Returning to Istanbul: Dinner Out in Taksim

After our 23+ hour bus ordeal,

we arrive at our hotel at 8:30 this morning. We have said goodbye to all of the group except Haluk, and when we arrive it is time to say goodbye to him. Haluk has been a joy to travel with: his knowledge of Turkey, its history, its geography, its politics, it is huge, and he has shared it with us with enthusiasm, although he must have repeated these facts and stories hundreds of times. Greg has very affectionately nicknamed Haluk the Oracle. Thank you, Haluk, for helping us feel like we have experienced the best of Turkey!

We spend most of the day napping, but we do venture out for a couple of hours. Our hotel is right in Sultanahmet, the heart of tourist Istanbul – near the Ayasofya, the Blue Mosque and the Topkapi Palace. We are planning dinner tonight in Taksim, tasting a more modern Istanbul.

We have been given an introduction to David, by Neil, who we met and hung with in Mykonos. David is a lawyer in the Istanbul office of the firm Neil is with. David is also a Canadian, a great virtue! We meet up with David for drinks and dinner, and he shows us a bit more of Istanbul, in Taksim, on the newer, trendier, side of the Golden Horn.

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