Bridging East and West – Europe and Asia – Istanbul possesses a richly complicated heritage. Once the capital of the Ottoman and Byzantine empires, this city's prestigious history has left us with many monuments to cherish. Plus, it integrates its past and present to create a unique mix of architecture; a glass skyscraper next to a Byzantine church or a colorful bazaar in the shadow of a shopping mall. The natural landscape is also impressive. The Bosphorus, a narrow strait, cuts the city in two and connects the Sea of Marmara in the south to the Black Sea in the north. From the blue waters, visitors will see a skyline of domes, steeples and modern towers.
There are many places you should visit and see when you come to Istanbul. We have made a prioritization for you.
This palace was built in the mid 1800s to replace an earlier structure that was made of wood. The new palace incorporated sixteen separate buildings with stables, a flour mill and a clock tower among them.
Hagia Sophia Mosque
This architectural marvel displays 30 million gold tiles throughout its interior, and a wide, flat dome which was a bold engineering feat at the time it was constructed in the 6th century.
Famed architect Sinan built this majestic structure for one of the greatest rulers of the Ottoman Empire. Although this mosque is less ornate, there are many similarities between it and the Hagia Sophia since the same architect was responsible for both.
This enormous palace was the Imperial residence of Ottoman sultans for almost 400 years. Although much of the palace is not accessible, the daily tours of the Harem are of great interest to tourists.
Built in 500 A.D., Galata Tower is one of the dominating landmarks of Istanbul. It was used as a watchtower to help defend the city.
Eyup Sultan Mosque
This mosque stands outside the city walls at the location where Hz Eyyubu El-Ensari, a noted Islamic individual, died in the assault on Constantinople in 670 AD.
According to Turkish legend, a princess was locked in this tower to protect her from being bitten by a snake. Over the years the tower has been used as a customs station, lighthouse and a residence for retired naval officers.
The Basilica Cistern is the largest of several hundred ancient cisterns beneath the city that provided a water filtration system for the buildings nearby. This underground chamber measures approximately 138 meters (453 ft) by 64.6 meters (212 ft) and is capable of holding 80,000 cubic meters (2,800,000 cu ft) of water. The ceiling is supported by 336 marble columns
The Grand Bazaar is one of the largest bazaars and one of the oldest covered bazaars in the city of Istanbul, located in the bazaars of Beyazıt, Nuru Osmaniye and Mercan districts. There are approximately 4,000 shops in the Grand Bazaar and the total number of these shops is approximately 25,000. The day center will accommodate up to 5 people during peak times. The bazaar, which receives 91 million tourists annually, is the most visited tourist attraction in the world.
Rumelihisarı, which was built in 90 days by the order of Fatih Sultan Mehmet, in order to cut the aid that could come from the Black Sea to Byzantium during the Conquest of Istanbul, is one of the most popular historical buildings of the city. The structure overlooking the Bosphorus is also known as Boğazkesen Fortress, in accordance with its purpose.
We have listed ten different historical beauties that you should visit in Istanbul.
This city, where every street smells of history, will fascinate you.