"Short stories and travel reports from my life adventures around the globe".

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Cool Spots Around Istanbul Part II.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

September-October 2020.

Following my recent article, Cool spots Around Istanbul, it’s time to wrap up my last batch of sights from across the city. So let’s get going with… Cool Spots Around Istanbul Part II.

Sometimes the most memorable travel moments can just be soaking up the atmosphere of a place. This is very much the case with Istanbul’s lovely Old Book Bazaar, also known as Sahaflar Book Market.

Sahaflar Book Market Cool Spots Around Istanbul

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

According to our research, the book bazaar opened in the mid 1400s to support students and teachers at the nearby Theological University. Elegantly tucked away in a leafy walled courtyard behind Beyazit Square, a sense of peacefulness washed over us the moment we entered.

Visit Sahaflar Book Market Istanbul.

Sahaflar Book Market.

Let’s be clear, you won’t won’t find much in the way of English or international literature. Rather, the market is a predominantly Turkish language affair with stalls and stores selling classic Turkish novels, educational course books and a vast array of editions of The Holy Quran.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Editions of the Holy Quran at the Old Book Bazaar in Istanbul.

Istanbul’s Old Book Bazaar.

But it doesn’t matter, because the market positively drips with that aforementioned atmosphere. The book vendors are a mostly chilled bunch, chatting to each other in hushed tones while drinking tea and Turkish coffee. Not a single one paid any attention to us.

The Old Book Bazaar in Istanbul.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

As we sauntered the handful of alleys that run around the main square, we smiled for the zillionth time at the number of cats mooching about. There were even a few dogs too, everyone existing in a state of harmony.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II)

A sleepy afternoon at the Old Book Bazaar.

In the main square there’s a monument that’s worth checking out. The dude getting the reverent treatment was a Hungarian scholar by the name of Ibrahim Müteferrika.

He was certainly a man with many strings to his bow. Converting to Islam as a young adult, he became a highly respected Ottoman diplomat, economist and historian. Moreover, his love of literature led him to success as a publisher when he became the first Muslim to establish a printing press with movable Arabic type.

Statue of Ibrahim Muteferrika in Istanbul.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

If like us a bit of peace and quiet is something you enjoy getting on your travels, another excellent (and underrated) aspect of Istanbul life is the city’s many wonderful madrasas. A madrasa (also known as medresa, madrassa, medresese) is an educational and/or religious complex that’s open to the public.

Kara Mustafa Pasa Madrasa.

Kara Mustafa Pasa Medresesi Cool Spots Around Istanbul

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Usually, such madrasass include a garden and a mosque, sometimes even a cemetery. At Istanbul’s lovely Kara Mustafa Pasa Madrasa there is a library and a small museum in honour of the man who funded the compound with a generous donation.

Kara Mustafa Pasa Medresesi.

Kara Mustafa Pasha Madrasa.

Kara Mustafa Pasha (1635-1683) was an Ottoman nobleman and Grand Vizier who led the empire’s final attempts at expansion. He ultimately lost his life after defeat in The Battle of Vienna.

Painting of Kara Mustafa Pasha the Ottoman Grand Vizier

Kara Mustafa Pasha: He seems to know what’s coming in Vienna.

Unfortunately for us the library and museum stood closed that afternoon. But it was still a great experience to walk around the walled complex. Amid the greenery, we came upon a tiny workshop and store selling handmade leather shoes. Quite reasonable too at 85 Euros a pair.

Traditional handmade leather shoe store in Istanbul.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

There was also a Turkish carpet store. Again the sellers made no attempts whatsoever to draw us in. In fact, the old man gave me a look that seemed to say “What are you two doing wandering around here?” 

Turkish carpet street store in Istanbul.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

In terms of accessibility, we enjoyed a much richer experience at Sinan Pasha Madrasa. This one takes its name from another Ottoman Grand Vizier, Koca Sinan Pasha, an Albanian born statesman who died in 1596 at the grand old age of 90.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Sinan Pasha Complex Cool Spots Around Istanbul.

