The History and Culture of Istanbul
The province Istanbul that’s History extends till 300 thousand years before today, was a capital city of the Roman Empire between 330 – 395 A.D., Eastern Roman Empire between 395 - 1204 and 1261 – 1453 A.D., Latin Empire between 1204 - 1261, Ottoman Empire between 1453 – 1922.
The Bosphorus that connects the Asian and European Continents got its name actually from a legend in Greek Mythology. Bosphorus which means actually “Cow Passage”, comes from the legend that the God of all Gods Zeus falls in love with the daughter of the King of Argos, Lo and he protects her from the wrath of his former goddess wife Hera and converts her with a spell into a cow, and Lo in form of a cow runs away from Hera over the Bosphorus.
Yarımburgaz Cave that is the known oldest residential site of Istanbul, is located on the 22 kilometers western part of Istanbul close to today's Halkalı quarter. Yarımburgaz cave can be separated as "upper cave" and "below cave". The cave where human beings resorted 400 thousand years before, today offers to scientists vital data from archaeological aspects and is a very important place all around the world.
We may say that the most reflecting place of the Istanbul’s historical atmosphere is the historical Peninsula. The district called Walled City witnesses to history in all your steps.
You will have the opportunity to see the most important touchstones of great civilizations and Human History. Saint Sophia that is initially constructed as a church, than a mosque and used today as a museum, Topkapi Palace that is constructed in the year 1478 by Fatih Sultan Mehmet 400 years before today as the administrative center of the state, and the Saint Irene Museum at the outer garden of the palace, Sultanahmet Mosque with famous Iznik Tiles, one of the first samples to today’s shopping centers Grand Bazaar and Spice Bazaar are only some places that you need to see in the historical peninsula. Without any doubt, these places can only be counted as the first leg of a historical journey in Istanbul. Because you may spent your whole life to see every detail of this city completely. Words are actually meaningless to describe this magical city that reflects with a fountain of centuries’ years old, a wonderful palace, a synagogue and church the cosmopolite soul of city.