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  #1  
Old Posted May 30, 2013, 4:41 AM
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hkskyline's 2012 in ISTANBUL

Being the western end of the Silk Road, Constantinople served as a bridge between the East and the West. Its glorious history has left behind numerous relics to explore appreciate. I explored Istanbul for about 4 days. It was barely enough, and I think I need to return one day.

Past the fishermen and seafood restaurants, Galata was the commercial hub during the Ottoman Empire.













The neighbourhood rises along the hillsides, which are made accessible through steep roads and staircases such as this one.

















Galata Tower was built in 528 and stands 61m high. Perched on the hillsides, the tower's observation deck offers a panoramic view of the Golden Horn all the way to the Asian side.





































Satisfied with the view, I headed back downhill past unremarkable buildings to Voyvoda Caddesi.









Voyvoda Caddesi was the financial centre of Ottoman Istanbul. Even today, it is home to many banks.







Surprisingly, these streetside juice vendors offered better bargains than in rest stops and tourist locations elsewhere in the country. 1 lira for a fresh pomegranate juice is indeed a huge bargain.











The Camondo Staircase was built by a Jewish banker to facilitate his commute to work.





























The full set : http://www.globalphotos.org/istanbul.htm


| Western Turkey Thread | Cappadocia |
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  #2  
Old Posted May 30, 2013, 3:37 PM
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Beautiful!
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  #3  
Old Posted May 30, 2013, 11:04 PM
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Great shots.

However, it looks like you only spend time in Beyoglu and did not visit Sultanahmet at all, which is quite unusal for a first time visitor of the city. Or will there be a second thread?
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  #4  
Old Posted May 31, 2013, 2:48 AM
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I have many more parts to come.

The Hippodrome was originally built in the 3rd century. Once thought to hold 100,000, the stadium is no more than a park today. In this photo, the octagonal German Fountain was a gift from Emperor Wilhelm II to the Sultan in 1898.









The Egyptian Obelisk was taken from the Temple of Karnak in Luxor in AD 390. Believed to date from 1500 BC, the obelisk was carved to celebrate the victories of Pharaoh Thutmosis III.







The Column of Constantine is in far worse condition, stripped of its bronze cover by the Crusaders.



Today's Hippodrome is a big public space where tour groups parade down to view the obelisks and enter the Blue Mosque.





The Blue Mosque was commissioned by Sultan Ahmet I in the early 1600's as an imperial mosque. With 6 minarets, it stirred up rivalry with Mecca, which was not kindly received.









































Ayasofya dates from the 6th century and was converted from church to mosque in the 15th century. Today, it is neither, but a museum only. Inside, stunning Byzantine mosaics grace the mosque.





















































The Ottomans plastered over Roman mosaics, which are slowly being rediscovered.













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  #5  
Old Posted Jun 1, 2013, 3:44 PM
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Beautiful pictures. I haven't been in nearly 15 years but have never stopped missing it. What an incredible place.
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  #6  
Old Posted Jun 4, 2013, 4:32 PM
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Istiklal Caddesi is lined with grand 19th century residences and embassies, but much of the ground level spaces have been turned into retail thanks to pedestrianization.











The Pera Palas Hotel opened in 1892 and hosted many famous guests over the years, including Agatha Christie. It is now managed by the Jumeirah Group from Dubai.

















Saint Antoine opened in 1912 after 6 years of construction and was designed by a local architect. It is the largest Catholic church in the city and occupies a busy spot just off Istiklal Street.













I made a detour downhill to Fransiz Sokagi, the "French" street. French is not spoken here, but it was designed to create a Parisian cafe atmosphere. Unfortunately, I arrived at the wrong time and didn't find patrons eating or drinking.



















Çiçek Pasaji is a covered arcade that is now a restaurant.









There is also a shopping arcade across the street.













The neighbouring streets are also lively with various fresh foods being offered for sale, including these vegetables and even seafood.

























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  #7  
Old Posted Jun 7, 2013, 8:35 AM
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The current Taksim to Tunel tram service resumed in 1990 along a single track. The line is only 1.6km long and slowly moves up and down the pedestrianized Istiklal Caddesi. Here it is in Taksim getting ready for another run.











Tunel is the 2nd oldest metro in the world after the London Underground. It opened in Jauary 1875 and continues to take passengers uphill from Galata to Istiklal Caddesi.







Sirkeci Station is the Orient Express' terminus. It doesn't look that grand on the outside, but there is a very worthwhile museum next to the platform where all sorts of train memorabilia are on display, including a model railroad.























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  #8  
Old Posted Jun 10, 2013, 5:04 PM
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Numerous municipal ferries travel between Europe and Asia. With no rail connection across the Bosporous yet, the sea route is both a scenic and vital lifeline for this huge city. Today, I set sail from Karakoy.













