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The commercial, historic and cultural capital of Turkey, the city that you definitely fall in love with, Istanbul, is truly fascinating. The only city in the world that lies on the banks of two continents, Europe and Asia, founded by Constantine the Great, Istanbul is a city of narrow streets, everywhere stores and millions of tourists who step in the city each year. If you want to spend holidays in a place packed with culture, art and history, but you need also a well-deserved shopping session in a city with taverns, bars and chic restaurants, or if you choose to enjoy the landscapes drawn from storybooks aboard a cruise ship, Istanbul is the perfect destination. Natives will wait for you with a smile, very helpful, so that you may feel that their only care in this world is to make you feel really good. Istanbul is a city of contrasts where ancient and modern shakes hands. You can easily reach this exciting city, located 456 kilometers from Ankara, the Turkish capital.
Oriental  Holiday spiced with belly dancing in Istanbul
Material by
TRAVEL MIX   TV channel
for www.7travel-magazine.eu
author: Fadia HÎRŢAN
What can you visit
You will find by far the famous Blue Mosque as the most interesting of all. Located across from Aya Sofia, it is bordered by Beyazid mosques, Sehzade, Selimiye, Sultanahmet and Suleymaniye. Do not forget to bring with you a pair of comfortable shoes, because you’ll have to take them off in front of every entry according to local customs (that must be respected). If you want to experience the sensations that you had by reading the "1001 Nights" fairy tales then you must see the palaces hosted by the miraculous city, too. Scheherazade will receive you properly in Topkapi, perhaps the most important palace nearby, which was for centuries the residence of Ottoman sultans. Thousands of precious gems, golden thrones, century-old porcelains, paintings, Sultans’ gems-and-metals clad clothing or weapons are waiting for you to discover them in the courtyards of the palace, full of palms and flowers. There you can also admire a great view, the seacoast. Take your time and reach the Basilica Cistern, and you will not regret it! Even if the exterior of the building looks like any other, if you get in the basement, you will see an unique sound-and-light show.
Admire unique sea view on board of a cruise ship!
If you come to see the gate of Asia, do not forget to save a day for the beauties of Bosphorus Strait connecting Black Sea with Marmara Sea. It is a flooded valley with a spectacular north east to south-west course, 32 kilometers long. Flocked by cruise ships and oil tanks canal is crossed by two suspended 1 Km long bridges. You can catch one of the most beautiful sights in Turkey and can admire on board a cruise ship the famous Ottoman wooden houses scattered along the bluffs, 200 m high.
Do not forget your credit card!
You can lose many hours in the famous bazaars of Istanbul, where thousands of shops with merchandise of all kinds will catch your eyes. Undoubtedly, the most impressive is the Grand Bazaar, where you can enter in from a side of the town and get out through the opposite side. You can enjoy a delicious meal in one of the chic and romantic restaurants from Sultanahmet or Kumkapi districts, your food being served by very friendly waiters. At the end of the dinner, order a traditional Turkish coffee for an authentic experience; enter a nightclub to enjoy the Turkish rhythms in the company of professional belly dancers, or go to a disco, a cabaret or a jazz club in Taksim-Harbiye district.
Istanbul vacanta orientala