Gallipoli History Trip

By Arnika Hazelwood | Posted: Wednesday September 23, 2015

A group of senior History students, teachers and parents enjoyed their 3 week tour of Turkey, Greece and Italy. They are pictured here in Istanbul.

A highlight was visiting Gallipoli.  Students paid respect to individual soldiers they had researched and remembered them with a poppy at their memorials.

The following blog has been sent by Louis Whitburn.

Day one:

By 6:45, everyone had arrived at the airport, and had checked in. It would only be one hour until we board the first flight to Christchurch, however it was delayed by 15 minutes due to icing. The weather in Christchurch wasn’t the best, with a lot of wind and rain, which made the approach and landing quite bumpy (and rather fun). Thankfully it was only an hour wait in Christchurch for the flight to Singapore, which lasted nearly 11 hours. After arriving in Singapore, we had a five hour wait, and $40.00 Singapore worth of vouchers to spend, which some used to access some pay per use lounges with showers, beds and food.

Day two:

After boarding our next flight at 1:15 Singapore time, 24 hours after most of us got up for the previous day’s flights, most of us went to sleep instantly, and many of us were not able to make it to the 1:15 boarding time without falling asleep. We arrived at Istanbul Attaturk airport in the morning, where we were taken to the terminal by bus, and then went to our hotel to regroup. On the way, we got to see some of Istanbul’s transport infrastructure.  We then met Mustafa, our guide for Turkey, and went to the Hagia Sophia (Ayasofya), and ended our day there, after having lunch at some local restaurants. One of the roads near the hotel goes through the arches of an old Roman aqueduct. One of the more interesting parts of the Hagia Sophia was that it was the third church (although it became a mosque) that was built there, as the previous two were torn down by angry residents after political incidents.

Day three:

We started our day at the inner city of Istanbul, where we went and saw parts of the old Byzantium city walls. We then went to the blue Mosque, and learnt about Islamic traditions, such as ritual ablution. We had to wear appropriate clothes for the mosque, which included a head scarf for females.  We then saw some obelisks in a square that was a Circus Maximus during the Roman period, and even saw a Roman water cistern. After that, we went for dinner at a local restaurant, where we got to eat some local Turkish cuisine.   Some people then returned to the hotel, and the rest went on a walk.

Day Four:

The first thing we did was to have a look at the Grand Bazar. Mustafa said that it had become more of a  tourist destination, and that we probably shouldn’t buy anything until later, but we could still look around. We were then taken on a cruise of the Bosphorus. It was a hot day, and many appreciated the cool breeze. Next was lunch, where we went to the Tanzim square area. Finally, we went to the spice market, where many people bought souvenirs and foodstuffs. We ended the day with a tram ride to a restaurant for our last meal in Istanbul outside the hotel.

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