Saturday, July 20, 2013

ISTANBUL - the city that never sleeps

It was my first trip to Istanbul and when i look back i think of long nights, a lot of colors & patterns and good & delicious food. It was a trip about 4 days. We stayed in the district Sultanahmet which is a great location to get to the most famous and ancient places. Even with the taxi it´s just about 15 TL (6 Euro) to get to Taxim on the other side of the city.
The first day we started off with the Topkapi Palast, Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque and the Cisterna Basilica. I mostly was impressed by the beauty and variety of the mosaics. The most beautiful ones have been inside of the Harem of the Topkapi Palast. 

Just next to the Blue Mosque is this small and unique ARASTA Basar. If i think of all the others, this is my favourite one with nice pillows and vases.

A nice place to eat is the district Kumkapi. It may be very touristic and a little bit more expensive because this place is mentioned in all the tourist guides but the atmosphere and the musicians are great! 

The second day we have been to the Princess Island. It is a very special one because traffic is forbidden, so the only way to move along is by walk, bike or as lazy as we´ve been the carriage. I had a mixed feeling about it. On the one side it is good that cars are not allowed but on the other side some of these horses did´nt look that healty anymore. If i would visit this island again i´d choose the bike or the economic Segway. The Islanad in general is worth a visit and a nice place to relax some hours.

As you do not need a whole day for the Princess Island, except you want to swim and lay on the beach, you can go to the Taxim and walk down the famouse Istiklal Caddesi.The shops are open till 10-11pm even on a sunday evening. Especially the side roads are recommending and a great place to eat, drink and to let the evening draw to an end.

View from Beyoglu (Galata Bridge) to Sultanahmet, Old City. 

Another tourist attraction is the Grand Basar and the Spicy Basar. Both are in near distance and you definetly need to spend one day for each or at least several hours! The architecture and the building of the Grand Bazar is amazing. The history of the place is appreciably.

Turkish sweets

Spicy Basar

The highlight of the trip was the 5 Kat restaurant in Beyoglu. The interior/ exterior is soooo romantic and designed in shabby shic. I found it in the internet some days bevor the trip and i loved it! It´s a little bit more expensive than the normal restaurant but the view up on the whole city is worth it. We payed about 40 Euro per person for  a three course meal and two cocktails each. It was so delicous!! Make sure you make an reservation and get there at seven o´clock. At this time the restaurant is nearly empty and you can make nice pictures!

And this guy is following you everywhere no matter where you go :)