We arrived into the centre of Istanbul fairly late on Monday evening and were met by lovely Aylin, our  AirBnB host.  The apartment is perfect for us and in a great location.  We were very proud of ourselves for managing to catch the public bus and then walk to the apartment … a 2 hour journey but very easy … all for $7 each.

We had a great fresh fish meal in Fish Street which is just one street over.  Tuesday we bought a Museum Pass and headed to  Aya Sofia.


John and I both found  Aya Sofya interesting however, we were pretty horrified  by  these huge ugly wooden discs with callligraphy.  Aya Sofya was commisioned by  Byzantine emperor Justinian  and it was consecrated as a church in 537.  It was  converted to a mosque in 1453.  I’m not sure what year these horrible, tacky wooden  discs hanging on chains were added  but  they are just horrible and out of place. Middle top you can see a beautiful mosaic of the Virgin Mary and child.

However, I shouldn’t focus on that as it is huge and beautiful and once again brilliantly built.

Next stop the Blue Mosque which is right next door. I was actually expecting it to be really blue  inside but there was a mixture of blue and red.

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