"There, God and human, nature and art are together, they have created such a perfect place that it is valuable to see." Lamartine·s famous poetic line reveals his love for Istanbul, describing the embracing of two continents, with one arm reaching out to Asia and the other to Europe.
Istanbul, once known as the capital of capital cities, has many unique features. It is the only city in the world to straddle two continents, and the only one to have been a capital during two consecutive empires - Christian and Islamic. Once capital of the Ottoman Empire, Istanbul still remains the commercial, historical and cultural pulse of Turkey, and its beauty lies in its ability to embrace its contradictions. Ancient and modern, religious and secular, Asia and Europe, mystical and earthly all co-exist here.
Its variety is one of Istanbul·s greatest attractions: The ancient mosques, palaces, museums and bazaars reflect its diverse history. The thriving shopping area of Taksim buzzes with life and entertainment. And the serene beauty of the Bosphorus, Princes Islands and parks bring a touch of peace to the otherwise chaotic metropolis.
How To Reach İstanbul
Istanbul is well connected to every part of Turkey. Buses are frequent and plentiful, and the main coach station (otogar) is at Esenler, on the European side.There are countless independent bus companies, all of whom have a ticket office at the station and the larger ones have offices dotted around town, especially in areas like Taksim, Sultanahmed and Besiktas.
Prices vary slightly regarding quality of the vehicle. There are also departures from Harem, on the Asian side. For journeys further afield, there buses to Greece, Macedonia, Germany, France, Austria, Switzerland, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Iran, Russia, Georgia, Romania, Bulgaria and Jordan.
Within the city, public transport is a good way of getting around. There are minibuses, buses, taxis, trams (from Aksaray) a new subway (between Taskim and Levent) and a tiny electric tramcar (Beyoglu to Taksim).
If you would like to book bus most prefereble companies Varan , Ulusoy and Boss compinies in high standart. Normal bus compinies Kamil Koc , Metro , Pamukkale.
When you need to book bus it is no problem except for the holidays you can find mostly seats before one day.
There are 2 airports in İstanbul.One of them is in Asian side Sabiha Gökçen Airport ( http://www.sgairport.com )and the other one is in European side is , Ataturk International Airport ( http://www.dhmiata.gov.tr ) 20 km from city centre. The new airport is the biggest in the country, with the most international flights. There are direct flights to every European capital, and many to Asia, USA and the Middle East.
The domestic terminal has flights to every domestic airport in the country, with several a day to major cities like Ankara and Izmir. Turkish Airlines (THY) is the national carrier.
For the domestic flight tickets please send us your inquiry by mail we can arrange your flight bookings.
Not as popular a mode of transport as buses, with a much smaller network, there are rail connections from Istanbul to Ankara, Izmir and Eastern Anatolian cities. Most of the services are slower than buses, although between the three main cities there are the mavi tren, mototren or ekspresi, which are fast and comfortable.
Reservations are essential for these journeys, and there are several classes of seats and sleepers. International services from Sirkeci (on the European side) and Haydarpasa (Asian side) stations include Vienna, Munich, Budapest, Salonica, (via Eskisehir, Konya, and Gaziantep), Aleppo, (via Tatvan and Van), Tehran, Moscow and Bucharest. Trains heading west leave from Sirkeci, and east from Haydarpasa station.
Maritime Lines run both the urban and national transport. Marinas also have connections with European ports.
Urban Maritime Transportation runs ships which operate between the following destinations within Istanbul: Kadikoy – Haydarpasa – Karakoy; Eminonu – Uskudar; Eminonu – Kadikoy; Bridge – Yenikoy; Beykoz – Kavaklar; Sirkeci - Bostanci, Bridge – Prince’s Islands; Bridge – Yalova; Kabatas – Cinarcik; Bostanci - Cinarcik. Boats operate from Istanbul to the following Black Sea towns: Zonguldak, Sinop, Samsun, Giresun, Trabzon, Rize, as well as Izmir. Marmara Lines run to Marmara Island, Bandirma and Mudanya.
