14.08.2011 - 14.08.2011 37 °C
Up early and first in for breakfast. Our tour bus was picking us up at 8.45 am. First the bus took us to the harbour and we cruised the Golden Horn and the Bosphorus. We saw the Rumeli Fortress, Istanbul from the sea (Asia and Europe sides) and lots of very expensive houses - $100,000,000.
Back to the bus and up to Pierre Lote Hill. Great view over the city, then caught a cable car back to the bus. Had lunch - lentil soup, salad, chicken and meat kebabs and water melon. We have decided to be very careful with what we eat, as per Rickus in South Africa - no ice, no salad, only things you can peel or cooked things.
Visited the Dolmabahce Palace. Absolutely magnificent. Home to six sultans and Ataturk died there. It has the world's largest Bohemian crystal chandelier which was a gift from Queen Victoria. Unfortunately no photos allowed in this fabulous place.
Then we drove over the Bosphorus bridge from Istanbul, Europe to Istanbul, Asia. Went to Camlica Hill for a photo stop and refreshments. It's quite hot now - 37 degrees but there is a nice breeze blowing.
Phil has pulled a muscle in his leg and is limping. We were dropped off at our hotel at 5.00 pm. Busy but enjoyable day. We forgot to take the DO NOT DISTURB sign off our door, so our room wasn't done. We are so dopey!
Phil has gone for a massage. I went for one too after him. It was very relaxing. Oil everywhere - even in my hair! In hindsight, I should have had a Turkish Bath after the massage. What a luxury that would have been.
We went out for dinner to a local restaurant and both ordered a pizza. When they arrived, they had forgotten to put the tomato paste base on the pizza, so they were pretty bland. We sat in the window, open to the street and watched the passing parade. Fascinating. Home to pack. We leave for Ankara tomorrow via taxi, ferry and train. Good luck!