Turkey is a land of peace, progress and prosperity
— and unimaginable sights !
Another great attraction is the Topkapi Palace, the residence of Ottoman Sultans, which housing the richness of 700 years. It also houses some of the most important Muslim documents, including a copy of the Hazrat Othman Quran as well as the crown jewels. Thousands of people visit the Palace on a daily basis.
St. Sophia, (Hagia Sophia) the great Byzantine Basilica built in the 6th century, provides grandeur beyond one’s highest expectations. Islamic writings and Christian drawings and engravings of Jesus Christ and the Virgin Mary are untouched from time. The Basilica is now a Museum and is fitting testimony of the tolerance and understanding which these two great religions offer.
The underground cistern, the water source of the Byzantine and Ottoman periods, is still working today.
The Spice Market, the famous and exotic food market, and the Grand Bazaar represent one of the greatest shopping opportunities of all times and throngs of people wade through the thousands of shops and vendors. Bargaining is a way of life and no one expects to pay for the asking price of anything, including carpets, jewelry, clothing, perfumes, etc.
Visitors are often taken to Ephesus and the House of Virgin Mary. Ephesus is famous throughout history for its temple of Artemis, one of the “7 Wonders” of the ancient world. Ephesus is considered to be the showpiece among all the antique cities of the world.
Visitors are taken first to the house of the Virgin Mary who was accompanied to Ephesus by St. John. She spent her last years living near a grove of olive trees close by to Ephesus. A visit is considered to be a pilgrimage by the Vatican. Ephesus is considered to be one of the most important cultural centers of the ancient world.
— Feature and photos by Edwin Ali, Jetsetters Magazine Middle East and Caribbean Editor.