This enormous city is a blend of Europe and Asia in the best possible way. Istanbul is one of the world’s oldest cities – but with its surreal landscape, delicious food, notoriously fun nightlife and vibrant culture attracting all sorts of visitors, the best is yet to come.
This is a visual experience of my time with my wife while in Istanbul – one of our last international trips before we have a baby. My advice: put on a paid of headphones and open the video up full screen to enjoy.
It’s a brisk winter day in Istanbul. Hot tea in hand, we sit on a sunny ledge looking over the Bosporus, on the edge of Europe gazing out to Asia in the horizon. The Call for Prayer has just ended, seemingly a thousand voices on loud speakers in unison resonating over the city. Alendar, our guide and a local who spent twenty-five years of his life here with his wife, has already taken us on a whirlwind tour through the Old City.
It’s only 10:00 AM and we’ve visited the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, the Underground Cistern, Hippodrome, and now we sit under heating lamps drinking Turkish coffee and tea from ornate china. While we’ve visited each of these sites in a short period of time, the experience has left my wife anxious to get back on our feet. We are here for three days to see as much of this interesting city as possible.
If there is one characteristic that summarizes Istanbul, it’s interesting – and that stems from its long transition from a Christian hub into a predominantly Muslim city. As many know, Istanbul was once Constantinople (and before that, Byzantuim). Istanbul was one of the most significant cities in history and served as the capital of four empires: the Roman Empire (330-395), the Byzantine Empire (395-1204 and 1261-1453), the Latin Empire (1204-1261), and the Ottoman Empire (1453-1922). With wave after wave of drastic cultural shift, modern day Istanbul is a both a European and Asian city. Think Rome with Minarets. As the sun sets over this massive city, the city’s colors morph into orange and purple hues.
Istanbul at Night, looking over the Bosporus.
This is a visual experience of my time with my wife while in Istanbul – one of our last international trips before we have a baby with us. My advice: put on a paid of headphones and open the video up full screen to enjoy.
Romantic Istanbul at Dusk.