By Keely Capel
As the largest city in Turkey, Istanbul is in a league with London or Moscow in terms of its size and population. With its ancient Roman occupation it has been called Byzantium and Constantinople previously in past times and has long been the busiest city within the region as well as the largest. Whilst located in the North West of Turkey, Istanbul has long been a city of culture, economics and finances at the heart of Turkey.
When visiting the city why not enjoy a cruise along the Bosphorus, which is a 32 kilometre strait joining the Marmara sea with the Black sea in Istanbul. Running through the heart of the city, passed crumbling Ottoman palaces, fortresses, shore villages and forests, the trip will take around half a day to reach the Black sea. Perhaps while away the afternoon returning back across land along its Mediterranean shores taking the time to stop and explore the Ottoman architecture up close along the way.
Whilst in Istanbul don’t pass up an opportunity to see the whirling dervishes, these Sufi monks are seeking a close relationship with God, with their worshipping taking on the characteristics of whirling dance, which is where their nickname originates from. You will find a number of event halls, where the “Semas” or ceremonies can be seen. However spectacular such a display, you must also try to keep in mind that the Sufi monks are religious and respect should be shown to these devout followers.
Whatever you choose to do or experience, embarking on a cheap holiday to Turkey will give you the best opportunity to explore the many delights that Istanbul has to offer. Be it haggling in the grand bazaar, visiting a traditional barbers for a haircut, shave or massage or relaxing in its many well-known bars and clubs whilst watching a glamorous troupe of belly dances. Istanbul can offer a unforgettable experience for everyone.