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[Istanbul]


DISTRICTS AND ENVIRONMENTS      


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The Districts of Istanbul are; Adalar, Bakirkoy, Beshiktash, Beykoz, Beyoglu, Eminonu, Eyup, Fatih, Gaziosmanpasha, Kadikoy, Kagithane, Kuchukchekmece, Pendik, Sariyer, Shishli, Umraniye, Uskudar, Zeytinburnu, Buyukchekmece, Chatalca, Silivri, Shile, Avcilar, Bagcilar, Bahchelievler, Bayrampasha, Esenler, Gungoren, Maltepe, Sultanbeyli and Tuzla.

Important districts in Istanbul are listed below


Bosphorus


You should not leave Istanbul without taking a boat trip up the Boshporus, the winding strait that separates Europe and Asia. You may watch the present Istanbul and its history from the shores of the Bosphorus. One of the first views that you may sight are the Modern hotels which stand next to rustic stone fortresses and the palaces right beside them The best way to see the Bosphorus is board on one of the passenger boats that regularly zig zags along the shores. Embark begins at Eminonu, and stops alternately on the Asian and European sides of the strait. The round trip to the Anatolia Poplar takes about 6 hours. Private agencies and boats organize this tour. A tourist agency may help you.


The Golden Horn


One of the best natural harbors in the world, it was once the centre for the Byzantine and Ottoman navies and commercial shipping interests. Today, attractive parks and promenades line the shores, a picturesque scene especially as the sun goes down over the water. At Fener and Balat, neighborhoods midway up the Golden Horn, there are entire streets filled with old wooden houses, churches, and synagogues dating from Byzantine and Ottoman times. The Orthodox patriarch also resides here. A little further, up the Golden Horn at Eyup, you may sight some wonderful examples of present Ottoman architecture. Those, who believe in the acceptance of their prayers visit the Tomb of Eyup. The Pierre Loti Cafe, atop the hill, is a wonderful place to enjoy the tranquility of the view.


Beyoglu and Taksim


Beyoglu is worth seeing with its European-influenced architecture, from a century before. Europe’s second oldest subway Tunnel still it holds the title of being the shortest subway. The top section of the Tunnel is the beginning of Istiklal Street. The old trolley that has been put back into service, in the street only open to pedestrians consists of Embassy Buildings that was assigned to the consulates in the Republic era. You may see the Divan Museum (Mevlevi Tekkesi – 18th century), at the top section of the Tunnel which is the beginning of Istiklal Street. The Street is active night and day at every hour. This is the reason why they say, “Istiklal Street and Beyoglu never sleep”. It is always alive with its stores, a fish market that is located in the Chichek Passage, cinemas, theatres, cafes, restaurants and entertainment places located on both sides of the street. The Street that reaches the Taksim Square is also the center of nightlife.

The Monument, which represents the Independence (Kurtulush) War and the republic, is located right in the middle of Taksim Square. The main terminal of the new subway is under the square and at the north end is the Ataturk Cultural Center. The five starred Hyatt and Intercontinental Hotels are located in Taksim Park, and the Istanbul Hilton Hotel is located very close to Taksim square. The Radio House, The Istanbul Military Museum that is one of the richest of its kind, the Lutfu Kirdar Congress Palace and the Open Aired Theater are all located around this area.


Sultanahmet


This district which different empire’s important religious, administrative and civil structures, is located at the west point of the historical peninsula. The historical Sultanahmet square is surrounded by historical works such as; the Hagia Sophia, the Haseki Hurrem Turkish Bath, the Sultanahmet Mosque, the hippodrome and Dikilitash. The district is one on the top of the list of places worth seeing with its structure of bringing the old Istanbul to the present.


Ortakoy


Ortakoy, which is located in the most beautiful area of the Bosphorus, has been drawing attention as a place of residence since the Ottoman era. Ortakoy, which consists of a shopping region, gift shops, cafes, bars, and restaurants, is one of Istanbul’s most important shopping and entertainment centers.


