Firstly I want to apologise for the late post. My arrival in Istanbul was much earlier than planned and as I had so much time I completely switched off and soaked up the experience that is this intense city.
Only now that I have started moving again that I have been proactive in keeping the blog up to date.
My first 2 weeks were spent in a bustling hostel called “Chillout Cengo”. It was a fantastic place to stay, staff and guests were so friendly, the location was brilliant and next door kebabs were about 35p! and all for £6 a night.
On several evenings we would all go out to watch live music and play backgammon over a water pipe.
One day we even had a trip to the beach on an island.
On occasions I explored the local markets and the Grand Bazaar. Traders selling everything from local craft to elegant foods.
There was a specialist touring bicycle shop in the city. Here I got some essential maintenance done for the mountains that await!
Istanbul really is a city that never sleeps, the early hours of night are busier than daytime and the entertainment never stops. Tram rides through the crowds are a common sight.
A must visit are the mosques. Some bigger and busier than others. Below is the blue mosque.
Views over the Bosphorus river from another mosque.
On week 3 a close friend from home, James, visited me. It was so nice to see a familiar face and catchup on everything thats been going on at home.
Thanks for coming out!
Chatting over dinner with a nice view.
We visited the Hagia Sophia, a very impressive building internally.
We also took our own walking tour of the city outskirts, escaping the busy streets and admiring some great architecture and views.
A local cat finding the book stall the most comfortable place to sleep!
One of a few nice parks to relax in.
As James’ time here ended a fellow traveller Barry, arrived.
We met up in England earlier this year and arranged to cycle together over Asia from Istanbul. He is cycling from London, England to Auckland, New Zealand.
Our ride now continues, as we take a ‘V’ shape through the country to Georgia via the stunning region of Cappadocia. We will also be chasing visas for our central asia stint. Not great fun but essential as this will be the remotest and extreme section of my entire journey!