The Bosporus, or Bosphorus, is the strait (boğaz, “throat”) that connects the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara and divides Asian Turkey (Anatolia) from Europe.
The Bosporus stretches for 19 mi (30 km), with a maximum width of 2.3 mi (3.7 km.) at its northern entrance and a minimum width of 2,450 ft (750 m) between the Ottoman fortifications of Rumelihisar and Anadoluhisar. Its midstream depth varies from 36.5 to 124 meters (120 to 40 feet). There is a strong current that travels from the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara at its center, but below the surface, there is another current that brings more salty water from the Sea of Marmara to the Black Sea. The Bosporus is heavily fished because fish use the channel to travel to and from the Black Sea during the different seasons. You’ll find villages, resorts, and luxurious homes dotting the landscape on both sides of the water.
The name Bosporus comes from the Greek word for “ox ford,” boos poros, and is associated with the mythical figure Io, who is said to have taken the form of a heifer and crossed the Thracian Bosporus on her travels. Byzantine emperors and later Ottoman sultans built fortifications along the strait’s shores, particularly on the European side, due to the city of Constantinople’s (Istanbul) strategic location at the strait’s southern end. The castles of Anadoluhisar, built-in 1390–91 on the Asian shore by Bayezid I, and Rumelihisar, built-in 1452 by Mehmed II, directly across the strait, are two such examples. As European powers grew in the 19th century, they codified rules (in treaties in 1841 and 1871) for the passage of commercial and naval vessels through the strait. After the Ottomans were defeated in World War I, an international commission took over the administration of the strait. With the ratification of the Montreux Convention in 1936, Turkey regained authority.
There are currently three bridges spanning the gulf. The Boaziçi (Bosporus I) Bridge was the first to be built, and it opened to traffic in 1973 with a main span of 3,524 feet (1,074 meters). The Fatih Sultan Mehmed Bridge, also known as Bosporus II, was opened to traffic in 1988 and has a main span of 3,572 feet (1,090 meters). The main span of the Yavuz Sultan Selim (Bosporus III) Bridge is 4,620 feet; it opened to traffic in 2016. (1,408 meters). It took until 2016 for a road tunnel to be completed under the Bosporus, but in 2013, a rail tunnel did the same.
In Greek Mythology
She was the offspring of the river god Inachus and the Oceanid Melia, and she was known as Io in Greek mythology. Callithyia was the name by which Io was known as the first priestess of Hera, the wife of Zeus. Zeus fell in love with her and turned her into a white heifer to shield her from Hera’s wrath. Zeus’s wife Hera convinced him to give her the heifer in exchange for sending Argus Panoptes (“the All-Seeing”) to keep an eye on her. So Zeus dispatched Hermes, and Hermes put Argus to sleep with a spell and then killed him while he was sleeping. Hera then sent a gadfly to bother Io. Io ran across the world, swam the strait that would later be called the Bosporus (meaning “Ox-Ford”), and ended up in Egypt, where she was changed back into her original form and gave birth to Epaphus.
The Egyptian goddess Isis was associated with Io, and the sacred bull Apis was linked to Epaphus. After being abducted by Hera’s order, Epaphus was eventually located by Io in Byblos, Syria. In this telling of the myth, Astarte, the goddess of Syria, is linked to Io. Both the Egyptian and Syrian sections show how the East had an effect and how non-Greek gods were often compared to their Greek counterparts.
The Bosphorus Bridge was built between the years 1970-1973.
The bridge is linking Europe and Asia continents in Istanbul/TURKEY. The Bosphorus Bridge has 64 mt. High from the water, and its pillars are 178 mt.
The bridge is only for cars and transportation, but walking is not allowed for sightseeing or across.
The Ottoman Sultan Abdulaziz built the Beylerbeyi Palace in 1861-1865. The architects are Sarkis and Agop Balyan brothers. The Beylerbeyi Palace was designed as a summer palace.
Unlike the other Ottoman palaces, Beylerbeyi Palace does not have a heating system. Moreover, the palace has a swimming pool. The palace has Gothic and Neo-classic architecture.
It has two floors and is ornated with gold-plated columns, mosaics, and paintings. Beylerbeyi Palace consists of 24 rooms, 1 hammam, 1 bathroom, and 6 kiosks in the garden. The palace is located on the Asian side by the Bosphorus. The palace is a museum today.
During your visit, you can see the original meeting rooms, dining rooms, and bathrooms. One of the last Ottoman Sultans, Abdulhamid II, passed away in Beylerbeyi Palace in 1918. you can see his study room, bedroom, and bathroom today.
It was built by Sultan Abdulmecid in 1857 who asked to design Baroque style architect Garabet Balyan and his son Nicogos Balyan. There was a two-story timber palace in the reign of Mahmut I. Difference occurred by its walls that on other palaces you can see surrounded by cast-iron railings with one gate at four sides. It seems like a Turkish traditional house on the interior side, but as a palace, the marbles are Italian crystal chandeliers from Bohemia, With Curtains, and Carpets from Hereke.
During the time of Sultan Abdulaziz, Some of the original garden buildings were demolished. It was renovated in 1944 and then opened as a museum. The palace can be better seen from the Bosphorus.
Also known as Leander’s Tower as well as Kız Kulesi in Turkish. There are many legendary stories about the tower, and the most popular one is; there was a king, and the king had a beloved daughter. The monks told the king that a snake would bite his daughter on her 18th birthday.
Then the king built the tower so that his daughter would be far away from the land and avoid the snake. But the prophecy did not stop following. One day, the servants brought some grapes in baskets, and a snake was lurking among the grapes. Finally, the snake bites her.
This ancient tower stands on a rocky outcrop at the entrance to the Bosphorus just offshore Uskudar. It is presently used as a lighthouse. The original tower in the 12th century by the Byzantine Emperor Manuel Comnenos (1143-1180), who aimed to find a firm foundation for the chairs, was used to close off the Bosphorus to sea traffic. Today, Maiden’s Tower is one of the most popular restaurants in Istanbul. The Maiden’s Tower can be better seen from the Bosphorus.