One of the great historical cities of the world, Istanbul is a modern metropolis at the crossroads between Europe and the Middle East. It's a city of hundreds of mosques populating the ancient city's canopy, with a new and modern skyline rising across the Bosporus, indicative of the city's success as a modern business economy.
Istanbul is a (relatively) new name for a very old city: Constantinople and even earlier than that, Byzantium. Prior to invasion of the Ottomans in 1453, Constantinople was the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire, and the city flourished for a thousand years, literally. More recently after that date, the city has been called the “stronghold of Islam”, and for the past 500 years under the Ottomans and Turks, the city has flourished yet again.