Entrance to the Sinan Pasha Complex.

Completed in 1594, just a few years prior to Sinan Pasha’s death, the renowned Ottoman architect Davud Aga designed the madrasa in the classical period style. Most of the doors you can see below are the private rooms of those who study Islam here.

Sinan Pasha Madrasa.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Wandering around the grounds, we found everything to be beautifully maintained and full of character. The garden is a calm oasis, despite being just a few streets away from one of the busiest parts of the city. A small cemetery houses several high ranking Islamic clerics of the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. Additionally, Sinan Pasha himself lies in the grounds in a grand tomb.

Visit the Sinan Pasha Complex in Istanbul.

Sinan Pasha Madrasa.

The compound is home to a small mosque. The door was open, thus I could pop my head inside for a brief look.

The mosque inside Sinan Pasha Madrasa in Istanbul

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

As much as we enjoyed exploring the madrasa, it was the people that made our stay so memorable. Quite suddenly, one of the two men who manage the compound approached me to ask us where we were from. Before we knew what had happened, we were sitting with him and his colleague for a chat and accepting their invitation to drink tea.

Sinan Pasha Madrasa.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Both men exuded genuine warmth and kindness. They happily told us about the history of the madrasa, but in no way attempted to lecture us or preach about Islam. Instead, they showed us around behind the scenes. This included a look into a student dormitory, a glimpse at one of their libraries and even a tour of their art and calligraphy workshop.

Art workshop at Sinan Pasha Madrasa in Istanbul

Sinan Pasha Madrasa.

Overall, this was definitely one of our most intimate experiences in Istanbul. Our hosts truly had no other motive than to make us feel welcome. Furthermore, they bade us farewell that day with a couple of gifts.

First, an  Islamic text called Message for the Sick by the acclaimed writer Said Nursi. Secondly, Sladja received her own headscarf for use in the city’s mosques. We’ll always remember our visit to Sinan Pasha Madras.

Sinan Pasha Madrasa Cool Spots Around Istanbul

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Staying on the subject of serene, reflective places, I can also recommend a walk around the Mausoleum and Cemetery of Sultan Mahmud II. Soaked in history, this sizeable cemetery dates back to 1839 when Abdulmejid I oversaw its creation as a tomb for his recently deceased father, Sultan Mahmud II.

Tomb & Cemetery of Mahmud II Cool Spots Around Istanbul

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Decades later, in 1861, it was decided that the giant courtyard outside the tomb would begin accepting the burials of notable figures of the Ottoman Empire.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Visit the Tomb & Cemetery of Mahmud II.

The Tomb & Cemetery of Mahmud II.

Over time, the former courtyard grew into a large cemetery hosting the graves of respected statesman, artists, poets and decorated military men.

Ottoman sultans cemetery Cool Spots Around Istanbul.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

With a general lack of signage and indeed any English language translations, we were not exactly sure where Mahmud’s grand tomb was. Hence we just made do with an exploratory stroll, figuring we’d naturally stumble upon it.

The beautiful cemetery of Mahmud II in Istanbul

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Similarly, the many graves contained few details about the lives of its occupants. So we simply did some online research on the plots that caught our eye.

This magnificent gravestone for example, sculpted in the style of a large ship’s sail, is for an Ottoman sea captain by the name of Ibrahim Pasha. Try as I might, all I could discover was that he passed away in 1888.

Grave of the Ottoman sea captain Ibrahim Pasha who died in 1888.

The Tomb & Cemetery of Mahmud II.

I had much more luck with the plot of Osman Nami Osmanoglu. Born in Switzerland in 1918, he was the grandson of Sultan Abdul Hamid I.

Osman Nami Osmanoğlu the last Ottoman prince

Osman Nami Osmanoglu (1918-2010).

During the first half of his life he became a renowned art dealer and travelled the world. By 1974, now in his 50s, he returned to Turkey to settle down. Celebrated as the last surviving Ottoman prince, he passed away in 2010 aged 93. Prime Minster Erdogan subsequently awarded Osmanoglu a state funeral.

