Istanbul

Istanbul   


Istanbulis the largest city inTurkey, constituting the country's economic, cultural and historical heart. With a population of14.1 million, the city forms thelargest urban agglomeration in Europe. Located on both sides of theBosphorus, the narrow strait between the Black Sea and the Marmara Sea, Istanbul bridgesAsiaandEuropeboth physically and culturally.

With its long history at the center of empires, Istanbul offers a wealth of historic and religious places to take in. The bulk of these ancient monuments, dating back to Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman periods, including theHagia Sophia,Topkapı Palace,Sultanahmet Mosque(Blue Mosque), andBasilica Cisternare located aroundSultanahmet Square, while some others are dispersed throughout the peninsula ofold city, such asChurch of St Savior in Chora(Kariye Müzesi), entire inside of which is covered by mindblowing frescoes and mosaics. An impressive section of mostly intactTheodosian walls, which mark the full length of western boundary of the peninsula, is right next to this particular church. North of the peninsula of old city, across the Golden Horn, isGalata, crowned by theGalata Tower.Istanbul Modern, with its exhibitions of contemporary Turkish art, is on the nearby waterfront of Karaköy. Another sight of religious significance close by is theGalata Whirling Dervish Hallof SufiMevleviorder, just north of the Tower. Further north is theIstiklal Avenue, Istanbul's prominent pedestrian street running from near Galata Tower to Taksim Square, the central square of whole city.

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