Ataturk Airport (IST)

Istanbul Ataturk Airport (IST)

Ataturk airport is the main international airport in Istanbul. It is located on the European Side, in a district which is called Yeşilköy. It serves about 51 million people in a year and is considered to be the biggest and the busiest airport in Turkey and one of the biggest airports in the world. It was opened in 1924 and was named after Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founder of the Republic of Turkey.

There are only 2 civil terminals, one is for international flights, the other one is for domestic. The modern domestic terminal has used to be the international one until 2000 when the new terminal was opened. After the opening all the domestic flights were shifted into the previous international airport. New terminals are much bigger and more sufficient.

Istanbul Ataturk Airport is getting busier each year and its functioning capacity was not efficient enough to serve the increasing number of passengers, that’s why in 2009 another airport, Sabiha Gökçen International airport was inaugurated. Turkish government has also started the implementation of the third international airport in Istanbul so it will help the Ataturk airport to function in a lower capacity.

About 100 of international and local airlines are flying to and from the Ataturk Airport to almost all countries of the world. National airlines, Turkish airlines are based there as well. There are many restaurants and cafes, fast food courts, exchange offices and a huge Duty Free Store. Note that drinks and food are very expensive at both of Istanbul’s airports.

You can reach Ataturk airport easily by M1A metro line which directly goes there or either way by Havataş buses that depart from Taksim Square every half an hour.