The Princes’ Islands: a faded pastiche

Princes Islands Istanbul

The Princes’ Islands are a popular destination for a day trip from Istanbul, Turkey. Inexpensive ferries run all day to and from the four largest islands, teeming with Turkish families and tourists of every nationality. After hearing stories from my aunts about what these islands were like in the late 1970s and early 80s, I wanted to see one of the islands for myself. Unfortunately, we choose a really chilly day to go and although it wasn’t windy, the ferry ride was unpleasant. We practically froze on that big boat. The tea they sold was watery and tasteless; I was craving a large cup of coffee.

Our day at the largest of the Princes’ Islands was really uneventful. It was too cold to do much. We tried biking around for a bit, but the bikes were in terrible condition (as was my fitness level) and we quickly returned them. We strolled around for a bit and took a few photos but after a while it was clear that there was nothing for us to do. There was one exciting thing on the island: good coffee. But it deserves its own post.

The island would be a good place to relax a day or two, if there are any good B&B’s there. It was picturesque, in a faded sort of way with multi-colored small houses and horse-drawn carriages. There was nothing authentic about it though and we couldn’t wait to get back to Istanbul.

Princes Islands Turkey horses

Princes' Islands Turkey

We got on the first ferry back and waved goodbye to the dull islands. In fact, we were in such a hurry to leave, we got on the wrong ferry and ended up getting lost. That part was far more exciting than the whole day put together! I think kids would find a trip to the islands fun and exciting. Anyone between the ages of 16 and 56? Skip it.

Princes' Islands Turkey

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