A Palace Tour

Trip Start Jul 07, 2011
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138
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Trip End Jul 31, 2012


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Where I stayed
Amber Inn Hotel

Flag of Turkey  ,
Monday, April 16, 2012

We had a pretty short day of touring today as Chris was pretty sick. He work up this morning not feeling great, but seemed well enough to head out for a visit at Topkapi Palace. This was an Ottoman Palace and construction began in the mid-1400s. Apparently the palace was used for over 400 years. We walked through the first and second court to begin with, which are really an area of big gardens and there is a viewing area of some old carriages. We had to pay extra to enter into the "Harem" area, which was the sultan's private family area. His collection of wives and girlfriends, as well as the eunuchs that looked after them lived there. We were able to walk through a bunch of the rooms and courtyards. I think there have been a series of fires there over the years, but a lot of stuff inside the palace has been restored. Inside the third court, the main attraction was the treasury. While there were tons and tons of jewels to see, one of the main attractions to see is the Topkapi Dagger. The whole thing is covered in gold and has three enormous emeralds set in it. There was even a heist movie that revolved around stealing the dagger. The coolest thing to see though was the Spoonmaker's Diamond, an 86 carat diamond, surrounded by almost 50 diamonds. Legend has it that someone at the bazaar bought it for three spoons thinking it was a worthless piece of crystal. Crazy!!! Unfortunately, that was the last thing we were able to see at the palace. Chris looked a weird shade of gray by this point, so we decided it was time to put him back to bed. We did miss the fourth court, so I guess we'll have to go back another time to see everything there. 
I walked back to the park for some lunch by myself, but eventually ended up heading back to the hotel and sleeping for a good 2 hours or so. We went out for dinner, but it was definitely more for me than Chris. Hopefully, he feels better tomorrow!! 
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