City Breaks

Istanbul for Photo Friday

Istanbul, Turkey is a photographer’s haven. The city overflows with historic images, beautiful waterfronts, sophisticated designs and diverse people.  It’s a city that successfully embraces its past while driving forward efforts to create a modern metropolis.

I have wanted to go to Istanbul for a long time, drawn by its historical importance and rich culture. It did not disappoint! We absolutely fell in love with Istanbul. It was exotic enough to keep us completely engaged, but we were easily within our comfort zone, with fabulous hotels and spas, outstanding healthful dining and best of all, welcoming Turks.

There are multiple posts coming from this trip, but here’s a teaser for Photo Friday.


This is a picture of the Blue Mosque, which has an immediate impact simply due to its massive size. Then when you walk in to see the intricately designs with the famous Iznik tiles, you see why it’s one of the world’s greatest sites.


The spice bazaar is one of my favorite places because in addition to the abundant spices it was packed with locals doing their shopping. Vendors here sell a little of everything, including fruit, fish, cheese, coffee, souvenirs, and clothes.

“This is where I bought my fish last night,” noted our guide as we stopped by the fishmongers. Near the Spice Bazaar was our favorite restaurant, Hamdi and Turkish coffee shop Kahve Dunyasi.


The rituals, like the call to prayer five times each day, the washing before going into the mosque, and the praying are are fascinating to observe. There is a serenity in the repetition and consistency. Here, a couple men are washing before entering Sulyman’s Mosque (which I really loved due to the simplicity and design).


Here is a photo of a man praying in the mosque.


This is a street in the trendy Cukurcuma neighborhood, which has a funky appeal and terrific antique shops. This area reminds me of Paris.


Finally, this is a picture of the pool and terrace at the Four Seasons Bosphorus, a terrific family-friendly hotel in Istanbul. The hotel allows you to soak in the breezes and views of the Bosphorous. After long days of touring, this is a perfect place to rest.

There are many families here, as the pool is a perfect place for kids to play. The spa, which I didn’t save enough time for, is absolutely decadent — one of the best I’ve ever seen.

For more Photo Friday post, check out Delicious Baby.

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  • We spent two days in Istanbul while on a Mediterranean cruise this summer and I absolutely loved it! Would love to go back for a longer stay – though perhaps not in August. Sitting on my balcony and listening to the calls to prayer echoing across the city was one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever heard!

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