You’ll see Whirling Dervish performances advertised throughout Istanbul, offering an evening of entertainment. But for an authentic experience, I chose to attend a true Mevlevi religious ritual at the Galata Dervish Monastery.
To step through the door into Hagia Irene in Istanbul is to step through a time portal back to fourth century Constantinople. Before the more famous Hagia Sofia was built, Hagia Irene served as the main church for the capital of the Byzantine Empire. Hagia Irene also served as a model for the construction of the Hagia Sofia next door.
The first time I ever heard the Islamic call to prayer was in Istanbul on my first visit in 2016. The sun was starting to set as I was taking a break on a bench in the hippodrome area in front of the Blue Mosque. The tulips were in full bloom and the scent of hyacinths was wafting on the early evening breeze.
Not all of the mosques in Istanbul are open to non Muslim visitors. But fortunately, the most beautiful ones in and around the historic core of the Sultanahmet area can be visited by tourists during the non prayer times of the day.
Photo Location – Column and courtyard marble inlay detail at the Sheikh Zayed Mosque, Abu Dhabi.
What a difference lighting can make in a photo. This is the same location as the previous post, the entrance to the Sheikh Zayed mosque; but this time, it is at the end of the day as the sun is setting behind the domes. I loved the symmetry – only one example of many at this amazing place.
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I have seen many beautiful religious buildings around the world, and after my recent visit to the Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi, it has become one of my favorites. I was like a kid in a candy store photographing it, but honestly, I don’t think you can take a bad picture of it from any angle. My challenge was to try and get some unique perspectives as well as the usual shots. This photo is looking through the main entrance into the mosque.
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Photo Location: Sheikh Zayed Mosque, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates at sunrise.
Photo Location – Fushimi Inari shrine in southern Kyoto, Japan is one of those classic locations and photos that instantly speaks “Japan”. A visit to Kyoto is not complete without a hike through this orange tunnel of torii gates.
Miyajima, Japan is most famous for the photos of its floating torii gate. But this lovely little island offers up lots of gorgeous scenery, both man made and natural. Read on to find out about my experiences as I spent a day in Miyajima.