22 Things I like to do when the airplane lands in Istanbul:
1. Feeling the magic that is in the air all over the city. It is that feeling that you cannot describe with words.
2. The beautiful view from Galata Tower and also from the Pierre Loti Café.
3. Drinking dozens of cups of apple tea and fresh pomegranate juice while strolling through the city.
4. Talking and laughing with the Turks. They are so generous, friendly and funny.
5. Exploring Istanbul by night around Istiklal Caddesi to places such as the Bar 360 with its amazing view.
6. Eating baklava and tasting all other Turkish sweets such as kazandibi.
7. Taking a boat for cruise to the Prince’s Islands and enjoying the Bosphorus.
8. Asking a DJ or live music group to play my favourite Turkish song Anlamazdin Anlamazdin… the song reminds me of someone!
9. Trying to find where my favourite Turkish film took place, especially the last scene which was thrilling. The name of the film is Issiz Adam! Love it!
10. Going for a hamam in the Cemberlitas Hamami Turkish Baths and all of a sudden learning that they have a special price only for Greeks and they do it just because. This is what why call love!!
11. Losing myself in the narrow streets of the Spice Bazaar and in the Grand Bazaar, preferably not in the weekend because it is extremely crowded.
12. Taking a boat to Kadikoy, a beautiful way to pass from the European to the Asian sides of Istanbul! Wandering through the crowd, you can find thousands of small shops, you can taste the Turkish coffee, doner kebab and more.
13. Trying to negotiate for a better price and manage to take everything in half price!!!!
14. Going for shopping in the street Abdi Ipekci in Nisantasi.
15. Asking from a fisherman to give you the fishing Rod and trying to catch a fish in the Galata Bridge.
16. Taking a taxi or a dolmus and let the driver drive you crazy…
17. Visiting all the monuments in Sultanahmet area such as Ayasofya, Top kapi, The Basilica Cistern, BlueMosque. They are next to each other. Don’t forget to visit the Archaeological museum.
19. Finding a beautiful Turkish guy and propose him that if you dance for him, he should then cook for you, like in the film “A touch of spice”. I don’t think that they will say no…
20. Taking pictures of the colourful houses in Balat, a different side of the city and playing with the children. If you buy them an ice cream you might have the honour to get a kiss from them.
21. Strolling in front of the Ortakoy Mosque when the sunset falls with the view of the Bosphorus bridge behind you.
22. But the best of all was the life lesson, that I already knew, but it is proven to me one more time. People who don’t have a lot of money are the people that they will treat you with the best way. They were the one that gave us to eat without wanting money, they were the one who told us “thank you for coming in Istanbul” and from their way, you could feel it, that they really meant it.
Seni Seviyorum İstanbul, çok teşekkür ederim, Tekrar geleceğim.