Beautiful Istanbul.. A city between two continents
If we want to talk about the city of Istanbul, perhaps the best phrase to with will be the saying of Napoleon Bonaparte I when he said: “If the whole world were one country, Istanbul would be its capital.”
History and Geography of Istanbul
Throughout its history, Istanbul was the capital of several major states. It was the capital of the Roman Empire, followed by the Byzantine Empire, as well as the Ottoman Empire, where the city became the capital of the Islamic Caliphate. during these eras Istanbul was known by several names: Byzantium, Constantinople, Constantinople, and Islampol which means “the city of Islam,” a name given to it by the Ottoman Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror “Fatih” after the conquest in 1453. This conquest was an event of great importance in the world’s history, as most historians consider it, The end of the Middle Ages and the beginning of modern times.
After the establishment of the Turkish Republic in 1923, the capital was moved from Istanbul to Ankara, that became the political capital, but Istanbul retained its position as the tourist and economic capital of Turkey.
Istanbul is in the northwest of the Marmara region in Turkey, and it is divided into two parts separated by the Bosphorus Strait, which makes the city located on two continents at the same time, the western part located in Europe, while the eastern part is in Asia. The city occupies 1,830.93 square kilometers, while the metropolitan area, or Istanbul Governorate, occupies 6,220 square kilometers.
Istanbul has a temperate climate similar to all parts of the Marmara region, but because of the city's distinctive location, its climate is considered a "transitional climate", as it is located in a middle area between the regions with the oceanic climate of the Black Sea, the humid continental climate of the Balkan Peninsula, and the Mediterranean climate. This diversity in climatic patterns was reflected in the plant diversity, as different types of plants and trees characteristic of each region separately can be found collectively in this region, Istanbul is bordered on its Asian and European sides by two ancient mixed wet forests, the Asian forest is known as the "Alemdağ Forest", and the European one is known as the "Belgrad Forest", and they are the city's lungs and main outlet.
Istanbul is divided administratively into 39 districts, of which 27 make up the actual city, and all these districts are known as "Greater Istanbul", and they are administered by the "Istanbul Büyükşehir Belediyesi Municipal Council". The following link shows the location of Istanbul on the map: https://goo.gl/maps/ukiMUskVp9YK4rip6
Architecture and Historic Landmarks of Istanbul
The urban landscape of Istanbul was - and still is - in constant change. During successive historical periods and due to the diversity of races and cultures of the peoples who inhabited the city, the prevailing style of architecture changed with the change of eras. We find in the buildings of Istanbul evidence of the Roman, Byzantine, Genoese, and Ottoman styles, as well as Modern European architectural styles "Baroque and Rococo", all these and other styles contributed to the construction of Istanbul’s diverse identity.
In recent decades, many tall buildings have been built around the city, and the surrounding towns have become part of the city due to the latter's rapid expansion and assimilation of those towns. The highest residential and office buildings are located in the north of the European section, especially in the financial and business districts in the neighborhoods of "Levent", "Maslak" and "Mecidiyeköy", located in the area between the Bosphorus Bridge and the Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge. The centers of the largest and most important Turkish companies and banks are in these areas.
The Asian side of Istanbul, that used to be home to summer resorts and elegant cottages surrounded by extensive gardens of canopy pines, has been growing rapidly since the early second half of the 20th century. The depopulation of these places until the 1960s helped build better infrastructure and create a more organized urban planning than that of other residential areas in the city. However, the real prosperity of the Asian side came with the opening of the "Ankara Asphalt" highway, the Asian extension of the E5 highway, which is located north of Baghdad Boulevard parallel to the railway.
If we want to talk about the tourist and archaeological attractions in Istanbul, perhaps we will need a book to list them all. Here we mention the most prominent and famous ones such as: Hagia Sofba, Sultan Ahmed Mosque, Topkapı Palace and Dolmabahce, Galata Tower and Ortakoy Mosque, and many many other tourist and archaeological attractions that each needs a separate article to describe its beauty and its history.
