Istanbul has unique characteristics because it functions as a bridge between Europe and Asia – and is the only city in the world that actually exists on two continents.
Istanbul’s strategic location on the Bosphorus gives the city its European characteristics, while also making it a key player when it comes to trade between Asia and Europe.
There is only one way to cross from the Mediterranean to the Black Sea by boat, and that is through the Bosphorus Strait, right in the middle.
There are more than 50 hills within the city limits, of which Ajdos is the highest and reaches a height of 537 meters.
Earthquakes are a constant threat to the city’s infrastructure, due to the proximity of the North Anatolian fault.
The Old City within the municipal boundaries of Istanbul is about 9 square miles (23 square kilometers), but the total city area as a whole covers about 5,343 square kilometers, making it the fifteenth largest urban area in the world.
The original city was found on seven hills, six of which were peaks along the high ridge that stretched across the Golden Horn.
One of the main features to pay attention to when visiting Istanbul is the city’s location, as it is located near three bodies of water: the Bosphorus, the Sea of Marmara, and the Golden Horn.
The Bosphorus strait separates the two sides of the city. On one side of the strait is European Istanbul, while on the other side are Uskudar and Kadıkoi, which are city districts on Asian soil.
Rose-ringed parrots are an invasive species in Istanbul. They like to hang out around areas where food is available and in places with warm temperatures but can become noisy and destructive when they form large flocks.
Wild mammals are mainly concentrated in the northern forest areas of Istanbul. Wild hogs, deer, foxes, coyotes, martens, badgers, wolves, and weasels have been spotted near the city limits.
It’s the largest city with the most snow in the Mediterranean basin, due to the rain on the lake. Due to its location between the Bosphorus and the Black Sea, the city has several microclimates that allow it to experience more than 60 centimeters (24 in) of snow per year.
Istanbul boasts a wide range of flavors due to its cosmopolitan origins. With kebabs and baklavas traditional throughout southeastern Turkey to lesser-known keskeks and gozleme originating in central Anatolia, Istanbul’s array of dishes is sure to bring out your inner glutton!
It was declared the European Capital of Culture in 2010.
Many movies have been shot in Istanbul, the most popular ones being Skyfall (2012), Taken 2 (2012) and The International (2009). It is also said that Agatha Christie wrote her book “Murder on the Orient Express” in Istanbul.
The districts of Istanbul each have a distinct atmosphere and character of their own. You can find most of the well-known sites in the Old City, Sultanahmet, and around it. Other districts worth exploring include Karaköy and Nisantasi. Additionally, there are the areas of Fener and Balat, which have a dilapidated charm to them, with cobbled streets that overlook the Golden Horn. Read more at Best Things to do in Istanbul Turkey
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