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Travel Guide To istanbul

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General Information About Istanbul

Istanbul (/ˌɪstænˈbʊl/;Turkish: İstanbul [isˈtanbuɫ] ( listen)) is the largest city in Turkey, and the country's economic, cultural, and historical center. Istanbul is a transcontinental city in Eurasia, straddling the Bosphorus strait between the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea. Its commercial and historical center lies on the European side and about a third of its population lives on the Asian side. The city is the administrative center of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (coterminous with Istanbul Province), both hosting a population of around 14 million residents. Istanbul is one of the world's most populous cities and ranks as world's 5th-largest city proper and the largest European city. Founded on the Sarayburnu promontory around 660 BCE as Byzantium, the city now known as Istanbul developed to become one of the most significant cities in history. For nearly sixteen centuries following its reestablishment as Constantinople (Greek: Κωνσταντινούπολις Konstantinoúpolis; Latin: Constantinopolis) or New Rome (Greek: Νέα Ῥώμη, Nea Romē; Latin: Nova Roma) in 330 CE, it served as an imperial capital for the Roman and Byzantine (330–1204 and 1261–1453), the Latin (1204–1261), and the Ottoman (1453–1922) empires. It was instrumental in the advancement of Christianity during Roman and Byzantine times, before the Ottomans conquered the city in 1453 and transformed it into an Islamic stronghold and the seat of the Ottoman Caliphate.[ Istanbul's strategic position on the historic Silk Road, rail networks to Europe and the Middle East, and the only sea route between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean have produced a cosmopolitan populace, although less so since the establishment of the Turkish Republic in 1923. Overlooked for the new capital during the interwar period, the city has since regained much of its prominence. The population of the city has increased tenfold since the 1950s, as migrants from across Anatolia have moved in and city limits have expanded to accommodate them. Arts festivals were established at the end of the 20th century, and infrastructure improvements have produced a complex transportation network. Approximately 11.6 million foreign visitors arrived in Istanbul in 2012, two years after it was named a European Capital of Culture, making the city the world's fifth-most-popular tourist destination. The city's biggest attraction is its historic center, partially listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and its cultural and entertainment hub can be found across the city's natural harbor, the Golden Horn, in the Beyoğlu district. Considered a global city, Istanbul is one of the fastest-growing metropolitan economies in the world.It hosts the headquarters of many Turkish companies and media outlets and accounts for more than a quarter of the country's gross domestic product. Hoping to capitalize on its revitalization and rapid expansion, Istanbul bid for the Summer Olympics five times in twenty years. Source: Wikipedia
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Sports Played in Istanbul

Istanbul has some of Turkey's oldest sports clubs. Beşiktaş J.K., established in 1903, is considered the oldest of these sports clubs; because of its initial status as Turkey's only club, it occasionally played as the national team. Its football team has seen several periods of dominance in national competition,Istanbul's Galatasaray S.K. and Fenerbahçe S.K. have fared better in international competition and share the honor of winning the most Süper Lig championships.Galatasaray and Fenerbahçe have a long-standing rivalry, with Galatasaray based in European Istanbul and Fenerbahçe based in the Anatolian part of the city.[240] Istanbul has seven basketball teams—Anadolu Efes S.K., Beşiktaş, Darüşşafaka Doğuş, Fenerbahçe Ülker, Galatasaray Liv Hospital, İstanbul Büyükşehir Belediyespor and Tüyap Büyükçekmece—that play in the premier-level Turkish Basketball League. Many of Istanbul's sports facilities have been built or upgraded since 2000 to bolster the city's bids for the Summer Olympic Games. Atatürk Olympic Stadium, the largest multi-purpose stadium in Turkey, was completed in 2002 as an IAAF first-class venue for track and field.The stadium hosted the 2005 UEFA Champions League Final and remains the home field of İstanbul Büyükşehir Belediyespor. Şükrü Saracoğlu Stadium, Fenerbahçe's home field, hosted the 2009 UEFA Cup Final three years after its completion, and Türk Telekom Arena opened in 2011 to replace Ali Sami Yen Stadium as Galatasaray's home turf.All three stadiums are elite Category 4 (formerly five-star) UEFA stadiums.[ Sinan Erdem Dome (top) Ülker Sports Arena (bottom) The Sinan Erdem Dome, among the largest indoor arenas in Europe, hosted the final of the 2010 FIBA World Championship, the 2012 IAAF World Indoor Championships, and the 2011–12 Euroleague Final Four. Prior to the completion of the Sinan Erdem Dome in 2010, Abdi İpekçi Arena was Istanbul's primary indoor arena, having hosted the finals of EuroBasket 2001. Several other indoor arenas, including the Beşiktaş Akatlar Arena, have also been inaugurated since 2000, serving as the home courts of Istanbul's sports clubs. The most recent of these is the 13,800-seat Ülker Sports Arena, which opened in 2012 as the home court of Fenerbahçe's basketball teams.[251] Despite the construction boom, five bids for the Summer Olympics—in 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2020—and national bids for UEFA Euro 2012 and UEFA Euro 2016 have ended unsuccessfully. Istanbul Park was a stop on the World Touring Car Championship circuit and the European Le Mans Series in 2005 and 2006, but the track has not seen either of these competitions since then. Between its opening in 2005 and 2011, Istanbul Park also hosted the annual Turkish Grand Prix; its future remains uncertain due to financial troubles.The Istanbul Sailing Club, established in 1952, hosts races, showcases, and events on the waterways in and around Istanbul each year.The Turkish Offshore Racing Club also hosts major races, with its most prestigious being its race for the Marine Forces Trophy.[258] Istanbul was also an occasional stop on the F1 Powerboat World Championship circuit, although its last appearance on the Bosphorus was in 2000.
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Istanbul Culture and History

