Istanbul. I’d never been to a city with so much history. Rome is the only place that comes close, and even that is not the same. The area was first settled nearly 2,500 years ago, and over that time it was a major crossroads of trade and culture, as well as the capitol of four major empires.
History is everywhere in the city, re-appropriated and re-purposed, layered on top of its self and crammed together. Stand anywhere in the city and you’ll find something beautiful from 500 years ago, then walk a few steps and find some place important 1,000 years ago, then turn a corner and find something 1,500 years old that was turned into something useful fifty years ago.
The modern day culture and the food were primarily what drew me to Istanbul, but we took a little time each day to visit one or two of the monumental historical sights the city had to offer. Limiting the time we spend in museums, for us, means that when we do go to one, we don’t feel rushed and exhausted. I like feeling like I can linger. Explore every corner and look at the light from every window. Imagine that I lived here and got to look at this tile or that stone, every day.