Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Trip to Istanbul

I just got back from an amazing trip to Istanbul, and as you might expect, I took a LOT of pictures (about 500). They're all up on Flickr if you want to see them, but since I know most of you (except my parents) will click through only a page or two before getting bored, here's a short selection of my favorite photos that I took. These aren't necessarily the best ones, but I tried to select shots that would quickly show you everything I did and highlight some of the more interesting bits.

P3241864.JPG
The Blue Mosque, which was within walking distance of my hotel.

P3241980.JPG
The Hagia Sophia, also within walking distance of the hotel. These two photos were taken on the same day, a few hours apart. Istanbul was often cloudy in the morning and sunny by noon.

P3241924.JPGP3241928.JPG
My pathetic attempts at capturing just how enormous the Hagia Sophia is.

P3241941.JPG
I thought that this light was very tasteful and blended well with the surrounding architecture.

P3241964.JPG
This is probably one of the least intelligent things I have seen a parent do with his child. Yes, this is on the second floor, 40-50 feet up.

P3241993.JPG
Now over to the Blue Mosque (which is only bluish on the inside).

P3242002P3242003
Two interior shots for awe inspiration purposes.

P3242015
And then onto the Basilica Cistern. The scary lighting got old after a while.

P3242025
But I did quite like the Medusa head that had been repurposed as the base of a column.

P3242040
On my meanderings through the west side of the Old City, I stumbled onto a pedestrian underpass that was also an enormous bike market.

P3242046
The Suleymaniye Mosque, which apparently inspired the Blue Mosque.

P3242048
The interior of the Suleymaniye Mosque. Not as flowery as the Blue Mosque, but I like this one a lot too.

P3242059
This is the (overpriced) Spice Bazaar. I ended up finding spices at a nice place across the river for much cheaper.

P3242068
How many Turks can you spot? That's why it's overpriced.

P3242095
The tiny (but free!) Istanbul Railway Museum, tucked into a single room in the train station near the Spice Bazaar.

P3242118
The very pleasant park next to Topkapi Palace.

P3272138
The church, not mosque, inside the palace grounds.

P3272163
Some tiling on the walls of Topkapi Palace

P3272204
The library in Topkapi Palace. I think I would be happy if my house had only one room as long as it looked like this.

P3272222
The War on Terror commemorative chess set! Complete with twin towers as castles. Hilarious...except not.

P3282230
There are a LOT of cats in Istanbul, and they basically own the place, as this one demonstrated.

P3282234
On a whim, I decided to visit the Prince's Islands instead of viewing yet another very old Ottoman palace. That was probably the best decision I made during the whole trip.

P3282250
The heavy machinery at the port on the Asian side of Istanbul.

P3282265
Exiting the harbor.

P3282268
The boat ride is about an hour long, so feeding the gulls is a favorite pastime.

P3282290
Wish I could have stopped at that island.

P3282319
On the main island, Büyükada, there isn't really anything to do except rent a bike and ride along this road overlooking the ocean. Which is fine by me.

P3282323
A sailboat near the shore on Büyükada.

P3282345
There were a lot of nice houses on the island, but I thought this one was particularly cute.

P3282361
Not all the houses were in good condition though.

P3282359
I was a little creeped out by the shoes lying in the courtyard of this abandoned house.

P3282383
Departing Büyükada in the late afternoon.

1 comment:

Patrick said...

Awesome pictures, man. That's one of my most desired destinations. I always thought Istanbul would be a really cool place to see.