Istanbul, "The City on Seven Hills", is the largest city and cultural, financial center in Turkey. The city covers 27 districts of the Istanbul province. Historically as Byzantium and later Constantinople it extends both on the Europe (Thrace) and on the Asia (Anatolia) side of the Bosporus. Istanbul was the capital city of the Roman Empire (330–395), the East Roman (Byzantine) Empire (395–1204 and 1261–1453), the Latin Empire (1204–1261) and the Ottoman Empire (1453–1922). The city was chosen as European Capital of Culture for 2010.
Istanbul is located in the north west Region of Turkey. The city covers a surface area of 1,830.92 square kilometres (707 sq mi), while the Province of Istanbul, covers 6,220 square kilometres (2,402 sq mi).
Istanbul climate has hot summers and cool, wet, winters. Humidity is high which can make temperatures feel warmer or colder. During winter snowing for a week or two is quite common. During the summer between June and September the average temperatures are +27.7 °C (82 °F).
Istanbul has two international airports. The Atatürk International Airport located in the Yeşilköy about 24 kilometres (15 mi) west from the city center. The smaller one is the Sabiha Gökçen International Airport located in the Kurtköy close to the Istanbul Park GP Racing Circuit. It is located approximately 20 kilometres (12 mi) east of the Asian side and 45 kilometres (28 mi) east of the European city center.
Istanbul provides rich social, cultural, and commercial activities like opera, ballet and theater. Live shows and concerts are hosted in historical places such as the Hagia Irene, Rumeli Fortress, Yedikule Castle, the Topkapı Palace, the Gülhane Park, the Atatürk Cultural Center and the Cemal Reşit Rey Hall. The Dogancay Museum, Turkey’s first contemporary art museum is dedicated to the work of its founder Burhan Dogancay. The Rahmi M. Koç Museum on the Golden Horn is an industrial museum that exhibits historic industrial history such as cars, boats, submarines and aircrafts. The Archaeology Museum is one of the largest museums with more than 1,000,000 archaeological pieces from the Mediterranean basin, the Balkans, the Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia. The Mosaic Museum contains the late Roman and early Byzantine floor mosaics and wall ornaments of the Great Palace of Constantinople. There are many night clubs, pubs, restaurants and taverns with live music in the city. The areas around Istiklal Avenue and Nişantaşı have cafés, restaurants, pubs and clubs, galleries, theaters and cinemas.
Istanbul Holidays Turkey
Where to go:
1. Prince’s Islands
The Prince’s Islands is an ideal place to explore and relax for a few days away from the main city. The Princes' Islands (Prens Adaları) are a group of the nine islands in the Marmara Sea, south of Kartal and Pendik. The islands are in the Sea of Marmara, reachable on a day trip by boat from Istanbul. You can visit them by ferry boats or high-speed catamaran Seabus from Eminönü and Bostancı. Şile is a well-known Turkish resort on the Black Sea, 50 kilometres (31 mi) from Istanbul. Kilyos is a small resort not far from Bosphorus at the Black Sea. There are many restaurants and night clubs to visit.
3. Çamlica Hill
Çamlica Hill overlooks the city and offers amazing view. The degree panoramic view is relaxing and beautiful and one of the highlights of any holiday to Istanbul.
4. The Old Sea Walls in the Fatih District
The old sea walls are located close to Istanbul’s oldest monuments, churches and tombs. They helped to shape the old walled city, and are a great place to visit.
5. Gulet Cruising
Gulets Cruises are traditional Turkish sailing boats that have usually been converted for luxury tours and tourists on holiday in Turkey.