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Istanbul (Turkish spelling: İstanbul) is the largest city in Turkey. Until 1930 this city was known as Constantinople by westernes and in ancient times Byzantium or Byzantion.
With a population of between 11 and 15 million people, Istanbul is the most populous city of Turkey and by some counts one of the largest cities in Europe, although the city straddles the Bosphorus Strait. The city is also the administrative capital of the Istanbul Province. 

Founded by the Roman emperor Constantine on the site of the ancient Greek colony of Byzantium, and called Constantinople after him, it became the eastern capital of the Roman Empire and later the capital of the Byzantine Empire. After the Fall of Constantinople in 1453 it became part of and soon capital of the Ottoman Empire. Before the conquest Turks called the city İstanbul, but officially used the name Konstantiniyye, means "City of Constantine" in Arabic. Only on March 28, 1930, was the city officially renamed İstanbul.

The old city is mainly located on the Bosporus strait, which separates Europe from Asia and the Black Sea from the Marmara Sea. However, the modern city is much larger and covers both European and Asian sides of the Bosporus. Famous tourist destinations include Sariyer, Eyüp and Taksim on the European side, and Beykoz, Üsküdar, Kadiköy, Moda, Bostanci and Adalar (the Prince's Islands) on the Asian side. Although Istanbul is no longer the capital of Turkey, it is still arguably the most important city to Turkish industry, commerce and culture and the most important import and export center.

Table of contents
1 Etymology of the name
2 History
3 Places to visit
4 Education
5 Airports
6 Districts
7 See also

Etymology of the name

There are two mainstream hypothesis about the etymology of the name Istanbul: the first states that the name Istanbul comes from the Greek words eis tin Poli meaning "at the City" (the City/Polis being Constantinoupolis), while the second suggests that the name is merely a Turkish contraction of Constantinoupolis. The sound rendered by "i" is prepended by the virtue of the language. Many Turkic languages forbid certain combinations of consonants at the beginning of the word, hence certain borrowed words acquire a vowel chosen according to the rule of vowel harmony. In this way Smyrna became Izmir and Nicaea became Iznik, just as "machine" became "amashina" in e.g., Abkhaz language. The intermediate form Stamboul was commonly used in the 19th century.


(For early history, see Byzantium and Constantinople.)

Places to visit




Adalar Avcilar Bagcilar Bahcelievler Bakirkoy Bayrampasa Besiktas Beyoglu Buyukcekmece Beykoz Catalca Eminonu Esenler Fatih Gaziosmanpasa Gungoren Kadikoy Kagithane
Kartal Kucukcekmece Maltepe Pendik Sayiyer Sultanbeyli Sile Sisli Tuzla Umraniye Uskudar Zeytinburnu

See also