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Istanbul - Sunday - What to do????

Old Apr 15th, 2014, 04:40 AM
  #1  
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Istanbul - Sunday - What to do????

Our cruise makes Istanbul the port on a SUNDAY. Sadly, we cannot visit the mosques that day (which is the main thing I wanted to visit). Other than going to the spice market, or carpet shopping; what else can we do their for the day? Need good suggestions, especially to convince another couple going with us that it is safe to get off the ship! Thanks everyone.
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Old Apr 15th, 2014, 05:08 AM
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The Hagia Sofia is open, certainly one of the city's great sights. Also Topkapi Palace. Those two will take up most of your day.
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Old Apr 15th, 2014, 05:55 AM
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Istanbul is very easy to do on your own from a cruise ship. You can catch a tram pretty much across the street that will take you to the main sights. My first choice is Topkapi palace, definately including the harem. This sight will take you proably 3 hours. Nearby is Hagia Sophia and also the cistern, which I think is open Sundays - it does not take long to see the cistern and it is very unique. I do suggest you either get a guide book, Rick Steves Istanbul is good, or do some more on-line research.

If it is a nice day and you like to walk, you could probably walk back to the ship across the bridge. Personally. I would have very little concern about safety. I'd suggest if your travel companions are nervous, either leave them onboard or all of you join up with a tour (from the ship? small group with roll call friends?) but don't miss seeing what you can of Istanbul. Afterall it was just voted the #1 tourist destination on Tripadvisor!
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Old Apr 15th, 2014, 06:41 AM
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RRT25, you have good advice.

In fact the Spice bazaar may not me open at all and most of the carpet shops will also be closed on Sunday.

I do not understand why you cannot visit the mosques on a Sunday but I can hazard a guess.

You can also take a 90 minute Bosphorus tour on a Turyol boat from the Eminonu end of Galata Bridge, on the Golden horn side of the bridge.

Do not forget to buy some baklava from either Gulluoglu or better still Koskeroglu which is on the street behind the multi-storey park, as you walk to or from the ship.
otherchelebi is offline  
Old Apr 15th, 2014, 07:13 AM
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Visit the Hagia Sophia, the Cathedral of Constantinople and head of the Orthodox World for over a Millenium. It truly is a Wonder. I find the Mosques a bit boring, there is nothing special on the inside, they are all the same to me, and the exterior is just a copy of Hagia Sophia. Instead visit the Byzantine Sights of the City, much more interesting, like the Chora Church which is rich in Mosaics.
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Old Apr 15th, 2014, 01:40 PM
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Hello Otherchelebi!
How's life with you? I remember you were moving, to your country house, I think? Hope all is well with you & your girls.

Apologies for the hijack, RRT25, just wanted to say Hi to one of my favourite Fodorites.
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Old Apr 15th, 2014, 01:57 PM
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Hi Bokhara2. Have spent more than usual at country home this Winter but a permanent move was impossible. Eser now on ethics committee of the Social club and also advisor for the restaurant at Iznik home. Things are tough but fun. Planning 6 weeks in Chicago in August-September.

If you're on twitter, you may enjoy my tweets, most of which are in English : https://twitter.com/ahmetcelebiler
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