Badges will be distributed at the registration desks. Your personal badge is your entrance ticket to all sessions, to the exhibition area and to the social events. Please remember to always wear your badge at the Harbiye Museum and Culture Centre. Participants without badges will be not admitted to the congress activities. It will also be necessary to present the corresponding ticket for each social event.
The language of the congress is English. No simultaneous interpretation will be provided.
The congress includes a commercial exhibition from Thursday, September 22 to Sunday, September 25, which will be opened during meeting hours.
Please note that smoking is prohibited by law within the Congress premises as well as in restaurants and public buildings.
The average temperature in Istanbul during June is 25-28°C during daytime, warm & sunny.
GMT Time Zone (+2 Turkey, Istanbul)
Passports & Visas
A valid passport is required for entry to Turkey. Citizens of a country which requires a visa for entry to Turkey are strongly advised to make their application in their home country at least one month before the intended date of travel. If in doubt, information can be obtained from your nearest Turkish Embassy or http://www.mfa.gov.tr/mfa
The current in Turkey is 220 volts 50 Hz.
If your mobile phone does support such feature, your mobile phone shall automatically select the GSM operator. Public telephones operate with tokens or cards, sold at post offices or some booths. Through some of the public phones, there is access to AT&T and some other telecommunication networks - please check with your operator for the latest information. Fax messages can be sent from major post offices, or from the hotel.
Available at taxi stands or hailed on the street. All are yellow and have meters.
Business, Banking & Shopping Hours
Offices and banks are generally open 9:00 AM to 5:00, PM Monday to Friday, with a break between 12:00 to 1:30 PM
Access & Transportation
Easy to reach!
Atatürk Airport in European Side
Sabiha Gökçen Airport in Asian side
More than 100 non-stop international flights by national carrier Turkish Airlines per day to both of the airports in Istanbul
Around 430 international flights per day
76 airlines stop in Istanbul per day including budget airlines like EasyJet
Insurance: The Organizing Committee cannot accept responsibility for accidents that
might occur during the Conference period and field trips. Delegates are encouraged to purchase travel insurance before leaving their home country. Insurance plans typically cover accidental loss of belongings, medical costs in case of injury or illness, and other possible risks of international travel.
Currency Exchange: The currency is the Turkish Lira. Foreign currency can be exchanged at the airport or the front desk of your hotel.
Safety: Turkey - Istanbul has well-earned reputation as safe countries in Europe. The grid pattern of the streets and the bilingual street signs in Turkish and English enable you to the city trouble-free. İstanbul is given highest credit in its security.
Telephones and Fax: Prepaid telephone cards are a convenient way to make domestic and international telephone calls from public phones. They can be purchased at convenience stores and from vending machines for approximately 10 Euro. There are four international phone companies and their rates vary. Your hotel probably provides fax service at the front desk. Some convenience stores have fax services too.
Convenience Stores: Convenience store can be found on almost every city block. A variety of foods, drinks (most sell alcoholic beverages and cigarettes), toiletries, magazines, instant cameras, stationery, recording media, etc. can be purchased in these 24 - hours stores.
Tipping, Charges and Tax: In places where service is not included, it is custom to tip for the table services you received. And even in the handful of places where service is included ( just as on mainland Europe ) the waiters will expect you to tip on top of that.
The rule of thumb is to leave a tip worth 10% of the bill in restaurants, cafés and bars.
But restaurants, cafés and bars are not the only places where tips are expected. It is also custom to tip hotel staff, porters, hairdressers and musicians. The amount is at your discretion, but the norm is TL 2 per person. Tipping taxi drivers is not custom, unless he helped you load the luggage.
A consumption Tax is included in the price of goods and services in Turkey. The prices displayed on goods usually includes tax, but some retailers will add the tax at the cash register.