Sariyer


You may see where the Bosphorus connects with the Black Sea, from Sariyer. There are numerous fish restaurants and lined up villas located in the area between Sariyer and Tarabya. A narrow road, which separates from Buyukdere, continues along to the beaches of Kilyos.

After these points, the Bosphorus is lined with tree-covered cliffs and little habitation. The last residential areas are the Anatolian and Rumanian Lighthouses and angler villages, which are neighbors with the Black Sea, located on both shores of the Bosphorus. Fish restaurants with its plentiful varieties and fresh sea products menus that are appropriate for all tastes are located on both sides.Sariyer’s fish market and the Sariyer Borek shop are famous.


Uskudar


Uskudar is a District that completes with Maiden’s Tower. The 16th century mosques, fountain, the miniature Shemsi Pasha Mosque and its Madrasah, which are located in the square, are beautiful examples of Turkish arts. The Historical Karacaahmet Cemetery and further away the Big and Small Chamlica Hills are on the ridge of Uskudar. The bird’s eye view of the Islands and the Bosphorus sighted from the top of the hills fascinate the viewers.


Kadikoy


Is one of Istanbul’s rapidly improving districts of the century. A few of the old gardened Mansions are present. Yacht clubs, marinas and wide streets reach all throughout the shore of Kadikoy.

Fenerbahche is a beautiful promenade place. The highly prestigious Bagdad Street is famed with its shopping opportunities. The Haydarpasha Train Station that reflects the characteristics of Prussian architectural style and completed in the year 1908 is located at the exit of Uskudar. Tombs and monuments that belong to English and French soldiers, which lost their lives during the Crimea War, are located on the hillside near the big military hospital. There are two big buildings located behind the hills of the Commercial Harbor facility. The one that consists of a watchtower is the old Haydarpasha High School and is presently a University. The bigger one, which consists of 4 towers, the Selimiye Shelter (19th century) in which Florence Nightingale nursed the injured during the Crimea war. The room, which she resided in, is still protected in its original condition.


Shile


The district that is 50 km away from Uskudar is located on the seashore of the Black Sea. The angler barrack, Genève castle ruins and famous lighthouse are worth the visit. There are beaches on the west and a series of small bays lined up on one side on the east. It is very active in the summertime. No pension or Hotel problems will occur. During the visit in Shile you should see the unique garments made from Shile bezi a white muslin fabric.


The Islands


The Islands which are also referred to as the Prince Islands, consist of eight Islands and is within one hour from the city, located in the Marmara Sea. Kinaliada, Burgazada, Buyukada, Heybeliada, Kashikadası and Sedefadası are parallel to the shore and Yassiada, Sivriada, and Tavshanada are located behind these Islands. Boats ply the islands from Kabatash and Bostanci, and sea buses make ordinary trips to four of these Islands.

Monasteries that were found on the Islands during the Byzantine era were used as summerhouses for the palace members and was also used asa banishment place.

The population of the Island increased after transportation to the Islands was eased with the steamboat that began to serve in the early 19th century and schools and hotels were constructed. It is famed with; Four enormous lined up Island summerhouses, villas, beaches and picnic spaces. The Islands are more isolated on the contrary of the crowd that exists beginning from May and ending at the end of September.

The boats first stop is to Kinaliada. There are no accommodation facilities located on this Island. You may make a daily here. Due to the fact of the Islands small size and that it is possible to walk everywhere, there are no transportation vehicles provided on the island. The Kirkor Lusorovich Church, Panagia and Chritos Monastaries are worth seeing due to their architectural characteristics.

Buyukada is the biggest of these islands. Motor vehicles are practically unused in Buyukada, which has a manastary in Hagia Yorgi that is located on the top hills. People of all religious beliefs visit this monastery on certain days of the year to pray and make a wish. Bicycles and coaches provide the transportation. It is recommended to take a trip around the Island with a coach. This way it is possible to wander around in two hours. A one-hour half tour is also interesting. The Yoruk Beach, which is located in the direction of Heybeliada, is ideal for sunbathing. The Dil Burnu promenade area is a preferred beautiful picnic area. On the contrary, of the crowdedness around the residential harbor side, the south side of the island is isolated. The bays that exist here are boat visitation areas. The environment of the harbor of Buyukada is colorful and active with its restaurants, teahouses, and stores. It has four hotels that are in service in the summer. Buyukada is perfect for taking walks with its historical and modern houses, well-cared gardens and very green groves.

