Istanbul is Turkey’s most populous city in addition to its cultural and financial hub. Found on both parties of the Bosphorus, the narrow strait involving the Black Sea and the Marmara Sea, Istanbul bridges Asia and Europe both physically and culturally.Istanbul is divided in three by the north-south Bosphorus Strait (Istanbul Bogazi), the dividing line between Europe and Asia, the estuary of the Golden Horn (Haliç) bisecting the western part and the Sea of Marmara (Marmara Denizi) forming a boundary to the south.Istanbul includes a temperate oceanic climate which will be influenced by way of a continental climate, with hot and humid summers and cold, wet and occasionally snowy winters.Istanbul includes a high annual average rainfall of 844mm, with late autumn and winter being the wettest, and late spring and summer being the driest.The Whirling Dervishes is a place which might appear to be a tourist attraction, but it’s a genuine worship service of Mevlana’s followers. Through the ceremony the Dervishes become a connection between God and humans through a prayer-induced trance.Although high on many visitors’Istanbul to-do-list, people often had to skip it in the long run because seats were sold out. Don’t make the exact same mistake and reserve your seats well in advance.This splendid church-turned-mosque-turned-museum is on the list of world’s greatest architectural achievements. After years of restoration works, the Hagia Sophia (Aya Sofya) is finally scaffolding free, enabling you to absorb its splendor as it was meant to be.Topkapi Palace (TopkapiSarayı) is rightfully a sight you can’t afford to miss during Istanbul. This complex of kiosks and pavilions contained by four lush green courtyards is where generations of sultans had their principal residence for almost half of a century.Top attractions at Topkapi Palace are the Harem, an adorned ‘cage’of the sultan’s women, the treasury storing the crown jewels (containing the famous Topkapi dagger), and the weapon’s room boosting the Ottoman’s fine craftsmanship even if it came to making swords and bows.Istanbul is not just fascinating above ground, but in addition underground with the Basilica Cistern (Yerebatan). This exquisite little bit of Byzantine engineering is a spectacular underground cistern, once bringing drinking water with aqueducts from current Bulgaria to Istanbul.Bargain hunting at Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar. Grand Bazaar has ended 500 years of age, but nonetheless one of the largest covered bazaars in the world. Its 60 streets contain a minimum of 5000 shops, 60 restaurants, 18 fountains, 12 mosques, and even a school.This is not really a tourist trap as some claim. Locals shop here every day, but chances are they’re better at bargaining than you are. The bazaar is extremely fabled for its carpets, leather, ceramics, souvenirs and jewelry.