Yes, Istanbul is a beautiful city with many great sights. But there are many beautiful cities in the world, so what makes Istanbul so special?
For me it was the hours spent in the city's wonderful cafés, drinking 'cay' or 'kafe', smoking nargileh (they have soooo many flavors).
It's just the perfect way to relax in between exhausting sightseeing sessions.
Check out one of the cafés under the Galata Bridge at night. The view on the illuminated Yeni Mosque mosque is breathtaking.
It doesn't matter whether it's hot outside as in hell, rains or snows, or cold freezez to the bone marrow, these guys are always on Galata Bridge.....
It's a way of life, an everyday ritual which could hardly be broke, it's like the change of guards near Queen's residence :))) an eternal Swiss watch, which never stops and never fails....
The Golden Horn runs approximately seven miles inland from the Sea of Marmara, a natural harbor along the northern edge of Stamboul that contributed heavily to the city's wealth (the fisheries here have been notorious over the centuries). Frequently miscalled the divider between European and Asian Istanbul, the inlet only divides Stamboul from the more modern suburb of Pera (Galata).
Fondest memory: Standing on the Galata Bridge, the focal point of life in Istanbul, the senses are overwhelmed with sounds and images. Hawkers and fishermen swarm the bridge. The Galata Tower stares down from its stronghold, while Yeni Cami anchors the southern watches, flanked in turn by Topkapi Palace and Suleimaniye.
Favorite thing: You are really missing out if you don't try street food. At Eminonu, have a nice snack or lunch by Galata Bridge under the watch of of another great mosque.
It is the bridge between Eminonu(old peninsula) and Karakoy ....
The bridge is full of romantic fishermen who enjoys fishing as they gaze towards Sultanahmet and the Palace..