Where to stay in Istanbul

For millennia Istanbul has been recognised and admired as one of the most beautiful and exciting cities in the world. This unique metropolis was once the capital for three world-spanning empires: Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman. The hundreds of emperors and sultans that reigned over the city for more than 16 centuries have all left a legacy of valour and beautiful relics.

Istanbul has a broad historical and cultural canvas with Roman architecture and Islamic mosques

Best Bites of Istanbul

Istanbul, the guidebook said, is a melting pot of cultures, of hidden eateries and native food, melt-in-the-mouth pastries dripping with honey and hearty aubergine kebabs found in the city’s ancient backstreets.

As a child, foreign cuisine began and ended with spaghetti out of tins; back then ‘eating out’ entailed selecting from a slightly sticky laminated menu with pictures of food on it. Which is why, sitting in Mercan Café, a small, crowded eatery found along …

5 Must See Thanksgiving Day Parades

As a major holiday, there are numerous activities and festivities to see and be part of, but none equals a spectacular Thanksgiving Day Parade. Nowadays, you can choose what location you want to the see the festive floats, giant character balloons and the marching bands, from New York City to Chicago to Philadelphia. It just one of those things that the TV cannot do justice to, the sights, the sound and the smell, so plan …

Europe’s hippest hostels: chic on the cheap!

Hostels sometimes used to be thought of as dingy, crowded, last-resort lodging that was only for hippies, students, random backpackers and possibly criminals — and perhaps that is the impression that some people still have of them. That old stereotype is completely outdated in the many shiny and modern new hostels that have been popping up around Europe lately and competing with one another for a chunk of a highly coveted market. Hostels cater to …

Go Underground: 5 Places to See the World from Within

Calling all surface-dwellers. These days you don’t have to be a spelunker to seek out the places within so it’s time to explore some subterranean sights. Whether you want to see the secret cities ancient societies dug under the warped and wrinkled landscape of Turkey’s Cappadocia, or witness the sparkling glowworm spectacle of Waitomo in New Zealand, there’s a strange and eerie world awaiting you below.

Underground Cities, Cappadocia, Turkey

Formed by a mother nature …

Turkey – tea with the locals

Yes, the British and the Japanese have their tea customs and rituals, and I wouldn’t want to take away from the special nature of either of those cultures. But if I had to choose where I would most like to have a cup of tea with the locals, it would be Turkey. Tea shops are a focal point for street level Turkish culture and most good things happen in the presence of a cup of …