Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Istanbul

As promised, here it is: 4 days in photos.
I'm sure that some of you may have been here before but this was my first time and it blew me away. It's such a heated mix of different cultures, visions, sounds and aromas. The photos are in the order of the sights we saw. If I could accompany them with the sound of the Muezzin (the prayer call that echoes around the city four times a day; it reaches you wherever you are!), I would.
This is my my favourite image from the whole trip: beautiful iznik tiles:
The Blue Mosque:

Hagia Sophia:
Although historically more important, Hagia Sophia is perhaps less beautiful visually than the Blue Mosque. Just don't tell my old university History of Art professor!
The interior of Hagia Sophia, a confused blend of Christian Byzantine and Muslim styles:


An ancient tile from the Islamic Arts Museum; I think this design transcends time, it could easily have been done today:

An early example of a kilim (woven Anatolian carpet), worn in patches:

A view of the Blue Mosque from the terrace on our hotel roof - we were very close:

We had a night-time drink up here away from the crowds below, with one of the best views of the city:

The Blue Mosque at night:

Mosaic from the interior of Hagia Sophia:

Inside the eclectic Grand Bazaar:

Inside the Basilica Cistern, the Roman waterworks beneath the city, the only cool spot!:

The interior of the Blue Mosque:

A buddleia bush in a courtyard at the Topkapi Palace:

Be prepared, there are a few photos of iznik tiles coming up!:




The "Sofa" of the Palace, a spot for rest and relaxation for the sultans and their concubines:

A view of the city from the "Sofa":


A sofa in the "Sofa"!:

Mother of pearl was also in abundance:

A random colourful little street:

1 comment:

amy said...

Sounds like you had a wonderful trip! The tiles are stunning. That blue seems surreally blue.

Great spot on the roof of your hotel. I bet the imams' calls were amazing, being so central, swirling all around you.

I'm thinking you'll have some California pics to post soon...yes???