Istanbul: A city of Seven-Hills, the Capital of the World
Istanbul…Istanbul is the centre (capital) of the world; rich with the beauties of past and present, the streets of which bear the mark of many civilizations and cultures. It is a marvellous city dating back to 400.000 years during which primitive people lived, a city which had been the capitals of Byzantine, Latin and Ottoman Empires.
One can find activities of all kinds in stanbul, which is a mystical city built on seven hills, and which connects Asia and Europe continents: shopping at a historical centre, Grand Bazaar, which makes one feel oriental authenticism: catching the famous view from Bosphorus from Ortakoy; feeding seagulls at Eminonu, feel years-old history at Dolmabahce Palace and Topkapi palaces. All these activities can one make the most of in one city: lstanbul.
Istanbul presents different horizons and dimensions with tall minarets almost reaching the sky, setting of the sun into the depths of Bosphorus, priceless historical palaces, pavilions, museums, parks and gardens. It is a magnificent city that has survived enduring wars, fires and earthquakes makes the one fall in love with itself.
Istanbul is a city that has gone through and reflected upon historical changes. Biggest monuments of Christianity, like Highia Sophia, rises during the Byzantine Empire; yet with the Ottoman Empire, nomadic Turkish culture takes its toll resulting in houses with yards.
Look of Istanbul begins to change as far as urbanism is concerned with the Industrial Revolution that starts in the 19th century in the West Beyoglu and Galata districts that are placed in northern Golden Horn begins to change under the effect of the new civilization. The world’s second earliest metro system (following London) is built during that time to connect Galata and Beyoglu.
Istanbul, which experiences a fast population increase following the founding of the republic, struggles to react to modernism and fast growing population, Two Bosphorus Bridges do not only connect Asia and Europe but also change the unique countenance of the city.
As the Istanbul poet Orhan Veli recites, one can listens and listens the city without ever being able to get enough of it.
by YAPRAK GÜRDAL