The drive into Istanbul was hectic and we were glad to find this spot

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Bundled up and ready to explore the city the next morning.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Looks like an early soccer game at our camp spot today.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Greeted by a cat as soon as we leave our camp spot. We didn’t realize that Istanbul is known for its cat population. Later that day we actually watched a documentary all about it called Kedi.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

How American are we? Lol. Sometimes you just crave the taste of home… even though it didn’t really taste like home but we will take what we can get.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Instead of sitting down with our textbooks, we walked miles and miles around the city of Istanbul the last couple days. We removed our shoes and covered our hair to enter our first mosque, The Blue Mosque. 

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

 

 

 

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Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

The color turquoise is named after Turkey and is prominent in the Blue Mosque.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Our shoes being held in bags while inside.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

When we exited the mosque, a friendly man invited us to his rug shop to look at rugs. No pressure he said. We tried to explain our lifestyle but it didn’t take. Dan was really interested in the experience so we agreed.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

He insisted he takes a family photo of us.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Stray dog snugglebugs.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Drinking apple tea at the rug shop.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Keeping themselves entertained while the shop keeper pulls out all different types of rugs handmade in Turkey.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

We really tried our best to turn down his original offer but he wouldnt take no for an offer. And he didn’t understand that we literally live in a van and don’t have floor space for anything.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Once he finally accepted that we really weren’t buying anything, he looked sad and we parted ways. Not much tourism this time of year to fill his shop.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

We called this shenanigan ice cream.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Mila didn’t want to deal with tricks associated with cone orders so she ordered a cup. Hah.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Our cat Yoda passed away the day after we all arrived in Europe and since that moment we promised to keep her memory alive by feeding stray cats (and dogs) on our journey. But it finally happened. We are officially out of the cat kibble that we brought overseas from California. So what will we do now? Well, I’m guessing we will buy kibble from the store and keep our new tradition going forever because I don’t want the #malimishkibblesfromyoda to ever stop.

Our cat Yoda passed away the day after we all arrived in Europe and since that moment we promised to keep her memory alive by feeding stray cats (and dogs) on our journey. But it finally happened. We are officially out of the cat kibble that we brought ov

Some of these cats were invited in. Some were not.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Hey cat! Off of our Dometic portable toilet!!

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Oh geez, cat.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 1

Spent a couple days relaxing and catching up on work and school.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

The owners son and Luka got along great. Random sign language and grunts were all they needed.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

The girls were occupied by the the you know whats. Meow.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Once we felt rested, we had another day out in the city. Next up we explored the Grand Bazaar.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

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Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

And then we got to taste our first ever Turkish Delights.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Look how pretty.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

We also got to meet up with a new friend that follows us from Instagram. She is a local and spent the day showing us cool spots in town that we would have otherwise missed.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Fish sandwiches from the river boats.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

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Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Visited another mosque while we walked around. And of course pet more cats.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Then we climbed up past its cemetery.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

And a tram ride up the hill. Luka was really scared at first because it is his first tram.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

But within in seconds he was really enjoying himself.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

They all were.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Even when they realized we were flying over grave sites.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

The view from the top.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Our new friends. SO thankful they reached out and showed us around. It’s always best to see places from a local’s perspective.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

More apple tea for everyone.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

We opted to walk back down the hill through the cemetery in the dark.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Luka decided to run down and tumbled. When we tumbled, he didn’t stop for a bit because it was down hill. He’s fine. We all cracked up. Even him.

Istanbul Turkey blog day 2

Tomorrow the kids will record their memories into their journals and pick up where they left off on math but my hope is that will never forget what they felt today. New experiences are nothing to be scared of and kind people are everywhere.

**

Dan is not done with his VLOG yet so in the meantime here are my Instagram stories to hear and see the sounds of Istanbul.

Thanks for following along on our trek thru Europe and this dip into Asia,
Marlene

Categories: AsiaEurope

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