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Istanbul's Hidden Gem

Istanbul’s Hidden Gem: Once a Film Location for Jackie Chan

Istanbul’s hidden gem in Turkey, is among the world’s top ten most popular tourist destinations. It’s no surprise since this city, spanning two continents, Europe and Asia, boasts numerous historical sites from various civilizations. Iconic landmarks such as Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace, the Basilica Cistern, Galata Tower, Grand Bazaar, and many others are found here.

Istanbul also offers a range of natural tourist destinations, perfect for healing and relaxation. One of these gems is Garipce, located on the shores of the Black Sea. This fishing village is built atop rocky terrain and features a small beach where fishing boats dock.

Garipce is incredibly peaceful and serene, a stark contrast to the bustling city of Istanbul. The air is fresh, and the scenery is breathtaking. About 85 percent of Garipce’s territory is covered in forests, with the remaining portion dedicated to residential areas. Most of the residents come from Black Sea regions such as Trabzon and Rize.

Film Location for Jackie Chan

Garipce Village is situated just 10 km from the city center and can be reached in approximately 45 minutes by private vehicle or bus. This hidden gem in Istanbul served as a filming location for Jackie Chan’s movie “The Accidental Spy” (2001). Some scenes were shot in the wooden houses by the seaside.

While these houses have deteriorated over time, they are still preserved, with their front portions serving as stalls where locals sell homemade foods like fruit preserves, egg noodles, tomato paste, various cheeses, and bread.

Garipce Village’s location is somewhat remote, and visitors must traverse a small road from the main Sariyer district. In the past, Garipce wasn’t a popular tourist destination, but after the opening of the Third Bridge in August 2016, it became a renowned healing spot.

Garipce Castle

Adjacent to the beach lies the historic Garipce Castle. The castle was built in 1774 during the reign of the Ottoman Sultan Mustafa III. Garipce Castle is a favorite spot for enjoying the breeze, the sound of crashing waves, and breathtaking views of the Black Sea and the Marmara Sea.

Culinary Delights in Garipce

It’s not just about healing; in Garipce, you can also embark on a culinary adventure. Along the beach, there are several restaurants offering traditional Turkish breakfast menus and a variety of fresh seafood dishes for lunch or dinner. If you’re in the mood for Turkish coffee, there are small cafes that serve this aromatic delight.


Garipce, the hidden gem of Istanbul, offers a peaceful escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. With its serene environment, picturesque views, historic castle, and delectable culinary offerings, it provides a unique and unforgettable experience for travelers seeking relaxation and natural beauty. Moreover, its association with Jackie Chan’s movie adds a touch of cinematic history to this charming village by the Black Sea.