The Bosphorus Strait divides the continents of Europe and Asia, also dividing Istanbul into its European side and its Asian side. It is the narrowest strait in the world used for navigation, and along with Dardanelles Strait in the end of the Sea of Marmara together they form the Turkish Straits. The Golden Horn or the part of the Bosphorous which bounces off golden sunlight hence giving it the name, is one of the most picturesque parts of the experience. Getting on a cruise along the Bosphorous is about a 4 to 5-hour escapade, that includes lunch and a high tea in case one is not ferrying from one point in Istanbul to the other along the strait. Without any stops, several seagulls for company, sightseeing places along the ride, container ships trudging past, and private yachts blasting away, the ride on the cruise is rather eventful. The Galata bridge, Hagia Sophia, the Galata Tower, the Blue Mosque are notable landmarks along the Sultanahmet part of the city while Karakoy, Dolmabahce Palace, the city’s star properties extending almost all the way to Bebek give one a glimpse into the real extent of the city. On the Asian side though an astounding tower stands clearly ignoring the nation’s heritage and beaming television signal to the addicts of Turkish sitcoms. The Four Seasons hotel alongside the Bosphorous makes for a really pretty stay and is a must for an experience of the calm and lucid waters.
On board the ferry, one is welcomed with a huge lunch, almost as vast as the cuisine of Turkey goes. Every traditional meal in Turkey is extremely colorful, red, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet, yes it is almost like eating the rainbow every single meal. The meal on board followed suit, we were served a huge salad, with fresh produce it was as crunchy as ever, then the lentil soup followed, which I very conveniently call the daal soup and then come the flurry of breads, the maincourse this time included the rice stuffed capsicum. Another popular dish in Turkey not on board but available elsewhere is the Pide or Turkish Pizza, a lot flattened, it serves one and is quite delicious. The high tea platter that soon follows is all about a rainbow of fruits and then the olives and cheese an unmissable addition in Turkey. Totally stuffed, and gazing into the horizon of the city, one is treated to a city that has beautiful buildings, old and new, interspersed with parks and adequate greenery, there are many flags on display putting on a show of Turkish nationalism in great measure. While studying any city, its green quotient is very crucial, but recent research has shown that blue is also an important color in the make of the well-being of denizens.
Living in places with blue skies is noted to bring out the best in people, maybe the tropics sure have a role to play in island life! Blue water bodies, watching them or using them all at the same time bring out the best in the mental health of people, if not the complexion! The food, the environment, and the lineage make Turkish people the most ridiculously good-looking people in the world. Even the smoke in the air disappears with all the blue. Feeling blue must have a different meaning altogether!