Turkey Cultural Tour   
Bosphorus of Asia-Europa And Palaces
Bosphorus of Asia-Europa And Palaces
Bosphorus of Asia-Europa And Palaces
Bosphorus of Asia-Europa And Palaces
Bosphorus of Asia-Europa And Palaces
Bosphorus of Asia-Europa And Palaces
Bosphorus of Asia-Europa And Palaces

Bosphorus is a natural strait connecting the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara, thus being a very strategic waterway. It was a river in the valley during the Tertiary period of the continents, which was drowned by the sea at the end of this period. It's length is 32 kilometers (20 miles) in the north to south direction, width varies between 730-3300 meters (800-3600 yards), and depth is between 30-120 meters (100-395 feet). Bosphorus strait separates the European part from the Asian part of Istanbul. The surface current flows always from north to south; however, a strong countercurrent under the surface creates swirls and eddies.


Bosphorus comes from a Thracian word which means "passage of the cow", deriving from the legend of Io who was one of many lovers of Zeus. When Hera, Zeus' wife, suspected her husband being involved in a love affair with Io, Zeus converted Io in a small cow and tried to send her away from Hera's rage. She (the cow) swam across the strait but Hera discovered it and she sent big flies after the cow to bite and disturb her all the time, ending Io in the Aegean Sea (thus named Ionian sea).

Bosphorus in Turkish is known as Bogazici, meaning "inner strait". Since the ancient times it held always an important role because of its strategic location, being the only passage from the Black Sea into the Mediterranean, along with the Dardanelles strait. Especially during the Cold War, the straits were crucial for Soviet navy.

Bosphorus is a very busy waterway with many ships and oil tankers going through it, as well as local fishing and ferries go to the Asian side back and forth. Around 48.000 ships pass through this strait annually, three times denser than the Suez Canal traffic and four times denser than the Panama Canal. Approximately 55 million tones of oil are shipped through the strait each year.

There are three suspension bridges on the Bosphorus connecting Europe to Asia (or vice versa). The first one is known as "Bosphorus Bridge" and was opened on 29th October 1973 between Beylerbeyi and Ortakoy neighborhoods. This bridge's name was changed into "Martyrs of July 15th" dedicated to the victims of the coup attemp on 15th of July 2016. It's 1074 meters (1175 yards) long between two pillars, has 6 lanes, 165 meters (540 feet) height of piers. The second one is known as "Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge" (or FSM Bridge shortly) and was opened in 3rd July 1988 between Anadolu Hisari and Rumeli Hisari neighborhoods. This one is 1090 meters (1192 yards) long, has 8 lanes, and is 65 meters high from the water surface. The FSM bridge is a part of TEM highway (Trans European Motorway) between Ankara and Edirne provinces. The third one is known as "Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge" (or YSS Bridge shortly) and was opened in 26th of August 2016 between Garipce and Poyrazkoy neighborhoods along the shores of the strait. It's one of the longest and highest suspension bridges in the World; 1408 meters (1540 yards) long between 322 meters-high pillars, is 59 meters (65 yards) wide with 8 lanes for motor vehicles + 2 lanes for trains. A new highway is built on both sides of the 3rd bridge for intercontinental trade and commuter traffic. All three bridges are tolled which is paid during the passage to the Asian direction only. On the suspension bridges only vehicles with electronic pass system (called OGS or HGS) are accepted, no cash. No bicycles nor pedestrian traffic is allowed on them.

The tunnel between Uskudar and Yenikapi neighborhoods was put into service in October 2013. It's a big project constructed by Japanese companies, which is delayed for 4 years due to technical reasons and archaeological findings. This tunnel connects only railways / subway between Europe and Asia, not motor vehicles. Another one under the water, a two-level and 5,4 kilometers (3,3 miles) long tunnel runs between Kazlicesme neighborhood in Europe and Goztepe neighborhood in Asia. This project is called "Eurasia tunnel" and was opened in December 2016, used by cars and minibuses only, no motorbikes nor heavy traffic or pedestrians are allowed. More tunnels under the sea are planned in the future.

Bosphorus is one of the most popular areas of Istanbul for its inhabitants, especially during Summer for its climate. Its shores are lined with fine neighborhoods, Ottoman palaces, fortresses, old wooden villas, hotels, parks and gardens, restaurants, cafeterias, and so on.

Some of the interesting neighborhoods on the Bosphorus are: Besiktas, Ortaköy, Arnavutköy, Bebek, Rumelihisar, Emirgan, Tarabya, Yeniköy, Istinye, Sariyer, Üsküdar, Kanlica, Beykoz, Anadoluhisar, Beylerbeyi, Cengelköy, and many others. Best way to see these sites would be taking a nice boat trip along the Bosphoru

The most impressive sights are along the southern shores of the Bosphorus, nearest to the city: Topkapı Palace, the mid-Bosphorus Maiden's Tower (Kız Kulesi), the Selimiye Barracks (where Florence Nightingale worked), Dolmabahçe Palace, Çirağan Palace, Yıldız Park & Palace, the chic art-boutique-and-café scene in the village of Ortaköy, the pretty Ottoman baroque Mecidiye Mosque, and the Bosphorus Bridge.

