Let’s make a retrospective journey into the history. During the prosperity of the Ottoman Empire, tulips were brought from Persia to Turkey and after a short time they become the national symbol of the country. And already in the 17th century, the flower enters Europe, taking root especially well in the Netherlands.
Despite the fact that it was Turkey that was the first European country to appreciate the beauty of the tulip, many people consider the Netherlands to be the capital of this flower. The Turks could not get used to such injustice and since 2005 decided to renew the celebration of the tulip festival in Istanbul.
We are slightly sorry for the Turks for the historical injustice, but let’s not hide, tourists only benefit from this competition. Every year, from mid-April, Istanbul is covered with an avalanche of flowers, 30 million tulips open their buds and turn the metropolis at the junction of Asia and Europe into a huge flower park.
What to visit during the festival?
It goes without saying that, the local authorities could not limit themselves to the usual planting of tulips. Every year, landscape designers make patterns, paintings and figures from flowers, the most beautiful of which can be found at Emrigan Korusu Park. Emrigan Park is not in a tourist area, it will take about half an hour by metro or taxi to get there from Galata Tower, but believe me, it’s worth it!
Firstly, it is the perfect place for a leisured picnic with a cup of coffee or tea. Secondly, this particular park is the heart of the tulip festival, so it is better to come here in the morning, by lunchtime everything will be crowded with tourists.
The second place that is literally buried in flowers is Gulhane Park. It will not be difficult to find it, since it is located exactly between Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque. There will be a lot of people here anyway, but this does not negate the fact that the main mosques of Istanbul look even more spectacular against the backdrop of a huge number of tulips of various colors and varieties.
Spring is perhaps the best time to visit Istanbul. The weather invites to walk along the cozy streets, every day you can watch incredible sunsets and, of course, the tulip festival, which you will not find anywhere else in the world! By the way, if you have already decided to go to Istanbul and have chosen a hotel on Vauboo (do not forget about the auction!), here are 3 more tips before visiting this wonderful city:
Consider different areas for your staying
Many travelers prefer to stay in the old town and don’t even consider other options. The historical center is really very beautiful, comfortable and compact, but in order to fully immerse yourself in the color of Istanbul, you need to deviate a little from the most popular routes. Stay near the Galata Tower and explore the streets lined with vintage shops, or try the modern Osmanbey district. After all, the Asian coast cannot be discounted as it is where the most popular cafes, new restaurants, many designer shops and workshops are located.
Hang on to street food
There is a lot of delicious food in Istanbul and often you don’t need to look for it in restaurants. It always smells good on the streets here and local delicacies are sold on every corner, don’t be afraid and try it! You should definitely try Balik fish shawarma, Adana kebab and doner.
Don’t dwell on history
Mosques, Topkapi and Dolmabahce palaces and the Basilica cistern are a must, but do not forget that Istanbul is not only about the past, but also about the present. In order to find out how Istanbul lives today, go to the Osmanbey district, visit the Museum of Contemporary Art and explore Karakoy, where you will feel the rhythm and pulse of Istanbul.