Thursday, 13 June 2013

ISTANBUL: Relax Your Soul

One of the most popular bazaars in Istanbul is the Grand Bazaar, but my favourite is after this journey the one in Yesilköy, which is not central and you definitely need cash to be able to pay. You can get anything you want there, from furniture to clothes, shoes and even a very nice and cheap lunch, the Turkish pastry dish, Gözleme.

Gözleme is done on a Sac.
This is a ferry commuting daily between the European and the Asian side.
The beautiful Bosphorus bridge.

Me on a windy ferry.
The marvelous Dolmabahce Palace. 
Ferry trip from Kadiköy to Eminönü. 
The traditional Turkish mocha served in a very vintage cup.
A classic menu in a park restaurant. 
Stuffed vine leaves called Sarma, very enjoyable with fresh salty yogurt and a traditional salad. 
Manti is Turkish tortellini served with a garlic yogurt sauce. 
Outdoor restaurant in Saray, which is a 2 hours drive from central Istanbul. 
Now and again, you will also see some old toilets, like this one in the park restaurant. 

A very good restaurant to have fresh fish is this place in Fetihpasa.

Kaymakli ekmek tatlisi is a very sweet dessert with a self-made delicious cream on top.

Getting hungry? No one wonder. Istanbul is the place for premium cuisine, to relax your soul, get inspired and live life to the full.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

ISTANBUL: Know How To Enjoy Life

One of the most beautiful walks along the Bosphorus are leading to Etiler and Bebek.
Each neighbourhood in Istanbul has a different character. Bebek is one of the most expensive places to live and the place to show off on a weekend, most likely by renting an expensive car and driving along the waterway.

A beautiful old house at the Bosphorus. 
Traditional Tavla board game. 
Turks love fishing in their spare time. You can buy small fish for a bit of money and enjoy them on a pan or even on a barbecue. 

This is the place to get fresh fish sandwich in Eminönü.
You can also get traditional pickled vegetables, Tursu, in Eminönü.

Nakkas restaurant was one of the most amazing restaurants in Istanbul I have ever been to. I guess I do not have to say anything when it comes to the following pictures.

Çiğ Köfte is a raw meat dish and very delicious with some lettuce. 
Ezme salad is one of my favorite salads, as it is very spicy. The one next to it is the patlican salatasi with grilled aubergines.

This is the kebap meat, served on some home-made wrap bread. Very different to how you get it served in European restaurants.

This is the beautiful Bosphorus bridge with a height of 105 m and a length of 1,510 m. It is impressive any time of the day but most spectacular in the evening with all the different colours highlighting it.

A less traditional lunch in a restaurant in Bebek.
This is the beautiful Galata tower.
Central Istanbul. Streets are mainly narrow and steep, a good workout after a heavy meal.

You can get fresh fish on the right hand side of the picture in Eminönü.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

ISTANBUL: Paradise Of Mosques

Istanbul has in my opinion the most beautiful and historical mosques in the world. My personal favourites are: Laleli Mosque, Sultan Ahmed Mosque also known as the Blue Mosque, Fatih Mosque and the Süleymaniye Mosque.

Very nice to look at is also the Hagia Sofia museum and the Galata Tower. Best is to go on top of the tower and take beautiful pictures from the Bosphorus. Istanbul has marvellous palaces, my personal favourites: Dolmabahce Palace and Topkapi Palace.

The traditional Turkish delight, Lokum, in different flavours. 

Boys get dressed up in this white costumes after circumcision.

Traditional Turkish Maras ice cream made of milk, sugar, salep, and mastic.

Grilled corn to go. 

Friday, 7 June 2013

ISTANBUL: Visiting Gezi-Park

Friday. It was time for me to get a better picture of the actual situation, so I went to Gezi park with my friend, to see what is actually happening in the heart of Istanbul. My pictures show how nice it was walking over the Taksim area, people singing along, dancing and enjoying being at Gezi park.

Most parts are covered with graffiti saying things about Erdogan and calling for freedom and democracy. I was very impressed by the barricades people set up against the police.

When I walked though the park, I felt the intellectual spirit of the people, fighting for a better future, a better life, more freedom and justice. There was a stage in the park with entertainment, free food was also given to the people, there was a medical area and even a library.

People seemed to enjoy being surrounded by the same spiritual human beings, sharing the will or big task for the nation. Everyone was very helpful, friendly, caring and peaceful, and so it was for the whole time except the first two days, when the police started to break through the Taksim area. Here are some pictures which show what happened when the police entered.

These protestors are different, not aggressive in any way, they were very calm and peaceful, they just had to protect and defend themselves from the police.