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Hippodrome

Day 22 – Hippodrome, Istanbul, Turkey

April 2015

Quick links : Photo spot  Istanbul secret
The Hippodrome (Of Constantinople) is located in what is now known as Sultan Ahmet Square just behind the Sultanahmet (Blue) Mosque. It was formerly a sporting and social centre of Constantinople, capital of the Byzantine Empire. The three most significant remnants are the two stone pillars known as Obelisk of Thutmose III and Walled Obelisk and the bronze Serpent Column minus the serpent’s head.

If you have chosen to stay at Star Holiday Hotel, from the entrance door it’s probably less than a minute walk to the square. Before reaching the first pillar, to your left will be the Blue Mosque.

Hippodrome

Walking route from Star Holiday across Sultan Ahmet Square to Hippodrome and ‘colourful’ restaurants.

Hippodrome

The Hippodrome as seen from Star Holiday Hotel’s breakfast terrace. The Blue Mosque minaret is to the left.

Hippodrome

The Hippodrome as approached from Star Holiday Hotel. The Blue mosque will be to your left.

Hippodrome

You’ll get to see the Obelisk (stone pillar) of Thutmose III first.

Hippodrome

In the centre is the bronze Serpent Column without the serpent’s head.

Hippodrome

And to the far end, the Walled Obelisk.

Hippodrome

Obelisk of Thutmose III at night. Star Holiday Hotel is so close by, you can come anytime and as many time you chose.

Hippodrome

The Walled Obelisk at night.

Towards the end of Walled Obelisk, turn left and you’ll see a row of restaurants painted in multi colours. This is something new, we have never seen before and we consider this as a photo spot as well as a new Istanbul secret.

Sultanahmet photo spot

Colourful restaurants.

Sultanahmet photo spot

A new photo spot in Istanbul. Painting should be completed by the time you read this.

Day 22 – Gulhane Park (Pt 2), Istanbul, Turkey

April 2015

Being fortunate to be in Gulhane Park in spring it’s all about tulips. Rightly so, this post will feature pictures of tulips in Gulhane Park, Turkey.

Gulhane Park


The beautiful tulips of Gulhane Park.

Gulhane Park

So, is this a dark purple or a black tulip ?

Gulhane Park

Gulhane Park

Gulhane Park

Gulhane Park

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Gulhane Park
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Gulhane Park

Gulhane Park

Day 22 – Gulhane Park (Pt 1), Istanbul, Turkey

April 2015

Coming out of Basilica Cistern, we walk downhill about two minutes towards Gulhane Park. It is located adjacent to and on the grounds of the Topkapı Palace and was once the outer garden of Topkapı Palace. Now it’s a public park open to all. We were fortunate to be there in spring to be able to see various varieties of tulips.

Gulhane cannot be compared to Keukenhof which is a purpose-built commercial garden. I prefer Gulhane for various reasons. Firstly it’s a public park, so no entry fees. It’s close by to Sultanahmet’s other attraction so it’s within walking distance, no special transport required. The park with flowers isn’t as big as Keukenhof, thus you’ll see a bit of everything in a smaller area so you cover it in less time. Anyway, the tulips of Holland originated from Turkey. It’s a matter of preference actually. We were in Keukenhof a week earlier so we can compare both gardens. You can read Kuekenhof’s postings here and here.

Gulhane Park

Fountain in Gulhane Park.

Gulhane Park

The tranquil and beautiful Gulhane Park.

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Gulhane Park

Gulhane Park

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Gulhane Park

Kids love going to the park too.

Gulhane Park

sampaisudah.com likes Gulhane Park.