The Grand Bazaar (Kapalicarsi in Turkish) is one of the oldest and largest covered markets in the world. It was built of wood after the Conquest of Istanbul around an old Byzantine building which became the part of Old Bedesten (Old Bazaar) today, and got bigger and larger throughout the centuries with the addition of new sections and inns.
One of the world's most strategic waterways, Bosphorus is the strait between the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara; it is an inundated valley that follows an irregular northeast-southwest course 32km (20 miles) long, 730-3300m (800-3600 yards) wide, 30-120m (100-395ft) deep.
Located on Istiklal Street in Beyoglu, the Saint Antoine Church (San Antonio di Padova) is on the left side of the street if you are facing from Galatasaray towards Tünel. Construction began in 1906 and the church was completed in 1912. Its architect, Giulo Mongeri, who was born in Istanbul, gave it an Italian Neo-Gothic style.
Established at time of the conquest, Eyup was Istanbul's first Ottoman Turkish settlement. The district is located beyond the city walls on the south bank of the Golden Horn and takes its name from the tomb of Eyyub al Ensari, a companion of the prophet Mohammed, who is believed to have died there during the Muslim siege of Istanbul in the 7th century.
Galata is located at the north side of the Golden Horn, towards Taksim Square. Galata was surrounded by walls, constructed by the Genoese, until the 19th century. These walls started at Azapkapi near the Golden Horn. The Galata Tower was the northernmost observation tower and the walls go down to Tophane from this point.
Turkey's largest and most magnificent railway station, Haydarpasa was built in the early 20th century by the German architects Otto Ritter and Helmuth Cuno. A monument to the close Turkish - German relations of the time, the station is in neo-renaissance style and has a U-plan. The inauguration ceremony took place on 19 August 1908, just after the proclamation of the Second Constitution.
A 14th century relic of the Ottoman's first attempt to conquer Istanbul, Anatolia Fortress is located on the Asian shore at the narrowest point of the Bosphorus. Sultan Yildirim Bayezit built this fortress in 1393 on the ruins of a Byzantine temple dedicated to Zeus. It's much smaller in size when you compare with Rumelihisari on the European side of Istanbul. Today it's an open air museum.
This 17th century mosque, near Haghia Sophia, is famous for the beautiful blue tile work ornamenting its walls. Its surrounding six slim minarets distinguish it from other mosques which normally have two or four minarets. It was built by architect Mehmet Aga by the order of Sultan Ahmed I as a complex in seven years and became the most important mosque of the city, right in Sultanahmet square.
This complex was build by the end of 19th century by the architect Vallaury thanks to great efforts of famous Turkish painter Osman Hamdi Bey. It includes the exquisite Tiled Kiosk and the Museum of the Ancient Orient and houses a large collection of artifacts and works of art belonging to ancient Greek, Roman and other Anatolian civilizations dating back to the 6th century BC.
Topkapi was the first Ottoman palace to be built (1466-1478) in the newly conquered capital of the Empire by Mehmet II. Located on the spot where the foundations of the city were first laid in ancient times by Megarian Chief Byzas in the 7th century BC, the palace boasts one of the most beautiful views of Istanbul, incorporating the Bosphorus, the Golden Horn, the two shores and the sea of Marmara.
There are certain places that have a vested interest in remaining the same, disdaining unnecessary change in order to preserve the romantic nature of their past. Pera Palas Hotel in Galata district of Istanbul is such a place. Its lobbies and halls cluttered with 19th century furniture, Pera Palas has the wonderful decaying atmosphere one would expect from an Agatha Christie mystery.
The Princes' Islands are composed of nine islands off the Asian coast of Istanbul, in the Sea of Marmara. There are regular passenger ferries and fast passenger ferries (sea bus) to the four of the islands from different piers of the city; from Sirkeci, from Kabatas, and from Bostanci districts.
This big city square is considered as the heart of the modern Istanbul. Many hotels and restaurants can be found here and on Istiklal Street, and there is a big bus terminal for public transportation and the main subway station. The Square is also the gathering place for locals to celebrate New Year's Eve, parades and other military gatherings.
The Cemberlitas Hammam is located next to the Cemberlitas Column, near the Grand Bazaar. It was built by architect Sinan with the wish of Nurbanu Sultan, mother of Sultan Murat III and wife of Selim II, in 1584 to provide a source of revenue for the Valide-i Atik Mosque in Uskudar.
Üsküdar is located on the Anatolian side at the entrance to the Bosphorus. Historicaly Üsküdar was located between Salacak and Pasalimani neighborhoods, but it grew everyday like other districts of Istanbul. Today it stretches to Umraniye on the east, to Kadikoy in the south, and to Beykoz in the north.