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Day 8: Istanbul, Turkey – On Day 8, we flew on Turkish Airlines and from Muscat to Istanbul. The flight on Turkish Airlines was fantastic, and I had my first ever Turkish breakfast while in the sky. We then checked into The Ritz-Carlton hotel, and had some amazing Istanbul street food kofte for lunch. Istanbul is a city that I’ve always wanted to visit, and I can’t wait to explore and eat more Turkish food!
0:15 Turkish Breakfast on Turkish Airlines – To begin this day and video my wife and I were on a flight with Turkish Airlines (member of Star Alliance) from Muscat, Oman to Istanbul, Turkey. Turkish Airlines is an amazing airlines, and on business class they served us Turkish breakfast since we happen to fly into Istanbul early in the morning. Bread, olives, cheese, honey, and then the main dish included eggs and vegetables. Great flight with Turkish Airlines!
2:42 Istanbul Atatürk Airport – We arrived to Istanbul very early in the morning and after grabbing our bag, we found the bus outside the terminal to go to Taksim Square. The bus cost 11 TL ($3.73) per person.
4:57 The Ritz-Carlton, Istanbul – Marriott Hotels sponsored my stay in Istanbul, and it was an honor to have the opportunity to stay at the The Ritz-Carlton, Istanbul, which is located just a 5 minute walk from Taksim Square, with a fantastic view of the Bosphorus. We got all checked in, and the room was fantastic.
7:44 Istanbul Street Food – Kofte Sandwich Stall – After taking a little rest in the hotel and drinking some coffee, Ying and I were both pretty hungry. There’s a small Istanbul street food stall that serves amazing grilled kofte, just down the street from The Ritz-Carlton, Istanbul, and that’s exactly where we headed, right at lunch time. Before ever arriving I could smell the aroma of the meat on the grill and then I could see the colorful display of peppers and parsley surrounding the grill as well. I ordered a kofte sandwich, and after toasting the bread, he added in a bunch of little meat kofte patties, some tomatoes and onions and peppers, seasoned with some spices and chili powder and handed it to me. For 10 TL ($3.40) for sandwich and drink, this was about as good as it could possibly get for Istanbul street food! Wow it was so good.
12:17 Taksim Square and Turkish Coffee at Mandabatmaz (Istiklal Street) – After that amazing kofte sandwich, we continued walking through Taksim Square, one of the most famous landmarks of Istanbul and then on to the walking Istiklal street. The highlight for me was stopping at Mandabatmaz for a cup of the most amazing Turkish coffee I’ve ever had. Turkish coffee – 5 TL ($1.70).
17:04 Fish and Meat House – At this point Ying and I were starting to get really sleepy – we hadn’t really slept the night before. So we stopped for an early dinner at Fish and Meat House to have some grilled fish. I had the grilled sea bream, which was simple and plain but excellently fresh and cooked perfectly. The salad was also delicious. Total price for everything – 74 TL ($25.12).
Disclaimer and Thank You:
This trip was made possible by Star Alliance and their Round The World tickets (http://www.staralliance.com/en/round-the-world) who sponsored my business class flights.
The Ritz-Carlton, Istanbul sponsored my stay in Istanbul.
Thank you to Star Alliance, Marriott Hotels, and Turkish Airlines for making this trip happen.
I personally paid for all food and attractions in this video.
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