Istanbul Journals

Istanbul in May - more eating and looking

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A May 2012 trip to Istanbul by koshkha

El Torito Sultanahmet Photo, Istanbul, Turkey More Photos
Quote: More reviews from our trip with my parents, my sister and her partner - and the bears of course

Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmet Camii)

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Attraction | "Istanbul's Top (Free) Attraction - Pt2"

Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmet Camii) Photo, Istanbul, Turkey
Quote:
Our VisitWe turned up just about ten minutes before the noon-time prayers which meant we had to rush rather. It’s not appropriate – it may not even be permitted – to go in during the five prayer sessions each day and each can take up to half an hour. Seeing us standing outside the ladies checking that people were correctly dressed called down to us "Hurry, only ten minutes, please hurry". We entered up some stone steps – from memory I don’t recall any step-free way to get into the mosque – into an area for removing your shoes and covering up. Unlike many mosques where you leave your shoes with a shoe minder, the Blue Mosque encourages visitors to carry their shoes inside ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 22, 2012

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

Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmet Camii)

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Attraction | "Istanbul's top (free) attraction - Pt1"

Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmet Camii) Photo, Istanbul, Turkey
Quote:
Istanbul's most famous building?If you ask most people to name an attraction in Istanbul – especially those who’ve not actually been there - there’s a very strong chance that they will pick the so-called ‘Blue Mosque’, known more formally as the Sultan Ahmet Camii. There’s something about the name that seems to tantalize and intrigue and promise something rather special and indeed, as Istanbul mosques go, this is a gem – not so much for its architecture which is, quite honestly, not so different from rather a lot of Istanbul mosques, but for its richly decorated interior tiling.I recommend that everyone goes to see the Blue Mosque and goes early in their trip. You need to...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 22, 2012

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

Taking the Tram in Istanbul

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Story/Tip

Super Sleek Photo, Istanbul, Turkey
Quote:
Istanbul is one of the world’s biggest cities but for most visitors, the things they want to see are very close together and it’s easy to forget that 13.4 million people call this city their home. It’s a big city that feels – from the tourist point of view – like a very manageable small town. Many people who take a holiday in Istanbul book a hotel in the Old City and spend their time within a mile or so of that hotel, rarely if ever heading away from the small peninsular that’s home to the giant attractions of the Blue Mosque, the Hagia Sophia and the Topkapi Palace. There’s so much to see in the old city that it’s tempting to just stay put and not explore further afield and that’s pretty much what my...Read More

Fish + Bread = Fish Bread (of course)

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Story/Tip

View from Galata Bridge Photo, Istanbul, Turkey
Quote:
During our trip to Istanbul we had a lot of good meals but you don't always want the bother of finding a restaurant, sitting down and having a proper meal. Sometimes you just want something to 'grab and go' and my top recommendation for cheap, quick, food is to head to the south western side of the Galata Bridge in Eminomu and check out the boats selling 'Fish Bread' or Balik Ekmek. The lower level of the bridge is lined with bars and restaurants and throngs with locals, attracted to the bustle and the better prices than in the more touristic areas. We were there at about six o'clock in the evening after taking a cruise on the river and the place was very lively. On the river bank we found...Read More

El Torito Sultanahmet

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Restaurant | "Have you ever eaten 'testis'?"

El Torito Sultanahmet Photo, Istanbul, Turkey
Quote:
By the second evening of our stay in Istanbul, I suspect that the local restaurateurs must have been getting used to seeing our party of six wandering up and down the street, arguing over where to eat. On our first evening we'd practically caused a diplomatic incident after two restaurants were fighting over us and on the second night we vowed to be more decisive and not to play them off against each other. In fact we decided earlier in the day that we would go to the roof terrace restaurant of the Pierre Loti hotel. Of course it didn't happen. We were a little later going out than on the previous night and the sky was a bit cloudy and a wind had picked up. Sitting on the roof didn't seem like quite s...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 16, 2012

El Torito Sultanahmet
Pier Loti Caddesi No 5
Istanbul, Turkey
0212 265 04 82