Monday, August 23, 2010

Robin took us to breakfast on his last morning with his friend Oktay

This is actually an unretouched photo of a sarcophagus. It look like it's floating thanks to the lighting.

A stunning sarcophagus depicting scenes from Alexander The Great's life

A beautiful alcove

Beautiful tile patterns

Corbin recreates the Trojan horse event

The boys with a lion from 8th century BC!

Strange photo of the day: Mayo and Bikinis are 50% off

Robin kicks our butt at Scrabble back at our flat

Robin was especially pleased because he usual dreads playing with us since we play all the time.

Have audio guide. Can tour Topkapi Palace.

A view to where the two continents meet

Robin and Carl visit the Topkapi Palace

View out from the Topkapi Palace towards Galata in the "new" part of Istanbul

Amazing colors from the tiles

Beautiful tile patterns

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Stunning tile work of ceramic and gold overlay

The muezzin chats prayers as we tour the palace

The royal living room

A royal wash basin

Beating the heat on Kinali island

Robin and Carl enjoying a nice warm day at the beach on one of the Prince's Islands

Swimming with the Asian continent behind us

Corbin's colletion of artifacts from the beach!

The Three Sultans of Fabulous Gowns and Prince Corbin

Corbin in his royal pose

Making the tortilla like bread by sticking it to the side of a brick oven

Basilica Cistern

Medusa's head serves as a pillar inside the cistern

Cooling off after a hot tour of the Aya Sofia

What you can't really see here is how humid it was! My shirt was sticking to my body and was entirely soaked. It has been so hot and humid since our arrival in Istanbul. I warned Robin before he left California that he should bring lots of flowing shirts. Tight t-shirts just don't work when you are sweating profusely.

The Aya Sofia (Haghia Sophia) - Church turned mosque turned museum

Built in 537, this church was the greatest church in Christianity until it was converted into a mosque in the mid 1400s. Thus is has characteristics of both religions. Then it was converted into a museum in 1935 by President Ataturk.

The ruins from the original built in 537 AD

Looking upward toward the gold medallions

Looking upward toward the gold medallions

Touring the inside

Where else can you see a mosaic of Christ next to Muslim script!

Ascending to the pulpit

Corbin, Terry and Robin in the Aya Sofia

A stunning day at the Blue Mosque in Istanbul

The Blue Mosque

Built in the early 1600s, the Blue Mosque has become the symbol of Istanbul.

Robin and Carl outside the Blue Mosque

The courtyard of the Blue Mosque

The Domes of the Blue Mosque

Inside the Blue Mosque

Inside the Blue Mosque

Touring the inside

After an afternoon at the Military Museum, Carl and Corbin enjoy a nice lunch

The singers of the Mehtar military band

A sample hamas at the Military Museum

The big drums of the Mehtar

Corbin poses with the military students