Left my heart in Istanbul

01:22 Hanna Tantoco 0 Comments Category : , , ,

Finally, another tick off from my long forgotten travel bucket list. It seems like as I age, I tend to choose comfort and familiarity over adventure and novelty. For the past year, I've been going back to the places I've been and I enjoy - like New York, Tokyo and Hong Kong. Istanbul has been part of my checklist ever since I read about the Ottoman Empire as a kid.

I've put it off as it was expensive to travel, and then I studied in Spain for my Masters. But I thought it would be better to see other places in Europe first (yet another excuse). My latest excuse, which I finally got over is the political turmoil. The most gorgeous city for me is Vienna, Austria. The entire time I was there - 5 days to be exact, my jaw just dropped. Vienna holds that record from September 2011 and then I saw Istanbul.

Let's start with history. The Ottoman Empire is one of the oldest civilizations in the world, and for a city-loving girl like me it's such a breath of fresh air to see structures from hundreds of years ago. The city has such a gorgeous character, I really want to take a photo in every nook and cranny. Every mosque, every cafe, every street has it's story. Then let's move to food. I seriously can live in kebabs. For 1 week, I didn't care if my kebab was cooked in 100 gallons of oil. I love it.

The caffeine-junkie in me got overturned. I thought I could take coffee (I after all drink at least 3 cups of long black every day), but nothing prepared me for Turkish coffee. It's so strong, it's like drinking 3 espressos in a cup. So I naturally turned to Turkish tea. I loved it so much, I brought back 3 packs. This is a visual heavy post, don't tell me I didn't warn you.