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Istanbul is a city of 14 million and is at the crossroads of Oriental and European culture. The city has gone through several incarnations over the last 2,500 years, at times being called Byzantium (at its founding), Constantinople (as a Roman imperial capital), and is now called Istanbul. You can trust Venere to have an extensive listing of Istanbul hotels, allowing you time to explore this historical, cosmopolitan city. Venere has an incredibly easy website to navigate, with a listing of hotels and a rating system located directly underneath the listing. They provide interior and exterior views of all of their hotels so that travelers will be able to get a better feel for each one. Venere makes an excellent use of a subtitle system in order to alert travelers to when a hotel is about to be fully booked. Venere also has a function where you can filter the results by star rating or price.
What's Istanbul Like?
Istanbul is a city that is currently at the center of Turkish culture. As one of the largest cities in the world, the city received around 12 million foreign visitors in 2012. Among the many tourist attractions in Istanbul, the most famous is the Hagia Sophia. Constructed in 537, the Hagia Sophia features a silver-colored domed ceiling which was as an Eastern Orthodox Cathedral until 1453. After the Ottoman Turks conquered the city, the building became a mosque for over 450 years, finally closing in 1931. Since 1935 this paragon of architecture has been a museum. Istanbul also still has a large amount of Turkish baths, which has been a custom since the days of the Romans. Today, they are called "Hamams" and many tourists still flock to them. The Panorama 1453 Museum commemorates the fall of Constantinople at the hands of the Ottomans from April to May 1453. This important event signified the end of the Byzantine Empire and saw the beginning of Ottoman dominance within the region.
Tips for Getting Along with Locals in Istanbul
After booking one of Venere's many Istanbul Hotels, the visitor will want to get out and mingle with the locals. When men greet each for the first time, there is usually a handshake and firm eye contact. Men that know each other well will often kiss each other on the cheek. If a woman does not offer her cheek or her hand to you, then you should simply nod and say "merhaba" (hello) to her instead. Istanbul has a large amount of individuals who work as professional shoe shiners. When taking a taxi in Istanbul, watch for an official yellow taxi, because there are many con artists in Istanbul that will tell you that the meter is broken. If a driver says this, simply say "polis" and get out immediately. If you are the type of person that enjoys your cigarettes or an alcoholic beverage every now and then, you should be aware that these products are extremely expensive in Istanbul. Indeed, the only thing that many have found to be of reasonable price in the area would be the beer products. Moreover, many of the sidewalks in Istanbul are not very well-kept. You might keep this in mind this makes the city a little less walkable than other comparable cities of its size. Venere is your one-stop shop to book all of your hotels needs whether traveling in Istanbul, Turkey, or anywhere else in the world!
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