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  • 1 Sultanahmet Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Architecture, castles and historic districts

    Divanyolu Cad. TR - Istanbul

    Overlooking Seraglio Point, at the mouth of the Golden Horn, the Sultanahmet quarter extends across the first hill of the city, the fiefdom of Ancient Byzantium and the political and cultural heart of the Byzantine and Ottoman cities. Few places in t..

  • 2 Blue Mosque Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    TR - Istanbul

    This jewel of the 17C has retained its vocation as a place of worship, hence the requirement to remove one's shoes before entering inside. The goal of the architect here was to surpass the elegance of the Aya Sofya basilica, an aim which was achieved..

  • 3 Topkapi Palace Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Architecture, castles and historic districts

    TR - Istanbul

    The harem with its eunuchs was a place of great intrigue, luxury and exquisite pleasure, and here in the harem of Topkapi Palace visitors are plunged into a mythical Orient of a thousand and one treasures and as many fantasies. Lattice-work screens f..

  • 4 Museum of Antiquities, Istanbul Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Museums and art

    TR - Istanbul

    This highly comprehensive museum is dedicated to Antiquity. Visitors are greeted by a Roman statue of Bes holding a headless lion. Don't miss the sarcophagus of Alexander the Great (5C BC), decorated with bas-reliefs, descriptions of battles and hunt..

  • 5 Church of St Saviour-in-Chora Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    TR - Istanbul

    Chora means "outside the walls", and refers to the fact that this 11C church was originally surrounded by countryside - the garden behind the church acts as modest reminder of this fact and is a pleasant place to rest after admiring the fin..

  • 6 Selimiye Camii Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    TR - Edirne

    Selimiye Camii, the imperial mosque built by Selim II (1575), is considered to be the jewel of Ottoman religious art. Sinan, who was also the architect of the splendid Soliman Mosque in Istanbul, has achieved a true masterpiece here. The exterior is ..

  • 7 Pergamon Theatre Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    TR - Pergame

    The highlight of a visit to the acropolis of Pergamon, the theatre (amphitheatre) is incredibly steep and without doubt one of the most impressive in the whole of Turkey. Its cavea is relatively narrow yet very high, comprising 78 seemingly verticall..

  • 8 Ephesus: Library of Celsus Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    TR - Acarlar

    This grandiose building, which has been sympathetically restored by a team of Austrian archaeologists, appears from the depths of History like a mirage. On its elegant and breathtaking façade, niches house copies of the allegorical statues of the Vir..

  • 9 Theatre of Ephesus Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    TR - Selcuk

    This theatre was one of the largest in the Ancient world. Its stage wall, which was as richly decorated as the façade of the library of Celsus on the same site, measures no less than 18m in length; sadly, little remains of it, although the system of ..

  • 10 Aphrodisias Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    TR - Geyre

    Aphrodisias honoured Aphrodite, goddess of "sensual love and exquisite femininity". The site is both magical and worthy of the worship that took place here. It was a centre of medicine and philosophy, as well as a capital of sculpture and a..

  • 11 Necropolis of Heracleia Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Archaeological and historical sites

    TR - Héraklée-Kapikiri

    This necropolis is one of this ancient city's most beautiful sights. Access to it is through the middle of a huge maze of rocks where the silence is striking, broken only, perhaps, by the sound of a nomadic shepherd calling out to his herd of goats. ..

  • 12 Selimiye Camii Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    TR - Konya

    Turning left out of the tekke, you pass in front of the Selimiye Camii, a mosque built in the 16C by Selim II. Its two slender minarets and huge domed prayer hall are typical of classical Ottoman architecture, with its large dimensions and a layout b..

  • 13 Blue Medersa Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    Cumhuriyet cad. TR - Sivas

    The Blue Medersa is without a doubt the jewel of Sivas. The building is immediately striking for its majestic and imposing appearance, which is reinforced by the two slender minarets rising above the portal. A turret stands at each corner of the buil..

  • 14 Cappadocia Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    TR - Ürgüp

    Cappadocia, one of the most magical landscapes on the planet, was born from the effects of fire, water and the wind. The limestone tufa and lava from two large volcanoes, Mount Erciyes and Mount Hasan, have been sculpted by the seasonal rivers and wi..

  • 15 Göreme Valley Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    TR - Göreme

    Göreme Valley consists of a spectacular landscape of cones, ravines and white cliffs. The natural beauty of the scenery here has been further embellished by man, who has dug more than 30 cave churches in the rock and decorated them with stunning fres..

  • 16 Göreme Open-air Museum Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    TR - Göreme

    Now a popular sight crowded with tourists, this open-air museum was once a place of solitude and prayer. Two monasteries hollowed in the rock demonstrate the austere environment in which the monastic communities of the 11C developed and visiting the ..

  • 17 Dark Church Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    TR - Göreme

    The Dark Church is the most important sight in Göreme's open-air museum and is the most richly decorated of the churches here. Lit by only one skylight, the darkness has preserved the frescoes, which have been carefully restored and can now be seen i..

  • 18 Church with the Buckle Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    TR - Göreme

    The 10C Church with the Buckle which stands at the entrance to the open-air museum is well worth a visit. The building is divided into two churches which demonstrate the rapid evolution of religious pictorial art. The first is home to archaic mosaics..

  • 19 Ihlara Valley Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Nature and gardens

    TR - Ihlara

    A long canyon extends between Ihlara and Selime, cut by the River Melendiz which winds its way through a bed of green vegetation. The clear, turbulent waters have sculpted elegant drapes in the rocks here, which change colour throughout the day. This..

  • 20 Ihlara Churches Highly Recommended Highly Recommended Highly Recommended

    Religious buildings

    TR - Ihlara

    Historians have counted around 100 churches in the Ihlara canyon, although only around ten of these are accessible. All have been given evocative names, such as the Scented Church, the Church under the Tree, the Church of Hyacinths and the Church of ..

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