As usual, it didn`t take long for me to get bored with the most touristy districts. They just feel like a giant themepark, with nothing real.
On my second day, I walked through the shopping streets of Taksim, and got the idea to continue to the Bosphorus Bridge. That meant walking through Besiktas to Ortaköy.
I had a small hope of continuing to the Asian side, but soon learned the bridge hasn`t taken pedestrians since the seventies. Still, the walk was worth it. Ortaköy has beautiful small restaurants, and I had a really nice lunch. On my way back, I walked through the bazaar district in Sultanahmet, and it really seems endless……
On the third day, I decided to take a stroll around the Golden Horn, starting in Sultanahmet and ending up in Taksim. It was a long walk (close to 20 kilometers), and it gave a fantastic view of the districts outside the common tourist paths. The feet hurt, but wow, was it worth it!
The middle 10 km was without a tourist in sight. I encountered school marching bands, goats, real local restaurants, and found ot that the shallow end of the Horn really literally stinks. Didn’t matter, the experience was great.