Thursday, March 3, 2016
Tomorrow we fly from Istanbul back to San Francisco so today was the last day of our trip.
This morning we took the bus to Taksim square and wandered around a bit then had a coffee. The square is where demonstrations happen when there is unrest here. Today it was quiet and wet.
Then we visited the Basilica Cistern. It is a massive cistern built by the Byzantines in 532. There are 336 columns many of which are recycled from ancient temples. The whole massive structure is under the square by the Blue Mosque. It was just opened for public viewing in 1987.
It was raining most of the day but it stopped in mid afternoon and we were able to take a nice walk in the gardens around the Topkapi Palace – Gülhane Park.
For dinner we went to a restaurant called Matbah that serves dishes with historic roots. The dishes are called Ottoman Palace Cuisine.