Off The Beaten Path In Istanbul
Off The Beaten Path In Istanbul

 

Exploring Off The City Beaten Path In Istanbul

 

Istanbul Turkey At NIght – It is always a fun adventure to leave the main city streets and attractions to discover the side streets and byways. Discovering Istanbul from the eyes of the locals, finding unique opportunities for food vendors, and seeing a whole new look of the city at night that most never see. Explore the small shops and the cobblestone walkways, while traveling the less traveled areas where the tourists gather.

 

Istanbul is a vibrant and busy city with a tremendous amount of activity in the evening. Both young and old are out in the public areas just going on walks, and enjoying the clear skies and food vendors who skirt the walkways. Corn on the cob and other street foods are ready and waiting for the nighttime adventure. Our whirlwind journey of photographs and information will be enough for you to decide the trip or just the short layover even at night is well worth the time and lack of sleep.

 

 

Istanbul Turkey At NIght
View of Istanbul at night via one of the many active bridges.

 

The Bridges Provide A Gathering Spot For Locals Who Just Want To Fish

 

From the bridges, you can see the city in lights, and be a part of the evening fishing culture. Even the announcement from the draw bridge operator brings a certain amount of excitement.

 

Our visit to Istanbul Turkey enabled us the opportunity to tour the city at night. Most of the time people focus on a cities day time opportunities, but at night people are alive with activity, and Istanbul is very lively in the evening. The cafes, eateries, and excitement of the people and all of the sights are lit up to show their beauty at night. Venders dot the area selling evening hot corn, and fountains are lit with the color displayed within the water fountains.

 

Walking the open Bridges

 

With a full moon, we venture on walking around corners, and into dead streets observing along the way. Our night tour allowed us the ability to also drive around without traffic and to stop easily along the way.

 

While Istanbul has many open markets and fish markets, there are times when you just want to catch your own fresh fish for dinner. Here you see the locals gathering on a bridge to fish. What an awesome experience for those who like to fish for dinner.

 

Baroque Clock Tower In Front Of Dolmabahce Palace
The Baroque Clock Tower In Front Of Dolmabahce Palace

 

Baroque Clock Tower  

 

The Clock Tower was the brainchild of Sultan Abdul Hamid II who lived in the late 1800s and early 1900s. It was designed and built by Architect Sarkis Balyan, and the project was completed in 1895. The clock stands 89 feet tall in front of the Treasury Gate Square nearby the Dolmabahce Mosque. While the tower is in the “Neo-Baroque” architectural style, the face of the clock has elegant “Eastern Arabic Numerals.”

 

A Photo Exploration Of Istanbul Turkey - Cookware

 

The Art Of Making Turkish Coffee

 

The Traditional Way To Make Turkish Coffee

 

It is made by taking ground unfiltered fresh Turkish coffee beans and boiling them over the lowest heat till they froth. It is then served and the remainder goes back on the cooking area till it froths a second time and then another serving is made.

 

Now, this is coffee!

 

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A hot cup of Turkish coffee to help you on your evening tour around the city.

 

Discover the world of Turkish food and relish the taste of Turkish coffee. This coffee goes well with Turkish delicacies such as Turkish Baklava, Keşkül, and Şekerpare.

 

Haseki Hurrem Sultan Hamam
Haseki Hurrem Sultan Hamam Bathhouse

 

The Haseki Hurrem Sultan Hamam 16th Century Bathhouse 

 

The Haseki Hurrem Sultan Hamam is an historical bathhouse from the 16th century.  Discover this amazing Hamam in our article :

 

These are some of the adventures of our time in Istanbul, Turkey. Look back, click on the former articles for more photos and details. Istanbul is a delightful city to explore. Next time you are traveling through the area, take time to discover the heritage and culture of the Turkish people.

 

The Haseki Hurrem Sultan Hamam or Ayasofya Haseki Hamamı Is an historical bathhouse from the 16th century. Ottoman Sultan Suleiman I commisioned the bathhouse to be built and it was built under the supervision of Mimar Sinan in Istanbul.

 

The Bathhouse History

 

The bathhouse is in the original design of all Ottoman bathhouses. There is a completely separate side with  different doors leading into the men’s and the women’s sections. The men’s section is arranged with a changing room that you enter first, then cooler room and finally the hot room where you can relax in the hot tubs. The women’s area begins with the hot room, cool room, and the changing room. This provides for the most efficient use of hot water.

 

Over the years the bathhouse fell into disarray and finally was closed.  For many years it housed a carpet shop. The bathhouse has been fully renovated from 2008-2011, keeping the original beauty and system of the Ottoman bathhouse. This newly renovated  hamam offers both basic and deluxe baths.  The facilities are  beautiful, efficient, and immaculately clean. Full-body clay masks and massages are both offered.

 

The Hamam is open daily from 8 am till 10 pm

 

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As you drive around and speak with the average person, and drink coffee all along the way you will enjoy this ancient city within all of it’s glory.

