Istanbul is unique. It is the only city in the world where two continents meet. Enjoy old and new in the cultural capital of Turkey with Istanbul expert Marc Guillet

Hagia Sophia regains some former glory

Posted on 15 August 2011

A visit to Istanbul is not complete without visiting the splendid Hagia Sophia (Aya Sofya in Turkish). Famous in particular for its massive dome, it is considered the epitome of Byzantine architecture and is said to have changed the history of architecture. The Eastern Orthodox Church of the Holy Wisdom – built by the Roman… Read more »

Topkapı palace most popular

Posted on 10 June 2011

The former palace of the sultans, Topkapı Palace, in the old quarters of Istanbul was the most popular tourist attraction in 2010. More than 3.58 million people visited the buildings where the royal family lived for four centuries and the sultan ruled the Ottoman Empire until the middle of the 19th century. The tourist brought… Read more »

Hand-carved tiles of Harem severely damaged

Posted on 21 March 2011

National and international film directors are increasingly starting to use the palace and the harem as a film set, further causing damage to the centuries-old buildings. Hit TV shows like “Muhteşem Yüzyıl” (The Magnificent Century) have reawakened interest in Turkey’s Ottoman past, yet this popularity has failed to prevent the empire’s most famous landmark from… Read more »

New: Palace Collections Museum

Posted on 3 March 2011

How a kitchen became a museum. That’s the story of the new Palace Collections Museum. It is part of the Dolmabahçe complex but has a different entrance. The kitchen was part of the baroque Dolmabahçe palace (1856) on the southern shore of the Bosporus. When the Turkish Republic was founded in 1922, all palaces, mansions… Read more »

Modern Chinese photography by Yao Lu

Posted on 27 January 2011

Istanbul Modern Photography Gallery is hosting an exhibition by Yao Lu, one of the most renowned artists to have introduced contemporary Chinese photography to the world. The exhibition Yao Lu’s New Landscapes displays 31 of the artist’s works in which he first photographs mounds of garbage and construction debris covered with green protective nets and… Read more »