Spending one and half hour on the strait that seperates two continents is not a figment of imagination. On one side is Europe, on the other Asia – both shores are lined with historic buildings from mansions to palaces. Seeing both continents at the same time standing right between of them on the legendary Bosphorus Strait will be the reward of the day. If you think so, welcome aboard! After disembarkation, you will step on one of the favorite traveler fascinations across Istanbul. Dolmabahce Palace is the grandest of the nineteenth-century palaces in Istanbul. The palace was the main administrative center of the Ottoman Empire standing as a priceless seafront jewel with all innumerable, exquisite jewels behind its walls. Camlica Hill is another spot in today’s tour providing the best scenic view of Istanbul. To reach there only thing you need to do is just to change the continent by traveling to Asia. Nothing more required! Before the last stop, you can just sit back, relax and enjoy the stunning view of Golden Horn (Halic) from your bus. And, do not miss the chance to glance at historic city walls, and panoramas of ancient suburbs including Fener, Balat and Ayvansaray. Last but not least, is, with hundreds of shops, awe-inspiring Spice Bazaar. Neighboring the New Mosque (Yeni Cami), in its heyday, it was the final destination for the camel caravans that travelled the Silk Road from China, India and Persia. And, your day ends here. Before going back home, make sure you stock up on edible souvenirs, especially Turkish delight (lokum) or some trinkets and TOUCH THE EARTH carrying a wide array of scents from far Far East.
Pinch yourself! Yes, this is not a dream. Nothing like taking a Bosphorus cruise between two continents. The Bosphorus Strait is a joint amid Sea of Marmara and Black Sea. While on it, don’t let your eyes catch fishing vessels, huge tankers, container ships or other excursion ferries riding near your boat. On one side is Europe, on the other side is Asia. They are catchy, and historic mansions, palaces and other loads of attractions are worth seeing and immensely satisfying.
Off the ferry, we reach the ostentatious Dolmabahce Palace. The middle 19th century: Topkapi Palace was abandoned, the administrative center and royal residence of the Ottoman Empire moved into newly-built palace. “Dolma” means filled or stuffed and “bahce” is garden in Turkish. Before the construction of the palace, the site, on the Bosphorus, was gradually filled that’s why the palace goes by the name of Dolmabahce. The western architectural style palace was home to six sultans and Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the Turkish Republic, used the palace as a presidential house. The lavishly decorated palace has 285 rooms, 44 halls, 68 toilets and 6 baths. The main building is surrounded by magnificent palace gardens and it faces the sea with very high walls. The chandelier in the reception hall, the crystal banisters and ceramic collection are worth-seeing in the palace. Cross off another palace on your list.
Next on our list is the other continent. We travel across continents to attain the highest point in Istanbul, Camlica Hill which rises 268 metres giving fabulous views over the city. Your eyes will be treated to Istanbul. This is the only point located in Asia on your itinerary.
Before the last stop, you will have the chance to enjoy the view of Golden Horn with the most venerated site of Eyup and Fener district where The Greek Orthodox Patriarchate, the spiritual center of the Greek Orthodox world, is situated. Once this Bosphorus inlet was the biggest concentration of mosques, churches and synagogues in the city.
Since 1660s, Spice Bazaar is still grandiose, glistening, still hundreds of shops, still same aromatic, rich, sharp smell fills the air and still thousands of baffled people going in and out. When you step into this covered bazaar, you won’t need a tour guide any more. Just follow your nose!