Search results for

istanbul

Our Last Day in Istanbul

Our last day in Istanbul was bittersweet.

honeymoon 1001  honeymoon 1003 honeymoon 1004

We had just learned our way around town!

honeymoon 1005 honeymoon 1006

On our last day we started out our day with a walk down to the Sea of Maramara.

honeymoon 1008

I was excited to be away from the museums of rocks and maps and down by the water!

 honeymoon 1015  honeymoon 1021  honeymoon 1028 

The backdrop of this photo is the Asian side of Istanbul. Another continent is right across the water!

honeymoon 1026 

I went down the boat dock and had to put my feet in the sea of Maramara. It was cold!

 honeymoon 1035

After our morning walk by the water we continued to check out the rest of Istanbul we had yet to conquer.

  honeymoon 1037  honeymoon 1039   honeymoon 1042   honeymoon 1048 

I was obsessed with the Evil Eye during my time in Turkey. It is a charm used to ward off evil – and we saw them everywhere!

 honeymoon 1050 honeymoon 1051 honeymoon 1052  honeymoon 1054 

Turkish lira seemed like fake money to me. It worked out quite nicely for us that it had a good exchange rate while we were there!

 honeymoon 1058 

There were also stray dogs and cats ALL OVER Istanbul. They would just be hanging out in the streets. The cool thing was they were all tagged by the city and seemed to be monitored.

honeymoon 1214  honeymoon 1222  honeymoon 1224 honeymoon 1226   DSC_0374

Charles and I walked down to the pier and watched these boats serve fish sandwiches fresh right out of the water.

 DSC_0395DSC_0375

Word on the street was that these bad boys were pretty tasty – Charles and I didn’t have the nerve to try them.

 DSC_0378 DSC_0379 

We then looked across the way and enjoyed the views of the modern city side of Istanbul, which is home to the Galata Tower.

 DSC_0384 DSC_0389   DSC_0392 DSC_0393  DSC_0586

We walked across the bridge from Sultanahmet to Karakoy – which links the old city to the new.

 DSC_0397

We took the funicular – a short underground railway up a hill – connecting the quarters of Karaköy and Beyoğlu.

DSC_0399 DSC_0400 DSC_0401

It was a 3 minute ride but was sooooo much better than walking up this massive hill! Hey! We are on our honeymoon here – we are allowed to be lazy!

DSC_0402 

At the top of the hill was Beyoglu!

DSC_0403 

We enjoyed a leisurely walk down İstiklal Street.

DSC_0408

It was BUMPIN’ for a weekday – so busy and packed full of people! It had a great vibe.

DSC_0577 DSC_0578 DSC_0579  DSC_0581 DSC_0583 DSC_0584 

After our stroll along Istiklal we stopped for a drink

DSC_0419 

Obviously a local favorite – a Cola Turka!

DSC_0421 DSC_0425

After our cola Turka break – Charles  and I met up with his cousin, Charlie – who happened to be studying abroad in Turkey while we were there! Seriously, what are the odds?

DSC_0551

Charlie wasn’t able to make the wedding, but he was able to meet up with us in Istanbul and be our guide for the day! He suggested we take a ferry across the water to the Asian side of Istanbul to check it out.

DSC_0429 DSC_0432 

It was amazing to get a view of the city from the water.

 DSC_0440 DSC_0441  DSC_0446  DSC_0448 

It was really cool to see the skyscrapers in Istanbul on the city limits and not actually in the Center City by the water. We believe it was because there were so many historical buildings and artifacts by the water, they couldn’t build big skyscrapers!

DSC_0459

And opposite the European side was the Asian side:

DSC_0456 

Pretty different looking, at least from the water!
 DSC_0462 DSC_0463 DSC_0465 

We arrived on the Asian side mid-afternoon. I was pretty excited to be on another continent!

 DSC_0483

Charlie took us to his favorite lunch spot in Asia.

DSC_0484 DSC_0487

It was a pretty neat little spot.

