Best. Layover. Ever.
En route to South Africa, Alisha and I had a six hour layover in Istanbul, Turkey. Normally, we’d detest such a long amount of time sitting in an airport rotting away, but since we’ve never been to Turkey, we made the most of it.
Immediately after landing, we headed to the visa line, paid our $20 and cleared immigrations nearly as fast. Jumping into a cab, we headed to the Blue Mosque, which is one of Istanbul’s more well-known sites.
We did some exploration of the mosque, with its incredible cool blue coloring of the interior’s tiles, and the towering ceilings. Before heading back to the airport, Alisha and I wanted to grab an early dinner. Wandering around Istanbul in search of food, we passed through a small bazaar, containing mostly locals enjoying the warm summer evening.
A couple of times we passed men sitting around — in this case sitting in the middle of the walkway — playing a fierce game of backgammon. I’m vaguely familiar with backgammon, except the men played it so fast I could barely keep up with who was throwing the dice, let alone who was moving their checkers.