Not being able to wait any longer I need to show you the second part of my pictures: These ones show less the touristic spots themselves and more impressions and portraits of random people and situations. I hope you like them!
This second day in Istanbul was already after the conference. And even though a day is never enough it was so intense I can show you a ton of pictures and tell quite some stories. Before going I was so inspired by this video I actually bought a Turkish Language book and tried to understand the logic behind the language. To learn it was simply impossible but even trying made me understand some tiny bits of things said around. And what a different feeling it is once you know how to say good morning and “do you have tea?” (which is the most crucial phase, you have to admit!)
Those are some of the people I had the chance to meet at the conference and get to know them even more during this very special last day in Istanbul. I guess without them it would have been just not the same amazing day. Thank you once again everybody for being so funny and open minded and always ready to switch from crazy to some deep talks.
Our journey that day started from the İstiklal Avenue in Beyoglue. We passed by the AIESEC office to collect some more people and continued to the Galata Tower. I heard it’s amazing to go up and see the view. Which we didn’t because it was too hot, too sunny and too expensive. Instead we went to Galata Konak Cafe, that also offered a nice view over the city. I guess it’s best to go with a smaller group (because less opinions) and also in the afternoon for nice pictures without super hard shadows.
After having a tea or snacks in the cafe we crossed the Galata bridge and watched the fishermen for a while. And once on the other side you’ll find yourself in the middle of the whole chaos, lovely place. Here you can find the Yeni Cami mosque, the entry to the spice market and approximately one million people. And corn wagons all over the place, how I miss that!
There is nothing more special while traveling than having a rough plan in mind and then getting lost on the way there. We tried to find the way to the Gülhane Parkı, a very famous park “close” to the Galata Bridge. Whenever you visit the city take into consideration that distances that seem short on the map will turn out to be one-hour-walks at least.
After the park we found our way to the water. It was painful to watch the cool waves without having any bikini with us. It was too dangerous to swim anyways, but still. You know, once you are there and are not prepared, life sucks sometimes. Ok, I got over it. For me this spot was really something special, I just sat there for a while, watched the waves and listened to the people around us. Somehow it’s a good reset from all the hubbub in other places in Istanbul.
After having some amazing Kebap’s we visited the Suleymaniye Cami Mosque and while waiting for the visitor’s time to stat, we fell asleep on the stone walls outside. Of course there are now some funny pictures being send around. But what can I say about Suleymaniye? It’s beautiful, less crowded that for example the Blue Mosque and a must-see since it’s the best known sight here. Important fact: It’s over 450 years old
On our way back to Istiklal we got lost several times, wandered around on purpose and through the already closed bazaar and passed by the university which campus was already closed unfortunately.
Our next stop then were the balık-ekmek boats, some fishing boats parking beneath the Galata Bridge and offering tasty grilled fish sandwiches. The best part: The sun slowly went down while we were busy eating and talking about the intense day.
Finally getting closer to Istiklal we did some late night souvenirs and clothes shopping. I am so not used to stores open until 10 or 11 at night! The day was wrapped up and ended in an Irish Pub and a disco later on: I was enjoying so much that I didn’t take any pictures. It was really such an amazing time, because of the people and the stunning, lively city. So if you are still doubting if visiting Istanbul is a good idea, I can assure you, all this is worth seeing and experiencing yourself!
By the way, it’s pretty dangerous what’s going on right now, with the attacks. So it’s not all amazing and fluffy all the time. Watch out and follow the news, let’s hope no more people get hurt or die there.