These posts are taking longer then usual because every spare time I have, I’m trying to make the most of Ramadan. Reading, reciting, praying. Not just that. Helping out around the house is more important since my mother in law keeps all her fasts and I most certainly can NOT be lazy! I’m on my toes! (it’s a good thing)
So anyway, before we left we booked a boat excursion (Saqib booked this after asking me a hundred times if i wanted to go on the full or half day excursion. I said half so of course he booked the full) I was on edge, naturally, so vented my anger on him. We had woken up early in the morning had a little something to eat before we left the hotel. Jana, at this point, wasnt eating so well still. We waited for the bus to come pick us up and take us to the port. There were three other couples getting on with us. Once we got to the port our boat arrived within a few minutes. It’s not pushchair friendly but the staff are definitly friendly and will do anything they can to make you feel comfortable. The offered to carry our pushchair, bag even the baby itself! She was fussy though and wouldn’t leave me. (which is the way I want it to be) I was stupid enough to climb to the top deck (incredibly difficult with a baby in one arm!) It was a five minute ride to our first stop – Maiden Tower. The debrief on the tour and the story of the tower itself was told right at the top of it. I was feeling brave so climbed and climbed all the way to the top! Only to find Jana searching for ‘dudu’. She was ready to have her nap in the middle of all these people. It was a little annoying as I had to miss out on the story (my husband caught me up later) but we made it back on the boat after a twenty minute recess for pictures and Jana slept.
Our next stop was a little village called Ortaköy. Jana slept. Mummy enjoyed her me time! Soaked in some sunshine, strolled around the vicinity, checked out the local mosques (small but stunning architecture as everywhere else in the city), got some ice cream, chilled in the shade and baby woke up a few minutes before we boarded the boat again! The boat took us under the bosphorous bridge to get to a Rumeli fortress. We were given plenty of time to look around the fortress after a detailed story of this particular area. I would say, not the safest of places to be with a baby but we weren’t the only ones. It is a bit difficult with a toddler as they need to walk around and burn off energy, possibly easier with a smaller child. It was finally lunch time when we got on the boat again and MAN was it good! Delicious turkish cuisine. A lot more people, including another family with children, had joined us at this point for their half day excursion. We were traveling all the way to the black sea now! You could see endless beautiful sceneries from the european and asian side of Turkey. A new bridge was under construction to join both sides as we approached the black sea. We stopped for a further 45minutes on the Asia side. Baby J had once again fallen asleep and so we indulged in some delicious turkish tea. A beautiful sea breeze was blowing in which kept the sun from getting too hot.
I survived the day without exhausting myself. What’s more is we made such good friends with the crew (well Jana did anyway) that we got a very a nice favour on the way back to our hotel. We got dropped off to the closest port to our hotel while everyone wondered why they couldn’t get off. (that was a nice feeling hehe) I would recommend this excursion to couples and people able to move around more freely. There’s no doubt that mothers with small children can still go provided you are mentally prepared for a little discomfort and the fact that your baby might get a little upset (if your baby is anything like Jana and needs absolute peace and queit to sleep otherwise your good) It’s difficult getting on and off the boat especially if you’re with a little baby. Some of the monuments are difficult to get to and can get tiring when you have a to walk at a height. The half day could probably work out better if your keen but don’t want to spend the entire day!