Northern Bosphorus
Beyond the Bosphorus Bridge there's plenty more to see: Beylerbeyi Palace, the village of Çengelköy, Kuleli Naval Academy, Arnavutköy with its photogenic Ottoman yalıs (wooden Bosphorus seaside mansions), Rumeli Hisarı (the mighty Fortress of Europe), the town of Bebek with its pretty bay, and Bosphorus University.

North of the Fatih Bridge, second to be built across the Bosphorus, is Anadolu Hisarı (the Fortress of Anatolia), Küçüksu Kasrı (a fine little rococo palace), the Hıdiv Kasrı (fine Art Nouveau villa built in 1900 for the Khedive of Egypt), the pretty restaurant village of Tarabya, the town of Büyükdere (with its excellent Sadberk Hanım Museum), and Sarıyer (with a fish market and several seafood restaurants on the shore).
The Bosphorus is the 32 km (20-mile)-long strait which joins the Sea of Marmara with the Black Sea in Istanbul, and separates the continents of Europe and Asia.
It's great for a Bosphorus cruise north toward the Black Sea, which you can do in less tna 90 minutes, or a few hours, or all day, as you wish. More...
The width of the Bosphorus varies from 500 meters (1640 feet) to 3 km (2 miles), its depth from 50 to 120 meters (164 to 394 feet), averaging about 60 meters (197 feet) deep.
It runs right through the heart of Istanbul, past the Istanbul Modern Art Museum, several Ottoman palaces, at least two fortresses, forested hills, and shore villages with Ottoman architecture. (For self-guided touring, I've divided it into the Southern Bosphorus and Northern Bosphorus.)
Traditionally called Boğaziçi (boh-AHZ-ee-chee, "Within the Strait"), more recently it's been called the Istanbul Boğazı, Istanbul Strait, perhaps to differentiate it from the Dardanelles (Hellespont), called the Çanakkale Boğazı.
Its English name comes from a Greek legend: Zeus had an affair with a beautiful women named Io. When Hera, his wife, discovered his infidelity, she turned Io into a cow and created a horsefly to sting her on the rump. Io jumped clear across the strait. Thus bous = cow, and poros = crossing-place: Bosphorus = "crossing-place of the cow."
Recent marine archeological research in the chill, deep waters of the Black Sea has revealed sunken cities on the underwater slopes along the Turkish coast.
Geological evidence supports the theory that in ancient times the northern end of the Bosphorus was blocked by earth and rock. The Black Sea had no outlet (like Lake Van today), and its water level was below that of the Aegean Sea, the Sea of

Marmara, and the Bosphorus.
However, an earthquake destroyed the Bosphorus blockage, releasing a deluge of water from the Bosphorus into the Black Sea, raising the water level and flooding its coastal communities. So it may well be that the Bosphorus is the source of Noah's flood and the legend of Noah's Ark! (Mount Ararat is also in Turkey.)
The Bosphorus has been a waterway of the highest importance since ancient times. Ulysses passed through. Byzas, who founded Byzantium (later Constantinople, later Istanbul) sailed up and down looking for the perfect place to found his village.
In 1452, Mehmet the Conqueror ordered the construction of the mighty fortresses of Rumeli Hisarı (Fortress of Europe) and Anadolu Hisarı (Fortress of Anatolia) so he could control the strait and prevent reinforcements from reaching the besieged

Byzantine capital of Constantinople.
To the Ottomans it was mostly an obstacle: each spring they had to ship their gigantic armies across the strait from Istanbul for campaigns in Anatolia, Syria and Persia.
During World War I, the Bosphorus was the key to the Black Sea and Russia. The Sultan held the key. The Entente powers wanted it. What they failed to get in battle they got by treaty, and British gunboats anchored outside Dolmabahçe Palace
Every visitor to Istanbul wants to—and should—take a Bosphorus cruise day-trip up the 32 km (20-mile)-long strait which joins the Sea of Marmara to the south with the Black Sea to the north of Istanbul
Turkey Cultural Tour
Zincirlidere Cd.Sisli-Istanbul/Turkey
• Tel: +90 532 3163653 • Tel: +90 212 2893252 • Fax: +90 212 2893252
• tours@turkeyculturaltour.com, • http://www.turkeyculturaltour.com
Turkey Cultural Tour
Zincirlidere Cd.Sisli-Istanbul/Turkey
• Tel: +90 532 3163653 • Tel: +90 212 2893252 • Fax: +90 212 2893252
• tours@turkeyculturaltour.com, • http://www.turkeyculturaltour.com