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Archive for the ‘Istanbul’ Category

I did find Istanbul overwhelming.  You’d think I’d learn my lesson traveling to big cities–Bangkok, New York, London.  Don’t get me wrong, they’re great cities, but I find them too big to manage, at least initially.  The more I visit a bigger city, the more I like it.  I guess it just takes getting used to for me.

Spice Bazaar

Even though Topkapi Palace was my favorite of Istanbul’s sites, the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia are still impressive.

View of Blue Mosque from Hagia Sophia

The Hagia Sophia was a church and then a mosque and now a museum.  It’s so interesting to see the design of a church with the high ceilings and the vaulted domes, with elements of a mosque, like the round discs with Arabic on them and the angels whose wings have been rubbed out.

Hagia Sophia

The Basilica Cistern was cool.  If my memory is right, according to our Rick Steve’s Istanbul Guide Book (which I would highly recommend), the cistern was forgotten about for a long time until people started noticing water seeping into the ground.  How do you forget about an awesome place like this?!

Basilica Cistern

My absolute favorite “must do” in Istanbul was the ferry cruise we took on our last day there.  It was a relaxing change of pace compared to hectic Istanbul.  Taking a leisurely ferry cruise to see the Bosphorus was an excellent way to see more sites without too much effort.

Bosphorus

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Istanbul: I

Back in July, I took a trip to Turkey with my friend Sarah.  It was a great trip and I enjoyed being in the European-esque city of Istanbul and exploring other parts of the country.

Istanbul Mosque at Dusk. Beautiful and magical.

My favorite site of the trip to Istanbul was probably Topkapi Palace.  We got there just as it opened, which was awesome since we beat all of the cruise ship crowd and other tourist crowd.

Interior view of Topkapi Palace

Baklava!

I might have gone a bit crazy eating baklava multiple times a day. Yum.

Mosque at Sunset

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