Bosphorus Boat Cruise

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August 24th 2011
Published: September 2nd 2011
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Toasting The ViewToasting The ViewToasting The View

We set off in very high spirits and with perfect weather.
One evening after school several of the new teachers took a boat tour of the Bosphorus. It started on the Asian side, by the second bridge. I have never been on a luxury boat cruise with catered aperitif and dinner before. It was lovely and the food was delicious. We cruised the Bosphorus for hours, eating, drinking and enjoying the views.

The boat started up the Asian side, towards the Black Sea. We didn’t go all the way up to the sea, but crossed over and headed south along the European shore, towards the Sea of Marmara. The Bosphorus is lined with mansions, historic and new. A traditional wooden home that borders the water is called a yalı (not yali). We watched cargo ships cruising up towards Bulgaria and loaded tankers coming down from Russia. There are hundreds of yachts in the Bosphorus, some are tour boats and some are private.

We passed lavish mansions, historic mosques, quaint neighborhoods with cafés along the water and the presidential palace. Late in the evening, after the sun had gone down and the city lights began to come on, we turned back north, still on the European side. The lights on the
Wooden YalıWooden YalıWooden Yalı

I first read about yalıs in a book by Orhan Pamuk. They are every bit as cool as he made them sound.
bridges had come on and we were treated to a light show. Both bridges have colorful lights, but it’s the first bridge that has the really spectacular light show. There are plenty of companies that do day tours of the Bosphorus too, but I am glad we did the evening/night tour. The whole evening was beautiful.

Additional photos below
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The yalıs built right on the water don't have any protection from passing boats or waves.
Voyeurism Voyeurism

Most of our cruise was very close to the shore. I'm sure the people who live along the water are used to it, but I felt a bit intrusive looking into people's homes.
Kicking BackKicking Back
Kicking Back

This was the perfect way to end the work day.
Turkish FlagTurkish Flag
Turkish Flag

The flag is everywhere, as are pictures and statues of Ataturk. This was our landmark for where to get the van home in the evening.

2nd September 2011

looks amazing
Heather- awesome job with the blogging! looks like you are having a really great time over there and I hope that continues. My time in Turkey was way too short and I hope Mohamed and I can go back someday. Keep up the good work!

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