Our first few days in Istanbul have been spent in a flurried rush between consulates, trying to organise visas for Iran, Syria and Pakistan. Photocopies, bank payments, letters of invitation, plastic sleeves for all the documents. It is an amazing array of paperwork that we have gone through and the difference in accomodation is fascinating. Britain sits in a grand mansion behind high spiked gates. Canada has a cozy flat on a trendy shopping street with fluffy white cats to greet you at the door. Syria’s tiny office would almost fit in the average broom closet.
From the above paragraph, you may have already deduced our planned route for the next few months — rather different than the result you suggested when we put a poll up on the site. You wanted us to go via Georgia, Armenia and the ‘stans into China but the thought of going so far north in the winter… well, brrrrrrr. We have opted instead for the slightly warmer route but may take in a few of the ‘stans in the late spring.
Now that we’ve updated you on our route, we hope you’ll be happy to know that between the consular shuffle, we worked our way down to the water’s edge off the famous Golden Horn and recorded a radio show for you. This time it features a few thoughts on Istanbul — mostly about eating well in the city — our best ever bicycle horn and an interview with Peter and Marj, two Aussies we met on the road in Germany. Enjoy!