Fighting the hordes at Topkapi

Istanbul Travel Blog

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Street entrance to Tokapi Palace

Breakfast was better this time as I took my own tea bag!  I packed some Roobibus tea bags in case the tea wasn’t to my liking and I’m glad I did! The sun had come out at last but it was still pretty chilly, today we were going to explore Topkapi Palace.  The palace dates back to the 15th century and was home to many Sultans until the 19th century when they moved to the more European style palaces like Dolmabache.  The entrance was through a stone arch then a nice stroll down through gardens brimming with Tulips down to another gate entrance.  I knew it was going to be busy it was tourist season and we would be sharing this palace with the hordes so it was time to sharpen the elbows!  The queue was pretty short and was 20Liras entrance with a separate 15Lira ticket to the Harem. We quickly browsed the display of carriages before heading over to the Harem  as it was close by.  The Harem was truly magnificent, the walls were decorated with ornate tiles of different designs and colours mainly hexagonal and Tulip designs.  The exit brought us into second courtyard with entrance doorways to various rooms with exhibits.  First we went out onto the terrace to get a good view of the Bhosphorus  before queing up for the treasury.  The treasury contained artefacts that were mainly gifts to the Sultan at the time, the usual pushing and shoving of people, sad to say mainly of European decent to get a closer look at the exhibits. One young bloke pushed in front of me so I gave him a good shove back, he was a little shocked, something he didn’t expect I guess! I was rapidly losing patience with the rudeness around me, Zehra thought it was funny which lightened my mood up a bit!  Another exhibit we went into had interesting armour of the Sultan’s time, Mohammed’s footprint and a piece of his beared, I enjoyed this exhibit more and reading about Mohammed’s life story also less people made it more enjoyable!  The last exhibit we explored was a Russian exhibition and only available for a couple of months.

We spent at least 4 hours here and we started to get tired and hungry so we headed out for lunch.  We stopped at a place that had red beanbags which we sat on for a while, then moved to a table so we could eat. A pregnant cat came and joined us and was begging for food when she realised we had nothing for her she went and annoyed the bloke behind us!  After lunch we headed back to the hotel for a rest and catch up on the diary and lookup flights for our trip to Bergama.  In the afternoon we decided on a cruise down the Bosphorus it was a bargain for 10Lira.  The cruise was not a formal one as there was no commentary but it was very pleasant.  We sat up on the top deck but the wind was very chilly so we had to go inside occasionally to defrost.  After the cruise we wondered over to Eminonu square to see the Tulip displays which were just beautiful then on the way back Zehra took me to a Backlava shop a Turkish version of a cake shop where we tried some delicious deserts. The one I tried was small green and cylinder shaped and contained crushed pistachios and was quite sweet, it was absolutely delicious. We also shared a chunky nut angel air looking desert.  We decided to stay in for the evening we had a big lunch and afternoon  tea so we weren’t hungry. Gave me time to catch up on blog and attempt to book flights!

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Street entrance to Tokapi Palace
Street entrance to Tokapi Palace
Inside Tokapi Palace grounds
Inside Tokapi Palace grounds
Inside Tokapi Palace grounds
Inside Tokapi Palace grounds
Main entrance into Tokapi Palace
Main entrance into Tokapi Palace
Harem at Tokapi Palace
Harem at Tokapi Palace
Harem at Tokapi Palace
Harem at Tokapi Palace
Harem at Tokapi Palace
Harem at Tokapi Palace
Lovely tiles inside Tokapi Harem
Lovely tiles inside Tokapi Harem
One of the courtyards in the Harem…
One of the courtyards in the Hare…
Harem at Tokapi Palace
Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Inside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Outside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Outside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Outside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Outside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Outside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Outside the Harem at Tokapi Palace
Terrace overlooking the Bhosphoros…
Terrace overlooking the Bhosphoro…
View of Bhosporus from Tokapi Pala…
View of Bhosporus from Tokapi Pal…
The library at Tokapi Palace
The library at Tokapi Palace
Tokapi Palace
Tokapi Palace
Tokapi Palace
Tokapi Palace
Tokapi Palace
Tokapi Palace
Tokapi Palace
Tokapi Palace
Tokapi Palace
Tokapi Palace
Lunch stop
Lunch stop
Fisherman down at the warf of the …
Fisherman down at the warf of the…
Views from the Bhosphorus cruise
Views from the Bhosphorus cruise
Views from the Bhosphorus cruise
Views from the Bhosphorus cruise
Bhosphorus Bridge
Bhosphorus Bridge
Dolmabache Palace from Bhosphorus …
Dolmabache Palace from Bhosphorus…
Bhosphorus Bridge
Bhosphorus Bridge
Old Mosque under Bhosphorus Bridge
Old Mosque under Bhosphorus Bridge
Cruising the Bhosphorus
Cruising the Bhosphorus
Cirayan Palace from Bhosphorus cru…
Cirayan Palace from Bhosphorus cr…
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Tulips in Enimonu Square
Afternoon tea, tasty sweets
Afternoon tea, tasty sweets
You see lots of these cafe/bar [pl…
You see lots of these cafe/bar [p…
Istanbul
photo by: Memo