4 days in Istanbul: not a Guide, a Diary

It took me some time to write these posts, clearly, since our trip was back in June 2019. But I didn’t want to rush it. I took my time reminiscing about the trip. Like telling a friend a story, instead of an excursion tour.

Here’s a recap of it, day by day:

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4th Day in Istanbul – Wandering through Sea and Sky

Our 4th and last day before taking a plane to Kapadokya was one to decompress. A boat tour going up the Bosphorus was going to keep us occupied for 6 hours. We started very early that day because we were catching the boat at 10:30 (if I’m getting up before 10:00 am on vacation, it’s very early).

Very important tip: don’t purchase the 20+ euro tickets you see everywhere for a boat ride on the Bosphorus. That’s a giant tourist trap. If you go to the very discreet Şehir Hatları ticket booths, Istanbul’s official ferry company, near the docks, you can purchase a ticket for a 6 hour tour for 25 Turkish lira (little under 4 euros). That’s what we did.

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3rd Day in Istanbul – Old Palaces and Ancient Places

Third day in Istanbul, and we woke up with a sense of urgency – there was still so much to see. Getting lost in the city was not an option this day. We headed for Topkapi Palace, aware that it was a time consuming experience, and considering skipping lunch altogether.

A kiosk on a street corner, across the street from the entry road that leads to Topkapi Palace, that we passed by almost every day. It became a reference point and a token image of Istanbul for me.
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First Day in Istanbul – The Erten Konak Hotel

First day at Istambul: the sun has already set when we arrive. Trying to decipher the public transportation system while carrying a very large trolley and reassuring a very jumpy Sir Boyfriend who was transporting, unbeknownst to me, my engagement ring in his baggage, I’m somehow able to get us across Sultanahmet Square, through the surrounding streets, passing by a myriad of tourist-trap like restaurants and descending to our very discreet and concealed hotel, guiding us only by memory of what I’ve seen on Google Maps – because we had no wifi.

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