10 Historical Structures You Might Encounter From Sultanahmet To Galata

There are many enjoyable routes in Istanbul. On some routes, you can view the best of the sea, and in some routes, you can get lost among the historical beauties. If you say you want both, you must walk between Sultanahmet and Galata. This region became the center of transportation, trade, and settlement during the Ottoman and Byzantine periods. Therefore, it is possible to see the most beautiful historical artifacts here. Here are ten historical buildings that you can encounter while walking from Sultanahmet to Galata.


Hagia Sophia

The Hagia Sophia, which has great importance for both our country and world cultural heritage, has been transformed into a mosque after the conquest of Istanbul. The building, which was known to have been completed in the 4th century, was converted into a museum in 1935. Hz. The Mosaic of the Virgin Mary, the Mosaic of VI Leon and the fountain built during the period of Mahmud I are a must-see.


Basilica Cistern

The Basilica Cistern is the largest underground cistern of the period. The cistern built in the 6th century has a length of 140 meters and a width of 70 meters. The cistern was used to keep the water which was brought from the Belgrad Forest via aqueducts. The 336-pillar cistern was used to store drinking water during the Roman period and was used for irrigation in the Ottoman period. The biggest reason for this is the fact that the Ottomans love the flowing water, not static water.


Theodosius Cistern

Theodosius Cistern, another ancient cistern in Istanbul, was built between the years 428 and 443. It was built by Theodosius. The water was carried through the Bozdoğan aqueduct in the cistern. Supported by 32 marble columns, the building has a height of 9 meters. The number of columns and the area is less than the Basilica and Binbirdirek cisterns.


Sultanahmet Mosque

The Blue Mosque, i.e., Sultanahmet Mosque was built by the Sultan Ahmet I  between1609-1617 to the architect Sedefkar Mehmed Ağa. The mosque is also known as the Blue Mosque because of its blue density. The Blue Mosque became the central mosque of Istanbul after the Hagia Sophia was converted into a museum in 1935.


Cağaloğlu Hamam

Built during the I Mahmut period and having a splendid architecture, Cağaloğlu Hamam is one of the oldest baths in Istanbul. This structure, which has been standing for 300 years, attracts attention with its baroque style. It was designed by Süleyman Ağa and built by Abdullah Ağa. As a result of the water shortage in 1768, Sultan III Mustafa prohibited the construction of the hamams. Therefore, the Cağaloğlu Hamam is the last great bath built in the Ottoman period.


Gulhane Park

Gulhane Park is among the outer gardens of Topkapı Palace. The park is settled on 100 acres of land. The land was converted into a park in the 20th century. That is the place mentioned in Nazım Hikmet’s famous poem, the Walnut Tree. At the same time, the

Edict of Gulhane was announced here, and also Latin letters were introduced here by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk in 1928.


Hagia Irene

Hagia Irene, the second largest church of the period after the Hagia Sophia in the Eastern Roman Empire, was built in the 330s. During this period the church was established as a wooden style. In a riot in 532, it was destroyed and reconstructed together with Hagia Sophia. The building has undergone several repairs over time. It is known that Ahmet Fethi Pasha collected some of his works here in 1846.


Banks Street

The emergence of Voyvoda Street or with its recognized name the Bankalar Caddesi began in the 1840s. In the 1870s, it lived through its most brilliant period. This street played a pretty significant role in the 19th century Ottoman and then the Republic of Turkey. The street was a commercial colony at the time, and several banks were also opened.


Kamondo Stairs

Kamondo Stairs, which we often see in photographs, is a stairway built by the Kamondo family. The stairs were created for two purposes. The first is that for easy access for Abraham Kamondo’s grandchildren studying at the Austrian High School; secondly, in order to provide easy passage for Levantines whose workplaces and houses were in the Galata and Pera region.


Galata tower

This tower, which adorns Istanbul’s silhouette with all its beauty, was built in 528 by the Byzantine Emperor Anastasius. The tower built as a lighthouse tower was destroyed for various reasons. The Genoese repaired the tower in 1348 and renamed it the Tower of Christ. With the conquest of Istanbul, the tower was captured by the Ottomans and renovated every century. During this period, the tower was used as a prisoner of war captives, observatories, and fire towers. The tower was repaired for the last time in 1967, and its present appearance was restored.