Istanbul’da hos geldiniz—welcome to Istanbul!
Istanbul is a tale of two cities. Straddling Europe and Asia and divided by the strait of Bosporus, the former capital of the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires is the only metropolitan city that has its foot on two continents, with the old city sprawled over European territory and the modern, residential areas established on the Asian side. Considering its massive size, a timeframe of 24 hours can hardly do any of the city’s gems any justice at all, but it is sufficient to scratch the surface and instill a curiosity for more. It is an enchanting city, fusing the history of several cultures, languages, religions, and eras together and establishing itself as Turkey’s economic and cultural epicenter.
Formerly known as Constantinople, Istanbul is a city of contrasts, and not just in a geographical sense. Discover a synagogue, an orthodox church, and a mosque all erected in the same vicinity. Witness a man atop a horse, pulling a cart, and weaving in and out of traffic while a sea of luxury imported cars zoom by. Watch retired old men sitting and playing cards in quaint tea houses, while modern business women strut by in short skirts and suits, sipping their Starbucks coffee. Shop around in vast stylish, glass-fronted shopping malls or haggle at one of the old beautiful underground bazaars.
Have your camera on hand and be ready to shoot because everything will be picture-worthy.
1) Start your day with a traditional Turkish breakfast at one of the many waterfront cafes before introducing yourself to contemporary Turkey at the Istanbul Museum of Modern Art a few steps away.
2) Stroll through the expansive Grand Bazaar and buy a wide array of spices, jewelry, hand-made crafts, carpets, and other trinkets.