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Old 07-31-2010, 10:17 AM   #1
Joosse
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Ephesus, Turkey

I was lucky enough to visit the site of this ancient Greek/Roman city in Turkey. For many years it was the second largest city in the Roman Empire.



Not sure why, but I always get an 'Indy Vibe' whenever I visit places like these...



Standing in the ruins of the Odeon.

(Note to self: Must suck in that gut.... )



In the ancient Celsus Library.



The Celsus Library again, with my youngest niece.



The poor kid. Thought she had a holiday from school, and finds out that her uncle is determined to lecture her...



The great amfitheatre at Ephesus.

Certainly a site I would recommend to everybody here, if you are ever in the area.
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Old 08-28-2010, 10:36 AM   #2
Gabeed
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Wow, that's a great shot of the amphitheater in that final pic.
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Old 04-07-2011, 02:42 PM   #3
JRJENNINGS86
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By chance did you visit the Road to Damascus? As a Christian that was special to me, to think that i could have been where Christ first appeared to Saul (later named Paul)
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Old 05-22-2012, 11:41 AM   #4
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Does anyone have any hotel recommendations for Istanbul?

Le Saboteur, are you reading this?
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Old 05-22-2012, 11:54 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoo
Does anyone have any hotel recommendations for Istanbul?

Le Saboteur, are you reading this?

If you can give me 24 hours, I work with a chap who used to live there. Should be able to give you some pointers...
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Old 05-23-2012, 05:52 AM   #6
Le Saboteur
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joosse
The great amfitheatre at Ephesus.

Two years on and I just realized that Joose used the Dutch spelling of amphitheater...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoo
Le Saboteur, are you reading this?

No. I resent the idea that I'd click on a link about Turkey.

I'd normally ask what you were looking for, but let's see what I can come up with. As a rule I don't stay in chain hotels, and hostels are hit or miss these days so...

I've stayed here, but only for the private launch. It's on the Asian side of the Bosporus and fairly close to the Bosporus Bridge, so it's definitely quiet.

I've also stayed here. Remember Midnight Express? Yeah, they turned the prison into a luxury hotel. Considering that it's Four Seasons, it's on the far end of pricey. Definitely visit the bar, though. You'll like it.

I wanted to stay here, but it was shuttered for an extensive remodel the last time I came through.

I've also stayed here and here. Both hotels are good, but I find myself returning to the Valide Sultan Konagi. It's a rather small hotel, but it has a splendid location across the street from the Four Seasons and in the shadow of the Hagia Sophia. The view from the rooftop restaurant are fantastic -- the Bosporus on one side, the Sea of Marmara on the other, and the Hagia Sophia on the other.

Do we not have a thread on Istanbul?
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Old 05-23-2012, 03:17 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoo
Does anyone have any hotel recommendations for Istanbul?

I have now become a regular at the Witt Istanbul. It's located at Defterdar Yokuşu in the heart of Beyoğlu near Cihangir, just vis-à-vis the İtalyan Hastanesi.

Great owners (two guys in their 30s-40s, like most of us mature Indy fans), an unpretentious place despite Tyler Brulé giving it some award, excellent rooms and truly cosmopolitan Turkish service, with the best breakfast (served by default in the room) I had in any hotel ever . It attracts mostly individual travellers or couples, and at maximum what I call "ideally-sized groups" (i.e. 4-6 people).
The two quite affordable rooftop suites have wraparound balconies that allow a 270° view stretching from Bosphorus Bridge on your left, along the Bosphorus, over Sultanahmet and the Golden Horn all way back to Galata Tower and the Beyoğlu skyline. I made some good medium-format panoramas there.

I find it very conveniently located, as 3 minutes down the road is the T1 tramline station. With a few jetons, it gets you northbound to the Dolmabahçe Sarayı and southbound to Topkapı etc., which is where I mostly have to be when I am there. The rides take around 15 minutes each.
And 20 minutes up the road leads you bang on to İstiklâl Caddesi and Galata.

