Places we’ve been: Taksim

Istanbul (Turkey) is crammed full – that’s the feeling you get.

There are tiny streets, and tiny shopfronts . You need to sort of burrow into the shops to find the good stuff because although they are narrow they go way back, and way up, and way down. The shops are often only wide enough for a single set of shelves along each wall and maybe one in the middle, but as you squeeze your way past the goods on display you come to the narrow winding stairs (both up and down) in the back corner.

Taksim is the central area in Istanbul, on the European side of the Bosphorus. Taksim Square is often at the centre of demonstrations and revolutions.

We lived in Bakirkoy, near the airport, further out of town – but still crammed with tiny cobblestone streets wide enough only for one car at a time, and narrow shops. People there told us that if we went to Taksim and we went “up” it would be okay. But if we went down in Taksim (as in this picture) “you will get stabbed!” they warned us.

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