A fairy Tale City; “İstanbul”

Istanbul, a fairy tale city…Poems, songs, novels written in its name; which has always been the favourite of kings, emperors and sultans. The coy beauty who says “I am here with my glamorous beauty, my past, my future, the darkness within me, my amusing attitude, my efficacy” both with us and with her inaccessible attitude. Yes, I think if Istanbul had a gender, it would be a woman who is determined and whose steps firmly on the ground.

A woman who proudly carries the traces of her past with her silhouette that will fascinate people, who has enough love to embrace all the people in her heart, but who can suffocate you in the dark when she hurt. She is both a very enthusiastic and excited woman, and an influential woman …

With her silhouette that will amaze people, she is a woman who proudly carries the traces of her past, has enough love to embrace all the people in her heart, but is able to strangle you in the dark when she hurts. She is both a very enthusiastic and excited woman, and an influential woman …

Istanbul, which connects the continents of Asia and Europe with the July 15 Martyrs Bridge, Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge, Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge and Marmaray, which is the project of the recent year is a legendary city where religions, languages, races have lived together for years.

Today, Istanbul, which is the first preferred megacity of those who migrate from their living places to provide their livelihood, provides people with a wide range of job opportunities. So its population is quite crowded. It is possible to see the crowd created by people who want to catch up with their workplaces in the early hours of the morning in any city. But Istanbul is a little different. It is possible to live these crowds every hour in Istanbul.

With the sunrise, from selling bagels to CEO of a company, all types of people walk on the roads. Even though the traffic of the city is not attracted from time to time, those who live in İstanbul miss the traffic when they are away from this city. The streets and roads near the end of the working hours are filled with people who want to reach their house as soon as possible to relieve the tiredness of the day. Of course, you can witness the horn sound of all the crowd and the intolerance of people overwhelmed by traffic.

If you have lived your day intensely, you will be an individual among the hectic crowd and become one of those human floods. However, if you are one of those who enjoy the city, you can enjoy the Turkish bagel you bought from a street vendor by window shopping on the road, observing the people and even extending your way a little and you can catch yourself in the various shades of blue by the sea. In addition, local and foreign tourists with its natural beauties and historical places; Istanbul is also a favourite of businessmen due to its geographical location and economic investments. 

The majority of foreign tourists coming to Turkey, also due to logging in to Istanbul, Turkey has become inevitable to become a tourist centre of the city. You can imagine yourself in a fairy tale as you walk around its palaces, mosques, churches, monuments, historical houses, mansions, streets, bazaars and markets that bear the traces of the past. You can dream of hearing birds chirping among the lush trees or leave the noise of the city behind you and sit on a bench and get lost in the blue of the Bosphorus.  

As I said before, İstanbul was home to the great Empires. Because of its historical background, every corner of this city is worth seeing. Being a guest of the magnificent palaces from the Ottoman Empire may make you feel like a sultan living in that period. The mansions on the edge of the Bosphorus are like open-air museums of luxury life.  

The fact that mosques, churches and other places of worship are sides by side is another nice aspect of Istanbul brings people from many religions together. When it starts to turn green in spring, the pleasure of visiting the historical streets with colourful flowers blooming in its parks will make you addicted to Istanbul.

If you want to have a little break, a coffee shop awaits you around the corner with its delicious desserts. Or if you feel hungry, besides traditional Turkish cuisine, you can find cafes, restaurants etc. that offer tastes from the world cuisine and appeal to every budget.

We should mention that nightlife is as colourful as the charm of the day. Review of entertainment venues, Turkey and even been a haunt of the famous names of other countries. There is no need to allocate high budgets for entertainment in Istanbul. It is not difficult to find entertainment venues suitable for your budget in Istanbul.  

I called İstanbul both that an excited, enthusiastic and a sorrowful woman. Although the famous streets of Istanbul are fun, you can find many sorrowful stories in their back streets. The struggles of people with weak economic conditions living while struggling and not getting lost in the size of this city is like movie scenes where people can feel all the emotions while watching.  In addition to the loving heart of the people who try to take their place in this struggle, it is possible to see the corrupt and the people who reveal the bad in it. It is not possible to say that it is a completely safe city due to the feelings of the people living in it like every megacity.  

Don’t forget that it is always necessary to be cautious in this city, which contains all kinds of people, as it receives a lot of immigration. But don’t let that scare you. After knowing the city well, it is possible to travel alone with low budgets until late at night. You do not have to own a private car in Istanbul or rent a car when you come here. The quite wide transportation network can easily take you from one end of Istanbul to the other. 

There are many options for transportation such as minibus, bus, metro, metro bus, train, ferry. Although some people see travelling in Istanbul as an ordeal, I always find it pleasant to go from one place to another in Istanbul.

It is quite peaceful to use a ferry, especially when passing from one side to another. Whether you can travel on the ferries with live music that will warm you up in cold weather, or with a sweet wind in the sweltering times of the heat, you can reach your destination with live music that will excite you. However, the transportation network that is developing day by day and the number of trips may not be enough to relax the density of transportation vehicles at certain times of the day. That’s why you need to think well about which means of transportation you should use at what time of day. 

You are excited to get to know this beautiful city, right? So let’s get to know this “strong woman” more closely.

Best Places To Visit In Istanbul

Anatolian Side

If you want to visit the Anatolian side of Istanbul, which has 14 districts in total, one day will not be enough for you.

