Istanbul, the only city in the world that is located in both Europe and Asia. There are over 14 million people living in Istanbul which makes it the fifth largest city in the world. This city has been on four empires – Roman, Byzantine, Latin and Ottoman. When I visited Istanbul, I was impressed with the beauty and history of the city. There were five places I highly recommend you visit when you go to Istanbul.
The 5 places to visit in Istanbul:
1. Blue Mosque
The Sultan Ahmed Mosque (or Blue Mosque) is a historical mosque built from 1609 to 1616. It was called the Blue Mosque because of its blue tiles of the interior design. This mosque is a very popular tourist destination because its strikingly beautiful design.
2. Grand Bazaar
The Grand Bazaar is the largest covered market in the world. It was built around 1455 and was completed after 1730. There are over 250,000+ visitors daily that go to this market. And you can find so many different items – clothing, carpets, jewelry, souvenirs, food and many other things.
3. Hagia Sophia
Hagia Sophia means ‘Holy Wisdom’, it is a museum in Istanbul that was once a Greek Orthodox basilica, Catholic cathedral and an Imperial Mosque. The construction for this monument started in 537, and many developments have been made through out its years.
4. Basilica Cistern
Under the district of Eminonu (a district in Istanbul near Hagia Sophia), there’s an underground ancient cistern that is approximately 105,000 square feet. Here you can find two Medusa head column bases, their origins are still unknown. This location was once used in the film James Bond in 1963.
5. Spice Bazaar
The Spice Bazaar is the second largest covered market (after Grand Bazaar). The bazaar was constructed around in the 1660’s, and currently it has around 85 shops. Our tour guide highly recommended that we visit this place to buy spices, snacks and souvenirs.
Have you been to Istanbul before? Share us your story.