Princes’ Islands

The Princes’ Islands are composed of nine islands off the Asian coast of Istanbul, in the Sea of Marmara. There are regular passenger ferries and fast passenger ferries (sea bus) to the four of the islands from Kabatas and from Bostanci districts. Motor vehicles are not permitted on the islands except the ones belonging to local municipality for public works, so people walk or rent a bicycle or horse-drawn carriage, even a donkey. These are nice little islands where local people have their summer homes or go there for small beaches and for picnicking, or just to wonder around at the weekends. These four islands are known as Adalar (Islands) in general in Turkish and their names are Buyukada, Heybeliada, Burgazada, and Kinaliada. There is also Sedefadasi which is not very popular as the other ones and very small settlement on it. There are no settlements on Hayirsizada, Sivriada and Yassiada, and Kasikada is a private island. The name of the islands come from the Byzantine period, when princes and empresses were exiled there. But during the Ottoman period, especially around 19th century with the use of steamboats, these islands became a popular resorts for Istanbul’s rich people, building their wooden houses. Jewish, Greek and Armenian communities were a large part of the inhabitants of the islands. Today, the islands are popular tourist destinations for daily excursions especially during summer months. There are many monasteries and historic buildings on the islands, besides Victorian style old wooden mansions.

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Galata Tower

Galata Tower has dominated Beyoğlu’s skyline since 1348 and still offers the best panoramic views of the city.Above, the Golden Horn, Seraglio Point and Old Istanbul as seen from Galata Tower (looking south).Originally named the Tower of Christ, it was the highpoint in the city walls of the Genoese colony called Galata. Most of the walls are long gone, but the great tower remains. Until the 1960s it was a fire lookout tower. Now the upper floors hold an uninteresting restaurant-nightclub, and a panorama balcony. The panorama balcony, encircling the highest row of windows, is narrow, open to the weather, and not recommended for anyone suffering from acrophobia (fear of heights). If you want the full effect, be here at the time of a call to prayer, preferably the sunset call.

Website:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galata_Tower
Distance from Hotel Golden City: 500 meters
Open daily from 09:00 to 20:30
Restaurant till : 22:30

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Istanbul Modern Museum

The Istanbul Museum of Modern Art, Turkey’s first private museum to organize modern and contemporary art exhibitions, was founded in 2004 and occupies an 8,000 square meter site on the shores of the Bosphorus.
Istanbul Modern embraces a global vision to collect, preserve, exhibit and document works of modern and contemporary art and make them accessible to art lovers.
As part of its commitment to sharing Turkey’s artistic creativity with wide audiences and promoting its cultural identity in the international art world, Istanbul Modern hosts a broad array of interdisciplinary activities.
Apart from permanent and temporary exhibition galleries, a photography gallery, and spaces for educational and social programs, the museum offers a cinema, restaurant, design store and an extensive library.

Website: www.istanbulmodern.org
Distance from Golden City Hotel: 1km 10 minutes by walk or station by tram
The Museum is open in between: Tuesday – Sunday: 10.00 a.m – 6.00 pm Thursday: 10.00 a.m – 8.00 p.m Monday: Closed
Entrance Fee: 17 TL

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The Maiden Tower

The Maiden’s Tower (Turkish: Kız Kulesi), also known as Leander’s Tower (Tower of Leandros) since the medieval Byzantine Period, is a tower lying on a small islet located at the southern entrance of the Bosphorus strait 200 m (220 yd) from the coast of Üsküdar in Istanbul, Turkey. Now it is a restaurant.

Website: http://www.kizkulesi.com.tr/
Distance from Golden City: 3 stations by tram and than a 5 minute journey with boat
The Maiden Tower is open in between: 9.00-00.30 every day

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Dolmabahce Palace & Museum

The Dolmabahçe Palace was home to six sultans from 1856, when it was first inhabited, up until the abolition of the Caliphate in 1924: The last royal to live here was Caliph Abdülmecid Efendi. A law that went into effect on March 3, 1924 transferred the ownership of the palace to the national heritage of the new Turkish Republic. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder and first President of the Republic of Turkey, used the palace as a presidential residence during the summers and enacted some of his most important works here. Atatürk spent the last days of his medical treatment in this palace, where he died on November 10, 1938

Website: www.dolmabahce.gov.tr
Distance from Golden City: 2km 20-25 minutes by walk or 3 stations by tram
The Museum is open in between: 9.00-16.00 every day except Mondays and Thursdays
Entrance Fee: Selamlik (Official part) 30 TL – Harem (Privy Chambers) 20 TL – Common Ticket for both 40 TL

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