Historically known by several other names, Istanbul today is the largest city in Turkey and the 7th largest city in the world. Considered a capital of culture in Europe, this city of wonders offers visitors a vast array of historical, cultural and architectural sights sure to please any traveller. Istanbul - previously known as Byzantium and Constantinople and with origins in the ancient Greek empire, this city has had a long and bloody history. Thanks to its strategic location it was constantly fought over, falling to the Roman republic in 196 AD before finding itself under continuous attack for centuries. A major tourist hub in Europe, visitors spend their days marvelling at the incredible Ottoman Empire architecture, traditional art, busy bazaars and relaxing at Turkish baths.
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In Istanbul there are plenty of things and activities to cover. It's filled with architecture and historic buildings, the sheer number of possibilities can be overwhelming for visitors.
Topkapi Palace is a great place to start. This Ottoman Empire Era palace complex offers visitors a glimpse into the life of the Ottoman Sultans. Over the years the palace housed up to 4,000 people and was constantly being changed to suit the tastes of the city's rulers. This token of the Imperial era is widely regarded as one of the best and most complete collections of Ottoman Era swords, armour, porcelain, weapons and manuscripts.
The Bosphorus is known as one of the world's most beautiful stretches of water and is top of many visitors' lists.
The Grand Bazaar and Galata Tower draw in crowds of amazed visitors, history buffs and classical scholars alike. It is a great solo travel or family destination, offering things to do and see for everyone who finds themselves in this Metropolitan capital.
In April, the city hosts the International Istanbul Film Festival, featuring some of the best Turkish and international films.
While you're there, the Tulip Festival held in spring sees the entire city covered in beautiful tulips.
There are many more things you can find in Istanbul, we recommend you to check out our page to find out more.
This city has a little bit of everything and is sure to please any visitor with its incredible architecture, history, music and culture. A wide range of events and sights to see will keep a traveller busy for years.
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