For lunch, we explored down Istiklal Cadessi (the picture to the right was taken while exploring down this road), which eventually led to Taksim Square, and found a small pastry shop. I also tried some pistachio baklava which was delicious!
After lunch, we gathered again to explore Istanbul's Archaelogical Museum (to the left). The museum features three smaller buildings housing one million artifacts. There were three major artifacts that we saw: the treaty of Kadesh, the Alexander Sarcophagus, and the Karaman Mihrab. The Treaty of Kadesh is the world's oldest surviving peace treaty and was between the Hittites and the Egyptians. The Alexander Sarcophagus, a carved marble sarcophagus for King Ahdalonymos of Sidon, features Alexander the Great's victory over the Persians. Interestingly, Alexander was depicted not as a great leader of the battle, but as a regular warrior. Lastly, we went to the Cinili Pavillion, a palace that housed the Karaman Mihrab. The palace was originally built to be a pleasure palace where emporers stored treasures to show off to visitors. The mihrab was magnificently tiled, but the entire building was a piece of art itself- wonderfully decorated and adorned. Today's explorations were full of beautiful Byzantine, Ottoman and Turkish treasures!