Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar is one of the city’s top tourist attractions, but a first time visit can be quite overwhelming to all of the senses.
Just want to share a few more of my favorite photos from my past trips to Istanbul. I am NOT a morning person, but, for a beautiful sunrise photo I will make the effort. In this case, I was up at dawn to catch the sunrise over the Bosphorus while enjoying a traditional cup of Turkish tea. Many of the hotels in the historic Sultanahmet district have rooftop restaurants which makes it easy to get up early and enjoy the beautiful views.
Thanks for visiting.
Straddling two continents and over 2000 years of history, there is no other place like Istanbul. With its friendly locals, delicious food and incredible architecture, it is one of my favorite global cities to visit and photograph. So, along with my favorite 25 images, here is my love letter to beautiful Istanbul.
Since the age of 9, I have always wanted to see Istanbul. When I emigrated to the USA from Romania with my parents in the summer of 1970, our flight was rerouted through Istanbul to pick up more passengers. I don’t exactly remember what that 9 year old saw out of the plane window, but it left a lasting impression.
2018 was an especially good year for travel. I was fortunate to be able to travel somewhere fun almost every month, both in the US and overseas.
Many of the locations that I visited were new to me, including a new continent-Africa. I also revisited some of my favorite cities-London, Istanbul and Washington D.C. I have written about my experiences for many of these destinations-but some are still sitting in my draft que, waiting to be finished (one of the resolutions for 2019 before I start traveling again).
It’s the magic hour in Istanbul – that time of day after the sun has set and the sky turns a deep royal blue. It’s the perfect time of day for the best view of Istanbul from the Galata Bridge. Looking uphill, the great Mosque of Suleyman the Magnificent sparkles like a jewel. In the waters of the Golden Horn at the base of the bridge, the colorful Balik Ekmek (fish sandwich) boats serve up freshly cooked fish to hungry locals and tourists alike. It’s my last grand view of this wonderful city on my last night in Istanbul. What a great way to end my visit. But not my last one – I’ll be back.
Thanks for visiting
As I stood on Istiklal Avenue in Istanbul, watching the large crowd of people walking up and down the street, this gentleman blowing bubbles caught my eye. He kept blowing bubbles, trying to sell his little bubble blowing toys. Most of the crowd just parted and walked around him, some smiling at his antics as they walked by. Occasionally, he would make a sale, but he just kept blowing his bubbles which added to the overall festive atmosphere on a Sunday afternoon on Istiklal Avenue.
Thanks for visiting.
Sunday afternoon on Istiklal Avenue in Istanbul. I read that as many as 3 million people will walk this one mile pedestrian street on a weekend day, and that certainly seemed to be the case on the Sunday afternoon that I was there. The street is lined with shops, boutiques, cafes, restaurants and movie theaters. A historic red tram can take you up and down the street, but don’t take it if you are in a hurry. The tram has to go very slowly to let the sea of bodies part so that it can pass. This certainly seems to be the place to go to see and be seen.
Thanks for visiting.
You’ll see Whirling Dervish performances advertised throughout Istanbul, offering an evening of entertainment. But for an authentic experience, I chose to attend a true Mevlevi religious ritual at the Galata Dervish Monastery.
Enjoying a hamam, or Turkish bath in Istanbul is a unique experience in Turkey. I wanted to try it on my first visit to Istanbul, but to do so, I would have to set aside my inhibitions about being seen naked by strangers. Could I do that?
I know I have a typical American hang up about public nudity. Hollywood may show a lot of bare skin, but that’s not me on that screen. Plus, at my age, I feel like I am losing both the battle of the bulge and the battle with gravity. I am not sure that I really should subject the world to seeing my body without clothes on.
Photo location – you can find these traditional colorful Turkish lights throughout the small shops and bazaars in Istanbul.