Our cruise concluded in Istanbul, we spent one night on board ship, and then the four of us transferred to a hotel directly across from the Hagia Sophia for two more nights.

When we arrived in Istanbul, the weather had become very overcast, with occasional rains (very unusual for that time of year, but it did keep the temperature down.) Our first sight sailing into Istanbul was a tremendous number of cargo carriers and other commercial ships waiting their turn to move into the commercial dock.
Our last cruise excursion was a boat trip up the Bosphorus, looking at the various yali's (Ottoman houses) and other interesting buildings including a fortress, Egyptian consulate, and a few palaces.
The next day the four of us departed the ship, and had arranged a guide for the day to take us around Istanbul. (Just a van this time, no 40 person bus.) We started at the Kariye Muzesi, which at various times has been a Catholic church, a Byzantine church, a mosque, and is now a museum. It has perhaps the best mosaics in Istanbul. We next went to the Topkapi Palace, which once house 5000 people. In addition to the rooms shown below, we also saw the Treasury and Sacred Relics, but no photography was allowed in either place. Next up was the Hagia Sophia - an huge building that also started as a Byzantine church, became a mosque, and is now a museum and then the Blue Mosque.
We made a couple trips to the Grand Bazaar - one to get a sense of it, and the follow-up trip for the real shopping. That wrapped up our time in Istanbul, and on the trip itself.

Cargo Ships Waiting at Istanbul at Dawn

Cargo Ships Waiting at Istanbul at Dawn

Toptaki Palace from the Bosphorus

Toptaki Palace from the Bosphorus

Rumeli Hisari Fortress

Rumeli Hisari Fortress

Bosphorus Three Houses

Bosphorus Three Houses

Bosphorus Yali

Bosphorus Yali

Bosphorus Mannequin Yali

Bosphorus Mannequin Yali

Egyptican Consulate

Egyptican Consulate

Beylerbeyi Palace

Beylerbeyi Palace

Dolmabahce Palace

Dolmabahce Palace

Topkapi, Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque

Topkapi, Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque

Night Time Topkapi, Sophia, Blue Mosque

Night Time Topkapi, Sophia, Blue Mosque

Kariye Müzesi Exterior

Kariye Müzesi Exterior

Kariye Müzesi Mosaic Closeup

Kariye Müzesi Mosaic Closeup

Kariye Müzesi Ceiling Mosaic

Kariye Müzesi Ceiling Mosaic

Kariye Müzesi Interior Dome

Kariye Müzesi Interior Dome

Topkapi Palace Entrance

Topkapi Palace Entrance

Topkapi Imperial Divan Exterior

Topkapi Imperial Divan Exterior

Topkapi Kubbealtı Entrance

Topkapi Kubbealtı Entrance

Topkapi Kubbealtı Interior

Topkapi Kubbealtı Interior

Topkapi Audience Chamber

Topkapi Audience Chamber

Categories & Keywords
Category:Travel and Places
Subcategory:Middle East
Subcategory Detail:Turkey
Keywords:Istanbul