Anadolu Hisari (The Anatolian Fortress)
The fortress is located on the Asian side of the Istanbul (Beykoz) at the narrowest point of the Bosphorous, a 14th century castle from the Ottoman’s first attempt to capture Istanbul will take you to an amazing experience. The fortress was built in 1395 on the ruins of an old temple dedicated to Zeus by the Sultan Yildirim Bayezit, and is made up of a citadel and its exterior walls, after the conquest of Istanbul it lost much of its strategic importance and was converted into a military hospital, the fortress is smaller in size when you compare to Rumeli Hisari on the European side. Its towers are about 82 feet high (25 meters) with a thickness of 7-16 feet (around 2-5 meters).
In our modern day the castle is an open museum but only the outer walls can be visited, and the road passes just through it, and it is free to visit.
Since you are already interested in visiting the Asian Side check our Bosphorous Cruise & Asian Side Tour to live an experience you will never forget.
Rumeli Hisari (Rumeli Fortress)
Rumeli Hisari was built by the Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror in just four months and directly on the opposite side to Anadolu Hisari in 1452 in preparation for the final attack on Constantinople which led to the downfall of the Byzantine Empire. It is located on the European side of the Bosphorous and in the northernmost district of Istanbul. Set within the lower part of the recently built Bosphorous University Campus, in a city where there is so much love and magic to discover. It occupies an area of 60.000 m2 (16 acres), had 4 main and 1 smaller gate, and 3 large towers and 1 smaller tower. From a small mosque inside only its minaret survived from an earthquake but was always restored, the final restoration was done in 1953 and opened as a museum to the public and hosts many concerts in its amphitheater usually during or around the Summer time, despite damages Rumeli Hisari still breathes history.
Every year thousands of tourists come to this great city and follow a tradition of taking a Bosphorous cruise and see the magnificent caste from afar, few of them know that this great building played an important role in the siege and Fall of Constantinople in 1453.
Its highly scenic setting overlooking the Fatih Sultan Bridge that links Europe and Asia, the site includes remains of the fortification walls with towers and gates.
Yedikule (Fortress Of 7 Towers)
Istanbul’s amazing Fortress of 7 Towers was where the ambassadors of foreign powers that had displeased the Ottoman Empire awaited their fate.
You can go to the castle by a train but you may want to consider an Istanbul Tour so you can visit every other relics left by the Ottoman Empire.
The castle was not always a prison, it was first built as the Golden Gate in the times of Byzantine Empire, and the twin square towers of the Golden Gate are now just two of the seven towers of the fortress. The Golden Gate was the monumental and ceremonial entrance to the city, with four huge towers, its massive doors were indeed once covered in gold.
After Mehmet the Conqueror conquered Constantinople in 1453 he added three towers to make it a fortress.
The fortress is located near the Sea of Marmara, precisely in Fatih Yedikule Meydani, the walls of the fortress extend to 6.5 km northward to Ayvansaray on the Golden Horn.
There also several interesting old fortresses in Istanbul to checkout such as Kavagi Fortress and Rumeli Kavagi Fortress both of them were built during the Byzantine era at the entrance of the Bosphorous from the Black Sea.
Get to know Istanbul’s history more by checking the Magnificent Istanbul tour and the treasures left by the great Ottoman Empire. What are you waiting for? Go for it.