I won’t lie- I kind of love Instagram. And I definitely loved Istanbul. So why not feature a post that combines the two?

Here are my favorite shots from my recent trip to Istanbul, a complicated, exotic and stunning city I got to know over a too-short span of five days.


Istanbul Instagram

A simit is essentially a Turkish bagel: dense, crunchy and coated with sesame seeds. Simit very quickly turned into my go-to snack because they’re filling, delicious, dirt-cheap and sold on every street corner.



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Turkey is overflowing with spices– from smoky, dark red sumac to pül biberi, or spicy red pepper flakes. I brought back tons to gift to friends as well as add to my own personal stash.

(Side-note- I’m kind of obsessed with spices.)


Dried fruits and nuts.

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The food.

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Turkish food and Turkish hospitality are equally amazing- did I mention how much lamb I had in Istanbul? I tasted everything from lamb loin to lamb chops to lamb heart (which, by the way, is so flavorful and tender).

All I can say is it would be very hard to be a vegetarian in Turkey.


Turkish coffee.

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Turkish coffee in four words is uber-thick, bitter, grainy and strangely addictive.


The Blue Mosque.

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Unlike the Hagia Sofia, the Blue Mosque is still a working mosque, meaning we took off our shoes and women covered their hair.

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I loved the cobalt blue paint paired with the intricate gold script.


The Hagia Sofia.

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Though I thought the Blue Mosque was absolutely magnificent, it pales in comparison to the ethereally beautiful Hagia Sofia.

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I could’ve taken a thousand pictures of the Hagia Sofia- it was truly magnificent.

So, which Istanbul Instagram did you like best?  And let’s connect on Instagram! My account is naturally @AshleyAbroad.

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Ashley is a travel and lifestyle blogger who lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Since college she has au paired in Paris, backpacked the world solo, and lived in Uganda. Her work has been featured by Buzzfeed, Forbes, TripAdvisor, and Glamour Magazine.