It looks like I’ll be taking an impromptu trip to Istanbul in the near future! Hopefully I won’t strangle my travel companion for constantly singing the song “Istanbul, not Constantinople,” as he is wont to do. (I really hate that song.)
Here’s a video of one of the most annoying songs in the world. Warning: watching this video may cause you to want to shoot yourself.
I threw together a list of all the sites I want to see there, with their visiting hours. It goes something like this.
Aya Sofya (Hagia Sophia): Tues.-Sun. 9-5 in winter (or 7 in summer)
Blue Mosque: Daily 9-5 in winter (6:30 summer); closed during prayer times
Basilica Cistern: Daily 9-5:30 in winter (6:30 summer)
Topkapi Palace: Wed.-Mon. 9-7 from April to Oct.
Topkapi Harem: Wed.-Mon. 9:30-5 from April to Oct.
Mosque of Suleyman: Daily sunrise-sunset except during prayer
Kariye Museum/ Church of Holy Savior in Chora: Thurs.-Tues. 9-7
Istanbul Archeological Museum: Tues.-Sun. 9-5 in winter (or 7 in summer)
Grand Bazaar: Mon.-Sat. 8:30-7
Egyptian Bazaar/ Spice Market: Mon.-Sat. 8:30-7, Sun. 9-6:30
Hippodrome: No hours, free
If I have time, I also want to see:
Mosque of Sokollu Mehmet Pasha: Daily sunrise-sunset except during prayer times
Dolmabahce Palace: Tues.-Wed. and Fri-Sun. 8:30-4 in winter (4:30 in summer); daily quota of visitors.
Can anyone recommend how many days I should spend in Istanbul? I’m thinking three or four days. I may also throw in a trip to Cappadocia if I have time!