One of the iconic sites in Istanbul is the Bosphorus Bridge. Renamed as the “15 July Martyrs Bridge”. in honor of the civilian victims who resisted the attempted coup in 2016.
The Bridge was built in 1970 and 1973, is significant to Istanbul as it connects European and Asian side of Turkey. Pedestrians are not allowed and carries about 1,80,000 vehicles a day on this 1.5 km (1 mile) long suspension bridge.
This Bridge is a Photographers paradise and the best time to capture its magnificence is during the night when the LED lights are ‘on’. We didn’t go during the night because the weather was too bad at the time of our visit i.e. in February. So if you plan to be here then, do make time to visit in the evenings/night when the splendor of the bridge is at its maximum.
Now let’s talk about the strait Bosphorus itself , it’s a natural strait connecting the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara, thus being a very strategic waterway. And it has a legend story to it which goes like this.
Bosphorus comes from a Thracian word which means “passage of the cow”, deriving from the legend of Io who was one of many lovers of Zeus. When Hera, Zeus’ wife, suspected her husband being involved in a love affair with Io, Zeus converted Io in a small cow and tried to send her away from Hera’s rage. She (the cow) swam across the strait but Hera discovered it and she sent big flies after the cow to bite and disturb her all the time, ending Io in the Aegean Sea (thus named Ionian sea).
Apart from the Bosphorus Bridge, you can also go to the Ortaköy Mosque, which is found in the european side of the bridge. Built in the 18th Century, located at the tip of Ortaköy, which literally means “the village in the middle” as it seems to be floating on the Bosphorus; with the bridge in the background it is the perfect place for a photo.