As I am originally Turkish my family and me visit Turkey every two years. So this year we went there for holidays for 3 weeks (Yes, 3 week, we have a lot of family to visit). We usually go to Istanbul, Ordu and visit family in the countryside.
“If one had but a single glance to give the world, one should gaze on Istanbul” – Alphonse de Lamarthine.
Istanbul is loud, impulsive, passionate and fascinating. You feel like everything could happen every moment. It’s a city that never gets boring or repetitive. In every corner you can find something new.
As someone who has been to the city of Istanbul a lot already, I wanted to explore something different. That’s why I decided to go to the Prince Islands this summer. These are three small islands not far away from Istanbul in the Sea of Marmara.
It is super easy to reach them by ferry and most of the ferries take off at “Kabataş” (which you can reach with the tram line T1). From there ferries take off every hour and there are different kinds of ferries, too. Some of them make a stop at every island and some go directly to the “Büyük Ada” (Big Island) where my family and me also went.
We took the ferry at 8 am and arrived there at 9 am and that place was really magical. It has a totally different vibe than Istanbul; you can almost say it is Istanbul in the 1940ths – big, old yet elegant villas with huge gardens, small shops and also really quite. Because there are no cars allowed on the island we lent bicycles and drove through the island (it was also possible to take a horse cart – but it was just too expensive to us – and a we drove through small streets and forests – it was magical.
However, the idyll only lasts until midday. When we came back from our bike tour the center of the island for dinner that place was PACKED. It seemed like the whole population of Istanbul was on the island. We found out that most of the tourists arrive during midday and that is almost impossible to move a meter during that time. So if you are planning a trip to these Islands take the first ferry and just say until 1 or 2 pm because afterwards it’s not enjoyable anymore. As we already had seen everything we decided to go back to Istanbul where we went to the “Grand Bazaar” and rounded off our day.
After we spent a few days in Istanbul sightseeing, shopping and of course visiting family we went to the countryside to visit my grandparents. The countryside gives you a totally new perspective on Turkey it is so different compered to Istanbul, you can’t really compare it to anything. My grandparents sometimes still struggle with the access to water or electricity. And you don’t have WIFI for sure, like seriously. But it gives you a feeling of calmness and peace. You spend your time interlay different when you don’t have access to electronic stuff. It’s fascinating but you need a lot of good books to read. Don’t be scared to go to the countryside if you visit Turkey. The people are much nicer and you see a totally different side of this beautiful country.
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