Galata tower is one of the rarest and most important symbols of Istanbul. This is a unique place where you can watch Istanbul in its entirety and see the seven hills of the city. The first tower was built here in 528 by the Byzantine emperor Anastasius. The present tower was built in 1348 during the Genoese period and was called the Tower of Christ. It was used as a prison during the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent. While approaching the 17th century, it was allocated to the mehter team. It was used as a lighthouse in the second half of the 20th century. The height of the tower to the very top of the roof is approximately 70 m. Its weight is around 10 thousand tons. Galata tower, one of the most beautiful historical places of Istanbul, is located between Karaköy, Taksim, Tophane and Kasımpaşa districts. It is possible to watch the magnificent view of the Bosphorus and the Golden Horn from the balcony of the tower.
This tower also contains many sad stories. The basement of the tower was used as a dungeon for a while. According to the Ottoman traveler Evliya Çelebi, Hezarfen Ahmet Çelebi was able to fly from Galata Tower to Üsküdar in 1638 by wearing wings he made himself. Thus, he made his first intercontinental flight. The tower has been damaged due to reasons such as earthquake, fire and wind, and has been restored many times for this reason. It suffered great damage in the earthquake of 1509 and the fires of 1794 and 1831. In the storm of 1875, the conical top on it was blown away.
However, despite all the disasters, it still stands today and continues to hold the title of being one of the oldest towers in the world. After the restoration works carried out in 2020, the tower began to be used as a museum and exhibition space. Galata Tower was included in World Heritage temporary list in Turkey by UNESCO in 2013.
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