Big Island

After the our lovely brunch and riding around Istanbul (again, I thought I had seen my last day every time we entered that traffic), we got on a ferry for Big Island. I think the ferries were definitely one of my favorite parts of the city—you're in this booming metropolis, yet boat travel is normal and convenient. There are several islands in the Bosporus that are a quick boat ride away and common vacation spots.

There are no cars on the island, making the only mode of transportation horses and carriages, which we gladly rented to take us up the mountain! It was a little lopsided, but a fun adventure.

It was hard to get any good photos because of the moving carriage and rain, but one some-what example of the architecture of all of the gorgeous vacation homes on the island. We stopped for a tea at this restaurant halfway up the hill to the top of the island. From there we could watch the boats out in the water waiting their turn to go through the straight.

We then walked up a really long hill to get to a restaurant at the top and to soak in almost tear-bringing beautiful view, with complete, absolute silence. A perfect respite from the throbbing energy of the city.

Armenian Christians used to live on the island (I guess still do) and built this lovely church.

I think if I could choose any vacation home in the world, this would rank very highly! On the other side of the island from Istanbul, where I honestly have not clue how they got to it. There had be roads, but none were visible from the top. You have a city of 15 million a 30 minute boat ride away, and then you could be here without anything but the sea in sight.

Our dinner of kebab and the typical Turkish salad that is so delicious: tomatoes, onions, parsley, oil and vinegar.

After a nice day of seclusion, quietness, nature, sunset, and a car-free island, we returned to the bottom to catch the ferry back and found that globalization reaches to even these far corners: