You can congratulate yourself if you are planning a trip to Istanbul. That’s not saying much actually. The underground waterways, steamy bathhouses and artsy buildings replete with sensual mysteries of the East and unsung legends of the past make Istanbul worth a visit. As you are on a vacation, here is our guide to you help you prepare your itinerary.
The Turkish delight can begin with your visit to the Basilica Cistern. This is an ancient complex underground system that brought drinking water to Istanbul from Thrace. This was built in the sixth century but left in darkness for a few years after till it came back into life. Earlier, the system was so sophisticated that the running water was accompanied by music and light.
After the Basilica cistern, you can go to another one of the sixth-century Byzantine masterpieces made by Emperor Justinian. This is a museum now which was once a church and then a mosque. This is a huge building that is mostly empty but the mosaics are simply breathtaking. You can bet that you haven’t seen anything like that yet.
The Topkapi Place is one of those places you cannot miss if you are visiting Istanbul. This place had been home to the sultans and their wives. There used to be a harem inside the building and a majestic Turkish bath that will surely mesmerize you, to say the least. Finally, the view of the Sea of Marmara, Istanbul trip is clearly incomplete without a visit to the Topkapi Palace.
Istanbul is famous for its bathhouses and a good few of them have remained open for the visitors for years. But the Ayasofya Hurrem Sultan Hamam made especially for Suleiman the Magnificent’s wife Roxelana have been recently opened. So, try out this sensual 16th-century masterpiece that will leave you spellbound.
Check out the Turkish And Islamic Arts Museum without fail before leaving Istanbul. This place originally belonged to Ibrahim Pasha but now it keeps giant carpets brought from all over the planet. In the basement, you will have reconstructed items which range between nomad tent to various other historically significant collectibles. If you are visiting with your kids, this will update them with chunks of information about Turkish history.
Last but not least, if you have time try out the Chora Church, Suleymaniye Mosque, the Blue Mosque and swim in a paradise of eastern enchantment!
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