Located at the point, where the Golden Horn flows
into the Bosporus, riding on two continents, Asia and Europe, Istanbul
is considered one of the most famous and fascinating cities in the
world - a great metropolis during the entire course of its ancient
History of Istanbul began
with the Greek settlement "Byzantium", founded in 657 BC. After
its destruction, the Roman emperor Constantine the Great erected
a new city on the walls of Byzantium, with the intention to create
a "Roma Nova" (New Rome). In 330 AD he declared the city the capital
of his empire and rechristened it "Constantinople". In 1453 the
Osmane Sultan Mehmed II conquered the city, gave it the name "Istanbul"
and made the legendary metropolis the centre of his empire.
Istanbul was the centre and mirror of two world empires and two
world religions for 16 centuries and has kept the most significant
testimonies from each era.
For one day we immersed in the magic atmosphere
of this fabulous city and visited its most famous sights -
Mosque of Hagia
Blue Mosque, Hippodrome,
Topkapi Palace and
Cistern, had lunch in the Ciragan Palace, the Sultan's
ancient residence and as another highlight strolled over the Great
Bazaar. What unique and unforgettable experiences!
The most precious ancient remnant of the Hippodrome and oldest
monument of Constantinople is the Egyptian obelisk, which was erected
by Pharaoh Thutmosis III in Karnak 1471 BC. Would take a long time
to tell its chequered history. Well, we visited the Topkapi Palace,
but were disappointed, not to get the chance, to see the sultan's
splendid rooms, or the Serail.