I think I have finally been able to download some of the many pictures I have taken during this trip. Here are the first ones, starting in Istanbul…
When we arrived in the early evening, we were hungry and looked for a place near our hotel to have a bite. The baklava shop around the corner was inviting, having some filo-wrapped meat and cheese treats, as well as ten kinds of baklava.
Our tour began with a visit to three of the most famous mosques in Istanbul, all within walking distance of our hotel. They are the Hagia Sophia and Blue Mosque, and the Little Hagia Sophia. The Blue Mosque has been under construction for years now, with an expected completion date of “eventually.”
You can see the scaffolding around one of the six minarets. The Little Hagia Sophia is actually quite beautiful. All mosques have balconies for women, while the men are downstairs praying. However, there are times when women are allowed to pray separately from men.
You can’t escape a visit to the rug dealers. They make them on-site and we saw how the women tie the knots to make the rugs. It is painstaking and a medium-sized rug can take years to complete. Sorry that the videos didn’t download. They ship for free worldwide if you find something you love.