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Culture

Istanbul was historically known as a cultural hub, but its cultural scene stagnated after the Turkish Republic shifted its focus toward Ankara.The new national government established programs that served to orient Turks toward musical traditions, especially those originating in Europe, but musical institutions and visits by foreign classical artists were primarily centered in the new capital.Much of Turkey's cultural scene had its roots in Istanbul, and by the 1980s and 1990s Istanbul reemerged globally as a city whose cultural significance is not solely based on its past glory. Pera Museum in Beyoğlu. By the end of the 19th century, Istanbul had established itself as a regional artistic center, with Turkish, European, and Middle Eastern artists flocking to the city. Despite efforts to make Ankara Turkey's cultural heart, Istanbul had the country's primary institution of art until the 1970s. When additional universities and art journals were founded in Istanbul during the 1980s, artists formerly based in Ankara moved in. Beyoğlu has been transformed into the artistic center of the city, with young artists and older Turkish artists formerly residing abroad finding footing there. Modern art museums, including İstanbul Modern, the Pera Museum, Sakıp Sabancı Museum and SantralIstanbul, opened in the 2000s to complement the exhibition spaces and auction houses that have already contributed to the cosmopolitan nature of the city. These museums have yet to attain the popularity of older museums on the historic peninsula, including the Istanbul Archaeology Museums, which ushered in the era of modern museums in Turkey, and the Turkish and Islamic Arts Museum. The first film screening in Turkey was at Yıldız Palace in 1896, a year after the technology publicly debuted in Paris.[220] Movie theaters rapidly cropped up in Beyoğlu, with the greatest concentration of theaters being along the street now known as İstiklal Avenue.[221] Istanbul also became the heart of Turkey's nascent film industry, although Turkish films were not consistently developed until the 1950s.Since then, Istanbul has been the most popular location to film Turkish dramas and comedies.The Turkish film industry ramped up in the second half of the century, and with Uzak (2002) and My Father and My Son (2005), both filmed in Istanbul, the nation's movies began to see substantial international success.[224] Istanbul and its picturesque skyline have also served as a backdrop for several foreign films, including Topkapi (1964), The World Is Not Enough (1999), and Mission Istaanbul (2008). Coinciding with this cultural reemergence was the establishment of the Istanbul Festival, which began showcasing a variety of art from Turkey and around the world in 1973. From this flagship festival came the International Istanbul Film Festival and the Istanbul International Jazz Festival in the early 1980s. With its focus now solely on music and dance, the Istanbul Festival has been known as the Istanbul International Music Festival since 1994.[226] The most prominent of the festivals that evolved from the original Istanbul Festival is the Istanbul Biennial, held every two years since 1987. Its early incarnations were aimed at showcasing Turkish visual art, and it has since opened to international artists and risen in prestige to join the elite biennales, alongside the Venice Biennale and the São Paulo Art Biennial.

