I’ve had some early morning and late night flights in my time but 3.15am flight from Amman (Jordan) to Istanbul was something new. It might have saved me on a nights accommodation but it meant I was tired most of the day. I found a hostel to stay, threw my bag in and hit the Turkish city for a day of sightseeing starting at 8am.
Blue Mosque was soon followed by Aya Sofya (external only) and then I discovered Topkapi Palace Museum was closed on Tuesdays. As a result I hit the Bosphorous straight on a boat which took a lot longer than I expected! I thought it was two hours return but it was actually nearer to being two hours one-way with close to a three hour stop at the end before the return. The views were nice enough but there were far too many people on board. I fell asleep a couple of times and on arrival at Anadolou Kavagi I wandered through the cobblestoned streets and climbed up to Yoros Castle where I slept
straight away before changing my spot and falling asleep again! Still, it killed a bit of time and refreshed me in a place where there wasn’t that much to do other than eat in the many restaurants near the port. With my funds very low I couldn’t treat myself to a seafood lunch which the place is famous for. Instead I went for a fish sandwich which sounds simple and it is but its actually a local delicacy in Istanbul and cheap too. I even had another one later on in the day!
The two photos above are of hotels around the corner from my own hostel. On the left is the Four Seasons Hotel which used to be the infamous Sultanahmet jail depicted in the 1978 film ‘Midnight Express’. Opposite that hotel is the Park Hotel (above right) which features in Barry Eisler’s novel ‘Fault Line’ which by chance I was reading at the time. I slept very well that night in a dorm which even had curtains around the bunks for privacy which is something I’ve never ever seen. A good idea though.