June 26, 2012

Istanbul Update #3

After describing Istanbul and how I'm feeling whenever I visit this gigantic city in my previous posts (here and here, if you haven't already seen them), I thought it was time to share some pictures, too. 

One thing I love doing while in Istanbul is spoiling myself and going out for lunch or dinner at awesome restaurants, preferably with a terrific view over the city. I went to Vogue and as always loved it, including the views I got. It may not look like anything special to you, but seeing this city from above makes it even bigger and more special, and at the same time very tiny - even just for a few minutes!

 *you get to see Asia across the water!

If you like fish you will not be disappointed in this country. If you don't like fish, they also have great meat. And if you eat neither, you won't be starving either. I think I ate way too much during these two weeks. I also discovered new and old restaurants and places to enjoy the vast culinary beauty this city has to offer.

The following pictures were taken from a roof top of a relatively newer restaurant right next to the Golden Horn. The owner is actually a fisherman but decided it would be terrific to open up a restaurant for the more fancy people rather than only serve fish traditionally downstairs next to the water...and so he did...and so we went and enjoyed Istanbul - the old Istanbul, the one you may read about in books. We kept saying "This is It" and "This is the true Istanbul!", and clearly...if you love history, culture, and food...just standing at the very top of that building overlooking rooftops and how the city slowly welcomes the night gave me the chills.

And I was just hoping the building was strong enough to keep us all safe and sound...from outside you'd think it's about to collapse...but nope...it's all safe and new inside. Another phenomenal contrast...the old and the new combined so easily as if it were nothing.






This is the drink you will see lots of Turkish (and some tourists too) drink. It is called Rakı, and is a hard alcoholic, unsweetened anise-flavored drink. May look like watery milk from afar but it is not. And yes, you read right it is alcohol...as in yes, it can make you drunk too. Ever heard Muslim people don't drink?! Well, some don't, and some do. Just like in any other religion. I won't go any further with this topic, but yes, alcohol is served...quite often, and quite well. Just saying. And no, only one glass was mine...thank you very much. :)


And besides lots of streets cats and dogs...I also saw lots of birds...this is just one of them, and I had to take a picture of it. Looks like he's wearing a scarf! ;) 

Every night I went to bed with the feeling that I truly accomplished something in this city. Whether it was just walking through the narrow streets trying to find the perfect pair of shoes (which I failed to find by the way), or the perfect top (I found one!), or the little street cafe I went in last year...I felt my mission was to see it all, feel it all and smell it all. I may not have seen or done what was on my 2012 to-do and to-show list but I managed to pretty suck Istanbul's energy up and go to bed accomplished. Even once at 7am. Whoops!

New York City may be called the city that never sleeps...but Istanbul is its twin. No doubt!

xoxo

11 comments :

Al said...

Never had Raki - my Muslim doesn't drink :( Booooo.

So glad you got to enjoy Istanbul again, darling. And thank you for posting, even though you said it wasn't your cup of tea (pun intended!!!) because you are reminding me of the splendor of that city and how much I miss it.

Love to you, friend.
xoxo

Christianna said...

Such awesome pictures! All the history you tell in these posts, which isn't a ton, but who cares, is very fascinating!

Krystal said...

you are kind of selling me on this city!

Leeann @ Join the Gossip said...

That bird looks so cool! And I do love fish so this is even more reason for me to visit with you :)))

Meghan said...

OMG. That's the view from a restaurant??? AMAZING! Ok, I think Istanbul is next on my list!

Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird said...

Hmm... what does Raki tastes like? It sounds interesting.

christine donee said...

I obviously need to go here. like... now.

Carol {Everyday Delights} said...

I have just loved all these pictures and posts - I SO have to go here! Beautiful pictures!!

Sam Morgan said...

I've heard of Raki, but I've never seen it before. These pictures are amazing. I love learning about Istanbul from someone who knows the town and culture so well.

Ocean Dreams said...

Sounds like you had a lot of fun and oh my gosh I would gotten drunk on that drink ha ha! The city looks stunning. Now I can see why you love it all the more.

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

So what exactly is in that drink? The photos look amazing of the town!

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