Travel

Forget Harem Pants, Visit the Harem at Topkapi Palace

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harem-topkapi-istanbulSo the free breakfast at my hotel is so much nicer than my hostel was. OK, the hostel had a rockin’ free breakfast of toast, hard-boiled egg, butter, honey, jam, fruit and tea. But hotels have treats like halvah! Now to recap last night’s conversation with N (my roomie)… we had a disturbing chat about Russia, Georgia (not in the US friends!), and the USSR. I wanted to say, “seriously?” OK, enough of that gossip.

Today we visited the mini Blue Mosque (it’s an exact replica), walked around the Hippodrome, returned to the [big] Blue Mosque and finished at the Aya Sofia. I loved having a local guide for the entire walk. He was great, and really knew his info. We had some interesting conversations about secular Turkey, Muslims, etc. The Aya Sofia is massive… so cool to learn the history of it being a church and a mosque and now a museum. We had tea at a corner tea shop and sat outside on the cushioned lounges — really breazy and relaxing. Now I know what I want in my future backyard.

I had an eggplant, veggie and fries kabab sandwhich for lunch. Amazingly delicious. After lunch, us girls went to tour the Topkapi Palace. Gorgeous and way too much to see! The price was a little steep though (apparently they randomly doubled the entrance a week before!). The Harem was the coolest part and after several hours we left and had dinner up by the tram tracks. I had my usual — lentil soup, bread and beer. I could gain weight in this country!