I traveled to Istanbul in October 2012. Since I was living in Manila at the time, I remember that my route was Manila-Dubai-Athens-Istanbul-Dubai-Manila.


The reason why I wanted to travel to Istanbul was thanks to the book “The Fall of Constantinople” by Nanami Shiono. The words such as “Bosporus Strait” and “border between Europe and Asia” fascinated me and I had a strong desire to go there.


I read “Travel Guide of Istanbul” quite seriously and also read books about Istanbul. Of course, I was interested in visiting Dubai and Athens, but Istanbul was the main focus of my trip. Travelers should always keep a diary of travels. I can enjoy the travel again. After I entered Istanbul, the descriptions were more detailed and the writing was cleaner than the one in other cities.


My stay in Istanbul was 2.5 days. In hindsight, it was not enough. As I had breakfast at the hotel, I remember thinking, “I have to control my excitement”. I had an idea that I have the highlight of the trip on the second or third day (which was a bit of a mistake). And I don’t think I needed to worry about that because there were plenty of tourist resources that could have been highlights.

計画は結局、現地に行くと全て変更になった。本で読んだナイチンゲールが勤めたセリミエ兵営を訪れるべくアジア側に船で渡ったが、兵営には行かず。Yemi CamiやRusutem Pasa Camiといったモスクをあれこれ道に迷いながら巡っている。

In the end, all my plans changed when I got there. I took a boat to the Asian side to visit the Selimiye Barracks where Nightingale served which I read in the book, but I did not go the barracks. I went to Yemi Cami, Rusutem Pasa Cami, and other mosques, getting lost along the way.


After enjoying the view of Istanbul from the Galata Tower, I had a mackerel sandwich. The mackerel sandwich was about 60% satisfaction in my opinion. I was very tired, so went back to the hotel. Maybe I was probably pretty exhausted. I went to a restaurant near the hotel to have a beer while planning the rest of my day.


In the afternoon, I went to Hagia Sophia. Hagia Sophia is one of the most important tourist attractions in Istanbul. The sheer number of tourists was off the charts. I was really impressed by the overwhelming scale of the interior. it is a historically very important cathedral that has been a Christian cathedral and an Islamic cathedral. It is said to have maintained the status of the largest cathedral in the world for 1000 years. At the time of my visit, it was positioned as a museum, but now I heard that it has returned to being an Islamic mosque again, despite criticism from the world. Highlight of the first day.

アヤソフィア内部の荘厳な様子/Inside of Hagia Sofia


I still had some time left. After this, I went to Taksim Square. It was a lively place with lots of people. I must have reached the limit of my physical strength. After returning to the hotel, I fell asleep and woke up at midnight. Feeling hungry, I went to a nearby restaurant, according to the travel diary. Why does this trip have to be so hectic? If I don’t keep a record, I won’t be able to remember how much I did in a day.

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乙女の塔/Kiz Kulesi
ガラタ塔外観/Galata Tower
ガラタ塔からの風景/View from Galata Tower
Taksim 広場あたりでトラム/Tram around Taksim Square