Istanbul is an old city with rich cultural heritage and it will take more then a few days to visit all beautiful places. Sultanahmet, for example, represents the historical and tourist face of Istanbul, where many ancient historical and cultural treasures gather. This part of the city is one of the most beautiful places in Istanbul, an archaeological and tourist area, with many mosques, churches, restaurants, gardens and museums. On this page you will find the complete list of all attractions in Istanbul that you do not want to miss.
The incredible Hagia Sophia, a symbol of Istanbul and a masterpiece of history and art, is an unmissable shrine and museum to visit. Saint Sophia, or as it is also called the Wisdom of God, was built in 537 years. It was built as an Orthodox church, built by Emperor Justinian between 532-537. year, in the old core of what was then Constantinople. Written data confirm that around 10,000 people worked in the construction. When it was built, Emperor Justinian, according to legend, exclaimed: "Solomon, I have surpassed you". He was alluding to the famous ruler who built the First Temple in Jerusalem. At the time Hagia Sophia was built, there were large churches in the Western Roman Empire, but Hagia Sophia was the first of its kind in the Eastern Roman Empire and the largest of all Christian churches in the world.
The Blue Mosque is probably the most beautiful mosque in Istanbul. The Sultan Ahmed Mosque, as it is actually called, got its second name Blue Mosque because of its 20,000 blue tiles inside the mosque. Tulips are painted on the tiles, and you can see verses from the Koran on the walls of the mosque. It is located in the old part of the historic city, with a total of six minarets, right next to Hagia Sophia. In front of the mosque there is a green landscaped area and a very beautiful fountain. It is considered one of the most visited sights of Istanbul. It was created between 1609 and 1616 during the reign of Sultan Ahemed, after whom the mosque was named.
The magnificent Topkapi Palace or Cannon Gate Palace is considered one of the most important landmarks of Istanbul, as well as the largest museum in Turkey. A place where sultans, servants, concubines and sages lived. This was the seat of the Ottoman rulers for 400 years, and official records testify that 4,000 souls lived in the palace. Large ramparts hide landscaped gardens and castles on an area of 700,000 m2. Mehmed II the Conqueror built the palace after conquering Istanbul. Topkapi Palace was the main palace until the construction of perhaps the most beautiful palace today, Dolmabahçe on the Bosphorus. Although the new palace took over many functions, Topkapi retained more important functions such as the imperial treasuries, mosque, mints, etc.
Kapali bazaar or Grand Bazaar - Istanbul is a city of commerce and a meeting place for shoppingaholics, and the place where everyone meets is the Kapali bazaar or Grand Bazaar, which covers an area of 47,600m2. The large covered market is located in the historical part of the city and, apart from being a place for good shopping, it is also a must-see tourist attraction while staying in this city. Old stone and cobbled streets lead to this unique shopping center. Be prepared to set aside a full day to see everything the Grand Bazaar has to offer. The offer is diverse, with over 3,000 stores, and the largest selection of leather jackets, fur coats, shoes, carpets, rugs, jewelry, gold, as well as traditional sweets, teas, and souvenirs at this largest market in Turkey.
An experience not to be missed in Istanbul is a ride on the Bosphorus, and don't fall for buying tickets online, because if you want to save money and see the Bosphorus for 90 minutes, it's enough to spend 3-4eur for a ticket. The Bosphorus is a strait that separates two cultures and traditions, the European part of Turkey from the coast of Asia. It is the link between the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara, and is located between the Balkan Peninsula and Asia Minor. The length of the strait is 30 km and it has a width of 3,700 meters, and the narrowest part is 750 meters wide, while the depth ranges from 34 to 124 meters. The shores of the Bosphorus are stunningly beautiful, and the view while driving is incredible.