Published: May 28th 2011April 9th 2011
I woke up in Maywood hotel in Istanbul. Erboy was really much better.... Anyway, I felt that our prayers has been answered. The sky is blue today! The first one in Istanbul during our 9 days trip in Turkey! Timing is just perfect because today is the highlight of this whole trip! Tulip fiesta!
We rushed to Emirgan Park where there suppose to be a lot of pretty tulips. Hopefully some has blosomed (as few days ago many tulips are still green and hiding). We took tram to Eminonu, then bus to Emirgan (Buses: 40, 40T from Taksim; 22, 22RE, 25E from Kabataş). It was truly a very long bus ride! We go quite slowly with the traffic jam and all - passing Dolmabahce, Ciragan Palace, Ortakoy, Bebek (seems to be a very hip hangout place) on the left, Rumeli Hisari and Bosphorus Strait on the right. Feels like a ferry ride on the strait itself.
Did we took the Bosphorus Cruise? No. Why? Well... Its just personal choice I guess. I know many guidebooks said that its a "must do" in Istanbul. But we just haven't had any special experience on ferry rides. Its too blur to take
pictures, and I don't feel it more special than just standing on the side.
Anyway, we arrived in Emirgan after 1+ hour commute. Its a tulip park like Keukenhof in the Netherlands. But this one is FREE he he. Even at first step, we were greeted by so many flowers. Mostly tulips but there are also variant that I don't know the name. But they are just... Gorgeous
Between snapping my SLR camera, we sat down on few benches, under shade of trees and just savor the moment. Blue sky, colorful sea of flowers, and their sweet scent (from this lavender like purple flower). You can even see the Bosphorus Strait as the park is actually perched on a hill. Perfect setting for our lunch. We just bought a kebab sandwich. Taste not spectacular. But such a beautiful setting
with the one you love? That's enough reason to work your ass off to be able to pay for these kind of vacations. Ahhhh.....
Here you're actually allowed to sit or step on the grass. As long as you don't touch the flowers, everything is good (they really have guards patrolling).
Content with the flower
fiesta, we took another bus ride to the south (Taksim Square). This time the traffic jam got worse and the bus crawls for 2 hours. As it was Saturday afternoon, the area is just jammed with young crowds out and about. Seriously not a conservative country at all, I'll say that.
It was raining when we got to Taksim square. I took few snaps at the monuments on the Taksim Square and the old tram. After that we attempted to walk down the Istiklal Caddesi, which suppose to be a hip place with shops left and right. But it was so full and too close for comfort! I'm not interested in shopping anyway, so no point. We just headed back to the hotel.
The day after, before catching the flight to Singapore, we had turkish breakfast (I ate Borek - basically a goat cheese lasagna, very good!) And Dondurma (turkish ice cream) with pistachio.
I'm content. Very happy. This vacation went so well and I wouldn't mind coming back again someday!
The only question now, where do we go next?
There are more photos below