PhotoPOSTcard: The Bubble Man on Istiklal Avenue

As I stood on Istiklal Avenue in Istanbul, watching the large crowd of people walking up and down the street, this gentleman blowing bubbles caught my eye. He kept blowing bubbles, trying to sell his little bubble blowing toys. Most of the crowd just parted and walked around him, some smiling at his antics as they walked by. Occasionally, he would make a sale, but he just kept blowing his bubbles which added to the overall festive atmosphere on a Sunday afternoon on Istiklal Avenue.

Thanks for visiting.

Rose

Sunday Afternoon on Istiklal Avenue

Sunday afternoon on Istiklal Avenue in Istanbul. I read that as many as 3 million people will walk this one mile pedestrian street on a weekend day, and that certainly seemed to be the case on the Sunday afternoon that I was there. The street is lined with shops, boutiques, cafes, restaurants and movie theaters. A historic red tram can take you up and down the street, but don’t take it if you are in a hurry. The tram has to go very slowly to let the sea of bodies part so that it can pass. This certainly seems to be the place to go to see and be seen.

Thanks for visiting.

Rose

PhotoPOSTcard: Whirling to Reach God

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.

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PhotoPOSTcard: How Does a Turk Get to the Other Side

Early morning fog shrouds the Bosphorus Bridge, the first bridge to connect the European side to the Asian side of Istanbul. At the time of its completion in 1970, it was the fourth longest suspension bridge in the world. Since then, two additional bridges have been built across the Bosphorus.  In December 2016, the Eurasia tunnel connecting the two continents was also completed. But Istanbul’s expansive ferry system is still an integral means of transport as 300,000 passengers use them daily to get from one side to the other.

Thanks for visiting

Rose

PhotoPOSTcard: A Balanced Breakfast

Simit is a common street food in Istanbul.  Dough is formed into a ring, dipped in grape molasses and sesame seeds and then baked. Vendors sell it from street carts, or, as in this case, by carrying a tower of freshly baked simit around the neighborhood to sell to local residents. This gives a whole new meaning to a balanced breakfast.

Thanks for visiting

Rose

PhotoPOSTcard: The Colors of the Silk Road in Istanbul’s Bazaars

Istanbul’s bazaars are a riot of colors, flavors and fragrances. They will completely engulf all your senses. Narrow covered passageways are lined with small store fronts that sell a rainbow of spices, a kaleidoscope of colorful Arabic lamps, scarves in every conceivable color, tiles and pottery with the traditional blue and red tulip designs, a multitude of patterned pillows, fabrics and carpets, and much, much more. The walls reverberate with the noise of local and tourist shoppers haggling to get the best prices. Shopkeepers are relentless in their calls to get passerby’s attentions. It’s busy. It’s noisy. It’s chaotic. And it’s one of the quintessential Istanbul experiences, even if your senses can only take it for a short time.

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PhotoPOSTcard: Reflecting on a Perfect Morning in Istanbul

Istanbul’s treasure, the wonderful Hagia Sofia, is perfectly reflected in a morning cup of Turkish tea at the Seven Hills Hotel rooftop restaurant. A day cannot start out any better than this.

Thanks for visiting

Rose

PhotoPOSTcard: Traditional Turkish Tea – a True Istanbul Experience

My first visit to Istanbul was in the spring of 2016 with my husband. We were excited to experience all the great history and culture and came back with many great memories. But one of our most memorable moments was a quiet hour that we spent sipping Turkish tea at sunset, looking out over the Bosphorus.

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PhotoPOSTcard: The Call to Prayer in Istanbul

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.

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PhotoPOSTcard: The Dogs of Istanbul

You can’t visit Istanbul’s historic district without encountering a stray dog, or two or ten. They roam freely and apparently quite happily, and often become the star of the show, despite the iconic scenery around them. They lay down anywhere and everywhere and people will carefully walk around them. They appear well cared for and well fed. If a dog has an ear tag, then it is part of the Trap, Tag and Release program where the dogs are captured, vaccinated, fixed and then released back into their neighborhood. As with the cats of Istanbul, it takes a village to care for the dogs of Istanbul as well.

Thanks for visiting.

Rose