The Three Historical Towers of Istanbul
Galata Tower (Galata Kulesi)
The Galata Tower, one of the world's oldest towers, was initially constructed in 507–508 CE to function as a fire lookout. It has since succeeded in becoming one of the representations of Istanbul's enduring energy.
The tower has taken more than 1,500 years to reach its current state, proving the adage that good things take time. The current tower was constructed by the Genoese in 1348, though it has undergone numerous repairs and even reconstructions. Sultan Mahmud II gave the Galata Tower its current appearance by constructing the final two storeys and giving it its renowned cone-shaped roof.
The tower has a long history of renewal and restoration, which is reflected in the wide range of styles seen on its floors. For instance, the first three stories exhibit features of Genoese architecture, while the latter floors exhibit a distinctly Ottoman design.
The fame of Galata Tower has also been enhanced by a number of stories.
Hezârfen Ahmet Elebi, for instance, is mentioned in Evliya Elebi's famous travelogue despite the fact that modern historians disagree with him. According to Evliya Elebi, Hezârfen Ahmet Elebi used a pair of wooden wings to fly from the Galata Tower to the neighborhood of Üsküdar on Istanbul's Asian shore.
Another popular myth states that you will wed the person you climb the ancient tower with. Due to this, many couples now stand in line to visit the tower's famed viewing terrace.
Beyazıt Tower (Beyazıt Kulesi)
On the main campus of Istanbul University, there is a fire watchtower called Beyazt Tower, which is 85 meters high. The tower used a particular lighting system that was created at a precise time in history to inform Istanbul residents of the weather forecast.
The tower gives a panoramic view of Istanbul and is one of the city's symbols today. It is perched atop one of the seven hills that make up the city. The city's original name, Constantinople, which preceded its current name of Istanbul, is visible when you climb the tower.
Although there are plans to convert the tower into a public museum, it is now solely accessible to students of Istanbul University.
Maiden’s Tower (Kız Kulesi)
On a little islet close to the Bosphorus Strait is where you'll find The Maiden's Tower. Although the tower's construction date is unknown, the architectural design suggests that it was built in the 300s BCE. The islet, which once served as a customs post for ships, is believed to have been connected to the Asian shore by a fortification wall, the remains of which may still be seen underwater.
The Maiden's Tower is said to have fallen into ruin as a result of numerous natural calamities, similar to how the Galata Tower did. During restoration, the glass kiosk and lead-covered dome were added. The tower now has a restaurant on the ground level and a café on the roof. Additionally, there is a museum with free entrance.
A few legends have helped the tower gain notoriety, but one stands out above the rest to the point where the tower was given the name "Tower of Leandros" in honor of it. Leandros (or Leander), a young man from the other side of the strait, fell in love with Hero, an Aphrodite priestess. He would swim across the Hellespont (Dardanelles) to see her every evening. At the peak of her tower, Hero would light a lamp to serve as a beacon for him. Leandros was hurled into the water by the waves one blustery winter night, and Hero's light was extinguished by the wind. Legend has it that Leandros tragically got lost and drowned.