The Anatolian side is calmer than the European side. Those who want to live in Istanbul usually choose the Anatolian side.

Due to the preference of those who want to stay away from the crowd of the European side which is getting more crowded every day, it is quite enjoyable to spend time on this side.

Let’s have a look where can you visit on Anatolian Side.

  • Bağdat Street
  • Kadıköy, Moda
  • Haydarpaşa Station
  • Üsküdar Sea Side
  • Maiden’s Tower
  • Çamlıca Hill
  • İstanbul Toy Museum
  • Beylerbeyi Palace
  • Büyükada
  • Heybeliada
  • Kınalıada
  • Anadolu Kavağı
  • Beykoz
  • Fethipaşa Grove
  • Mihrabat Grove
  • Kuzguncuk
  • Çengelköy
  • Polenezköy Natural Park
  • Kalamış
  • Otağ Hill
  • Fenerbahçe Park
  • Şile, Ağva

Preferred Shopping Malls at Anatolian Side:

  • Tuzla Viaport Shopping Centre
  • Kurtköy Viaport Shopping Centre
  • Pendik Marina Shopping Centre
  • Kartal İstMarina Shopping Centre
  • Maltepe Piazza Shopping Centre
  • Maltepe Park Shopping Centre
  • Hilltown Shopping Centre
  • Akasya Shopping Centre
  • Tepe Nautilus  Shopping Centre
  • Palladium Shopping Centre
  • Kozzy Shopping Centre
  • Emaar Square Mall
  • Brandium Shopping Centre

Transportation:

  • Underground / Metro
  • Marmaray
  • Overground
  • D-100 road to reach the main districts by minibus or bus
  • Coastal road to reach the main districts by minibus or bus
  • Ferry / Steamship
  • Taxi

European Side

The European side, which is called the real Istanbul by someone, has a very large population compared to the Anatolian side. Istanbul has 39 districts and 25 of them in European Side. You can feel the traces of the history of Istanbul on this side more. With taking a deep breath, you can feel Istanbul inside of you.

Let’s have look where you can visit at European Side.

  • Eminönü
  • Beyazıt Square
  • Sahaflar Bazaar
  • Grand Bazaar
  • Spice Bazaar
  • Blue Mosque
  • Hagia Sophia
  • Yerebatan Cistern
  • Galata Tower
  • Gülhane Park
  • Karaköy
  • Topkapı Palace
  • Dolmabahçe Palace
  • Yıldız Park
  • Taksim İstiklal Street
  • Beyoğlu
  • Çırağan Palace
  • Ortaköy
  • Beşiktaş
  • Nişantaşı
  • Bebek Coast
  • Emirgan Grove
  • Belgrad Forest
  • Atatürk Arboretum Botanic Garden
  • Rahmi Koç Museum
  • Eyüp Sultan Mosque
  • Pierre Loti
  • Miniaturk
  • Rumeli Fortress

Preferred Shopping Malls at European Side:

  • Akaryum Shopping Centre
  • Aqua Floria Shopping Centre
  • Capacity Shopping Centre
  • Cevahir Shopping Centre
  • Forum İstanbul Shopping Centre
  • İstinye Park Shopping Centre

Transportation:

  • Midibus
  • Bus
  • Metrobus
  • Underground / Metro
  • Tram
  • Marmaray
  • Ferry / Steamship

Culture-Art-Sports Activities in İstanbul

You can have a pleasant time alone in Istanbul or you can also participate in many cultural and artistic activities. Cinema and theatre come first among these activities. Having cinema and theatre activities for every budget is a great advantage for those who live here.

While public theatres appeal to people with lower budgets, private theatres can appeal to all segments. Moreover, you can enjoy the cinema and theatre, which are played free of charge with the programs published monthly in the cultural centres of each district.

Live concerts are held in many entertainment venues. With these concerts featuring famous names, you can have fun during the week by relieving your work fatigue. By the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, every summer, thousands of people from Istanbul and neighbouring cities gathered at open-air concerts organized at the Harbiye Cemil Topuzlu Open Air Theater and enjoy a pleasant time.

When you search for museums, exhibition halls, you may find yourself lost in a huge art workshop. Various festivals are held throughout the year not only for art lovers but also for science lovers. In fact, there are festivals and fairs in Istanbul that do not break out every season:

  • İstanbul International Puppet Festival (Mayıs)
  • İstanbul International Dance Festival (Nisan)
  • İstanbul Film Festival
  • İstanbul Antiquarian Festival ( Eylül, Ekim)
  • İstanbul Shopping Fest (Haziran)
  • İstanbul Design Biennial (Ekim)
  • Chill Out Festival (Mayıs)
  • International İstanbul Opera Festival (Haziran)
  • İstanbul Music Festival (Mayıs)
  • İstanbul International Improvisation Festival (Mayıs)
  • İstanbul Theatre Festival (Kasım)
  • İstanbul Tulip Festival ( Nisan)
  • Ekşi Fest (Mayıs)

Due to the fact that it is a city established by the sea, many water sports activities are held makes everyone happy in this area.

Giant aquariums on both sides are an option for both adults and children. Kidzania, which allows children to learn professions; Toy Museum and various places intertwined with nature show that children are not forgotten in this city.

İstanbul calling you… Let’s explore it…

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1 Response

  1. Wow that’s a great article! I feel like living in another city now.

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