I saw a completely different side of Istanbul today as I got the very reasonably priced ferry up the Bosphorus. It does make a few stops along the way, but seems to be mostly used by tourists. For some reason I’d always thought the Bosphorus was a dirty, mucky waterway mostly used by commercial boats. That may be to do with one end being at the Black Sea and the connotations of that name. Interestingly there are two currents (countercurrent naturally) – the one on the surface is due to a height differential, while the one down below is due to a concentration differential (salinity) between the Black and the Marmara Seas.
But on another stunning warm & clear day, the Bosphorus turned out to be an exceptionally beautiful stretch of water. For most of the ninety minute trip Istanbul kept stretching towards the end of the Strait. It wasn’t more of the same housing either – there were many palatial buildings and it was easy to see why some of the highest property prices in the world are here. Istanbul surprises again. Many nice yachts and other boats too.
At the end of the route there was three hours to occupy before the ferry headed back. I, & many others, climbed fifteen minutes up to an old castle to get a glimpse of the Black Sea – which is more of the same vivid blue. Back down at the dockside town, I shared a seabass with a group of Americans I’d met on the boat. They were on a faculty trip from some liberal arts college in Allentown, PA. Once I told them I’d spent a month just down the road in Doylestown, I was very well received.
There were a few big tankers & naval ships to see on the return voyage – as well as some wonderfully turned out polished wooden launches. Back in town, I crossed the Golden Horn & climbed up to the base of Galata Tower – which was closing just as I got there yesterday. Unfortunately you are not allowed to climb up it, just take the elevator. Decent views of the city – the only picture I have to share today.
On the way down the hill I found myself in yet another market. Belwilderingly, yet interestingly, this market near a lot of tourists, seemed to be given over to small process and maintenance equipment. I was eying up things that we need in the plant back at work. Alas, the photos of that are on my camera – so the only person who is likely to care, Farmer Liz, will have to wait.