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Monday, 1 October 2007

Top Ten Sights in Istanbul – No. 5: The Cruise Up the Bosphorus

It was a great pleasure taking a cruise up the Bosphorus as I didn't have to walk so much but I could enjoy the views under the comfort of the sea breeze. It is very interesting as the ferry sailed between Europe and Asia. I was on European land sometimes, and then minutes later, I was on Asian land.

The trip started at the ferry terminal at an area in Istanbul called Eminönü. I bought a round trip ticket and I was all ready for the cruise. I had about an hour to spare before the ferry left, so I walked around Eminönü and found an interesting mosque which the people referred to as New Mosque.

The New Mosque (Yeni Camii).

Opposite the Eminönü Port is where the distinctive Galata Tower (Galata Kulesi) stands, outstanding amongst the other buildings.

The Galata Tower (Galata Kulesi) at the background of a ferry on the Bosphorus.

There are many nice buildings and mosques along the two sides of the Bosphorus; the European side and the Asian side.

A mosque on the European side of the Bosphorus.

There are also many bridges linking the European land and the Asian land of Istanbul. Many of them are suspension bridges.

One of the suspension bridges linking Europe and Asia.

There is a fortress on the European side called the Fortress of Europe. It was built in 1452 by Mehmet II before he invaded of Constantinopole (the former name of Istanbul).

The Fortress of Europe.

Many houses were built along the shores of Bosphorus as villas. There are however some very run-down houses too.

A very old and poorly maintained house at the pier of a small town.

Villas along the European shore of the Bosphorus.

As one of the important economic activities on the Bosphorus is cruising, some colourful cruise boats can be spotted once in a while, especially near the pier of small towns.

A cruise boat on the Bosphorus.

The ferry's final stop of the Bosphorus Scenic Tour is a small town on the Asian land called Anadolu Kavaği. When the ferry arrived at its terminal pier, it was almost lunch time. I alighted from the ferry and strolled around this beautiful town.

Restaurant chefs cooking seafood at Anadolu Kavaği.

Most of the seafood stuff are grilled or deep-fried.

Some of the seashells being served for lunch.

When I walked further towards the less beaten track, I found a very nice restaurant-cum-guesthouse set beside the water. I decided to settle down for lunch here and occupied a table just by the pier.

Lunching under the breeze from the Bosphorus.

Green salad served as part of the set lunch I ordered.

The Turkish bread is a mandatory item in any meal. I like the crispy crust and the spongy flesh.

Part of the main course served, the deep-fried mussels and calamari rings.

Another part of the main course, a grilled whole sea bream.

It was a very satisfactory lunch. I paid 16.50 YTL (Yeni Türk Lirasi, New Turkish Lira) for the meal inclusive of service charge, which was about USD13.00.

I took a strolled on the path I took to come to this restaurant, heading back to the pier to board the ferry.

I was free like a bird again, heading back to Eminönü.

The view of the city is back in sight again with the Süleymaniye Camii and Yeni Camii.

I enjoyed every bit of my time on this cruise and the mid-afternoon at the town of Anadolu Kavaği. If you are in Istanbul, make sure that you spare a day for this cruise up the Bosphorus.

If you would like to read more of my travelogues on Istanbul, here are the links:-

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