The Tomb & Cemetery of Mahmud II.

The grave of Osman Nami Osmanoglu in Istanbul.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Finally, we came upon Mahmud II’s tomb and, wouldn’t you know it, the darn thing was closed. Such Istanbul tombs keep funny hours, so if you really want to see inside you usually have to time your visit carefully.

From what I’ve read and seen online, it looks every bit as ornate and lavish as the royal tombs we saw at Suleymaniye Mosque. Still, I would have enjoyed seeing the hanging crystal chandelier that was a funeral gift from none other than Britain’s Queen Victoria.

Tomb of Sultan Mahmud II Cool Spots Around Istanbul

The Tomb of Mahmud II.

Sladja and I were blown away by the museums we visited across Istanbul. For the very best, do check out my individual articles on the Great Palace Mosaic Museum, the Istanbul Archaeological Museums and the Museum of Innocence. If one has the time and inclination, I’d also heartily recommend the wonderful Museum of Turkish & Islamic Arts.

Museum of Turkish & Islamic Arts Cool Spots Around Istanbul

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Chockablock with historic and artistic wonders, I admittedly toyed with the idea of doing a single report on this one. In the end I decided it was perhaps one piece too many in what is already a hefty series (20 articles!) So let me offer just a few highlights, starting with the museum’s amazing collection of 17th, 18th and 19th century Azerbaijani rugs.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Collection of 18th century Azerbaijani rugs Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts

Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts.

Gathered, restored and displayed in collaboration with The Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum, the exhibit showcases the most impressive array of rugs and carpets I have ever seen.

18th century Azerbaijani carpets Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

As with similar museums we’ve seen across Asia and beyond, there are a number of priceless objects salvaged from various ancient mosques. This stupendous door comes from the 12th century Grand Mosque of Cizre in Turkey’s Şırnak Province.

13th century door knob of The Great Mosque Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts Istanbul

Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts.

Last but not least, I had to include some lovely examples of Turkish shadow play art. This particular style, dating back to the rule of Sultan Orhan Ghazi in the 13th century, focuses on the adventures of two characters, Karagöz and Hacivat.

Karagoz figures traditional shadow play art.

“Why did the chicken cross the road?”

Steeped in the tragedy and comedy of comparing peasantry life to the upper class, these shadow play stories became one of the most popular forms of entertainment during the Ottoman period.

Karagöz and Hacivat.

Ancient depictions of Karagoz and Hacivat shadow play

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

There’s a fun legend behind how these characters came about. As the story goes, Karagöz and Hacivat were once real life men working for the sultan as an ironmaster and master mason on a mosque construction.

The Ottoman sultan Orhan Ghazi

Sultan Orhan Ghazi: Not one to suffer tomfoolery.

However, both men were relentless jokers and tricksters who didn’t take their jobs seriously. Enraged by their poor work ethic, the sultan had them executed. Later, he greatly regretted his actions and the general lack of laughter around the mosque. As a result, a few workers began mimicking the two men with performances behind a curtain. And so the idea was born. 

Karagöz and Hacivat traditional shadow play characters

Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts.

I can’t pretend that Istanbul is one of the greenest cities I’ve ever visited. Not by a long shot. That said, we did enjoy the parks and gardens we came across. If I had to recommend just one, it would be Gülhane Park, the city’s oldest green space.

Gulhane Park Cool Spots Around Istanbul.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Situated right next to Topkapi Palace, the park was once an area of woodland that belonged to the palace itself. In the mid 1800s a chunk of the forest was cut down in order to create a royal rose garden. Right enough, the word Gülhane translates as rosehouse. But in 1912, after years of landscaping, the garden opened as a public park. Much to the delight of Istanbulites all across the city.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Locals hanging out in Gulhane Park Istanbul.

Gülhane Park.

We took a stroll through Gülhane one lovely warm September evening. The park was full of life but by no means crowded. Friends snacked by the central fountain, couples and acquaintances chatted on benches. There were also joggers, dog walkers, jugglers and a lone man practicing tai chi.

