Saturday, August 14, 2010

Distinctive Istanbul

Photos of Istanbul from a recent trip.

Where else would a 400-year mosque be considered "new?"

The same mosque from a distance. All the mosques follow basically the same beautiful pattern (invented by architect Mimar Sinan who got his first big break when he built a bridge in record time so the impatient Sultan could go conquer a neighboring nation quickly). Number of minars and domes vary from mosque to mosque.

Inside the Aya Sofia, which started as a Church (2000 years ago), becoming a Mosque after the Ottomans conquered Constantinople, and then became a Museum during Ataturk. I found the face (lower left) most curious - was it there during the time it was a Mosque? Only this face remains, but the other three in each corner of the dome have been erased. Hmmm.

Istanbul Cemeteries have lots of roses.

Istanbul skyline from Galata Bridge (on the Bosphorus.)

Inside an off-campus building of Istanbul University in Beyoglu.

Clothing is big business in Istanbul. They use lots of mannequins, sultry...


...and you could easily lose your head over them!

Oh, here is how the Turks do World Cup flags...

... and other things.

Inside the Topkapi Palace, this was essentially the Sultan's bedroom...

...and the toilet.

Many cafes in Istanbul offer board games to entice customers.

I was expecting Turkish coffee, but found the Turks like to drink tea, like our "Rong Cha".

What can I say, one of the great cities of the world. Hope I can go again someday.