Istanbul City, Turkey. Most populous city in Turkey and the country’s economic, cultural and historic center.
It is a transcontinental city in Eurasia.
Its metropolitan area has a total population of more than 15 million people. It is one of the largest cities in the world in terms of population.
The city is the administrative center of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality.
More than 12 million tourists went to the city in 2015. It was named European capital of culture.
It is the world’s fifth most popular tourist destination.
The city’s biggest attraction is its historic center which is partially UNESCO’s world heritage site.
Its cultural and entertainment hub is across the city’s natural habor, the Golden horn.
Since it is a global city, it hosts the headquarters of many Turkish companies and media outlets.
It accounts for more than a quarter of the country’s GDP.
Things to Do and Not to Do in Istanbul
- Don’t take the tram in Istiklal. It is usually jam packed. Instead, for better experience, it is advisable always to walk on foot.
- Don’t go shopping at the streets of Istiklal. The prices are generally high. Instead, go shopping at bigger malls where they have friendly prices.
- Don’t get tempted to buy everything that you see. Instead, control yourself from buying every random thing that you see to avoid overspending on unwanted products.
- Avoid eating at or close to touristic places. They are way too expensive. Instead, go and eat at a local restaurant.
- Don’ bother with taxis.Traffic is generally slow. Instead, you can walk to your place if it is near. You can also go for the metro-buses, which are crowded but faster.
- Do not expect drivers to stop and pave way for you. Instead, give way to cars, trucks and motorcycles.
- Don’t show your wealth. You risk falling victim to theft and crime. Instead, be watchful within and around tourist places and don’t show off your wealth.
- Do not wear flimsy sundress to a mosque. Instead, dress properly when you visit religious places. Wear dresses that cover your legs, shoulders and chest.
10 MOST INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT ISTANBUL
- Istanbul city is the only pan-continental city in the world on two continents. Europe and Asia.
- Under the Ottoman Empire, Istanbul was well known for having more than 1400 public toilets.
- 99% of Istanbul’s population is Muslim.
- Tulips, the icon of Holland, originated in Istanbul and were sent from Istanbul to the Netherlands.
- The Grand Bazaar is the biggest old covered bazaar in the world, with over 3,000 shops of all kinds.
- Sultanahmet or the Old City is where most of the well-known historic sights of Istanbul are situated.
- The Galata Tower, built in 1348 to house prisoners of war, now offers a 360-degree observing platform of the city.
- Istanbul was the European Cultural Capital City in 2010, but has never hosted the Olympics.
- Istanbul is home to the most mosque in Turkey. It has 3,113 mosques.
- It has been the capital of three great empires – Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman. However the modern day capital of Turkey is Ankara.