An autumnal stroll through Gulhane Park in Istanbul.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

After a while our ambling brought us to a commanding bronze statue of none other than Turkey’s founding father, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk. After all our exploring across the city’s many historic sites, by this point it felt like ol’ Ataturk and I were good buddies.

Statue of President Ataturk in Istanbul.

Gülhane Park.

The early evening light was rapidly fading by the time we came upon a quite splendorous building somewhat hidden away in a discreet corner of the park.

Rosehouse Park Cool Spots Around Istanbul

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Much to our delight, an accompanying history board revealed that the building was once the workplace of Osman Hamdi Bey, who you may remember as the celebrated painter and daring archaeologist who founded the Istanbul Archaeological Museums.

Former workplace of Osman Hamdi Bey in Istanbul

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Apparently, he conducted much of his museum work from a modest office within this building. A room, the board assures, that offered lovely views over the palace gardens. Sadly he passed away in 1910 just a few years before Gülhane Park’s grand opening.

Gülhane Park.

The history of Gulhane Park in Istanbul.

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

It was nearly dark and, with our stomachs rumbling, high time to seek out dinner. Which is perfect really, because it sets things up nicely for my last article of the series. Yes, a look at Istanbul’s vast array of culinary delights…

Night falls over Gulhane Park in Istanbul

Cool Spots Around Istanbul (Part II).

Like this? Take a look at my series of articles on Istanbul.

I’ve been living, working and traveling all over the world since 2001. So why not check out my huge library of travel reports from over 30 countries.

Leighton Travels logo travel reports and short stories.


  • Monkey's Tale

    Sounds like a great experience at Sinan Pasha Tomb. It’s so great when you meet people who are genuinely interested in showing you a site that is important to them. I wish we had more time in Istanbul. We saw the highlights but not as many of these lesser known gems like you guys did. Maggie.

    October 8, 2023 - 3:47 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks Maggie, having a bit more time definitely helps. What would you say were Istanbul’s highlights for you?

      October 8, 2023 - 3:50 pm Reply
      • Monkey's Tale

        Hagia Sophia, Basillica Cistern and Topkapi I think, but mostly it was the atmosphere of the city.

        October 8, 2023 - 4:23 pm
  • christinenovalarue


    October 8, 2023 - 4:23 pm Reply
  • kagould17

    Another fascinating wander through Istanbul Leighton. How nice to be able to visit many of these places without getting the hard sell. Loved the door and archway shots, especially with the people and cats captured in them. Unobtrusive and unposed street photography is the best. Thanks for taking us about the place. Have a great Sunday. Allan

    October 8, 2023 - 5:29 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks Allan, I’m glad you enjoyed the tour. Have a great Sunday too, autumn is in full flow here and for the first time it’s chilly enough that sweaters and jackets are needed.

      October 8, 2023 - 5:55 pm Reply
  • Memo

    Cool places, indeed. Loved the sense of calm that seemed to pervade these spots. I found the book information most interesting. The first book bazaar was founded about the time of Gutenberg developing moveable metal type but Ibrahim Müteferrika didn’t develop moveable Arabic type until 300 years later. Were they using carved wood or clay block? And how fortunate that not every madrasa manager ignored you. It was your (and our) good luck.

    October 8, 2023 - 6:47 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Hey Memo, if I had to guess I’d say wood block but that’s really just a shot in the dark. Thanks for checking out this concluding collection of Cool Spots. I think you may have missed the first part? I am going to email you in the next day or two, an update is long, long overdue.

      October 8, 2023 - 7:31 pm Reply
  • Mike and Kellye Hefner

    Another wonderful Istanbul post, Leighton! I enjoyed following you around the city to all the cool places, and I especially enjoyed seeing the book bazaar and Gülhane Park. Between you and Orhan Pamuk, I am truly itching to see Istanbul. I would love the mosques, tombs, and cemeteries too. (Is it morbid that I like visiting cemeteries?)