The Naval High School building located on the harbor of Heybeliada, is the first structure that will welcome you. Hagia Triada, the Hagia Nicola Church and the Terk-I Diyar Monastery are some of the old structures located on the island. Its beaches and cafes are appropriate for a nice vacation day. There is a very beautiful bay behind the residential area with a public beach and Sea Club Facility located on the side, which faces the Kashikada, and in the rear side, there is the prestigious Degirmen Burnu Picnic Area. The pedestrian walking routes on the tophills go around the whole island. The Island is also crowded in the winter because of its schools and sanatorium facilities.

The most highly prestigious Sailing and Water Sport Club, which are located on all of the Islands is in Burgazada. Famous Turkish novelist, Sait Faik Abasiyanik lived on this Island and the house that he resided in is presently turned into a museum. The place that the novelist visited the most was a café on the Kalpazan rock, which is famed for the sunset and a field restaurant.


Environment


TheWide beaches of Kilyos, located at the European side of the Black Sea at 25th km.away from Istanbul, are attracting Istanbul residents during summer months. Belgrade Forest is the widest forest around Istanbul. Istanbul residents come along with their families come to picnic here, on the weekends. Seven old water tanks and some natural resources in the region compose a different atmosphere. Moglova Aqueduct, which is an Ottoman aqueduct, was constructed by Mimar Sinan during the 16th century, and is one of the longest aqueducts located in Turkey. The 800 meters long Sultan Suleyman Aqueduct, passes through the Golf Club, and is one of Mimar Sinan’s works of art.

Polonezkoy,

which is 25 km. away from Istanbul, is founded at the Asian coast by Polish immigrants during the 19th century. Polonezkoy is the resort point of Istanbul residents for walking in a village atmosphere, horse riding, and tasting traditional Polish meals served by relatives of initial settlers. Beaches, restaurants and hotels of Shile located at the Black Sea coast and 70 km. away from Uskudar, turn this place into one of Istanbul’s most pleasent holiday places. Famous Shile cloth is produced in this famous touristic place.

Bayramoglu - Darica

Bird Paradise and Botanic Park is a unique resort region located 38 km away from Istanbul. This gargantuan park with its trekking roads and restaurants are full of bird species and plants coming from various parts of the world.
Nice Eskihisar fisherman Village, which is located on the south east of Istanbul, has a marina where yachtsmen may anchore, after daily voyages in the Marmara Sea. Turkey's 19th century famous painter, Osman Hamdi Bey's house has been turned into a museum. Hannibal's tomb between Eskihisar and Gebze is one of the sites around the Byzantium castle.

In Silivri, the popular holiday place that is located 65 kms. away from Istanbul, there are several summer houses that are owned by Istanbul residents. This is a huge holiday place with magnificent restaurants, sports and health centers. The conference center also attracts businessmen with possibilities of escaping from the rapid tempo of urban life and business - holiday mixed activities. Scheduled sea bus services, connect Istanbul to Silivri. Painter, Osman Hamdi Bey's house in has been turned into a museum. Hannibal's tomb, located between Eskihisar and Gebze is one of the sites around the Byzantium castle.

Agva, which is officially named Yeshilchay, is a beach resort that is connected 40km east away from Silivri. The population, which is 2500 in the winter, increases to 15000 in the winter. By improving the hotels, motels and rooming houses in Agva, has shown that it is rapidly moving up to be a tourist center.

From the Shile highway located on the Anatolian side in Umraniye, you may reach Agva in 1 hour and 45 minutes by following the Kabakoz, Imrenli and Kurfalli route. Another transportation vehicle option is the Shile-Agva buses that depart from Uskudar Istanbul every hour.
Avsha and the Marmara Islands are pretty close to Istanbul when transporting by bus. Uchmakdere, Sharkoy, and Marmara that are located around Tekirdag, may also be appropriate for weekend vacations.