Gobble-Gobble-We're in Turkey!

Trip Start Dec 22, 2009
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Trip End Jun 22, 2010


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Flag of Turkey  ,
Saturday, January 16, 2010

Istanbul was more than anything that I could ever expect.  Upon arriving to the ancient center  of the world (aka Byzantium aka Constantinople) we were immediately scammed. First we scrambled to call our hotel to find out if they extended the pickup service to their Expedia customers… they happily declined. Once we got the thumbs down, we attempted to decipher the local metro map and were happily assisted by someone who appeared to be a member of the Turkish Tourism Bureau. The nice man was actually a member of a rental bus company who overcharged us roughly double the cost of transport to our hotel. (We found out that he completely lied about the complexity of the tram system once we arrived to our hotel).

Upon arriving to the hotel (40 Turkish Lira lighter) we were greeted by the kind folks at the Yasmak Sultan; what we didn't know was that this would later be our prison because we booked way (way) too many days during Turkey's freezing rain season. Laura was excited about the prospect of a fancy Turkish hotel with sauna/baths, gym and breakfast inclusive, only to later claim this was the saddest example of all of the above. Who eats olives for breakfast? I found perhaps some of the worst cheeses I have ever tasted in Turkey and I love cheese!

So  what the heck did we do for 7 days? That is easy: we ate lots of Kebabs and Kebab related cuisine.

Between kebabs, we toured the Topkapi Palace (the grand seat of the Turkish Sultans and Ottoman  Empire). Witnessed the living quarters of the Sultan's 1,000 wives (the Harem) as well as some of the greatest Mosques of the entire world.

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