Straddling the continents of Europe and Asia, divided by the straits of the Bosphorus, Istanbul forms the proverbial bridge between East and West. It is no longer a capital city, but with a population approaching 12 million, it remains one of the world’s great cities and the center of Turkey’s economic and cultural life. The Blue Mosque, Roman Hippodrome, Haghia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, Grand Bazaar, Spice Market, and the Bosphorus all mark the historical past of this ancient capital, from the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires. Istanbul never fails to surprise - with its layer upon layer of history, hospitable people and glamorous nightlife; adding up to a most memorable vacation.