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Princes' Islands History

Published Date
06 September 2022, 12:20
Princes' Islands History
Onur Koçak

Onur Koçak

Tour Organizer


The Istanbul Islands, and Princes Islands known as the Islands in Turkey, are archipelagos located on the Asian coast of the Sea of Marmara, southeast of the southern end of the Bosphorus. The Princes Islands have been the seaside neighborhoods of Istanbul, Princes islands history, the ancient Byzantine Constantinople, and the great metropolis of the Bosphorus. The archipelago consists of nine islands, but all but five are small and have no permanent settlements on them. Although they are fifteen kilometers away from the Istanbul ferry piers at the entrance of the Golden Horn and the Bosphorus, and twenty-six kilometers away from the farthest, they seem to be much further away from Istanbul in terms of both appearance and atmosphere.

The closest island to Istanbul is Kınalıada (Proti), then Burgazada (Antigoni), Heybeliada (Halki), and finally Büyükada (Prinkipos), the largest and most populous island among the Islands. Ferries also stop by Sedefadası (Anterovithos) in the summer months. There are few residents in Kaşıkadası (Pide-Pitta) in summer, but there are no settlements in Tavşanadası (Niandros), Yassıada (Plati), and Sivriada (Oxia).

Büyükada (Prinkipos)

Büyükada, with its Greek name Prinkipo; is the largest and most beautiful of the Prince Islands. This is the only island that many people visit and explore, and it is one of the most popular summer destinations. With an area of 5.4 km2, Büyükada is larger than the other three main islands combined. It is also the most densely populated of the Islands. The population, which averages around 6,500 throughout the year, reaches 40,000 in summer.
The island is approximately 4.3 km from north to south and an average of 1.3 km from east to west. It has two high peaks: 164 m in the north. high Isa (Hristos) Hill and in the south, known as Hagios Georgios (Saint Georgios) by the Greeks, 202 m. High Hill. Yüce Tepe also forms the highest peak on the Island.

Much of the northern part of the island is full of buildings; The further south is dominated by lovely pine groves and forests of other trees, wild cliffs plunging into the sea, and sandy, desolate beaches.

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Heybeliada (Halki)

Heybeliada, with an area of 2.35 km2, is the second largest island. While the average population per year is around 5,500, this number rises to around 30,000 in the summer. Halki, which is the Greek name of the island and means "copper", comes from the copper mines operated on the island in ancient times; Aristotle talks about these studies. The island got its name Heybeli in Turkish because of the "saddlebag" shape of its hills and valleys passing through these hills. Among the main hills of the island, Ümit Hill, previously known as Papaz Mountain (85 m.) and located in the north of the island, Değirmen Hill (136 m.) and Köy Hill (128 m.) in the center and Baltacıoğlu Hill (98 m.) in the southwest ) is located. The most important part of the town is the northeast coast; The island houses are scattered in rows on Ümit Hill, Değirmen Hill, and Köy Hill and the valleys between them.

Burgazada (Antigoni)

Burgazada is the third largest island in the archipelago with an area of 1.5 km2. The population, which is around 1500 people throughout the year, increases to 15000 in the summer months. While the island was known as Panormos in ancient times, it took the name "Antigoni" during the Byzantine period. This name is still used by the Greeks. The Greek word "Pyrgos" meaning "tower" comes from a watchtower on the summit of the Island, mentioned by Evliya Çelebi and other travelers who lived before the 19th century. The name Burgas, used by the Turks, was formed by the change of shape of "Pyrgos" over time. In the engraving made by Cosimo Comidas in 1794, this watchtower is located on the summit of the island. In this engraving, the Island appears to consist of an orchard and two or three cultivated fields on the hillside.

Bayraktepe, also known as Hristos Hill (Isa Hill), is the only hill on the island, is located in the middle of the island, and is 170 meters high. The center of the village is on the northeast coast of the Island, and the settlement spreads from here to the high parts of the north coast. The coastal road reaches every part of the island, except for the south coast, which is not very convenient with its cliffs rising from the sea.

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