A click on this icon above displays the list of chapters of this film about Turkey. A click on a dot goes directly to a chapter.
Reading the text below will help you better understand the historical context of the sites shown in this video.
00:26 • Galata bridge
01:25 • market near Galata bridge
04:26 • the Grand Bazaar
06:36 • on the Bosphorus
Istanbul is the proud descendant of Byzantium and Constantinople. As such, it has many remarkable monuments, even if throughout history successive civilizations have tried to erase the traces of their predecessors while reconverting the most emblematic monuments. Thus the Hagia Sophia became a mosque before becoming a museum and regaining its role as a mosque recently. Another basilica even older than Hagia Sophia, Hagia Irene which is located within the grounds of Topkapi Palace is sometimes used as a performance hall.
Life in Istanbul
But there is much more than old stones in this city shared between two continents. The agglomeration has more than 15 million inhabitants and has many places to live. From small restaurants to popular markets, the city teems with life.
Some emblematic places
Istanbul's Grand Bazaar is one of the largest covered markets in the world. Its construction began shortly after the conquest of Constantinople by the Ottoman troops in the middle of the 15th century.
It is the result of an initiative by Sultan Mehmed II who erected a building dedicated to the textile and jewelery trade near his palace. The market continued to grow and change to become a hub of Mediterranean trade in the early 17th century, at a time when the Ottoman Empire spanned 3 continents.
No European market was able to rival the Grand Bazaar in terms of the abundance, variety and quality of goods on display until the middle of the 19th century. The market had become a city within a city, with its perfectly arranged mosques, caravanserai and perpendicular streets.
The market has also suffered several earthquakes and fires throughout its history. But it has also been restored several times and the last major works date from 1980.
Nowadays, despite competition from supermarkets, the bazaar remains an important economic center, employing more than 26,000 people.
The Galata Bridge (Turkish: Galata Köprüsü) is an iconic bridge located in Istanbul, Turkey. It crosses the Golden Horn, a branch of the Bosphorus, and connects the districts of Karaköy (formerly Galata) on the northern shore and Eminönü on the southern shore.
Although of old design since Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci drew up the first plans for a bridge over the Golden Horn, the construction of the Galata Bridge is very recent since it dates from 1994, at least in its current form. In fact, it is the fifth bridge built at this location since 1845.
The Galata Bridge was built in 1845 to replace an old wooden bridge. The original bridge was made of iron, but it was replaced by a sturdier steel bridge in 1912. The bridge has a total length of 490 meters and a width of 80 meters. It is supported by two stone towers on each bank, and has a metal latticework structure that gives it a characteristic appearance.
This bridge is of symbolic importance since it connects two cultures between the Istanbul of the royal palace and religious institutions and that where most foreign merchants or diplomats reside, mostly non-Muslims.
The bridge is also home to many shops and Istanbulites like to go angling there.
At the foot of the bridge, a traditional market selling mainly fish is also a place to see.
A mini-cruise on the Bosphorus between Istanbul and the Anadolu Kavagi fortress allows you to see many typical places, such as fishing villages and some historical monuments. The Bosphorus is a strait connecting the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara and marks the boundary between the European and Asian continents.
Spoken comments in the film:
The idea of building a bridge over the Golden Horn in Istanbul dates from the time of Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, who were asked by the sultan to draw plans for its construction. However, it was not until the middle of the 19th century that the first bridge appeared at this location. The current Galata Bridge, dating from the end of the 20th century, is the fifth. A link between two cultures, the bridge leads from the Istanbul of the sultans to that of generally non-Muslim traders and diplomats.
This bridge is very popular with anglers.
At the foot of the Galata Bridge, a small vegetable and fish market plunges the visitor into another universe. From there, charming alleys lead to the Galata tower, a medieval tower built by the Genoese in the 13th century, to protect the colony that Byzantium had authorized them to form in this district of Constantinople
The birth of the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul corresponds more or less to the capture of Constantinople by the troops of Mehmed II in the middle of the 15th century. The sultan made it one of the largest markets in the world, to make the European commercial centers of the time green with envy. The Grand Bazaar was not covered until years later.
This market still gives work to more than 26,000 people today.
A visit to Istanbul would not be complete without a short boat trip on the Bosphorus. It is a great opportunity to see the few fishing villages and the palaces built on its banks.
What's the weather like in Istanbul?
about the place, Istanbul:
Istanbul is the economic capital of Turkey. It is at the same time the largest city in the country. The city was founded in the 7th century BC under the name Byzantium.
In 330 CE, Emperor Constantine the Great designated it as the new capital of the Roman Empire and initially called it New Rome. Later it became Constantinople. For 16 centuries it was the capital of several empires, Byzantine, Roman and Ottoman.
Constantinople was a Christian city for a long time, even hosting 4 of the first 7 councils. With the fall of Constantinople in 1453, the city became Muslim before becoming the seat of the Ottoman Caliphate in the early 16th century.
At the time of the formation of the Republic of Turkey, the capital was transferred to Ankara and the city was renamed in 1930 to become Istanbul.
- YouTube video library - For Originz, (© For Originz by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
- YouTube video library - Lurking Shadows
- YouTube video library - Searching for the Missing Piece
Disclaimer: Despite its appropriateness, copyright issues prevent the use of turkish traditional music in "Istanbul • Some interesting places • Turkey", hence the use of royalty-free music. Despite our careful selection, some might regret this decision, which is necessary to avoid potential lawsuits. Although difficult, this decision is the only viable solution.