 

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The Ancient Egyptian Obelisk Of Theodosius I In Istanbul Turkey

 

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The Ancient Egyptian Obelisk Of Theodosius Of Pharaoh Thutmose III

 

A Photo Exploration Of Istanbul Turkey - A city at night - The Blue Mosque

 

The Sultan Ahmed Mosque

 

The Sultan Ahmed Mosque is one of the amazing mosques of Istanbul, Turkey. Discover the rich heritage, extraordinary history, and rich culture of this spectacular mosque.

 

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The Sultan Ahmed Mosque In Istanbul Turkey

 

Exploring The Sultan Ahmed Mosque In Istanbul Turkey - A close up of a tower - The Blue Mosque

 

Close Up Of The 6 Minarets As Well As Many Of The Mosques 13 Domes

 

The mosque is complete with 260 windows that were filled at one time with stain glass from the 17th Century. It has 20,000 handmade blue tiles on the interior.

 

Colorful Fountains Are Found All over The Sultan Ahmed Mosque

 

Colorful fountains are found all over the mosque that are for refreshing your face, washing your hands and feet at the Dome of the Blue Mosque. Shown is the top of the inside dome at the Sultan Ahmed Mosque, also called the Blue Mosque. The mosque gained the nickname because of all the many shades of blue used in the inside tiles. Over 20,000 of these beautiful blue tiles adorn the walls of the mosque.  These tiles are in over 50 different tulip designs, other flowers, and Cyprus trees.

 

Exploring The Sultan Ahmed Mosque In Istanbul Turkey - A close up of a stone building - The Blue Mosque

 

The Base Of Many Colorful Fountains For Washing At The Sultan Ahmed Mosque

 

These large tubs with running water make it easy to follow ritual cleansing rules while worshiping at the mosque.

 

The mosque is open to tourists to view and is also an active Muslim Mosque. Women are asked to be covered and to wear a scarf. Robes and scarves are provided at the entrance. Men are also asked to wear long pants and shirts. The mosque is an amazing place and should be on everyone’s radar while in Turkey.

 

A Culinary Adventure In Istanbul Turkey

 

The Mihri Restaurant 

 

The Mihri Restaurant is located inside the Hurrem Sultan Hamam and is a full-service Turkish Restaurant. The food is excellent and the service is amazing. The restaurant is open daily from 10 am till 7 pm. The Mihri is the perfect place for lunch or dinner, after your visit to the bathhouse.

 

While in Istanbul, Turkey, a visit to the Haseki Hurrem Sultan Hamam is a wonderful gift to yourself. Take time to experience a luxurious hot bath, followed by a full massage. Then finish the day having a spectacular dinner at the Mihri Restaurant. What an amazing end to a perfect day.

 

food on Istanbul Turkey

 

 Baklava With A Turkish Touch,  Keşkül ~ Turkish Almond Pudding, And  Şekerpare 

 

Does almost everyone know what Baklava consists of? But have you had it with a Turkish Touch? Throughout the Middle East; the Caucasus, which is a region at the border of Asia, Europe, the Black Sea,  and the Caspian Sea, and of course modern-day Turkey, comes a wide variety of Baklava. Traditional Baklava by nature is over sweet, made with walnuts and phyllo dough, and then it is soaked in honey.  When you are sure there is no version that is a favorite among the many recipes, you encounter Turkish Style Baklava. In Turkey, you will see that pistachios are usually used instead of traditional walnuts. There are also several other small changes made from the other recipes. The end result is amazing.  This is the king of the Baklavas.

 

Then there is the discovery of Keşkül, and almond pudding made with milk, coconut, and pistachios. It is usually served in a special bowl with a spoon. Sprinkled on top are coconut flakes and pistachio pieces. The name, itself, has an interesting story behind it.  In the time of the Ottoman Empire, this was the name of a special bowl that lodges used for begging money so that the lodge could make this special pudding. The pudding was then served in these same bowls and given to the poor.  This special dessert is served in these same bowls even today.

 

Our next major desert is  Şekerpare . It is by far the favorite among the Turkish people and is so easy to make. In a nutshell, it is an almond pastry that is dipped in a very thick lemon-flavored syrup. This is simple and delicious.

 

food of Istanbul Turkey

 

  A Street Vendor Selling Warm Roasted Chestnuts And Fresh Grilled Corn On The Cob  

 

Taking your time to wander the side streets of Istanbul, Turkey as well as the major will render many such vendors as the one in the photo. It is easy to grab a bite of lunch as you check out monuments, museums, and other places of interest. In Turkey, like all of the Middle East, there is little reason for going hungry.

 

outside dining food of Istanbul Turkey

 

Relaxing With Food And Friends

 

How do you end that perfect day? You have met new friends and you just want a bite before returning to your hotel, as dinner will be later.  Why not visit one of the small eateries and have a snack with Turkish coffee.  Good conversation and coffee, seem to just go together. 

 

On your next adventure to Turkey, we hope you are inspired to explore the world of good eats, Turkish style.

 

 

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