Rumeli Hisari
Rumeli Hisarı, an Ottoman fortress, is the gateway to the Upper Bosphorus.

Even for a city that straddles two continents, Istanbul is packed. Depending on who’s counting, Turkey’s cultural capital is home to 14 to 20 million, a staggering range by any count. To accommodate the booming population, the city’s environs have been transformed and deforested — and the pastoral life that once characterized Istanbul’s outskirts has been enveloped by heavy residential and commercial development. Still, a journey up the wide, meandering Bosphorus strait preserves glimpses of a simpler, more sparsely populated time, at least for now.

In my latest post for Food Republic, I visit the European side of the upper Bosphorus, working my way from Rumeli Hisarı to Tarabya and my favorite fish restaurant in town, grazing along the way. You can read the full post here.

Fried smeltFried MusselsGrilled Calamari