понедельник, 20 октября 2014 г.

To see all Istanbul. Galata Tower

It was not my first visit in Istanbul, and even not 2nd or 3rd. Afsin all time tries to organize our free time useful and cognitive. In that warm summer day we decided to make a short excursion in the European part in Istanbul. First we went to the Istanbul Akvaryum, after we spent a short time in the café, which was in big Mall, and then Afsin offered to go to the Galata Tower about which “he told me so many times”, and I answered him: «Of course I remember, honey” (but in my brain was 0 information about that building!)

It’s not so difficult to find this Tower: it’s one of the highest building in European part of Istanbul. When we came there, we were shocked: que of people, who wished to see Galata Tower was very long. In that que we met many foreigners from Germany, China, Russia, and Kazakhstan. From everywhere I could hear russian conversations…
In that que we spent about 30-40 minutes, and after we finally bought tickets.

In this que I even quarelled with one man from Kazakhstan). He comunicated with his girl friend about "beauty" of ukrainian girls). Mm.. he was shocked when learnt (from me of course!) that I am ukrainian and I heard him!))

About prices. For turkish 1 ticket cost 6 Turkish liras. For other nationalities – 18 TL. There are no any limits about time, which visitors can spend inside the building.
About history. Very interesting thing. Inside the building I learnt that Galata Tower first time saw the world in 528 AD, during the reign of Byzantine emperor Justinian (as I understood from that date). When I came at home and decided to learn more information about young wooden, but not so high and strong, Galata Tower I found very big confusion in different Internet sources. Many sites indicate that Galata Tower first was built during the reign of Byzantine emperor Anastasii. But Anastasii died in the 519 AD, and in 528 Justinian was emperor. I asked Afsin to check turkish Internet sources and there the same situation: not clean information. Maybe in one day I will know a truth, but now I tend to think, that Galata Tower started built in era of Justinian, and served as lighthouse.
In 1349 small and weak Galata Tower was transformed in stronger stone tower by genoese. It was calling Christian Tower, and genoese used it as a lookout tower. In XIX century, when was era of ottoman sultan Mahmud II, Galata Tower got 2 more floors, and attractive root. From the same date Galata Tower got its present name.

Panorama from Galata Tower

In different times Galata Tower was used in different areas: as a lighthouse, observatory, lookout house, jail, ships warehouse, observation point in case of fire… This building was burned few times, and restored again. Nowadays Galata Tower – high (more than 60 meters), wide, strong, attractive building, wherefrom opens beautiful panorama on whole Istanbul.
What was inside. Elevator, which brought us to the last floor, restaurant (not so expensive as we thought), narrow balcony (where very lively movement), and toilets (also was popular among visitors). Women’s toilet has few rooms: in one of them women can sit on the bench, and look in the window, where opens perfect view. About other 2 rooms no need to talk, because its understand, how people use them. But one more room in the WC still makes me laugh: administrator’s room (and there really sit administrator!).

On the 1st floor of Galata Tower

What was outside. Ottomans sultan Mahmud II came in the balcony of Galata Tower to see his ownership from the highest point in Istanbul. Ataturk very often came there to watch on his beautiful and so important for country city. And now we came there… I knew that Istanbul very attractive, but when I was in that small balcony and watched in all this beauty, I stopped breathe for a few second.

Because of this man I also can"t breathe sometimes:)

I wanted go faster for watching more and more views. I saw lazy gulls, which didn’t wish to fly, and sat on the roofs of houses. I saw big bridge (from that point was so small!), which connect Asian and European parts of the city. I saw tiny sweet houses, and high skyscrapers. I saw roads, which were full of cars (poor drivers what can I tell)), and very relaxed people, which rested in restaurants. I saw attractive Hagia Sophia, and very old Hagia Elena. I saw famous Topkapi Palace, and Blue Mosque. In that time Istanbul totally opened for me: I saw his old and modern life, I saw his positive and negative sides, and I was absolutely happy.

Beautiful Hagia Sophia. View from Galata Tower

Galata Tower is one of the most famous symbols in Istanbul, which can present many positive emotions for visitors. I recommend this place for that people, which never were in Istanbul before, but plan to go there. Galata Tower must be first place, which every tourist should visit!)

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