Location: Turkey straddles the borders of Europe and Asia with the majority of the country in Southwest Asia. It has a total area of 780,580 sq.km. that lies within Europe. The country is bordered at the east by Georgia, Armenia and Iran with Iraq, Syria and the Mediterranean Sea on the south. The Aegean Sea, Greece and Bulgaria are to the west, and the Black Sea forms the northern border. Turkey's geographical coordinates are 36o 00' to 42o 00' north latitude and 26o 00' to 45o 00' east longitude.
On the Asian side of Bosphorus Bridge you will see a building which well decorated white marbles. This palace was built of white marble by Sultan Abdulaziz in the 19th century. It possesses a beautiful garden with magnolia trees and was used as a summer residence of the sultans and as a guest house for visiting foreign dignitaries. Also can be seen Harem section of the Palace. Beylerbeyi, located on the Asian shore of the Bosphorus has been a settling area since Byzantine times. According to the famous 18th century traveler Inciciyan, Constantine the Great raised a cross here, after which the area was known as the Istavroz (Cross) Gardens. Under sovereignty of Ottomans this area was an imperial park. Inciciyan relates that the name Beylerbeyi was given to this area in the 16th century because Mehmet Pa?a who held the title of Beylerbeyi (Governor General) built a country house on the site.
The Sultans built various country houses and pavilions on the imperial estate here, and in 1829 Sultan Mahmud II built a wooden waterfront palace. Sultan Abdülaziz demolished this wooden palace to build the present Beylerbeyi Palace in 1861-1865, a fancy white marble Palace in the midst of magnolia gardens. The interior design of Beylerbeyi Palace is a synthesis of diverse western and eastern styles, although the layout of the rooms follows that of traditional Turkish home, consisting of a central sofa with closed rooms situated at the four corners. The furnishing and decoration of the Selam.ık or public apartments are more complicated than those of the Harem. The dining room concept, not seen at Topkapı Palace, entered into Ottoman life at the Beylerbeyi Palace.
The palace, consisting of two main stories and a basement holding kitchens and pantries, has three entrances, six staterooms and twenty-six smaller rooms. The floors are covered by rush matting from Egypt, protecting the inhabitants against moisture in winter and heat in summer. Over this are laid large Carpets and Kilims, mostly woven at Hereke. The furnishings include wonderful Bohemian crystal chandeliers, French clocks, and Chinese, Japanese, French and Turkish Yıldız porcelain vases. One of the characteristics distinguishing Beylerbeyi from other Ottoman palaces of the period is the terraced garden on the sloping hillside behind the palace. There are two pavilions on these terraces, the Sarı Köşk (Yellow Kiosk) beside the pool on the upper terrace, and the Mermer Köşk (Marble Kiosk) with its interior fountain and marble walls, which provided a cool safety in the summer heat. The Mermer Köşk, the large pool on the lower terrace and the tunnel are the only parts of the palace remaining from the earlier wooden palace. The attractive Ahır Köşk (Stable Kiosk) is a fascinating example of Ottoman palace stables, and of particular interest as the only such building survived in its original state. The old coastal road passed under a long tunnel constructed during the reign of Mahmud II (1808-1839) so that the palace would not be separated from the terraced gardens behind. This is a unique feature, other palaces and mansions along the Bosphorus being connected to their back gardens and parks by bridges. This tunnel now has a cafeteria and shop offering the sale of books, postcards, posters various gifts and souvenirs for visitors. The gardens are available for private receptions upon advance application. Open every day except Monday and Thursday
Hi Toroshan, Our last trip to Turkey was wonderful. Thanks for all your arrangements. Everyone was happy. We actually
enjoyed the snow. I thought I'd deleted
all my photos but I recovered them. Tim was a good guide. We hope
to use you and Tim both again in the future. I am already looking at dates for another trip. I will be in
communication with you. Blessings
Pastor Jeff Gang, D.Min.
CrossWalk Church - Redlands, CA 92374 www.crosswalkministries.com