    October 8, 2023 - 7:16 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      So glad we aren’t the only cemetery loving weirdoes Kellye, ha ha. Thanks for checking out these cool spots, I agree that the Book Bazaar and Gülhane Park are probably the pick of the bunch.

      October 8, 2023 - 7:33 pm Reply

    My only surprise here is your comments that Istanbul doesn’t rank as one of your favourite cities….yet your eulogies really do it justice and the place has clearly left a deep impression. I thought it really was very high on your list

    October 8, 2023 - 8:47 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Hey hey, did I say that Istanbul isn’t one of my favourite cities? I don’t recall that. Not sure I’ve thought about whether it would make say my top 10. Possibly… 🙂

      October 8, 2023 - 8:54 pm Reply
  • 🙏For a better 🌍

    great writing and images you really show the city well

    October 8, 2023 - 8:52 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Cheers, thanks for reading and commenting.

      October 8, 2023 - 11:40 pm Reply
  • Rochelle | Adventuresfromelle

    Beautiful and interesting photos, Leighton 🙂

    October 8, 2023 - 9:12 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks Rochelle.

      October 8, 2023 - 9:25 pm Reply
  • bronlima

    You have certainly got around. What a wealth of ideas and options for future visitors! As you say, the people you meet make all the difference, making their gifts to you a very special memory.

    October 9, 2023 - 1:16 am Reply
    • Leighton

      The guys at the Sinan Pasha Complex were just lovely. Afterwards I felt bad for being a bit suspicious, they really had no motive at all other than being friendly.

      October 9, 2023 - 6:23 am Reply
  • Rebecca

    You really got off the beaten path to discover some lesser-known treasures of Istanbul, Leighton! I’ve never heard of any of these places, but you had me at the Old Book Bazaar: my book-loving partner would definitely enjoy wandering this open-air bookstore! Greatly enjoyed reading your adventures in and around Istanbul!

    October 9, 2023 - 4:52 am Reply
    • Leighton

      Cheers Rebecca!

      October 9, 2023 - 6:21 am Reply
  • Anna

    That book bazaar is everything!!! When I get to Istanbul that will be my first stop!!!

    October 9, 2023 - 5:02 am Reply
    • Leighton

      Ha, you’ll love it! Thanks for stopping in Anna. 🙂

      October 9, 2023 - 6:20 am Reply
  • Travels Through My Lens

    I’m amazed at all Istanbul has to offer as well as the beauty of the city. The book bazaar looks quite inviting, and meeting locals who are genuinely interested in sharing their stories is always a treat. Thanks Leighton, for showing us so many of Istanbul’s treasures!

    October 9, 2023 - 10:54 am Reply
    • Leighton

      It’s my pleasure Tricia, thanks for coming along with us. 🙂

      October 9, 2023 - 11:45 am Reply
  • tourinfonepal

    great writing what a fascinating city!

    October 9, 2023 - 12:31 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks for reading! 🙂

      October 9, 2023 - 2:17 pm Reply
  • wetanddustyroads

    Yes, I know what you mean by “soaking up the atmosphere” … it’s hard to capture such memories in photos. But yet, you still managed to show beautiful moments – the quiet buildings, lovely gardens and especially the hospitality of the locals. Oh, those amazingly beautiful carpets and rugs … and of course, I can’t wait for your last instalment about Istanbul’s food!

    October 9, 2023 - 3:24 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Cheers Corna, I appreciate your support of the series. One more and a blogging rest I think. 🙂

      October 10, 2023 - 10:06 am Reply
      • wetanddustyroads

        I don’t know how you working people can blog regularly too – when do you guys sleep? I think a rest is well deserved Leighton!

        October 10, 2023 - 10:58 am
  • Lyssy In The City

    There sure are a lot of cool spots around Istanbul! It seems you could spend months there and still have an endless list of places to visit. Your experience at Sinan Pasha Madras is very special. I think I’d love wandering through the book bazaar.

