Istanbul, day 3

As I didn’t share a photo yesterday, here’s the view from the roof of our hostel. Pretty great, and it goes all the way around. Also, while I remember, I love the heat! Dry, not sweaty hot, and perfect in the shade. Sitting outside at night time is beautiful.

Istanbul, day 3

The big plan for the day was Aya Sofya, so we started there. It’s so huge! And so old. It’s been through a lot, and has a great history. But seriously, HUGE! Unlike the others, it’s still pretty rough looking, with areas chipped away to expose older surfaces and mosaics covered up by conquerers and their religions over the ages. It’s all rather incredible. And again, way too many photos of ceilings and arches.

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

A coffee brought the girls to life, even if it was a bit rubbish. We went on the hunt for a pharmacy to make Bex’s back less painful, and got directed across town by an unbelievably helpful guy that sounded like he’d moved over from the UK. Turns out pharmacies are hard to come by on Sundays in Turkey. Who’d have thought.

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

It was a good excuse to see another part of town as we walked west along the tram route. And the pharmacy was open! Drugs and heat patches are crazy cheap, if you’re ever in town. Es and I grabbed some freshly squeezed pomegranate juice, which was a sillier idea than I’d imagined. It’s not easy to drink a lot of that stuff, it’s pretty sour, but Es managed to knock back her one pretty quick.

And baklava! Holy smokes. I’d never had it before, but it’s the best thing ever. Baklava and green tea are now hunted down at every opportunity.

Istanbul, day 3

We came across another mosque, and it was stunning. Huge and completely immaculate. Ceiling photos! And the girls in their classy dress.

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

We headed over the hill towards yesterdays food bazaar in search of the palace, wandering through a run down local part of town which was something we hadn’t experienced yet.

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

We managed to avoid buying turkish delights at the bazaar again, but it was hard.

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Finding the palace didn’t go so well. Which was a bit of a pain, as we’d been told it was the one thing we absolutely had to see. Instead, we stopped by another mosque. More incredibleness.

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

Then, first dinner! We stopped in somewhere vegetarian looking for bread and dippy stuff halfway home, next to where Bex had got excited and bought handmade sandals. Bread, dippy stuff and other appetizers – like wrapped wine leaves and stuffed peppers – is the greatest way to eat.

Second dinner was in the same area we ate in the first night, only now we were all over the food thing and went for more of the appetizers. And three deserts – a custard thing, something a little like a giant baklava, and more balaclava. This whole food thing is awesome.

Istanbul, day 3

Later we walked over to sit outside in the street again with baklava, apple tea, and Es and I tried rake. It was anise flavored, which might have been okay if it didn’t taste so watered down too. Es gave up, and I somehow managed to finish both our drinks. Not so yum, but as the national drink, we had to try.

Istanbul, day 3

Istanbul, day 3

And that was Istanbul! Great food, beautiful places. I had no idea what to expect, but it was all very amazing and a lot of fun. Very clean and safe feeling too, so long as you don’t mind every person approaching you with great enthusiasm to sell their things. It’s all fun!

From August 22, 2010.

Hong Kong
August 7
 
August 8
 
August 9
 
August 10
 
August 11
London
August 12
 
August 13
 
August 14
 
August 15
Edinburgh
August 16
 
August 17
 
August 18
 
August 19
Istanbul
August 20
 
August 21
 
August 22
Gallipoli
August 23
Troy & Pergamon
August 24
Ephesus & Kusadasi
August 25
Samos
August 26
 
August 27
Samos & Athens
August 28
 
August 29
 
August 30
Paros
August 31
 
September 1
Santorini
September 2
 
September 3
Paris
September 4
 
September 5
 
September 6
 
September 7
 
September 8
 
September 9
Lyon
September 10
 
September 11
 
September 12
Roanne
September 13
 
September 14
Barcelona
September 15
 
September 16
 
September 17
Bilbao
September 18
 
September 19
San Sebastian
September 20
 
September 21
 
September 22
Paris
September 23
 
September 24
Dijon
September 25
Beaune
September 26
Bern
September 27
 
September 28
Fribourg
September 29
Gruyeres
September 30
Luzern
October 1
 
October 2
Zurich
October 3
Venice
October 4
 
October 5
 
October 6
Bologna
October 7
Cinque Terre
October 8
 
October 9
 
October 10
Pisa
October 11
Florence
October 12
Tavarnelle
October 13
San Gimignano & Siena
October 14
Siena
October 15
Perugia & Assisi
October 16
Nocera Umbra & Naples
October 17
Naples & Pompei
October 18
Naples & Amalfi Coast
October 19
Rome
October 20
 
October 21
 
October 22
Eze & Monaco
October 23
Nice
October 24
Aix-En-Provence
October 25
Avignon & Roanne
October 26
Roanne
October 27
 
October 28
Paris
October 29
 
October 30
Nurburgring & Mayen
October 31
Mayen
November 1
Nurburgring & Mayen
November 2
London
November 3
 
November 4
San Francisco
November 5
 
November 6
 
November 7
Wellington
November 8
See all days