Maiden's Tower was a fortress during the Bzantine era, but this tower is only a century old, having been used as a quarantine centre, lighthouse, and customs.











Haydarpasa is the grand railway station on the Asian side of Istanbul. Designed by German architects as a gift from Kaiser Wilhelm, trains depart from here towards the east as far as Iran.







The ferry stops here for a convenient connection to the trains. Service is disrupted though as a high-speed railway is being built to connect with Ankara.









A quick ride later, the ferry arrived at its final stop in Kadikoy. The mosques on the European side are still visible on the horizon.









Not much in terms of historic relics remain on the Asian side thanks to the ravages of war. The Asian side today is a more modest suburban area. Kadikoy was founded by the Greeks in 675BC, but its founding fathers did not realize the European side was a far better place to settle.





A lively market occupies the inner streets, and it's not geared towards tourists.













A short single-track tram system circles around Kadikoy. A few large bus stations also help move people about next to the ferry terminal.







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  #9  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2013, 1:32 AM
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Stunning city, and excellent photography.
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Old Posted Jun 24, 2013, 8:46 AM
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Uskudar is located further north along the coast. Unlike Kadikoy, it is a very conservative area settled by rural Anatolian migrants. Several large mosques are within walking distance from the ferry terminal. Thanks to the tourist information centre in Kadikoy, I was able to get here by bus rather than ferry back to the European side and then transfer to another ferry to here.





I liked this section of waterfront more as it was closer to the European side while the newer areas with skyscrapers are also visible, culminating with the bridges that span the Bosporous.













It was a nice stroll along the waterfront south towards Maiden's Tower.















Ayazma Mosque dates from the 1700's and was believed to have been named after a palace that was once located here.



















Construction is under way for the first rail tunnel across the Bosporous.













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Old Posted Jun 26, 2013, 4:03 PM
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After a visit to Asia, it's time to hit the water and head back to Europe. The ferry had plenty of seats for the reverse commute back to the European side around sunset.

























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Old Posted Jul 3, 2013, 4:24 AM
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A short bus ride from Galata Bridge is Eyup, in the western part of the city. It's a serene area, with a lovely waterfront park where you cannot find other tourists snapping away.













A cable car takes visitors past the cemetery to a hillside cafe that offers panoramic views of the Golden Horn.













I ventured past the cemetery and out through the back to see a lot of residentials in various states











I decided to save some money and head back downhill by foot through the cemetery. Soon, I reached the bottom and the Eyup Sultan Mosque.









The Theodosian Walls stretch along the western part of the city and can still be seen today. Construction started in the 5th century and the whole defense structure once had 92 towers.





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Old Posted Jul 30, 2016, 2:07 PM
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With a lot of bad news coming out of Turkey lately, I dig back into my archives to find some Istanbul gems that showcase what a great place it really is. Galata Bridge is a popular fishing spot. Having scanned the buckets, it seems they are getting small results.









Below deck, fish restaurants line the covered section, and you get to see all the fishing lines in action.









My full gallery : http://www.globalphotos.org/istanbul.htm
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Old Posted Aug 6, 2016, 3:21 PM
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Boasting 5000 shops, the Grand Bazaar was built in the 15th century and is a gigantic covered market. I had enough apple tea, figs, and Turkish delight already, so only my camera got a work-out here.









































Check out my updated Istanbul gallery : http://www.globalphotos.org/istanbul.htm
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Old Posted Aug 19, 2016, 4:37 PM
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Be ready to be amazed! Topkapi Palace was completed in 1478 and stayed as the administrative and art centre of the empire for almost 400 years. Abandoned during Ottoman rule as the centre moved to Dolmabahce in the mid-19th century, the palace has been preserved and now is open to visitors.



















































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Old Posted Sep 9, 2016, 2:36 AM
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Awesome thread hk......great photos of a charming metropolis. Loved all the boats too!
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  #17  
Old Posted May 8, 2018, 2:26 AM
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There is a lot of street activity as I headed towards the Grand Bazaar, the ultimate tourist trap.









Süleymaniye Mosque sits atop one of Istanbul's 7 hills. Being the 4th imperial mosque in the city, it was completed in 1557. Head to the garden for beautiful views of the Golden Horn.





























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  #18  
Old Posted May 8, 2018, 9:14 AM
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Good views but one question, is it safe in there as tourist, media all about tourists being beaten even killed on streets.
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Old Posted May 8, 2018, 9:25 AM
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Loved Istanbul first time around.

Not so much the second time.
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Old Posted May 8, 2018, 12:10 PM
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spectacular
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