 DSC_0488 DSC_0489 DSC_0490 DSC_0491 DSC_0492

We enjoyed some local favorites

 DSC_0493  DSC_0495 

And then stopped for macaroons on the way home!

DSC_0501 

Before heading back to Europe! 

 DSC_0543DSC_0553 

It was a pretty neat little afternoon – our last in Turkey!

DSC_0588 

On our last night on the town we decided to check out a place with a view.

DSC_0615

We went out for drinks at the next hotel over, I enjoyed some Lions Milk.

DSC_0597

While Charles had the local beer – Efes.

DSC_0600

In true, old married couple fashion, we enjoyed a game of chess with our drinks and our view.

Doesn’t everyone play board games at bars on their honeymoons?

DSC_0601 

The best part about the game was that I WON – and I never beat Charles Chess! Woohoo!

(Bow to the Chess Master! 🙂 )

 DSC_0612 

All in all it was a pretty amazing few days in Istanbul – but it was just the beginning of our honeymoon!

DSC_0624 

Stay tuned for the next portion of our trip – Greece!

 DSC_0626

Istanbul, Turkey – Day 1

I am a little overwhelmed when thinking of recapping our honeymoon. We did so much and saw so much over our two week trip – did I mention I took over 4,000 pictures?! So there is a lot to recap and lots of pictures to sort through, but I am excited to relive our trip with you!

honeymoon 403

The first part of our trip began in Istanbul, Turkey. We weren’t planning on coming here for our honeymoon at all, but then we watched a Rick Steve’s travel video on Greece and it had an entire section on Istanbul and we both knew we HAD to go – and we are so glad we did!

honeymoon 404

We left Philadelphia for Istanbul on Monday evening so we arrived in Turkey during the day on Tuesday. We had lots of time to explore and take on the day. Our hotel was located close to all the action – we stayed in Sultanahmet which was really close to Topkapı Palace – Hagia Sophia – Blue Mosque – the main attractions!

 honeymoon 405

Since we had some time to walk around and take in the sights the first day, we decided to walk over to see Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque. Both of which we were going to see the inside of the next day on our tour, but we wanted to check them out and get a little sneak peak!

honeymoon 407

To me, the Blue Mosque was incredible. I had never seen anything like it before and I was blown away by the beautiful minarets (which is the tall pointy thing in the middle of the picture!)

   honeymoon 414 honeymoon 415

Charles and I just hung out in the courtyard of the mosque, we wanted to save checking out the interior of the mosque for our tour the next day,

honeymoon 420honeymoon 425 honeymoon 427

honeymoon 428

Just taking in the outside of the Blue Mosque was pretty impressive!

 honeymoon 432 honeymoon 433

This spot is called the “Facebook Spot” – I love it!

honeymoon 436honeymoon 437

A beautiful fountain separates the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia – two of the largest landmarks in Istanbul are right across from each other.

honeymoon 444 honeymoon 445 honeymoon 448

Hagia Sophia is a former Orthodox patriarchal basilica, later a mosque, and now a museum. It was the largest cathedral in the world for thousands of years!

honeymoon 439

To me, the outside of the Blue Mosque is more impressive, but the locals in Istanbul seemed to be more proud of Hagia Sophia!

honeymoon 449 honeymoon 451

Since we would be seeing the inside of this bad boy the next day too, we decided to take a walk and get to know our new surroundings!

honeymoon 452

It was such a gorgeous day – perfect temperature for walking around! Jeans and t-shirt weather is my favorite!

honeymoon 455 honeymoon 456

It was fun just walking around, exploring and getting lost in the streets of Istanbul, Turkey!

honeymoon 458 honeymoon 459

The streets were really cute. Is that weird to say? I enjoyed the cobblestone.

honeymoon 460

And it was such a gorgeous day that we ended up making our way towards the Topkapi Palace gardens.

honeymoon 464

I had only been in Istanbul for a few hours, but I was already in love. Everything was so clean and really impressive.

