There are many legends about the construction of the tower and its location. According to the most popular Turkish legend, an emperor had a much beloved daughter and one day, an oracle prophesied that she would be killed by a venomous snake on her 18th birthday. The emperor, in an effort to thwart his daughter's early demise by placing her away from land so as to keep her away from any snakes, had the tower built in the middle of the Bosphorus to protect his daughter until her 18th birthday. The princess was placed in the tower, where she was frequently visited only by her father.
On the 18th birthday of the princess, the emperor brought her a basket of exotic sumptuous fruits as a birthday gift, delighted that he was able to prevent the prophecy. Upon reaching into the basket, however, an asp that had been hiding among the fruit bit the young princess and she died in her father's arms, just as the oracle had predicted. Hence the name Maiden's Tower.
The older name Leander's Tower comes from another story about a maiden: the ancient Greek myth of Hero and Leander. Hero was a priestess of Aphrodite who lived in a tower at Sestos, at the edge of the Hellespont (Dardanelles). Leander (Leandros), a young man from Abydos on the other side of the strait, fell in love with her and would swim every night across the Hellespont to be with her. Hero would light a lamp every night at the top of her tower to guide his way.
Succumbing to Leander's soft words, and to his argument that Aphrodite, as goddess of love, would scorn the worship of a virgin, Hero allowed him to make love to her. This routine lasted through the warm summer. But one stormy winter night, the waves tossed Leander in the sea and the breezes blew out Hero's light, and Leander lost his way, and was drowned. Hero threw herself from the tower in grief and died as well. The name Maiden's Tower might also have its origins in this ancient story.
Due to the vicinity and similarity between the Dardanelles and the Bosphorus, Leander's story was mistakenly attributed to the tower.
The building that is located in the Edirnekapı neighborhood of İstanbul and called the “Chora Museum” (Kariye Müzesi) is a church building that constitutes the center of the Chora Monastery, which was a great building complex in the Eastern Roman Empire period, and it was dedicated to Jesus Christ. Since it stood outside of the city walls built by Constantine, the building was called “Chora”, which means “in the country” or “outside of the city” in Greek.
Although the exact construction date of the building is unknown, according to the description of Symeon the Metaphrast, an author and saint who lived in the late 10th century, the region where the Chora monastery was located began to gain importance as a holy cemetery (necropolis) when the relics of Saint Babylas, who had been martyred in the early periods of Christianity, in 298, together with his 84 disciples, in Nicomedia (İznik), were buried here in the early 4th century.
The Chora monastery was rebuilt in the 6th century, in 536, by the Emperor Justinian (527-565) on the cemetery that was considered holy, on a chapel that had been ruined. On the other hand, according to the unproven claim on the page 229 of the calendar of Byzantine feasts written by Manuel Gedeon, the construction of the monastery had been initiated by Theodoros, the uncle of Justinian’s wife Theodora, in the 6th century, but it had been devastated by an earthquake that occurred on October 6, 557, and the emperor had built a larger monastery on the site of the former one.
As if plucked from a whimsical fairytale and set down upon the stark Anatolian plains, Cappadocia is a geological oddity of honeycombed hills and towering boulders of otherworldly beauty. The fantastical topography is matched by the human history here. People have long utilised the region's soft stone, seeking shelter underground and leaving the countryside scattered with fascinating cavern architecture. The fresco-adorned rock-cut churches of Göreme Open-Air Museum and the subterranean refuges of Derinkuyu and Kaymaklı are the most famous sights, while simply bedding down in one of Cappadocia's cave hotels is an experience in 21st-century cave living.
Whether you're wooed here by the hiking potential, the history or the bragging rights of becoming a modern troglodyte for a night, it's the lunarscape panoramas that you'll remember. This region's accordion-ridged valleys, shaded in a palette of dusky orange and cream, are an epiphany of a landscape – the stuff of psychedelic daydreams.
Venice is a city unlike any other. No matter how often you've seen it in photos and films, the real thing is more dreamlike than you could imagine. With canals where streets should be, water shimmers everywhere. The fabulous palaces and churches reflect centuries of history in what was a wealthy trading center between Europe and the Orient. Getting lost in the narrow alleyways is a quintessential part of exploring Venice, but at some point you'll almost surely end up in Piazza San Marco, where tourists and locals congregate for a coffee or an aperitif
Cumalıkızık is a village in the Yıldırım district of Bursa Province, located 10 kilometers east of the city of Bursa, at the foot of Mount Uludağ. Its history goes back to the Ottoman Empire's foundation period. The village is now included within the border of the Yıldırım district as a neighbourhood. Cumalıkızık was founded as a vakıf village. The historical texture of the village has been well protected and the civilian countryside architectural structures of the early Ottoman period are still intact. Because of this, Cumalıkızık has become a popular but still unspoiled center for tourists.