History

Neolithic artifacts, uncovered by archeologists at the beginning of the 21st century, indicate that Istanbul's historic peninsula was settled as far back as the 7th millennium BCE. That early settlement, important in the spread of the Neolithic Revolution from the Near East to Europe, lasted for almost a millennium before being inundated by rising water levels. The first human settlement on the Asian side, the Fikirtepe mound, is from the Copper Age period, with artifacts dating from 5500 to 3500 BCE,On the European side, near the point of the peninsula (Sarayburnu), there was a Thracian settlement during the early 1st millennium BCE. Modern authors have linked it to the Thracian toponym Lygos,mentioned by Pliny the Elder as an earlier name for the site of Byzantium. The history of the city proper begins around 660 BCE,[a] when Greek settlers from Megara established Byzantium on the European side of the Bosphorus. The settlers built an acropolis adjacent to the Golden Horn on the site of the early Thracian settlements, fueling the nascent city's economy.The city experienced a brief period of Persian rule at the turn of the 5th century BCE, but the Greeks recaptured it during the Greco-Persian Wars.Byzantium then continued as part of the Athenian League and its successor, the Second Athenian Empire, before gaining independence in 355 BCE. Long allied with the Romans, Byzantium officially became a part of the Roman Empire in 73 CE.Byzantium's decision to side with the Roman usurper Pescennius Niger against Emperor Septimius Severus cost it dearly; by the time it surrendered at the end of 195 CE, two years of siege had left the city devastated.Five years later, Severus began to rebuild Byzantium, and the city regained—and, by some accounts, surpassed—its previous prosperity.[53]
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Landscape

Istanbul is located in north-western Turkey within the Marmara Region on a total area of 5,343 square kilometers (2,063 sq mi).[c] The Bosphorus, which connects the Sea of Marmara to the Black Sea, divides the city into a European, Thracian side—comprising the historic and economic centers—and an Asian, Anatolian side. The city is further divided by the Golden Horn, a natural harbor bounding the peninsula where the former Byzantium and Constantinople were founded. The confluence of the Sea of Marmara, the Bosphorus, and the Golden Horn at the heart of present-day Istanbul has deterred attacking forces for thousands of years and remains a prominent feature of the city's landscape. Following the model of Rome, the historic peninsula is said to be characterized by seven hills, each topped by imperial mosques. The easternmost of these hills is the site of Topkapı Palace on the Sarayburnu. Rising from the opposite side of the Golden Horn is another, conical hill, where the modern Beyoğlu district is situated. Because of the topography, buildings in Beyoğlu were once constructed with the help of terraced retaining walls, and roads were laid out in the form of steps. Üsküdar on the Asian side exhibits similarly hilly characteristics, with the terrain gradually extending down to the Bosphorus coast, but the landscape in Şemsipaşa and Ayazma is more abrupt, akin to a promontory. The highest point in Istanbul is Çamlıca Hill, with an altitude of 288 meters (945 ft). The northern half of Istanbul has a higher mean elevation compared to the south coast, with locations surpassing 200 meters (660 ft), and some coasts with steep cliffs resembling fjords, especially around the northern end of the Bosporus, where it opens up to the Black Sea. Istanbul is situated near the North Anatolian Fault, close to the boundary between the African and Eurasian Plates. This fault zone, which runs from northern Anatolia to the Sea of Marmara, has been responsible for several deadly earthquakes throughout the city's history. Among the most devastating of these seismic events was the 1509 earthquake, which caused a tsunami that broke over the walls of the city and killed more than 10,000 people. More recently, in 1999, an earthquake with its epicenter in nearby İzmit left 18,000 people dead, including 1,000 people in Istanbul's suburbs. The people of Istanbul remain concerned that an even more catastrophic seismic event may be in the city's near future, as thousands of structures recently built to accommodate Istanbul's rapidly increasing population may not have been constructed properly.[91] Seismologists say the risk of a 7.6-magnitude or greater earthquake striking Istanbul by 2030 is more than 60 percent.
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istanbul-bosphorus

BOSPHORUS ON BOAT 10 Aug 2015 - 05 Mar 2016

per person€35.00
  • City Walls
  • Golden Horn
  • Spice Bazaar
  • Bosphorus on Boat
  • Rumeli Fortress
  • From The Sea–No Interior Visit
Pierre-Loti-3

CABLE CAR & BOSPHORUS CRUISE 10 Aug 2015 - 05 Feb 2016

per person€35.00
  • City Walls
  • Golden Horn
  • Pierre Loti
  • Cable Car
  • Bosphorus on Boat
  • Rumeli Fortress
  • The Leander’s Tower
İsfanbul

İsfanbul Transfer 24 Aug 2015 - 02 Jan 2016

per person€15.00
  • Hotel Transfer
  • Vialand Turkey's Disneyland
  • Shopping
  • Free Transfer
  • Local Drinks
istanbul_toy_museum

Istanbul Toy Museum 24 Aug 2015 - 02 Jan 2016

per person€20.00
  • Hotel Transfer
  • Istanbul Toy Museum
  • Free Transfer
  • Local Drinks
kapak

MINIATURK TRANSFER 24 Aug 2015 - 29 Feb 2016

per person€15.00
  • Hotel Transfer
  • Miniaturk
  • Free Transfer
  • FREE Soft Drinks in Transfers