Day 1: Istanbul Pre-Cruise
We arrived in Istanbul on Wednesday evening, October 12, 2011. We had pre-arranged transportation to our hotel - Yusaf Pasa Konagi in the old city - Sultanahmet. The hotel has a great location and we walked around last night primarily to find an ATM and get the lay of the land. Although we had read that the place to stay in Istanbul was in the Old City, I am not sure I would do it again. Between the calls to prayer five times a day, the heavy traffic and sirens and the rooster outside our hotel room, I think I would prefer the outskirts and commute into town for the sites (unless you love living in New York City or just have a day or two in Istanbul).
The next morning after breakfast in the hotel we went via taxi to the Egyptian Spice Market. All I can say is WOW. This a a must see. You can also get to the spice market via tram if you want to save a little money.
The suites on board the Wind Surf are magnificent with two entire bathrooms, closets and drawers space. Not really needed for a 7-day cruise, but would be really helpful in a cruise of 14+ days.
The Internet hardly exists and we were told does not support AOL at all.