I found the hotels north of Dolmabahçe to be not very practical to get to the city quickly and conveniently at all times (esp. for nightlife), even though the Yalı properties there are gorgeous to stay in. I also personally like that the Witt is away from Sultanahmet which has become just way too much tourist-oriented in the past decade, with mainstreamed food, high prices, and bad manners (by local Turkish standards, which abhor waiters inviting people into restaurants and such behaviour). As my partner's Turkish family would say - "it is now neither local nor classy" . Plus you are also away from what they call "adventure travel re-enactments", i.e. tourists who think they are in some orientalist phantasy, strolling through "Exotic Stanbul" between Muslims-in-Souks and all that.

I think it's fair to say that Beyoğlu is the reason why Istanbul became cool again since the late-1990s: because of the chemistry and wit of the young (maybe last) Atatürkian secular and cosmopolitan generation that made its base there. And with the current rift in Turkish society, for me and my partner, staying there and supporting this has an important element of 'politics of place' . Plus, within 5 minutes from the Witt, you have the White Mill, Komşufırın, the Hayat, plenty of cool Koiförs, and some local supermarkets to top up on fresh victuals and provisions.



P.S.: Check out Robinson Crusoe 389 on İstiklâl Cd, down from Taksim towards Demirören. Very good academic section, and very good Indy section . You won't leave without having bought a book.
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Old 05-31-2012, 10:29 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Le Saboteur
Do we not have a thread on Istanbul?
Unfortunately not (at least, not in the Globe-Trotting section anyway) but I figured it would be better to bump this one in order to talk about Turkish travel in general.

Thanks Le Saboteur and Archaeos for the recommendations. I really appreciate the effort and must say that the Valide Sultan Konagi and the Witt are sounding ideal.

I should have mentioned that I'm keen on staying near the Bosphorus because a former schoolmate of mine lives on the Asian side. She has offered to let us stay at her mother's place (also on the Asian side) but we'd rather not impose.

Her family moved to Canada when she was 10 and we went to school together until they moved back to Turkey after we graduated highschool. We lost touch but thanks to Facebook, that has changed. Her name is Hulya and a work colleague of mine once told me that it is Turkish for a type of flower.

And, yes, I remember "Midnight Express". Talk about living a nightmare!
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Old 05-31-2012, 10:29 AM   #9
Stoo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inky_skin
If you can give me 24 hours, I work with a chap who used to live there. Should be able to give you some pointers...
Whenever you have a chance, Inky. I've been postponing this trip for years so there is no rush.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Le Saboteur
Do we not have a thread on Istanbul?
Unfortunately not (at least, not in the Globe-Trotting section anyway) but I figured it would be better to bump this one in order to talk about Turkish travel in general.

Thanks Le Saboteur and Archaeos for the recommendations! I really appreciate the effort and must say that the Valide Sultan Konagi and the Witt are sounding ideal.

WilliamBoyd8 went to Istanbul last month. I wonder where he stayed?

I should have mentioned that I'm keen on staying near the Bosphorus because a former schoolmate of mine lives on the Asian side. Staying somewhere between her place and the centre of the city is the goal. She has offered to let us stay at her mother's place (also on the Asian side) but we'd rather not impose.

Her family moved to Canada when she was 10 and we went to school together until they moved back to Turkey after we graduated highschool. We lost touch but thanks to Facebook, that has changed. Her name is Hulya and a work colleague of mine once told me that it is Turkish for a type of flower.

And, yes, I remember "Midnight Express". Talk about living a nightmare!

Last edited by Stoo : 05-31-2012 at 10:42 AM.
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Old 05-31-2012, 02:14 PM   #10
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Don't know about Hülya referring to a flower (could well be), but it's a not too rare first name for women, because it means "daydreamer" in English, or "Traumtänzer" in German (dreamdancer), or "reverie" in French (a frivolous dreamery). You will find many romantic novels featuring characters with that name (not that I would read such stuff... )
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Old 05-08-2013, 11:53 PM   #11
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Great pictures! I was in Ephesus a few years ago, too, and loved it. I won't post pics because it was in my pre-fedora days.
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Old 05-11-2013, 10:16 PM   #12
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Fantastic location! Reminds me of the "Travels with Father" Young Indy episode.
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