultra-clean rooms with the best facilities, super-fast WiFi, currency exchange, a gym, and a spa centre. Hopefully, a 15-minute ride to the Ataturk Olympic Stadium won’t be a problem.
- Hampton by Hilton Istanbul Kayasehir – is located a 10-minute drive from Turkey’s main sports venue. This pretty and cosy hotel offers transportation from and to the airport. Kayasehir Central Mall is located literally a few steps away from it. You’ll pay about £70 for the room including a very good breakfast.
- TRYP by Wyndham Istanbul Airport – is about 5 miles away from the football ground of the Turkey national team. It’s a nice location close to the supermarket, Mahmutbey İstasyonu metro station and several bus stops. This splendid hotel charges only £56 per night.
- Centro Westside by Rotana – is situated about 6 miles away from the stadium. It’s a premium-class hotel where you’ll find so many enjoyable things that I can hardly list them all here. The price is £50 per night, and it’s a real bargain.
How to get to
Istanbul is one of the world’s most congested cities situated on two continents. Thus, moving around the city is often hard. Public transport and especially metro and tram can be a real life-saver for a traveller in this giant city. Furthermore, its largest football ground is located in the outskirts of the Turkish capital, very far away from the regular paths of the tourists. If you are looking for the best ways how to get to the Ataturk Olympic Stadium on a matchday, the information below should be extremely handy.
By Metro – Olimpiyat Parki is the stadium’s metro station (M3 blue line) which ensures easy access to the ground from a number of locations in the city. Istanbul is very big, so be prepared it will take you about 1 hour 20 minutes to get from the Town Centre to the sports venue.
By Bus – there are plenty of bus stops within walking distance from the Ataturk Olympic Stadium. For example, the bus lines MK11, MK12, MK13, MK14, MK15, and 79FY stop nearby. I always use Google Maps to find the closest bus stops and the most convenient and time-efficient routes.
By Car – use the stadium’s address Ziya Gökalp Mah., Olimpiyat Stadı Yolu No:1, İstanbul to find the fastest way to the ground. As I mentioned before, moving around Istanbul is not easy. Therefore, you’ll need up-to-date directions from your sat nav.
By Train – Sirkeci train station (or Marmaray Sirkeci İstasyonu) is the largest train station in Istanbul. You’ll need to use several buses to get from there to the football ground. The travel time is about 1 hour 40 minutes. You can also take a tram T1 and get to the M1 red line of the metro.
By Plane – the new airport of Istanbul (IST) opened in 2018 is about 20 miles to the north from the Ataturk Olympic Stadium. You can get to the venue within 30 minutes by car or within 1 hour if you take the buses IST-17 and 36AY.
According to the stadium’s official website, the venue’s parking area has an incredible capacity of 18,900 cars. It is actually surrounded by a giant car park. But the reviews state that only about 6,000 parking spots are currently available and they are mostly occupied by the local fans. However, there is always a solution. The approximate matchday paid parking price near the sports venue in Istanbul is TL20 (£2,8).
Eating out nearby
First of all, you need to know that drinking alcohol is banned at the Ataturk Olympic Stadium and often banned in cafes and restaurants of the nearby area. Also, you won’t find any pubs and bars within walking distance from the ground. It’s likely that you’ll have to spend at least 30 minutes in transport on your way from the nearest bar to the Ataturk Olympic Stadium. But in general, the capital of Turkey has many wonderful places where you can have a drink. Speaking about food, you won’t regret trying the tastiest Turkish meals. Among them are menemen (scrambled eggs with sautéed veggies), lahmacun (flatbread with dozens of various toppings), meze (cold appetizers), and many amazing deserts including güllaç and baklava.
Pubs, bars & cafes
- Pub Crawl Istanbul – is the city’s centric drinking spot. You can enjoy the greatest music there. And you’ll certainly love attentive service provided by the first-class staff of this venue. They serve drinks with plenty of classic and unique flavours. The distance to the ground is 17 miles.
- Pierre Loti Roof Pub – is one of the most popular pubs in Istanbul. Travellers absolutely love it because of the stunning rooftop sea views and the Old City views, a wide range of dishes they serve, and sincere hospitality. The distance to the stadium is 14 miles.
- Metropol Cafe & Kebap Evi – is located less than 2 miles away from the main sports ground in Istanbul. Hookah-lovers will be more than happy to spend some time there. They also offer tasty and affordable local meals and drinks.
- Asitane – is the restaurant which boasts of a beautiful garden and some very ancient houses nearby. They serve delicious local dishes in a very unique way. It takes about 20 minutes to get from there to the country’s main stadium.
- Warung Nusantara – in case you think Istanbul only has some great venues serving local food, there are so many alternatives there. For example, I can recommend the city’s best Indonesian restaurant with authentic meals prepared by the best Indonesian chefs. It’s also located within a 20-minute drive from the stadium.
- All Eatalian – is a decent Italian restaurant located quite close to the Ataturk Olympic Stadium, within 10 or 15-minute drive from it. This enjoyable eatery is always packed with Italian food-lovers, so don’t hesitate to book your table in advance.
Things to see at the stadium
Unfortunately, everyone’s favourite stadium tours are not available at the largest football ground in Turkey. The venue also has no museums of any kind or any other attractions to enjoy on non-matchdays.
The stadium used to have several temporary tenants but those clubs have never opened their official fan stores onsite. On matchdays, there is always an opportunity to purchase the relevant merchandise at the kiosks which always pop-up several hours before the kick-off. Turkey national football team’s kit and the other sportswear can be found in the numerous malls throughout Istanbul.
Things to do in Istanbul
Some people would call the Turkish capital the city of clutter and paradoxes but for me, it’s rather the city of stunning antiques, hipster neighbourhoods, and vivid food bazaars. There are literally thousands of incredible things to see in Istanbul. You should find out what you are interested in most of all and start exploring the Second Rome. Whether it’s the remnants of the Ottoman Empire, marvellous Bosphorus and Old City views, or maybe famous Turkish baths, I’m sure you’ll spend an amazing time in this place of contrasts.
Istanbul is one of the world’s largest and most dynamic cities and it can be explored in multiple different ways. You can take the unbelievable Imperial tour, the Ottoman Splendours afternoon tour or enjoy the sunset and the night lights of the Turkish capital on a romantic dinner cruise. You can also have an unforgettable experience at nearby Princess Islands. Green Bursa tour with unique ferry and cable-railway views is another great option. And of course, Istanbul has fun hop-on-hop-off city bus tours which can help you to start the adventure.
Top 3 places to visit
Spice Bazaar – can you imagine a bazaar which was built in 1664? Well, if you are looking for the most atmospheric, colourful, and Instagram-friendly market in Istanbul, you shouldn’t miss this delightful spot. You can purchase every spice you can imagine there; plus they sell all shapes and sizes of dried fruits, nuts, local coffee, herbal teas, fresh oils, and many other Turkish kitchen essentials.
Hagia Sophia – is the incredible building that changed the history of architecture. It used to be Greek Orthodox Christian cathedral and later an Ottoman imperial mosque. Today it’s a museum with so many amazing things to see and to learn about the history of this ancient land.
Bosphorus cruise – the Turkish capital has a number of poetical nicknames and among them are “the Sublime Gate” and “the Gate of Felicity”. Of course, ‘the gate’ is referred to stunning Bosphorus which was always an important door for the ships going from the Mediterranean to the Black Sea and vice versa. Taking a Bosphorus cruise is a must-do thing during your stay in Istanbul. Whether you choose a short circle trip or a full Bosphorus cruise, you’ll always remember that day.