It’s been ages since we went to Istanbul. Last time was when we bought the bike – March 2012. So we thought it was time to pay another visit. We’ve just got home from a three night stay with more pictures than we’ve had time to process.
The first day, after arriving at around 2 in the afternoon, we went to the new carpet museum. This is in what used to be a kitchen, possibly attached to Agia Sofia.. The museum is totally climate and light controlled but still retains many original architectural features. The carpets are stunning and wonderfully displayed. Flash photography is not allowed for obvious reasons and we couldn’t capture the colours of the carpets on the cameras.
There have been a lot of changes. The whole area around Agia Sofia, the Blue Mosque and the Hippodrome has been ripped up and relaid with modern paving. Many people do not like this but, on the upside, it does unify the space and there is far, far less dodging of tour buses. You can walk and look at things without so much fear of being run down.
Some things, of course, never change. Though the fountains now appear to be running 24/7!