 honeymoon 470

honeymoon 471

After taking in some of the sights our tummies began to rumble so we stopped for our first Turkish meal!

honeymoon 472

We walked by this restaurant and I saw this giant bread basket and knew I had to have it!

honeymoon 473 

That is one big hunk of bread – but it was all hallowed inside!

honeymoon 476

To celebrate the first night of our ‘moon we got a lovely Turkish bottle of wine.

honeymoon 479 

It was delish!

honeymoon 480 honeymoon 481 

My first Turkish meal was a chicken kebab of sorts. It was very yummy!

 honeymoon 483 

We ended our meal with some Truva, which is a Turkish brandy, compliments of the restaurant.

 honeymoon 486

Check out the cute little restaurant – it was lovely to sit, watch the sunset in the sky and see the people walk by on the street.

honeymoon 487 

Pretty much an amazing first evening in Turkey.

honeymoon 489

Not a bad nighttime view of the Blue Mosque either!

honeymoon 492  honeymoon 495

At this point, Charles and I couldn’t wait to see what else Turkey had to offer – we had a fantastic first day and were so excited for the honeymoon to officially be underway!

honeymoon 493

Oh The Places I’ve Been

Today I said goodbye to an old friend.

DSC_0001.JPG

My passport.

DSC_0002.JPG

I have had this passport for a while now, it has been with me on many amazing travels but today I had to send it on it’s way.

DSC_0006.JPG

I am in the final stages of changing everything over to my new name and my passport was next on my list.

DSC_0009.JPG

It is crazy to look through and see all the places I’ve visited.

DSC_0012.JPG

I have grown to love my little stamps

DSC_0003.JPG

Favorite stamps include:

DSC_0007.JPG

All my stamps from Australia, including a Did Not Depart

DSC_0005.JPG

A pretty sweet stamp from Fiji – I love being able to say I’ve been there.

DSC_0004.JPG

Honeymoon stamps from Greece!

DSC_0008.JPG

DSC_0010.JPG

and Turkish stamp from Turkey

DSC_0011.JPG

I have been so blessed being able to fill up so many pages in my passport with stamps from around the globe.

DSC_0013.JPG

But today I had to say goodbye to my passport along with our marriage certificate and a hefty check in order to be given a brand spankin’ new passport with my new last name.

DSC_0016.JPG

I wish that we were able to keep our old passports, but I am very much looking forward to receiving my new one and filling it up with awesome stamps from around the globe!

************************************

If money or time was not an issue, where would you pick up and travel to right now?


The Ancient City of Ephesus

Next stop on our cruise, we were back in Turkey – but this time we were in Kuşadası, which is a resort town on Turkey’s Aegean coast.

honeymoon 2625

Kuşadası is a small port town on the Asian side of Turkey, it was a very different visit than our time in Istanbul!

honeymoon 2633 honeymoon 2638

The highlight of our trip to Kuşadası was a visit to the ancient archaeological side of Ephesus.

honeymoon 2639 honeymoon 2640 

Ephesus was an ancient Greek city, and later a major Roman city, on the west coast of Asia Minor. During the Roman period it was the second largest city of the Roman Empire, behind Rome!

honeymoon 2642  honeymoon 2645 honeymoon 2647

Charles was in heaven again with his rocks.

honeymoon 2649

Here are a few random fun facts about the ancient site of Ephesus:

honeymoon 2648  honeymoon 2650

The Gospel of John may have been written here.

honeymoon 2651 honeymoon 2652

Marc Antony & Cleopatra honeymooned here!

honeymoon 2653  honeymoon 2656 honeymoon 2657 honeymoon 2658  honeymoon 2660

Stray cats and dogs were not only randomly around Ephesus, we saw them all over our honeymoon! Most were tagged and the city knew about them, but it was weird to see them all over the place just hanging out!

honeymoon 2661 honeymoon 2821

I was really surprised to see just how spread out the ruins were – this was a pretty big city back in the day!

