Previous E&E Congresses

have been held in Strasbourg
in 1996, Barcelona in 2000, Vienna in 2004 and in Copenhagen in 2008.

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About Istanbul

Istanbul as a Destination
The eye gazes sleepily across the seductive blue sweep of these Bosporus: One country - two continents.

As diverse as night and day, the only thing they have in common is the miraculous mirage that is Istanbul - a skyline of sensually shaped mosques and minarets scattered across seven hills - Istanbul is rapidly becoming one of the most popular international congress and exhibition destinations as a result of the increasing demand for suitable facilities. Istanbul is a city competing professionally to fulfill the demands.

The god and human, nature and art are together in there, they have created such a perfect place that it is valuable to see." Lamartine’s famous poetic line reveals his love for İstanbul, describing the embracing of two continents, with one arm reaching out to Asia and the other to Europe.

İstanbul, once known as the capital of capital cities, has many unique features. It is the only city in the world to straddle two continents, and the only one to have been a capital during two consecutive empires - Christian and Islamic. Once was capital of the Ottoman Empire, İstanbul still remains the commercial, historical and cultural pulse of Turkey, and its beauty lies in its ability to embrace its contradictions. Ancient and modern, religious and secular, Asia and Europe, mystical and earthly all co-exist here.

Its variety is one of İstanbul’s greatest attractions: The ancient mosques, palaces, museums and bazaars reflect its diverse history. The thriving shopping area of Taksim buzzes with life and entertainment. And the serene beauty of the İstanbul strait, Princes Islands and parks bring a touch of peace to the otherwise chaotic metropolis.

Land of the Blinds

A famous myth explains very precisely the unmatched location of Istanbul:
Commander Byzas, who gave his name to the empire to be later called as Byzantine, sets off to sail to build a new colony from where Greece is located today. During the long voyage and his searches, he goes to an oracle for advice. The oracle makes this prediction: “You are going to build your city right opposite of the land of the blinds!” Continuing his voyage, Byzas reaches to the banks of Sarayburnu, the Istanbul of today. When he sees this protected peninsula, he thinks that it is just the place that he was looking for; meanwhile he notices the area of residence on the opposite side (Kadiköy at present). Byzas decides that the people who, given the excellent area of residence right before them, do not prefer to reside there are blind. And since it also coincides with the prediction, he builds his colony on this land without hesitation…

A City of Harmony in a Country of Variety
The cultural diversity of Istanbul defies exaggeration. A Roman city converted to Christianity, it was also the seat of the Islamic the caliphate that preserved the patriarchate of Christian Orthodoxy. It has been a refuge for Jews fleeing Spain in the XV. Century and for those seeking asylum in 1930s. Belonging to 3 different religions and speaking 10 different languages, 26 ethnics groups live in Istanbul in harmony

Art, Culture and Entertainment
İstanbul is an international art and cultural center. The International Arts and Cultural Festival is held each year in June and July with famous artists coming from all over the world. These performances are held mostly at the Atatürk Cultural Center. The İstanbul Science Center (Bilim Merkezi), founded by the Science Center Foundation and located on the campus of İstanbul Technical University, has hands-on experimental and theoretical opportunities for adults and children of various educational levels. In March and April you can lake in the International Film Festival. Those who enjoy classical music can hear it at the Cemal Reşit Rey Hall. Operas, operettas, ballets, films, concerts, exhibitions and conferences all contribute to the cultural palette of the city.
İstanbul also has a rich program of light entertainment. Nightclubs provide splendid entertainment throughout dinner, ranging from a selection of Turkish songs to belly-dancing. Alongside these are modern discos, cabarets, and jazz clubs in the Taksim-Harbiye district. In Sultanahmet, there are a number of restaurants in restored Byzantine and Ottoman buildings which offer a unique setting for an evening out.

Kumkapı, with its many taverns, bars and fish restaurants, is another attractive district. People have been meeting for years at Çiçek Pasajı in the district of Beyoğlu for snacks and seafood specialties. Also in the area near Çiçek Pasajı is the narrow Nevizade Street, which is the best place in İstanbul for eating Turkish specialties and drinking rakı, the special Turkish drink.
On the İstanbul Strait, Ortaköy is the best place for nightlife in İstanbul, with its nightclubs, jazz clubs, line seafood restaurants and bars.

In Eminönü, do not miss the opportunity of seeing the fishermen dressed in traditional Ottoman dollies and their Ottoman-style boats on which you may board to sample their delicious fried fish.
For more information visit www.kultur.gov.tr




 

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