|Cleanliness is very important
|Spot the ostrich egg again!
Sultan Süleyman was the 10th and longest-reigning Sultan of the Ottoman Empire. He made a lot of positive changes for the expanding empire, including the significant cultural developments, but his biggest legacy is his love life.
Süleyman fell in love with Roxelana, a formally-Christian Polish girl who had converted to Islam to join his harem. She had previously been a slave but rose through the ranks of the harem to become his favourite. Much to everyone’s surprise he then married her, making her Hürrem Sultan. Ignoring tradition, he also allowed her to remain at court with him for the rest of her life with their son, Selim II. Selim II became his father’s heir after the previous eldest son, Mustafa, was murdered 13 years earlier at his father’s request!
We then headed through the Grand Bazaar and Spice Bazaar…
…to the Hippodrome. This ancient race-track was the sporting and social centre of Istanbul. It is now called Sultan Ahmet square and contains only a few of the original structures.
We stopped at Sehzade Erzurum Cag Kebabi for lunch.
Erzurum Cag is a kind of döner kebab from eastern Turkey which is different because the meat is served in chunks (not minced) on a skewer, cooked in a charcoal fire.
You are served a skewer on thin bread (lavaş) and once you’ve finished, another is presented….until you tell them to stop!
To end on a healthier note, I then tucked into a delicious fig - after all I was in fig country (Turkey is the world’s biggest exporter of figs)!
Then it was time to leave Europe and head off to Ankara…
|Bye bye Europe...hello, Asia!
Arriving in time for dinner we headed straight out to a ‘pizza’ place where I had Ayran (salted yoghurt drink) and a Turkish pizza - “pide”.
|Worth trying...but not for me!