Day 254 - 258 : Taming the 'Bul
Trip Start Mar 23, 2010
114Trip End Mar 23, 2011
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Our next phase of travel wasn’t going to be overly straight-forward, and after having spent many weeks stationary, we were relishing the chance to go on another bold adventure. We set off from Amsterdam for an early morning flight (6am) after seeing a late-night gig (2am). Sleep was decidedly for the weak, so we pushed on – grabbing our bag (singular; really getting the hang of this light travel mumbo-jumbo) and getting over to Schiphol just in time with the last bus for the night
But, to get back on track, Istanbul was simply amazing. We arrived and were immediately basking in 25 degrees of warmth, a sudden and glad change from the -3 degree snow and arctic winds the Dam nailed us with. Second, we encountered the street merchants – juice, fruits, nuts, breads, yoghurts, cigarettes, phone cards and any other moderately useful tool or tasty snack you could want; all for under a euro. We were quickly taking a shine to this place.
We spent the day roaming around the bazaars, haggling for all sorts of trinkets; drinking endless amounts of šay as well as consuming all manner of freshly made sweets, Baklava & Lokum high on the list. We saw some amazing sights; the Blue Mosque being awe-inspiring, and very recommended; as well as having really great conversations with expats and locals, all of whom were extremely open and friendly. At night (after drinks in some very cool meyhanes), we got to bed down in another CS (thanks Yucel!), this time in a small neighbourhood outside the city totally devoid of any tourists – the look on the locals faces when me and Ann strolled through, picking up groceries, exploring and speaking our best Turkish was hilarious.
Our trip here was rejuvenating, the change in culture, language and setting being very welcome. To complete the cleansing, prior to our departure, we headed to a Hamam