honeymoon 2664  honeymoon 2666

Just like in Athens, we were impressed with the details still preserved throughout the city.

honeymoon 2667 honeymoon 2668  honeymoon 2670

At the top of this hill is where the House of the Virgin Mary sits. It is believed that she spent her last days here and died in her home.

honeymoon 2671 honeymoon 2674 honeymoon 2675 honeymoon 2676

The fields in the distance used to be completely covered by water. Ephesus used to be an important commercial center and harbor but the water slowly silted up and is now WAYYY in the distance! Crazy, right?

honeymoon 2677  honeymoon 2682

We walked down the main street and stepped back in time.

honeymoon 2684 honeymoon 2685 honeymoon 2686 honeymoon 2687  honeymoon 2689 honeymoon 2695 

Check out the original mosaic tile in the street. Thousands of years old – I can’t believe it’s still there!

honeymoon 2697

Seriously, how gorgeous is this?

honeymoon 2698 honeymoon 2699

This is the remains from the Temple of Hadrian.

honeymoon 2700 honeymoon 2701 honeymoon 2702

Pretty impressive if you ask me, and I am not the rock lover in our little family.

honeymoon 2703 

Next on our tour we checked out the bathroom facilities.

honeymoon 2705

This was the area for the women.

honeymoon 2707

And here is where the men did their business. Pretty impressive facilities for thousands of years ago!

honeymoon 2708

The view from the toilets!

honeymoon 2709

Charles tested out the seats for himself.

honeymoon 2710 honeymoon 2711

Then it was time to head to the center of the city – which is home to the Roman Library of Celsus.

honeymoon 2715

This bad boy has been reconstructed from all original pieces – pretty impressive, right?

honeymoon 2716  honeymoon 2718 

The building faces east so that the reading rooms could make best use of the morning light.

honeymoon 2727honeymoon 2729 honeymoon 2730 honeymoon 2732  honeymoon 2734  honeymoon 2736  honeymoon 2738 honeymoon 2739  honeymoon 2741  honeymoon 2743

Can you find me in this picture?

honeymoon 2744honeymoon 2746

There I am!

  honeymoon 2748 

I then went inside the library, which once was home to nearly 12,000 scrolls as well as a statue of Celsus himself. The statue has been moved to a museum, so I got up there to show you where it once was.

honeymoon 2760 

Ephesus was bumpin’!

honeymoon 2762 honeymoon 2763

It really was a beautiful place to visit.

honeymoon 2764 honeymoon 2765 honeymoon 2766 

On our way out of the city, our last stop was the Theatre.

honeymoon 2772  honeymoon 2775 honeymoon 2776 

This theatre is MASSIVE! 

honeymoon 2779

At an estimated 44,000 seating capacity, the Theater is believed to be the largest outdoor theater in the ancient world.

honeymoon 2780

It’s hard to really show you how BIG it is.

honeymoon 2781 honeymoon 2782

See me doing dancer pose in the middle? honeymoon 2784  honeymoon 2791 honeymoon 2801  honeymoon 2806 honeymoon 2807

All I can say is WOW.

honeymoon 2811 honeymoon 2812 

I think this gives a better idea of its size!

honeymoon 2815 honeymoon 2816 honeymoon 2823 honeymoon 2826

After our time in Ephesus came to and end, we spent some time in Kusadasi by the water. 

honeymoon 2827  honeymoon 2829 honeymoon 2830

Charles and I ended up stopping in a cafe for a drink and we sat right next to the little fishies! Check out how clear the water is.

honeymoon 2831   honeymoon 2834

No surprise here – I got a Mint Cafe Fredo.

  honeymoon 2836 honeymoon 2837 

My new favorite (non-alcoholic) drink!

honeymoon 2839  honeymoon 2842

Along with our coffee break, came a lovely view.

honeymoon 2847  honeymoon 5563 

Next up on our travels – Patmos!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
error: Content is protected !!