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About İstanbul




Istanbul, historically known as Byzantium and later Constantinople, is a city with a rich and multifaceted history that spans over two millennia. It served as the capital of three great empires: the Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman. Its strategic location at the crossroads of Europe and Asia has made it a melting pot of cultures, religions, and traditions.

The city's cultural heritage is a tapestry of influences, from the grandeur of Byzantine architecture seen in the Hagia Sophia and the intricate mosaics of the Chora Church to the stunning Islamic architecture showcased in the Blue Mosque and Topkapi Palace. Istanbul's vibrant bazaars, such as the Grand Bazaar and Spice Bazaar, offer a glimpse into its thriving trade history, while its cuisine is a fusion of flavors from across the Mediterranean, Middle East, and Central Asia. Today, Istanbul stands as a dynamic metropolis, a bridge between the past and the present, where the echoes of its rich history resonate in its culture, architecture, and daily life. In 2010, Istanbul become a European cultural capital.


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Currency and Exchange

The Turkish currency is Turkish Lira (TL). Foreign money can be exchanged at banks on business days (09.00 - 17.00 Monday-Friday) as well as in hotels, at the airport and in bureaux de change. All major credit cards are accepted in most hotels, restaurants and shops. Automated bank machines are available at many points throughout the city and at the airport


In Turkey the standard voltage is 220 V and the frequency is 50 Hz. You can use your electric appliances in Turkey, if the standard voltage in your country is in between 220 - 240 V (as is in the UK, Europe, Australia and most of Asia and Africa). Manufacturers take these small deviations into account. If the standard voltage in your country is in the range of 100 V - 127 V (as is in the US, Canada and most South American countries), you need a voltage converter in Turkey.


The official language of the conference is English. (Please be informed that there will not be simultaneous translation to any other languages)



Restaurants and Turkish Cuisine

There is a wide choice of restaurants in Istanbul offering a broad spectrum ranging from excellent national cuisine to first class international dishes. Traditional Turkish cuisine is famous for its specialties prepared with fresh vegetables. There are numerous quality restaurants as well as fast-food shops in the vicinity of the hotels reserved for this meeting.


One of the most enjoyable parts of a trip to Turkey is shopping for the rich variety of Turkish crafts. Istanbul is a shopping paradise with its Covered Bazaar as well as modern malls. In the Covered Bazaar bargaining over the sale price with shop traders is expected


Turkey is 3 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (+3 hrs GMT ).




Although service charge (%10) is included in most restaurants, leaving a tip at one’s own discretion is appreciated


Participants are requested to check with the Turkish Consulate in their home country or with their travel agency or at for visa requirements. Entry visa to Turkey can also be obtained at Istanbul Ataturk Airport for a vast number of countries.