    October 9, 2023 - 6:25 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks Lyssy! 🙂

      October 10, 2023 - 10:03 am Reply
  • Little Old World

    What a wonderful collection of sights! The old book bazar looks right up my street and your visit to Sinan Pasha Madrasa sounds incredible. I’m often amazed and humbled by how kind, welcoming and hospitable people are, those sorts of impromptu moments are among my favourite travel experiences.

    October 9, 2023 - 11:05 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks so much, I’m glad this cobbled collection of lesser known locations appeal. And yes, people can sometimes make or break a visit, we’ll never forget those kind people at Sinan Pasha. Thanks for reading!

      October 10, 2023 - 10:00 am Reply
  • NortheastAllie

    Istanbul seems to have so many interesting historical places to visit. The Old Book Bazaar looks very impressive!

    October 10, 2023 - 2:35 am Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks Allie, the Book Bazaar is a definite highlight.

      October 10, 2023 - 9:56 am Reply
  • grandmisadventures

    What a great city. I think you have certainly delighted us with this series. I love how you have captured these moments around the city and really giving a space for all of it. While Im feeling a little sad about the end of this series Im also super excited to see where you take us next!

    October 10, 2023 - 7:09 am Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks Meg, I hope Costa Rica continues to delight!

      October 10, 2023 - 9:55 am Reply
  • travelling_han

    Oh wow, what a beautiful selection of places. It’s so nice to get to see areas that aren’t on the tourist trail and give a much greater feel for the people and culture of Istanbul. I love the book bazaar, and wow that carpet museum looks incredible. Your experience at Sinan Pasha Madrasa also sounds really special, one of those travel memories you’ll never forget – I’d treasure that scarf for sure.

    October 10, 2023 - 12:20 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts Han, it feels good to be finally edging to the end of this lengthy series.

      October 10, 2023 - 5:05 pm Reply
  • Mash


    October 10, 2023 - 10:18 pm Reply
  • WanderingCanadians

    It honestly looks like you had the city all to yourselves in your pictures. I guess that’s one of the benefits of exploring off the beaten path and visiting some of the lesser known spots. I’m such a fan of hard copy books and the Old Book Bazaar looks like such a cool place to wander around. It’s neat that you found some green spaces within the city as well. Thanks for sharing. Linda

    October 11, 2023 - 3:05 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks Linda, do you have much of a book collection at home? I used to have loads of books, but sold and gave away most of them during the great Leighton sell off of 2017 prior to becoming a full time digital nomad.

      October 11, 2023 - 8:08 pm Reply
      • WanderingCanadians

        I sure do. But they take up a lot of space and it’s becoming harder to keep my bookcases organized.

        October 12, 2023 - 10:08 pm
  • satyam rastogi

    Nice place.

    October 12, 2023 - 12:52 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Uh huh, it certainly is.

      October 12, 2023 - 10:53 pm Reply
  • rkrontheroad

    Ah, the book market was a warm memory for me. Even though there wasn’t much there in my language, what a celebration of literacy in such an ancient civilization! And the carpets, the carpets, the carpets.

    October 12, 2023 - 8:40 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Absolutely. If I could have gotten away with pilfering an historic Azerbaijani rug and cramming the thing into one of our suitcases, I would have. *joke*.

      October 12, 2023 - 11:03 pm Reply
  • Lookoom

    I was relieved to find Gülhane Park in your article, finally a place I know. The tulips in bloom there in spring are outstanding. You’ve done a good job of finding less-frequented but interesting places.

    October 19, 2023 - 2:36 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Mm, I can imagine Gülhane Park is splendrous in spring. Thanks for your encouragement, writing up Istanbul has been a blast.

      October 19, 2023 - 8:04 pm Reply
  • Toonsarah

    It was a delight to see all the peaceful spots you found, especially the book bazaar and the madrassas 🙂

    October 24, 2023 - 1:27 pm Reply
    • Leighton

      Thanks Sarah. Few bloggers ever seem to mention the madrassas, so I thought I’d show them a bit of love.

      October 24, 2023 - 1:41 pm Reply

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