Thursday – 02/01/2020 | The Spice Bazaar
Today is our last full day in Istanbul so we spent it doing everything we could possibly do in the little time that we had left. We went to the Spice Bazaar, I absolutely loved shopping here.
It’s a huge undercover bazaar where they sell a variety of things. Spices, Turkish delight, baklava, keepsakes like key rings, purses, pillow cases and even pots for making tea and coffee. We spent about two hours walking around in here looking at everything.
We found a shop that sold everything my mum wanted to bring home. We bought rose flavoured and hazelnut flavoured Turkish delight, especially for my grandfather and teas and salep for winter, some chilli flakes to add a bit of Turkish spice to our food at home and some saffron which the shopkeeper gave us a gift.
I had the most amazing pomegranate tea in this shop and as I write this post, I find myself craving some.
After the Spice Bazaar, we then walked through another bazaar on the streets. This bazaar sold everything from clothes to scarves to material for wedding dresses.
We were really hungry after this so we stopped for lunch at Baldir’s which we found on the way walking back to the hotel. We bought a cheese basket for starters which was absolutely delicious and cheesy steak rolls for mains. Our meal was completed with the usual complimentary Turkish tea.
After sorting out everything in our rooms, packing our bags to go home and admiring the Istanbul skyline from our hotel window, we set out for our last adventure Turkish night adventure.
We took a short walk from our hotel and ended up at Hafiz Mustafa for dessert. We had the Künefe, Havuç Dilimi with ice cream and Karamellı Trileçe for dessert and salep, juices and Ottoman Coffee for drinks. The Karamellı Trileçe was the best and my Ottoman Coffee was a caffeine high in a shot sized mug.
While we were at Hafiz Mustafa, my mum bumped into one of her old friends so you can imagine how excited they were to see each other. What ensued was seven South Africans talking and laughing loudly (which earned us a few stares from the locals). It was good food and even better company until past midnight. But the night didn’t end here.
My siblings and I decided to take the last tram to Eminönü. We spent the next few minutes enjoying the view of the Asian side from the Bosphorus and then started to walk back to our hotel. Along the way we met a couple who photobombed the pictures I was taking on the street and then came across an old man selling sandwiches.
I couldn’t resist buying some for us to taste. We watched as this old uncle took the fresh fish (that he probably caught moments ago on the Bosphorus) and grilled it. As he was grilling it, he gave us pieces to taste. It was easily the best fish I’ve ever eaten. He then put the grilled fish on a roll, added lettuce, tomato and onion and then some fresh lemon juice and wrapped it in paper. We took it to the hotel where we shared it with our parents and wished that we had bought more. With this, our night ended.
Step count: 13 354