Public Services and Infrastructure of Istanbul
Istanbul, especially the modern areas surrounding the old city, has a modern and high-tech infrastructure. In Istanbul today, there is a chlorinated filtered water supply, and a sewage treatment system, which is managed by the Istanbul Water and Sanitation Authority, as well as several private sector organizations that undertake water purification. and distribute it to homes. As for electricity, it is secured by the state through the ground distribution networks, and natural gas (home gas) reaches most of Istanbul's homes through the Istanbul Gas Distribution Joint Stock Company, İGDAŞ.
Air and sea navigation of Istanbul
Istanbul has two main airports, Sabiha Airport on the Asian side, and Istanbul Airport on the European side, where Istanbul Airport is the largest in Europe. Maritime navigation is also vital for Istanbul, since the seas surround the city from all sides, and many Istanbul residents live on the Asian side of the city and work on the European side, or vice versa, so passenger ferries form the basis of daily transportation between the two parts of the city for many of them., even more so than the three suspension bridges that connect both ends of the Bosphorus. Also, these fast-moving ferries and cruise buses form the main link between the mainland of Istanbul and the Princes' Islands.
Highways of Istanbul
The international route D100 and the European route E80 are the main highways connecting Turkey with Europe. The road network in Istanbul is highly developed and organized, and it is still expanding, and it connects the city from the east to Ankara and from the west to Edirne. There are also two highways surrounding the city, the inner and outer belts of Istanbul.
The July 15 Martyrs' Bridge, located within the inner belt, and Sultan Mehmet Fatih Bridge, located within the outer belt, are the two-connecting links between the European and Asian sides of the Bosphorus. The northern and southern shores of the Golden Horn Strait are connected by a few bridges: Galata Bridge, Ataturk Bridge, and the Gulf Bridge, Which in turn forms part of the network of roads in the outer belt of Istanbul.
The metro, tramway, and express bus network of Istanbul
Istanbul has one of the widest and most modern subway networks around the world, and it is still under expansion in order to achieve the slogan of the Greater Istanbul Municipality (Metro from anywhere to anywhere), where one or two new lines are opened every year, and this network will become in its final form as shown in the following map: Istanbul has one of the widest and most modern subway networks around the world, and it is still under expansion in order to achieve the slogan of the Greater Istanbul Municipality (Metro from anywhere to anywhere), where one or two new lines are opened every year, and this network will become in its final form as shown in the following map:
The uncoloured lines on the map indicate metro lines that are still under construction.
Education and health in Istanbul
Istanbul has many of the best higher education buildings in Turkey, as it has more than 20 public and private universities, and most of the reputable universities are public universities, but in recent years there has been a sudden rise in the number of private universities. Istanbul University is the oldest Turkish educational institution in the city, founded in 1453, and Istanbul Technical University is one of the oldest universities in the city, founded in 1773, and it is also the third oldest technical university dedicated to teaching engineering sciences in the world.
Istanbul has many governments and private hospitals, in addition to a number of clinics, laboratories and research centers equipped with the latest technologies, which has contributed to an increase in the number of tourists coming for the purpose of "medical tourism". Istanbul has become a global destination for laser vision correction, plastic surgery and hair transplantation.
Investment and business in Istanbul
Successive Turkish governments have worked to attract foreign investments to the country, by providing incentives to foreign investors, starting with tax exemptions and up to participation and partial financing of projects in some states.
As for Istanbul, the name of the city alone may be enough to attract investments, and Istanbul has already witnessed, during the past two decades, a huge turnout by foreign investors in various fields, of which the real estate and construction field had the biggest share.
This turnout from investors coincided with a boom in the Turkish real estate market, which culminated in Resolution No. 5091 relating to Turkish citizenship and its amendment issued on 09/18/2018, which granted those wishing to invest in real estate in Turkey the right to obtain Turkish citizenship in return for buying a property worth 250.000 USD.
This decision and many other government measures constituted support for the national economy and a source of foreign currency for the treasury, as this decision is still in effect until the date of writing this article.
In the following link you can check our Lists of properties for sale in Istanbul