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Oia 847 02, Greece
First of all, it should be said that it doesn't really matter where you are on the island of Santorini—the view will likely be outstanding. Skala, a Greek restaurant nestled amongst boutique shops and cliffside hotels, is one of several...
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I had just left the Spice Bazaar behind me when I noticed the entrance to Yeni Camii (New Mosque). It was late afternoon, and I was already exhausted from a very long day of sightseeing. I wanted nothing more than to call it a day but I was...
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Tomtom Mahallesi, Ara Güler Sk No:2, 34433 Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey
Cafe Ara was a perfect stop on a rainy chilly day in the Taksim/Beyoglu part of Karakoy, Istanbul, Turkey. The cafe is named after a magnificent Turkish photographer who worked in Istanbul and whose large format black and white images adorn the...
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Bereketzade Mahallesi, Galata Kulesi Sk., 34421 Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey
The Galata Tower is one of Istanbul's most striking landmarks. The nine-story stone tower offers a panoramic vista of Old Istanbul and its environs. Save Galata for the end of the day, timing it so that you reach the top just in time for sunset...
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Firuzağa Mahallesi, Bostanbaşı Cd. No:19, 34425 Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey
The Çukurcuma neighborhood, just a short walk down the hill from Istanbul’s busy İstiklal Caddesi, is an antique, vintage, and retro lover’s delight. Step onto Faik Paşa Street or Turnacıbaşı Street and you step back in time....
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Vişnezade Mahallesi, Dolmabahçe Cd., 34357 Beşiktaş/İstanbul, Turkey

The Grand Ballroom in Dolmabahce Palace is the most amazing single room I've ever been in. There is the largest chandelier in the world (weighing 4 tons), and grandeur everywhere. To top in off, there are wonderful gardens and fountains, and it's...

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Balat Mahallesi, Mürselpaşa Cd. No:10, 34087 Fatih/İstanbul, Turkey
My Local Guide Istanbul provides a unique tour of Istanbul's UNESCO World Heritage listed renovated and ruined Ottoman Houses. Walking amongst the locals was an experience in itself, with local kids curious to see us in their colourful community....
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Tomtom Mahallesi, İstiklal Cd. No:8 D:163, 34433 Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey
This elite rooftop restaurants is a popular place for locals to celebrate birthdays, milestones, and romantic moments. Called 360 for its magnificent 360-degree view of Istanbul, it's a great place to celebrate just being in Istanbul! Relax with a...
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Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey
On the way to see the Galata Tower, the afternoon sun was peeking down the narrow streets of this wonderful neighbourhood in Istanbul.
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Alemdar Mh., Yerebatan Cd. 1/3, 34410 Fatih/İstanbul, Turkey
This cistern is thought to have been built after the Nika revolt in 532 AD. It was known as the Basilica Cistern during the Roman period. After the conquest of the city by the Ottoman Turks, it was forgotten and nobody knew that it existed. It was...
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Be sure to buy some spices. Most of the vendors have their own special mixtures. And the best part: the vendors can vacuum-seal your purchase for the trip home.
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Firuzağa Mahallesi, Dalgıç Çk. No:2, 34425 Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey
Incurable romantics should visit the Museum of Innocence in Beyoglu, Istanbul. Read Orhan Pamuk’s novel The Museum of Innocence first, or visit the museum and then read the novel, or visit the museum while you are reading the novel. It really...
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Bereketzade Mahallesi, Hacı Ali Sk. No:2, 34425 Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey
Istanbul is famous for being the only city in the world to span two continents (Asia and Europe), and one of my favorite casual dining experiences is enjoying a Turkish tea (cay) and dessert at Galata's rooftop, Konak Cafe. From one seat, you will...
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Beyoğlu/İstanbul, Turkey
A shop window display in the small, outdoor, Arasta Bazaar, behind the Blue Mosque.
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Cankurtaran Mh., 34122 Fatih/Istanbul, Turkey
The Istanbul archaeology museum blows your mind from the moment you step through the door and confront that massive, leering statue of Bes splaying an upturned lamb. But high among its mind-blowing moments are the rooms devoted to anthropoid...
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Carrer del Bruc, 162, 08037 Barcelona, Spain
On any visit to Barcelona, a trip through the city's charming Gothic Quarter shouldn't be missed. You'll find everything there from historic buildings and fun shops to entertaining street performers and delicious restaurants like this one. I love...
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08199 Montserrat, Barcelona, Spain
Located a short drive out of Barcelona, Montserrat Monastery is a must see while in Barcelona. Try the honey and fig cakes. There are many tour operators that offer this day trip from Barcelona. Take your time and hike some of the trails. The...
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Carrer de la Marina, 253, 08013 Barcelona, Spain
I've always loved pictures of the exterior of the Sagrad Familia in Barcelona, but finally seeing the inside was spectacular.
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Carrer d'Avinyó, 42, 08002 Barcelona, Spain
In the Gothic Quarter, a man dips his giant bubble sling into a bucket of soap and tosses out behemoth bubbles for children to run after, to be chased by, to pop or try to hold in their hands. It's really a bit magical.
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La Rambla, 91, 08001 Barcelona, Spain
I love to just walk around the Boqueria, buy some fresh fruit or food from Bar Pinotxo, and watch the vendors arrange their goods and the (other) tourists walk around and photograph it all.
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La Rambla, 65, 08002 Barcelona, Spain
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Carrer de Muntaner, 2, 08011 Barcelona, Spain
Check out regional specialties like ensaïmadas, a typical sweet pastry from Mallorca that is often stuffed with cabello de ángel (made from caramelized pumpkin), whipped cream, or chocolate only a short walk from Plaça Catalunya. Throughout...
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Calle Casp, 86, 08010 Barcelona, Spain
About a year and a half before I came to Spain, my father died. So, I found myself chasing my father's ghost in Barcelona. He had spent time here before I was born, before he met my mother... I had a week alone in this city, before meeting up with...
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Mercado de La Boqueria, La Rambla, 91, 08002 Barcelona, Spain
La Boqueria is known for its incredible selection of fresh fruit, amazing ham, and uber fresh seafood. Wandering around the market is a foodie's dream but make time for a meal at one of the many fantastic restaurant counters. My favorite meal of...
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Carrer Avinyó, 9, 08002 Barcelona, Spain
One of the best things about Barcelona is its many delicious cafes, offering strong Spanish coffee and rich, flaky pastries. I've found the best cafes to be concentrated in the city's enchanting Gothic Quarter, or "Barri Gotic." As in a lot of...