Just close your eyes and imagine a far away place where Orient meets Occident, where a bridge connects Asia with Europe, where the old Greeks, Romans, Byzantines and Osmans erected stunning buildings and now people from all over the world come to visit, admiring it's beauty.
Got the picture? No more guessing, it's Istanbul the former Constantinople, Capital of the East Roman Empire.
The sights, sounds and scents of the city are amazing.
When you walk through Istanbul, open not only your eyes but experience the place with all your senses.
So many long gone Empires ruled here and left their traces, the stunning Byzantine Hagia Sophia , one of the most beautiful buildings the world has ever seen, the amazing Blue Mosque, The Basilica Cistern, for sure the world's most beautiful water reservoir.
After hours of strolling through the city, visiting the many sights it has to offer, we decided to experience the ambience of Istanbul, enjoying a Turkish coffee at the garden of the Archeological Museum.
Surrounded by stunning vegetation, it's a place where time and the noise of modern Istanbul stand still for a precious moment and the old Greek columns, sarcophagus and sculptures seem to speak to the visitors.
The nights are long in Istanbul and in the evening there are many restaurants serving excellent Turkish cuisine making it quite difficult which one to choose.
Pricy roof top bars with amazing views invite visitors to sip drinks and enjoy the amazing views over the city.
Later, trendy nightclubs for the young and beautiful ones open their doors with the beat of Arabic and International Dancefloor music.
The next morning, I would recommend you to try some Anatolian Breakfast to recover your energies. It offers different kind of fruits, veggies, cheese, Philo past filled with spinach or cheese and wonderful honey with fresh made yogurt, the perfect treat to start a new day.
The perfect beauty of Hagia Sophia, built in the 6th century.
The splendor of the Ottoman Empire captured in this room at the Topkapi Palace.
Charms and decorations, used to repel the evil eye.
A colorful selection of hand made soaps.
Tasting Turkish Coffee at the Grand Bazaar
Sharing ou breakfast with this cute little fellow
A huge variety of bath sponges on display
The right ilumination for 1001 nights
The legendary Blue Mosque
Having tea at the garden of the Archeological Museum
A symphony in blue at the Topkapi Palace
Freshly made bread at a restaurant
The old city seen from the Bosphorus side
Our last evening at Istanbul - dinner at a friend's place with a to die for view over the city and the sea
Places to visit:
Hagia Sophia- http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/haso/hd_haso.htm
Chora Church - http://www.choramuseum.com/history/mosaics-and-frescoes/, one of my favorites, it-s mosaics are stunning. Unfortunatly, the main part is under restauration until 2016, but the entrance, which is open to the public is worth the visit.
Basilica Cistern - http://www.istanbultrails.com/2008/06/the-basilica-cistern-the-coolest-spot-in-town/
Blue Mosque - http://www.bluemosque.co/
Topkapi Palace - http://topkapisarayi.gov.tr/en
-A beautiful place to enjoy Turkish tea or coffee is the garden of the Archeological Museum
-Instead of the quite pricy and very touristic Bosphorus cruises take one of the regular ferry boats - an enjoyable aprox. 2 hours boat trip at a moderate price.