This is Yeniceriler Road, the main east-west route through the city. It is heavily traveled on foot, by car and via the modern light rail system. And it connects to many of the important historic sites. To the left (east) about half a kilometer is the Hippodrome, the Blue Mosque, the Hagia Sophia Museum, and the Basilica Cistern. Further down about another two kilometers brings you to the Eminonu Station where the Spice Bazaar, the Galata Bridge and the Golden Horn waterfront are located. To the right (west) just beyond the streetcar is the access to the Grand Bazaar, and many good shopping side streets. Let's go east first.
This is the Hippodrome - the race course for Roman chariot and horse races. It is a long track.
This neat monument occupies the north end of the Hippodrome.
The Blue Mosque is off to the left.
This needle is located in the center of the course. Immediately behind me is the east gate to the Blue Mosque grounds.
This is the gate. We will return to this in the section on the Blue Mosque.
There are many shops and restaurants south of the Hippodrome.
At the north end of the Hippodrome you can see the Hagia Sophia Museum off to the right center in this photo. Just to the left of the corn and chestnut sales wagon you can see a stone water tower. This marks the location of the Basilica Cistern.
That same tower is to the left behind the trees in this photo. The building to the right is the entrance to the Cistern. Lets take a look.
An amazing piece of civil engineering, this cistern covers 105,000 square feet in size, and can hold up to 2.8 million square feet of water. The ceiling is 30 feet above the floor. This is the largest of several hundred cisterns built under the city.
This is one ot two columns that rest on a carved head of Medusa. These heads were removed from a building of the Roman period and used simply because they were the right size needed for the column support.
This is one of our favorite streets for browsing and shopping. Lots of excellent rug and jewelry stores. Pedestrians only.
If you get tired of walking you can find a spot to sit and relax.
Plenty of sweet snacks available.
This street ends at a gate to a large mosque.
This gate also connects with one of the main entrances to the Grand Bazaar.
Back up on Yeniceriler Street. We are waiting for a streetcar to take us east and down to the Golden Horn.
About ten minutes later we get off at the Eminonu station. Up ahead and to the left is the large plaza where the Spice Bazaar is located.
The Bazaar is hidden behind advertisement covering the scaffolding for repairs to the historic old building that houses the bazaar.
In use since 1664.
This is it. Of course, lots of spice shops. The aroma is heady with every kind of smell. In addition to the spice shops there are outlets for jewelry, candy, nuts and tourist goodies.
Fun shopping here. Always bargain hard.
Out the front of the Spice Bazaar and across the street is the Golden Horn waterfront. The Galata Bridge is one of two bridges that cross the Horn. The waterfront to the right holds the loading berths for the many ferries that ply the Bosphorus in both directions.
The waterfront to the left of the Galata Bridge is famous for its floating fish restaurants.
Not the typical floating restaurant, here the cooking is done on the boats that bob up and down next to the waterfront. You purchase your fish sandwiches directly from the floating kitchens and then scramble to find a seat in the crowded sitting areas on the dock.
The fight is worth it. Great fish sandwiches.
This is our humble hotel, the Home Hotel. Inexpensive, yet clean and well located for walking to everywhere. It also has an excellent restaurant serving fresh caught fish and shrimp. We had about half of our evening meals here.
On the other evenings we ventured out to other restaurants. All good.
Including several traditional Turkish restaurants with bread and some desserts prepared at the front window.
Excellent dinner inside.