A Bosphorus Cruise in Istanbul is undeniably an unforgettable experience, and one which combines history; adventure and romance all into a single package. If this sounds enticing, be sure to look for one of our Egypt and Turkey Tours that include a cruise on the bosphorus.
The Bosphorus Strait in Istanbul is also often referred to the Istanbul Strait. It’s a very narrow strait that connects the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea. The strait runs completely through Turkey, effectively dividing the Asian and European parts of the country. Cruises on the Bosphorus have become one of the most popular tourist attractions in Turkey.
The Crossing Place Of The Cow
According to Greek mythology, Zeus, the Ruler of Gods, was believed to have had an unquenchable taste for women. It is said that his wife Hera once caught him having an affair with a woman called Lo. Infuriated by her husband’s infidelity, Hera turned Lo into a cow, and then followed up on this by creating an evil horsefly. As was the intention, the horsefly stung the cow on its rump, causing the cow to leap over the narrow straight.
The Greek name for the strait is Bousporus, and is derived from the above mentioned incident:
Bous is the Greek word for a cow, while porus is the Greek word for a place of crossing – the Crossing Place of the Cow.
Bosphorus As A Modern Day Shipping Lane
The Istanbul Strait, as it’s often called, is the narrowest navigated strait in the world. At its narrowest point the straight is just 700 meters wide, and in some parts, ships using the straight have to make abrupt directional changes of up to 80 degrees in order to navigate around the straight’s bends and corners. This in turn makes it a notoriously dangerous shipping lane since vessels approaching from the opposite direction cannot be seen.
The strait is also known for it fast and powerful currents. All these dangers are increased even further due to the number of ferries operating between the Asian part of Turkey and the European Part of the country. For now, the strait essentially belongs to Turkey; although it is to remain open to all international maritime shipping. The Turkish government does however have the authority to close the strait to naval vessels.
Bosphorus Cruise In Istanbul
With so much shipping activity taking place on the strait, why would anyone want to go for a Bosphorus Cruise in Istanbul? The truth is, cruises on the Bosphorus are immensely popular and are featured in many Istanbul tours and also in some of our classic Egypt and Turkey tour packages.
Contrary to what you might be thinking, when you go for a Bosphorus Cruise in Istanbul, the chances are you won’t even see any large ships sailing by. It might be a very important shipping lane, but it’s not exactly the busiest shipping lane.
Cruises on the Bosphorus in Istanbul have become big business these days with literally hundreds of tour operators offering a vast variety of cruises. One of the biggest attractions is the fact that both sides of the straight are heavily populated.
Whether you cruise along the Asian side of the strait, or whether you cruise down the European side of the strait, you’ll be greeted by a kaleidoscope of sights. Many visitors to the region even go as far as saying it’s one of the best ways to see Istanbul. Many also recommend going on a daytime cruise as well as a night cruise.
Sightseeing; Adventure and Romance
Visitors should bear in mind that many of Turkey’s most famous landmarks and attractions are located along, or at least close to the shores of the strait. As such, a Bosphorus Cruise in Istanbul will more often than not allow you to see countless historical attractions. Also, seeing some of the sites from the water offers one a different perspective; a sense of adventure.
On the other hand, if you opt for a dinner cruise on the Bosphorus in Istanbul, you can expect it to be nothing short of magical, and if you are in the company of your most loved one, it will be one of the most romantic experiences of your life.
Egypt And Turkey Tours
If you’re searching for a holiday you’ll never forget, including a memorable Bosphorus Cruise in Istanbul, you can find what you’re looking for in our Egypt and Turkey Tours. If you can’t find the ideal tour, our consultants are standing by ready to customize a tour package just for you.