Istanbul Journals

Istanbul - A Tale of Two Cities

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A May 2006 trip to Istanbul by fizzytom

Quote: Budget accommodation, day trips, main attractions and much more about the world's most fascinating and compelling city

Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmet Camii)

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Attraction | "Don't It Make that Grey Mosque Blue?"

Quote:
The Blue Mosque was built in the seventeenth century on the orders of Sultan Ahmet I with the intention that it should rival the Hagia Sophia which stands opposite it. The image of these two fantastic buildings square up to each other is one of the most breath-taking sights in Istanbul. Both buildings are extraordinary but it's the Blue Mosque that wins me over with its six stately minarets and awesome courtyard.The Blue Mosque is easily identifiable from all over the city - even in a city that is teeming with mosques. There is a story that claims that the Sultan had demanded that the mosque have minarets made from gold - in Turkish "altin" - but the architect misheard him and built six - ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on August 2, 2009

Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmet Camii)
Sultanahmet
Istanbul, Turkey
0212 458 0776

Dubb Indian Restaurant

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Restaurant | "Terrific Indian Food in Istanbul"

Quote:
Dubb is an Indian restaurant in the Sultanahmet district of Istanbul. Having spent four weeks in total in Turkey we decided to do something different on the final night of our trip and when we passed Dubb we knew we had to try it. It’s mid way between the Blue Mosque and Aghia Sophia and almost next to the Yerebatan Cistern. Booking isn’t essential but it may be advisable if you want to be sure of a table on the terrace which is the best place to dine on a hot summer’s evening. There were no tables left on the terrace when we arrived and we were going to sit in one of the other dining rooms when I spotted a small table on a floor where there were no other diners and asked if we might have that one....Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 21, 2009

Dubb Indian Restaurant
Incili Çavus Sokak 10
Istanbul, Turkey
+90 212 5137308

Istanbul Paris Hostel & Hotel

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Hotel | "Ooh La La - It's Hot in Here"

Quote:
When we stayed at the Paris Hostel and Hotel in Istanbul it was at the end of a three month circular trip and we wanted to try some different accommodation to the place we’d stayed at some fourteen weeks earlier. A week before we were due to arrive back in Istanbul we did an online search for something suitable and found the Paris H&H. I have no idea why it’s called hostel AND hotel. Maybe they think a dormitory means a hostel and private rooms mean a hotel? Anyway, this is plain and simple accommodation with very few, if any, frills. It is hostel standard, or one or two star standard in hotel-speak. Had we known then just how much money we had left at the end of the trip, we’d have s...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on May 21, 2009

Istanbul Paris Hostel & Hotel
Piyerloti cad. Dizdariye Medresesi Sk. No: 9/11 Cemberlitas
Istanbul
+90 212 518 9820

Quote:
Just a short ferry ride from Istanbul, the Princes Islands are a brilliant place to kick back and escape the relentless noise and bustle of the city. Other than emergency vehicles, motorised vehicles are not allowed on the islands which makes them very peaceful and makes walking more enjoyable. I love to walk but Istanbul can be hard work for walkers and so visiting the Princes Islands gives you an opportunity to stroll without needing eyes in the back of your head. Huddled together in the Sea of Marmara, each island has a character of its own and it's easy to forget the proximity of one of the world's largest cities. The Islands can be visited all year round but ferry and hydrofoil servic...Read More

Cordial House Hotel Istanbul

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Hotel | "Comfort and Cordiality"

Quote:
The Cordial House Hotel. It sounds like the kind of house that one of Jane Austen's characters might lodge at, doesn't it? The kind of place where sugary sweet staff indulge your every whim and the guests stroll arm in arm around the landscaped grounds. It's not like that at all.However it is a truth universally acknowledged that hotels should meet certain criteria to be considered acceptable so would Mr Darcy find anything to shout about at Istanbul's Cordial House Hotel?TRUTH NUMBER 1That a hotel should be comfortable and relaxing….A difficult one to judge. Our "double room" contained one single and one small double bed; this meant that we did not have...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 11, 2009

Cordial House Hotel Istanbul
Divanyolu Caddesi Peykane Soka
Istanbul, Turkey
902125180576

Grand Bazaar (Kapali Carsi)

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Attraction | "Let Me Help You Spend Your Money Madam!"

Quote:
Along with the Aghia Sophia and the Blue Mosque, no trip to Istanbul is regarded as being complete unless it includes a visit to the Grand Bazaar. It's fame is almost legendary but I have always found the response of tourists to be mixed; put simply you either love it or hate it.Always one to buck the trend, my reaction having visited this summer was "It was OK". This is why…Having been to Tunisia and Morocco I knew roughly what to expect of the Grand Bazaar. The hustle and bustle, rows of units selling the same stuff, confident and friendly traders, haggling for the best prices - yes, I now consider myself a veteran. I feel confident enough to haggle and am happy to walk away ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 11, 2009

Grand Bazaar (Kapali Carsi)
Kalpakcilarbasi Street
Istanbul, Turkey