Istanbul has been my favourite city I have EVER been to! Not only are there some of the greatest sights to see in the world (such as Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, and my top pick Basilica Cistern) I found the culture to be relaxed and inviting. I loved the food, long meals that were never rushed that started with meze (selection of food served as the appetizer) and then meat or fish simply prepared. Every dish we tasted was SO flavourful with local spices and fresh herbs. My favourite treat for desert was baklava and after extensive research I found the best one outside of the Spice Bazzar at Hamdi. Also another local treat I enjoyed was a simit (turkish bagel), they are available by food cart on every main street. I tried mine with Nutella and it was delicious!!! Of course one of greatest pleasures of Turkey is the markets, whether you are buying fresh saffron or locally made jewels, everything has a "Turkish" flare that is so unique to the country.
I had the pleasure of meeting up with Ufuk of Flytogrpaher to shoot around Sultanahmet Square while I was there. He was an absolute delight to meet and totally put me in ease in from of the camera! It was so fun to chat with a local about my time there so far, and get some insider tips on things that we hadn't had the chance to see yet. He even gave us a fabulous dinner recommendation to go to Mikla Restaurant, and it was to totally PARTYSKIRTS worthy!
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PS- comfortable shoes are a MUST while traveling. My favourite pair to pack (and wear) are my classic champion Keds!