Istanbul hotels,istanbul hotel,istanbul guide things to do attractions destinations tours,explore istanbul getting around,istanbul

in History

With so much amazing history behind it the city of Istanbul is the perfect place to go on a package tour to learn about some of Turkey's most important history. You can book a tour for yourself or include a group of friends or even your entire family since there is something for everyone. One of the key attractions that you can visit on any tour that you book is Hagia Sophia. Hagia Sophia is a great piece of architecture built and used mostly during the Ottoman and Byzantine Empires. The structure itself was mainly used as an Orthodox basilica though today it is mainly a tourist attraction and a constant reminder to the people of this Turkish city of Istanbul's incredible history.

For many years the Hagia Sophia was the world's biggest cathedral. Its beauty still astounds today as its massive domed cathedral and looming spires make up some of the city's impressive skyline. Emperor Constantius was the cathedral's first dedicator and it has since been used for a number of important ceremonies plus as a symbol of imperial wealth and pride throughout the ages. Not many other sites in Turkey can compare to this man-made wonder and as such it is easy to find a number of Istanbul hotels happy to provide information about the cathedral's history and also a visiting guide.

The cathedral's location is made all the more beautiful by the glistening waters of the local river, the Bosphorus. You might opt to take a luxury cruise to and from the site on which you can bob gently along the waterways enjoying views of local life along the water's edge. Inside the dome black and gold are the dominant colors and large circular emblems done in Arabic script offer a certain Islamic touch to the location - it was a mosque all the way up to 1931. Beautiful mosaics richen the feel of the place  and create some stunning pieces of art for you and your loved ones to enjoy.

After your visit to the ancient cathedral and former mosque you can enjoy a traditional Turkish lunch. Middle Eastern cuisine is replete with spices and heady flavours. Bread is a particularly important part of the Turkish diet and comes in a variety of forms from sweet to sour and makes up a part of each and every meal. For breakfast, you might enjoy a combination of dairy and vegetables such as cheese and tomatoes with cucumber and sausage or ham. An typically traditional Turkish breakfast is known throughout the region as menemen. Somewhat like a modern day omelet, this dish is made with egg, tomatoes, onions and sweet peppers and is served accompanied by traditional Turkish coffee or tea.

Another tour that you can book is to visit the local markets and take a cooking course. You will go with your instructor and a group of other students to peruse the stalls at the local food market picking the best ingredients for your food challenge later that day. You will learn about the history behind the Turkish marketplace as well as how to visually and aurally identify certain ingredients. This may be particularly interesting for those that no very little about fresh herbs and spices. There may be some herbs that are unrecognizable to you and that you will need to help pick and choose. You may also find a number of fruit and vegetables that you have never seen before and be exposed to new and unusual smells and flavours.

After your trip to the market, you will go back to the kitchen and learn how to make a traditional eight course Turkish meal including some favorite staples such as kebab and naan.
Author Box
Lek Boonlert has 1 articles online

Lek Boonlert is an editor and content reviewer at DirectRooms and is responsible for all Istanbul Hotels content.

Add New Comment

Istanbul hotels,istanbul hotel,istanbul guide things to do attractions destinations tours,explore istanbul getting around,istanbul

Log in or Create Account to post a comment.
Security Code: Captcha Image Change Image
This article was published on 2011/09/05