Hello! Good day, good evening, etc.
Istanbul Day 3, and the first day that I haven’t felt totally like crap – so a good start to the day! Got up nice and early again (body still isn’t quite “with it” as far as the time difference goes) and had another wonderful breakfast here at the hostel before setting out for the day. I decided to explore the local area today, since there are so many beautiful sights to see nearby… a bit rainy when I left but not too bad, so I layered up a bit and ventured out the door.
First stop was the Blue Mosque, an absolutely beautiful building which is kind of the centre piece of the area that I’m staying in. Stunning architecture, huge building and beautiful surrounding, well worth the visit. It can actually be seen from the rooftop of my hostel too, which is pretty cool. After that I went across the road, past the cool fountain (which is nicely lit up at night) to the Hagia Sophia Museum – another wonderful building with some amazing history. Spent about an hour there touring the building and the grounds, and then I went off to the nearby tomb site to see some of the marvelous tombs created (and wonderfully restored/maintained).
Overall – a very architectural morning with a dash of history.
After this I decided to keep on walking and see what I could see… it started raining a bit more, but not too bad – I approached another museum but wasn’t really in the mood at the time so kept walking along. Saw the water front, so I thought I may as well go see that… which is easier said then done. It seems, in that area anyway, there is only one access point to get beyond the wall that surrounds the area and get to the water. So I found that, after a little searching, and decided to walk along the water, since I tend to enjoy that. During this time it started raining – actually, not just drizzling. Bleh. But I kept walking, figuring that there must be somewhere else that opens up… only I didn’t have such good luck with that.
Turns out had I walked a bit further I would have hit a tram stop that could have gotten me back, but unfortunately by that time I had decided I had no idea where I was and I should probably turn around, so I did… the rain stopped eventually, I got back into familiar territory, and being a little tired, wet and cranky, I settled down for a quick and cheap McDonalds meal (I KNOW! I’m a terrible person… surrounded by amazing food and I get McDonalds…), which was actually pretty nice – haven’t had a burger in a while.
I returned to the hostel after that to hang things up to dry off a bit, then decided to venture out again – this time, since it was still pretty crappy out, I thought I’d hit up the mall. Largest mall in Europe, 7th largest in the world, this one had a roller coaster in it (which was pretty fun to ride), cool arcade, movie theatre, etc, etc… so I spent a bit of time there, ate dinner at the biggest food court I’ve ever seen (drool), and returned back to the hostel.
And that was pretty much my day… happy I got to go out and see some of the sights, and even though it was a bit rainy, it was actually really nice to see… the streets are so beautifully built, and the city has so many little hills so the water was just running down everywhere. Fountains were nice and full, the buildings looked fantastic… it really was a breath of fresh air. I’m quite happy with Turkey, it’s a beautiful spot… so European!!!! 😉
Started reading a book tonight, had a FaceTime chat with my parents – sounds like my mom will be visiting me at some point in March which should be lots of fun (Harley will be staying home with dad), and all else is well at home. Apparently the weather is pretty nice there actually!
Soooo I’m off to bed. I might be doing a boat tour tomorrow which should be fun, or trying out one of these turkish baths that I’ve heard so much about. Have a good night!!!!