Armenian Heritage, İstanbul

5 Days Tour
No matter if you are countries far away ... Even if there are vast oceans as boundaries..! Your roots, myths, history and heritage are in homeland. Come to Türkiye, the country of your forefathers, breathe the air they lived in; share the culture, the atmosphere and nostalgy of the homeland... At present, the Armenian community in İstanbul bas 17 schools, 17 cultural and social organizations, 3 newspapers 2 sports clubs, and two health establisments, as well as numerous religious foundations set up to support these activities.

Day 1
Meet at İstanbul Airport and transfer to hotel. Time permitting stroll at Beyoğlu known as Pera. Have a glimpse of Esayan High School for girls, light a candle at the Church of Yerrortutyun (Üç Horan).

Day 2
Visit the Armenian Patriarchal Cathedral, Surp Asdvadzadzin at Kumkapı and participate Sunday service. Lunch at Samatya, the oldest Armenian residential area. Walk through this historical district. Samatya is a special place for Armenians. One of the first regions where Sultan Mehmet The Conquerer settled the Armenian population after the conquest of Istanbul , which was also the first authority of the İstanbul Armenian Patriarchate established in 1461. Samatya, which has turned into a village where fishermen lived,has become an increasingly important settlement during the Byzantine and Ottoman periods. And schools, churches, associations,aid activities have always kept the pulse of daily life in the neighborhood where the lower middle classes lived, usually dealing with craftsmanship, artisans and workers. People who created that humble life together they also produced Samatian consciousness. Samatya has witnessed a long history... The plander of the Latin, the fall or conquest of İstanbul, the Armenian-Greek conflict, migrations in the Byzantine period. Psamatia, whose name means “sandy place” in old Greek, is said to have been a settlement since ancient times.
Ioannes Prodromos Church was converted to Imrahor İlyas Bey Mosque. It was ruined in the 1894 earthquake and was not repaired again. It still waits to be restored as the oldest church hospital in İstanbul. But it's not just bad events: The world-famous bell-maker Zildjian Family also came out from Samatya. The famous Armenian work of Zakarya Episkop Kinuntyants, describing the life of Alexander the Great, was also from Samatya. The taverns that held the pulse of the middle class entertainment life of İstanbul are very popular in Samatya. Armenians brought from Karaman, Bursa, Nakhchivan and other regions were settled to Samatya. Samatya was the home of the Grand Bazaar shopkeepers , the jewelers, the tailors, the grocery store owners, the hardware store owners, and those who earn their lives with their labor. While the neighborhood was changing after the 1960's, the Samatian Armenians existed side by side with their Turkish, Kurdish and Muslim neighbors. They just had no problems. They lived peacefully in a neighborhood relationship. Enjoy a very delicious and joyful lunch with the famous local drink Turkish Rakı and a very rich variety of meze specialties, mostly Armenian, with fresh fish of the season. Fatih Sultan Mehmet II., The Conquerer, brought the Armenian masters, artisans and workers from various regions of Anatolia to İstanbul. Bursa Episcopal Hovagim was called to İstanbul in 1461 and was given the title of “Patriarch”. Sultan Mehmet II gave Samatya's Teotokos or Panayia Church, to Armenians which belonged to the Greeks and was called Perivleptos (magnificent), and this was the first Patriarchate authority of the Armenians in the city. The monastery called Surp Kevork was also known as Sulu Monastery in Turkish. 
This crowded neighborhood, Jemaran (1805-1810) and Akabyan Boarding School (1869) were the schools of Orthodox Armenians in Samatya. Samatya's Shakyan-Nunyan School, which continues today for educational purposes related to kindergarten, primary and high school, was opened in 1830 by Patriarch Golod, who made an important educational and cultural move by the administration. It is the school of the Armenian Catholic Anarad Hığutyun Church, which was built in 1857 and dedicated to Virgin Mary. Hagop Baronyan, the great master of Armenian humor literature, says: “The local people of Samatya do not know how to speak in a low voice. When they say let me tell you a secret, what they say to your ear is heard from Yenikapı”. The people of this place do not like to cringe, escape from flattery. Late evening return to botel.