“Ten solo lo que puedas llevar encima. Conoce idiomas, conoce países, conoce gente. ¡que tu memoria sea tu bolsa de viaje!”

-Alexander Solzhenistyn

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Amazing Tour



The Sultanahmet neighborhood, which constitutes the authentic historical core of Istanbul, encompasses a modest but coveted area that has been an object of desire for various European and Middle Eastern powers throughout history. Long before the Ottoman conquest that made Istanbul the capital of their empire in the 15th century, this particular area had already been the seat of decadent Rome, the former Byzantine Empire and even, briefly, the short-lived Empire. Latin.

Strategically located atop Sarayburnu, a promontory bathing in the waters of the Bosphorus, Sultanahmet is home to some of the city’s most precious historical treasures and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985. Therefore, today, Sultanahmet is known as the most touristic area of ​​the city and, at the same time, the cultural epicenter of the entire country.

The heart of this neighborhood is located in the beautiful Gülhane Park, a tree-lined space where the largest historical monument in Istanbul is located: Topkapi Palace. Built shortly after the Ottoman conquest, this palace complex played a central role in the administration of the empire for five centuries.

Today, it opens its doors to tourism, and among all its rooms, those of the Treasury and the Harem are the most visited. Furthermore, in the same park is the Istanbul Archaeological Museum, a treasure for lovers of antiquity founded at the end of the 19th century. A few steps away stands the ancient Hagia Sophia, another of the visual jewels of ancient Istanbul. This building, built three times by the Byzantine Empire, dates back to the year 532 and was long considered the largest Christian temple in the world. After its conversion into a mosque, in 1935, the first president of the Republic of Turkey, Kemal Atatürk, converted it into a museum.

Sultan Ahmet I is said to have been inspired by Hagia Sophia when, in 1609, he commissioned the construction of the Blue Mosque, a lush building across Sultanahmet Square. This mosque, with free entry subject to certain dress guidelines, is considered the most beautiful in Istanbul, thanks to its two hundred Venetian stained glass windows, its six minarets and its 20,000 blue İznik tiles. Next to it is the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Art. The ancient Hippodrome of Constantinople, an inexhaustible source of vestiges of various civilizations, and the Basilica Cistern, an underground water store built during the Byzantine period, complete the most emblematic set of historical and artistic treasures of the Sultanahmet neighborhood. To conclude, we cannot forget other tourist attractions near the area, such as the Grand Bazaar and the Spice Bazaar, two huge markets whose visit is a must-see even if you do not plan to shop.

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