The magnificent Ulu Camii was built in 1399, when, to satisfy a promise to construct 20 mosques, Yildirim Bayazid chose instead to build a single mosque with 20 domes and minarets.
The next day, I look for the Chora Church, which Baha had suggested the last time I was here. His directions fail me so I hail a cab, but even the cabbie has trouble finding it. He drops me a few blocks away but points in the direction I need to walk to get there.
I locate the Ibrahim Pasa Palace, said to be one of the great surviving palaces in Istanbul dating to the Ottoman period. It's the home of the Islamic Art and Ethnology Museum.
This Ayasofya is among the oldest religious sites in the world, dating to 537 AD. It is also among the most important examples of Byzantine architecture still standing.
As Chief Architect, Mimar Sinan designed and restored 477 buildings and public works. The Suleyman Camii is regarded as one of his greatest achievements.
I hurry on to the Islamic Science Museum, eager to see how it compares to the Galileo Museum in Florence. There are globes in the entryway, but unlike the ones in Florence, these are not enclosed in glass...
We reach our final destination, the small fishing village of Anadolu Cavagi that sits at the base of a hill, crested by Yoros Kalesi. My map-reading skills have completely left me, and I'm approached by a waiter from the nearby restaurant, whom I try to ignore until I realize that he's pointing me towards the castle. The road up the hill is steep, taking me past a cemetery and up to the ruins of the fortress.
The Topkapi Palace, built between 1460-78, is a walled complex covering 700,000 square meters, comprised of three courtyards, several gardens and all the buildings required for a royal administrative city.
The weather is overcast, like my mood. I'm mentally fatigued. I cannot get onto the WIFI. Maybe Istanbul is too challenging for me. And now I cannot get out of my room.
The Grand Bazaar is as large and noisy as you would expect a 5,000 store shopping mall to be. Rick Steves says to spend about 2 hours here, which is about as much time as a human has before their retinas start to melt.