The Golden Horn (Turkish: Haliç) is an inlet of the Bosphorus dividing the city and forming a natural harbour. It has been an important commercial port and a naval base throughout its history. One of the oldest settlements in the city, the Golden Horn offers a glimpse into İstanbul’s past.
A vital center in both the Byzantine and Ottoman eras, the shores of the Golden Horn were once lined with waterside residences, factories and workshops.
Fener, one of the neighbourhoods on the western shores of Golden Horn, was largely populated by Byzantine Greeks and Jews in the Ottoman era.
Also located on the western banks of the Golden Horn is Balat, the traditional Jewish quarter of İstanbul.
Beyond Balat is Ayvansaraay. This neighbourhood was famous during the Byzantine era for its Bakachernae Palace.
To the north of the Golden Horn is Eyüp. Beyond the protective city walls, this district is important for being the first Ottoman residential area.
With its rich history and natural beauty, the Golden Horn has much to offer to visitors to Istanbul and remains one of the most iconic features of the city.