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İstanbul, Turkey

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The cosmopolitan city of Istanbul is one of the most frequented cities in the world. It was once the old capital of Turkey known as Constantinople, this amazing city has wall-to-wall culture and history, and where new and old lives in harmony. There is no mistaking this is where 'East meets the West'… A true extravaganza of sights which includes the Blue Mosque and marvelous Topkapi Palace. You will be amazed and inspired by this truly magnificent city where life never stops.

Istanbul has an imperial history which stretches back some 1,500 years and is continually ‘the crossroads of Europe and Asia’. It has an estimated 15 million occupants on both sides of an east-west divided by the 32km (20-mile) Bosphorus Strait. This Strait connects the trade routes of the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara and the Mediterranean. Thus meaning that this  the city has been a jealously guarded center of world trade dating back to the Byzantine era.

The city has remained as the trading post for spices and textiles brought along the silk route from as far away as China. Evan after Isanbu (Constantinople as it was then known) fell to the  Ottoman Sultans back in 1453, the city upheld its trading post. The city has suffered from conintualy sieges though the ages due to its prime position and has changed from the world’s first Christian Capital to a Hellenic outpost to Rome then to the seat of the World’s biggest Muslim Empire – truly confirming this city’s diverstiy.

There are no ancient findings within the historical city itself however ruins found during the excavations  in the Golden Horn region of city and on the Asian side have reveal  that the first settlement in this  region dates as far back as 3000 B.C. The Acropolis in Istanbul has revealed that the Byzantines lived in the area where Topkapi Palace now stands.

Even after so many years Istanbul is buzzing more than ever, the local council (belediye) has started to smarted up the tatty central area which has meant that the arts and music scene has started to grow and flourish and even intentional fashion chains are thriving in pedestrian avenues.  A steady streem of bars, clubs, private art galleries and restaurants open up all the time meaning the city seems more funky and cosmopolitan than ever with its younger generation even more keen on cultural expression. The climate in Istanbul’s a Mediterranean one but can be affected by climatic variations due to its location on the Marmara Sea and Bosphorus. The Summers are generally hot and winters cold with a steady snow fall.

Turkish Holidays with Holiday Mate

Choose one of our cheap package holidays to Turkey. Book a flight with us from any UK airport to a selection of Turkish holiday destinations. Choose from a large selections of hotels in Turkey with prices and accommodation to suit every traveller's needs and budget.

Istanbul Hotels  

Holidaymate, with British and Turkish staff, are your ideal choice for booking holidays to Turkey or Northern Cyprus, hotels in Turkey and cheap flights to Turkey from the UK.

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