Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

A couple of weeks ago Istanbul constantly mentioned in all the newscasts due to mass demonstrations and clashes with the police, which attracted the attention and interest of the ordinary people. Istanbul, what city, what is it? Many people know that it is a large and important city, often mistakenly believing it the capital of Turkey, much less know what it is on the border between Europe and Asia, and very few people remember that a hundred years ago, this city was called Constantinople. And it is not just the name of the city, as throughout the Middle Ages and even later Constantinople was the largest and richest city in Europe.

Constantinople, Byzantium, City, New Rome, Constantinople - it's all about him. Even today, the word "Constantinople" is alive and well, for example, in the Orthodox Church. Patriarch of Constantinople above all the other patriarchs, even Jerusalem, and his residence is still in Islamic Istanbul.

Istanbul - the largest city in Turkey and is unique in its geographical location. Bosphorus divides the city into two parts: the European (in the foreground) and Asian. On the sum of living in both parts of Istanbul residents ranked third in Europe in terms of population.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Istanbul is known to all who watched "Diamond hand" - is a city of contrasts. Contrasts are different. One of them - the contrast of oriental flavor with European design and the achievements of scientific and technical progress.

Istanbul - a modern European city, with a well-developed transport system. Tram is the most revealing in this regard.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Many believe Turkey is not a specifically developed Asian country, which only promoted tourism. But compare Istanbul tram, for example, to Moscow. Who here is more advanced? Travel by tram costs three lira (50 rubles). The same number is travel by train and passenger ships, which, given the fact that there is water everywhere, replaced by buses. At least, shuttle buses, I have not seen.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

It looks like a tram stop, standing between the tram tracks, ie one at both directions. Entrance to it is carried out through the turnstiles. You buy on the street next to the machine for three liras badge, throw and go. Most of the stops is open and you can safely go without going through the turnstiles, but I somehow did not notice this here. Imagine what would happen if such a payment system will have.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

In the historical part of the city streets are very narrow and the cars and trams go on the same road. Unlike Moscow tramways, which is lined with stone blocks and riding which kills and suspension, and the mood, here rails recessed into the normal roadway and driving on the car does not cause any inconvenience.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

The main tourist attraction of Istanbul - Hagia Sophia. It is believed that it was built by Emperor Justinian in the 6th century.

In general, historical sights in Istanbul are many, and different cultures - the same contrast. After all, this city was the capital of four empires: Roman, Byzantine, Latin and Ottoman.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Blue Mosque - standing in front of the Hagia Sophia and is a masterpiece of Islamic architecture of the 17th century. All these attractions are very, very historic center, where tourists more than people.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Despite all this, there is the tourist attractions are combined with some dilapidated shack. This is another contrast Istanbul. Photo: Abandoned wooden house near the Blue Mosque.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Another example. Also in the historical center.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Another monument of antiquity - a city racecourse, on which various commemorative columns and obelisks were installed. Now the race course they were only, and even then only three.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

It is ironic sounds, here on this water landscape shows the center of Istanbul. The fact that the merger of the Bosphorus and the Golden Horn, which divide the city into three parts. Cape Verde on the right - this palace cape or Sarayburnu, which begins with the old town.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Sarayburnu - it's the tip of a small plot of land, washed by the three sides of the waters of the Golden Horn, the Bosphorus and the Marmara Sea. It is not surprising that here in ancient times the city flourished - the mighty Constantinople. On a promontory on the hill is the Topkapi Palace, which served as the main residence of the Ottoman Sultans for 400 years.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Night view of the marina and the Topkapi. In this palace, I did not go, because the kind of noisy huge multilingual crowd, lined up in the heat before it enters, repulsed all desire to even understand what a queue where stand.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Next to Topkapi is Istanbul Archaeological Museum - one of the world's largest collection of ancient artifacts. In the photo: Part of famous Ishtar Gate, standing in Babylon.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

In some quarters streets clogged with arcades and posted the goods as at the flea market. You walk down the street is quite civilized, I turned and - was in some Cherkizon.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

There are a lot of streets. And that's not Laleli - the shopping district, where shuttles overstock from Russia and other CIS countries. I did not go in Laleli, look there at that - some clothes, bales, trolleys and annoying salespeople, greeters.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

The first floors of all the streets in the old town are busy shops where you can buy almost everything. What are the prices? Three lira (50 rubles) for the tram - it seems a little expensive. For 5 lira (80 rubles), you can buy a great burger and a bottle of cola - have, like, normal. For them you can buy a shirt or blouse of local production. Or imported beer. By the way, drinking water - no problem: half-liter bottle in the center, like in Moscow on Red Square, is worth one lira (17 rubles), but just in the center - all polliry.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Galata - Historic District, founded by colonists from Genoa on the outskirts of Constantinople. Above the houses rises the famous Galata Tower. Now it is the center of Istanbul, Beyoglu district.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

From Galata Tower, which stands on top of a hill, extend here such medieval streets.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

View from the tower on the Galata Bridge and the historic center of Istanbul. Galata Bridge - a two-story. The upper part is designed for vehicles and pedestrians, the bottom is occupied by numerous restaurants.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

Valens Aqueduct - one of the symbols of Istanbul. Valens - a Roman emperor, who ruled in the 4th century. And, of course, built this miracle Hydraulic longer than a kilometer.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

The ancient walls. Constantinople had the most powerful walls in the world. Those who defended it from attack by land (in the photo), were in three rows. Some towers and walls were restored, some are in the form of ruins.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

The famous fortress of Yedikule, built by Sultan Mehmed II after the capture of Constantinople.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

As I said, Istanbul bordering the different waters and outside, and inside, the embankments are complete. Many come to rest to the sea: beautiful views, fresh air, cool.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

A pair of residents returned home from a fishing trip. Fishermen in the city, for obvious reasons, very much.

In Soviet times, said that Istanbul is a port city, a lot of ships, the Sea of ​​Marmara all dirty, you can not swim - decaying capitalism in general. I do not remember how it was before, but now everything is clear. Walking on this promenade, I have repeatedly seen dolphins, about twenty meters from the coast.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

These are the monsters are moored here numerous berths.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

At peak at docks accumulates a large number of people - people waiting for transport to sail to and from work to home. There are also many hiking trails, mostly runs along the Bosphorus. I wanted to ride, but did not have enough time.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

In Istanbul, three major international port and a bunch of small ones. Maritime communications constitute an important share of the economy of the city, the Bosphorus alone what it takes. His load is three times higher than the Suez Canal. Istanbul accounts for about 27% of Turkey's GDP. Photo: Cargo ships are anchored in the Sea of ​​Marmara at the entrance to the Bosphorus.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

And this Grand Bazaar - one of the largest covered markets in the world and probably the oldest of them. There are more than 50 streets and 3,000 shops.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

In the Grand Bazaar selling mainly clothes, shoes, jewelry and tableware, accessories and other things souvenir character. Many like these hanging lanterns, lamps.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

In the summer in Istanbul, of course, hot. However, despite the fact that the city is in the subtropics, the average temperature in July and August is kept below 25 degrees Celsius. But the sun is hard, so it is better to go to Istanbul, taking sunblock.

Walk in Istanbul - a city of contrasts

A stroll through the old Istanbul nice. Oriental flavor in the streets, shops, cafes, seagulls, sea ... At night, too beautiful, all is quiet.