There are not enough words in dictionary to describe the beauty of Turkey. We wanted to do so much but we only had a week in Turkey, so we decided to spend five days in Istanbul and two days in Cappadocia. The best time of the year would be from mid-October to April, as it was still super hot in the first week of September.
Istanbul is very rich in its history and architecture. Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, Blue Mosque, Basilica Cistern, Dolmabache Palace, and Galata tower are must visits. If you are not afraid of crowd then Istiklal caddesi, Taksim square, Navizade street, and Grand Bazaar are must hangout places. The cruise on Bosphorus strait is definitely a big ‘YES’. If you are a big fan of Sheesha, then you are at the right place, it’s a must try here and one of the top quality Sheeshas in the world. Hamams are of course must do, forget all your worries and stress, just get a nice Hamam and a massage with it.
Turks seemed nice, helpful, and are very liberal. Their revolutionary leader and the first President of Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk changed Turkey and made it what it is today. The only thing I did not like about Istanbul was the Cab drivers, they will try to rip you off, whenever they can. They charge you at least 2-4x more than the actual rate as they take longer route. So, please be careful while taking cabs. We didn’t take any other means of transportation, since cabs were comfortable and it was HOT!
Cappadocia is a very beautiful valley with several natural formations and cave houses. We stayed in a cave hotel to experience the true cave living. We also went to Kaymakli underground city, its history and architecture was so fascinating. Cappadocia is very famous for it’s early morning balloon ride that takes you over the valley. Hot air balloon ride was just breathtaking, early morning views of the valley and sky were incomparable.
Make sure to keep a comfortable pair of flats or sneakers for Istanbul as you will be walking a LOT. A pair of sneakers is must for Cappadocia for hiking tours in the valley.