It’s a known fact: humans aren’t easy to satisfy – during hot summer days we dream about cold and during cold days we dream about summer. And this is happening to me right now, since I have a bunch of sweets (because nobody came in our building for sweets) and it’s cold, I’ve started to remember the great days we’ve spent in Turkey.
First we’ve stayed in Istanbul for 3 nights. What I loved most was the fact that even at 2 am families were in parks, with joyful kids and the adults drinking black tea. We’ve spent almost each night in Gulhane Park, where we’ve found a terrace from where it was a pleasure to admire Bosporus. The city was full of life at any time of the day! And imagine we’ve visited Istanbul in the last day of Ramadan and the next 3 days of sugar fest – so Grand Bazaar was closed, almost all the stores were closed. So we passed over the negotiation phase for everything, but there were still people on the streets trying to sell you something. I felt amused that each time we said we are from Romania we were hearing “Hagi, Gica Popescu”, but after all we still have some precious old war instruments in Istanbul won by ottomans in the wars with our predecessors.
In Istanbul I’ve been for the first time in a aquarium tunnel, I’ve seen a 4D movie and it was the only time I made corns on my foot from so much walking. And it was also the first time when I’ve seen so many people in one place – in the first day after Ramadan we’ve been in Taksim and I felt that everybody was on the streets. The city is full of colors, starting from the spice markets and ending to the beautiful outfit of women. The food was great, cheap and tasty. The water is also cheap and can be found at each corner (it’s not even compared with 1e as in Netherlands or 0.50e in Romania). All the trams have AC, so during summer time, for long distances, take the tram with confidence. But, of course, nothing compares with crazy walking, getting lost on the streets, eating a baklava at a hidden store or fresh watermelon. Oh, and how can I forget about the candies made right in front of your eyes – this activity reminded me about the summer festivals in Romania, in the country side, where people were making candies for the kids in open air.
My recommendation is to take the pulse of the city at each hour, to avoid wasting time at museums and just head out to the crazy, full of color streets. Visit the European part, but don’t miss the Asian part (it’s easy to get there with a ferry). Enjoy!