(We started this blog in May 2017, and now we want to try and record the things that happened in June 2015 when we were in a group tour in Turkey. Memories might not be as vivid, since we did not keep a travel journal at that time. But definitely it’s worth a try making a record anyway. Hope you enjoy.)
June 26-27, Istanbul, Turkey.
The journey started with a pleasant flight with the Turkish Airlines from Hong Kong to Istanbul. To get a sip of how Turkey is like just on the plane, we ordered Raki, an alcoholic drink which is popular in Turkey and adjacent region. It has a strong smell and taste of alcohol. I know it is personal but I would say it is really for experience purpose.
We arrived at Istanbul in the morning. The weather was great and the sky was all blue! All the people from the tour were excited and started taking pictures.
We took some time walking at the square before heading to the first spot of the trip – Sultan Ahmed Mosque, aka the Blue Mosque. As expected, women would have to cover their hair and some skin before getting into the mosque. From my understanding, it is because they consider the hair as the most attractive part of a woman and women would only let their husband know how their hair and skin look. They never show it to the public. For the younger generation, and for Turkey being an open Muslim country, they do not really adhere to such a tradition. But of course inside a mosque, we all respect their tradition and do the same.
The Blue Mosque afterall is not really that blue from the outside. It is still those marble rocky color. But the inside you can see the use of the dreamy blue color. It definitely stunned us and we couldn’t make ourselves leave the mosque.
There is also one thing special about the Blue Mosque. Usually there are 4 minarets surrounding the mosque, one at each corner. There is a saying that the architect, when building the mosque, misheard the Sultan’s request to have “golden minarets” as “six minarets” in their language.
The next stop was the Topkapi Palace. There are treasures from around the world being shown in the rooms. Honestly we did not have a good memory of this place. That being said, the place was still a decent place for a visit.
Finally, we went for a boat journey across the Dardanelles Strait to Canakkale and called it a day.
All posts related to Turkey 2015:
Turkey 2015 – Istanbul (We are here)
Turkey 2015 – Troy and Pergamon
Turkey 2015 – Ephesus and Pumukkale
Turkey 2015 – Antalya (in the making)
Turkey 2015 – Cappadocia (in the making)
Turkey 2015 – Istanbul (in the making)