Istanbul, which has served as a bridge between different cultures due to its geographical location for centuries, served as the capital of four empires for 1600 years. As a result, buildings witnessing a glorious history of hundreds of years have risen all over this city, where science, culture, and art have been blended and brought to life again. Many of them have survived to the present day. Ten famous historic buildings have become an integral part of Istanbul’s magical atmosphere with their experiences and stories…


1. Maiden’s Tower

Kız Kulesi

The Maiden’s Tower was built by the Athenian commander Alcibiades to control the ships passing through the Bosphorus and collect taxes. Today’s architecture was shaped during the reign of Fatih Sultan Mehmet. The Maiden’s Tower is also known as “Leander’s Tower” because it is believed to be the tower in the legend of Leandros-Hero. Another legend about the tower is an emperor who locked his daughter in this tower to protect her from a prophecy and a snake that killed the girl.


2. Mihrimah Sultan Mosque


Exterior Shot Of Mihrimah Sultan Mosque At Uskudar, Istanbul, Turkey

The story of Mihrimah Sultan mosques, built-in Edirnekapı, and Üsküdar by Mimar Sinan, whose architectural genius is known to the whole world, is also quite interesting. His love for Mihrimah Sultan, the daughter of Suleiman the Magnificent and Hürrem Sultan, and named after the words “Mihr” meaning Sun and “Mah” meaning Moon; Thanks to the tremendous architectural intelligence of Mimar Sinan, who wanted to make these two mosques immortal, every year on March 21, the Sunsets over one mosque and the Moon rises over the other.


3. Basilica Cistern

yerebatan sarnıcı

The Basilica Cistern, built by the Byzantines to meet the water needs of the people of Istanbul and has glittering architecture, has a water volume of 100 thousand tons. The “weeping column,” together with the columns with Medusa statues in the cistern, which consists of 336 columns, each 9 meters high, preserves its mystery. It is believed that this column, which has eye figures and is constantly moist, weeps for the slaves working in the construction of the cistern.


4. Pera Palace Hotel

Pera Palace Hotel

The story of Pera Palace dates back to the 19th century. It was established in 1888 when the Paris-Istanbul expedition of the Orient Express started so that passengers could stay in a hotel with high standards. As a result, it was the first building in Istanbul where electricity was supplied, electric elevator and hot water facilities were provided for the first time. Since 1917, it has hosted Atatürk many times, and in 1981, room 101, which was painted the color Atatürk liked, was turned into a museum. Thus, Pera Palace Hotel, where Atatürk’s personal belongings and many other precious memories are exhibited, has the status of a museum hotel.


Agatha Christie’s 11 Lost Days

Many different scenarios were put forward about the 11 lost days of the famous writer at that time, but no one knows the truth. After Christie’s death, the renowned film company Warner Bros. wants to make a movie about his mysterious story. However, because they do not have enough information, they decide to seek help from a psychic. A psychic named Tamara Rand is tasked with summoning the author’s spirit and then tells her that the secret of 11 lost days is hidden in Pera Palace Hotel.

According to the psychic’s claim, a key kept by him will reveal the author’s secret. Although there is no exact information, the key found in Pera Palace opens a room in the mansion of Misbah Muhayyeş, the hotel owner, in Yeniköy; In the notebook found there, it is said that all the details of 11 lost days were written.

After this striking claim, the whole world’s eyes are turned to Agatha Christie’s room in Pera Palace Hotel. Room 411 is now wondered by the world as a whole. After a while, the key in question is indeed found in the place described by the psychic! With the discovery of the key, an irreconcilable struggle begins between the hotel management and the film company…


5. Tekfur Palace

Tekfur Sarayı

Although Tekfur Palace, one of the most important trade centers of the Eastern Roman Empire, lost its importance after the conquest of Istanbul and became idle over time, it was recently repaired and turned into a museum. One of the most frequently spoken rumors about the palace is the claim that the “Kaşıkçı Diamond,” which once belonged to Napoleon’s mother but passed into the Ottoman treasury after a long journey, was found in the garbage dump of the Tekfur Palace years later and was circulated from hand to hand until its value was understood.


6. Galata Tower

Galata Tower and Maiden Tower

First, M.S. The Galata Tower, built-in 507-508 and frequently repaired and upgraded over time, took its final form today after the II. He took it during the reign of Mahmut. According to the legend, Galata was in love with the Maiden’s Tower, but the Bosphorus did not meet. Galata; When he sent the letters he had written for years to the Maiden’s Tower with Hezarfen Ahmet Çelebi, the two lovers were finally happy.


7. Hagia Sophia Mosque

Ayasofya Cami

Many legends are also told about Hagia Sophia, a church built by the Byzantine Emperor in 532-537 and converted into a mosque by Fatih Sultan Mehmet after the conquest of Istanbul. The entrance door of St. claims that it is a part of Noah’s ark, and there is a coffin above the entrance door. According to one of the legends that impressed the listeners the most, an angel who appeared to the guard there during the construction of Hagia Sophia tells the guard to gather the workers for the building and will wait there until he returns. The Emperor, learning this, sends the guard to Rome, and Hagia Sophia has been protected by an angel ever since.


8. Suleymaniye Mosque

Süleymaniye cami

During the construction of the Süleymaniye Mosque, one of the unique works of Mimar Sinan, the structure was suspended for a year to lay its foundation. Shah Tahmasb, who heard that the construction was stopped, sent a chest full of gold to be used to complete the mosque to embarrass Suleiman the Magnificent. However, by order of Suleiman the Magnificent, the gold was ground into powder and poured into the construction mortar of Süleymaniye.


9. Grand Bazaar


One of the most exciting details of the story of the bazaar is the claim that there are hidden tunnels under the Grand Bazaar, which was opened in 1461 and is one of the oldest bazaars in the world; it extends to Kınalıada. It is believed that the entrance to the tunnels is in the Basilica Cistern.


10. Cemberlitas

Çemberli Taş

Çemberlitaş, also known as the Column of Constantine, which gave its name to one of the most crowded and popular districts of Istanbul, was one of the symbols of Byzantium. According to a belief, Constantine I buried the wooden statue of a goddess, the scepter of Noah, the stone from which the Prophet Moses poured water, and the crumbs of the seven slices of bread left in his hand on the day when Jesus distributed bread, in the foundation of Çemberlitaş and covered them with his hands.

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