Sorry for the huge delay in blog postings! Firstly I just wanted to make sure everyone is aware that my hotmail account got hacked into the day before yesterday, so someones is pretending to be me and asking for money. New email- [email protected]
Lucy and I got our first overnight train from Thessaloniki to Istanbul. Our beds were sooo high up! Lucy loved em :P We got woken up twice during the night, once at about 3am to get out of the train (damn cold!) to get a Turkish visa. 15 Euros later and we were back in our tall beds.
Got to Istanbul around 10 am and started to wander around in search of our 'Istanbul Hostel'. It was actually insanely close to everything, and it was about a 4 minute walk from the bus stop but we asked the guys in front of another hotel where it was and it was literally at the end of the street and a bit off to the right, but they told us to go left, right right and ended up on the wrong street wandering around like idiots!! When we finally found it we glared at the guys who told us the wrong thing! (well i did:P)
The hostel was pretty cool, big bar/eating area with laptops which was cool. We dumped our bags and went to the rooftop(!!) restaurant with a mad view of the ocean between European Turkey and Asian Turkey, and you could see the Blue Mosque and Aya Sofya. We had Turkish Pizza :) During our lunch these mad as monk prayer kind of things came belowing out from some direction, we're thinking the Blue Mosque, and they were sooo loud and went on for ages. But pretty cooL :)
Then off to Topkapi Palace- we saw the extravagent presents given to previous sultans, sultans wardrobes- huuuge dress style robes :P, and really cool marching band came through and played Turkish music.
24th Oct: Had a pretty good sleep until at 6.30 in the morning the monk prayers started again... haha. Went and how our first complimentary breakfast- including a whole lot of stuff I don't like... and bread. Lol!
Went off the to Grand Bazaar today which I was really excited for, and it was a bit of a let-down because it was so expensive. I haggled as I obviously have done everywhere I can, and they went down a bit but not as much as I like.. so I just walked away from most stuff. But then!!... the spice markets!! They are obviously designed for the cheap traveller :P got a few bits and pieces there including this one thing which I asked how much it was and he goes '15 Lira' me; 'i'll give you 5.' him:10 me:5 him:8 me:5 him:7.50, me:I'm not going above 5. him:... hmm... okay. LOL! good times. Lucy just looked at me completely amazed.
Although Turkish guys got on my nerves a bit. I was wearing my wallabies shirt as I do.. and so every second guy was like 'AUSSIE AUSSIE AUSSIE' and one guy tried to talk to me and you just learn to walk away cos it's annoying and he's like 'can i ask you something?' kept walking... 'oh please cutie don't break my heart' BLEEAAUGH!! so seedy!!
One cool guy was this one in a rug shop.. me and luce started chatting to him and he made us tea and we stayed for like an hour and met his co-workers then went off to the hostel. Then the barman from the hostel took us out on the town.
25th: Got up and managed to fit my explosion of possessions into my backpack to check out of the hostel. Then, it was a rainy day, but we went to the Blue Mosque and Aya Sofya. Then hung out at the hostel till it was time to go to the train station for our train to Sofia :)