When a friend of mine invite me on a trip to Istanbul to watch Formula 1, I did not hesitate. I was ready for my second visit to Turkey.
I don’t remember much about the trip itself, because I slept almost the whole time. But, when we arrived, I was awake and ready for adventures. Istanbul is an amazing city. It has nice parks, different culture and has a lot to offer. Well, may be, half of its charm comes from the fact it is situated on two continents. I saw a lot from the car, as we drove around the city.
We stopped near a nice park, that was close to the water, and was in such a contrast to the big and full of traffic street next to it. Perfectly cut grass and bushes, nice benches and a fascinating view. The waterside street was long and quiet. In front was the vast sea, that was calm and without a single wave on the horizon. On the left side, we saw a port, guarded by a small painted in white and red, lighthouse. We could not see the end of the street, on the right side. It was long and beautiful benches were “resting” alongside it, waiting for somebody to sit and engulf the loveliness around.
Behind us, next to the street, was the St. Stephen’s Church, also known as the Bulgarian Iron Church. It is a Bulgarian Orthodox Church, and according to Wikipedia is famous for being made of cast iron. The building had very interesting architecture and is richly ornamented, and is a three-domed cross-shaped basilica. Unfortunately, it was closed for visitors and we had no chance to go inside.
We had time to make another stop, again near the water. This park had fitness apparatus, which we did not hesitate to try. After we “trained” for a little while, we went for a walk on the street beside the water. There were nice cafes and restaurants beside it. Here I saw a very huge white ship. I’ve always wanted to see one, but never had the opportunity. Not far behind it, was standing stately one of Istanbul’s famous bridges.
It was time for our purpose of visit. We got on the bridge and soon we were in Asia. I remember that finding a spot in the parking of Istanbul Park, was very hard. After we managed to do that, we headed to our seats. But, before that we had time to explore everything around us and to have pictures with race cars and other interesting stuff. Small buses drove us to our destination. Our “seats” were not exactly seats. We had the cheapest tickets, so we were near one of the turns and we sit on the grass. Luckily, we had some chairs, umbrellas, hats and blankets. The race started, we put our earplugs in and started to watch. We put our huge Bulgarian flag proudly on the ground. To be honest we didn’t see much, just from time to time cars passed by us, but we didn’t really know which car it was. The day was very hot, and I spent half of the time in the restroom, where it was cool. We didn’t understand, who won. When the race finished, we headed to the cars, but it was so overcrowded, that we could not get on a bus, so we walked for about 30-40 minutes to the parking and then drove at least an hour or two to get to the bridge again. It was a long day, but I was happy that a dream of mine came true.