A few thoughts on Turkey

It is already time to leave Turkey. A few readers wrote me and asked whether I could provide some tips for each of locations we visit, both in terms of photography and travel. I don’t intend to make a long and exhaustive column but just a few points about the countries we visit. So let’s start by Turkey.

Street Photography
We spent about 10 days in Istanbul and it took a while to get the feel of the city and go to places outside of the typical tourist paths. Indeed, the touristic locations are overcrowded and pretty similar to other Western cities. Once you get out of these neighborhoods, the everyday life of inhabitants and the oriental setting is wonderful for shooting. I urge you nevertheless to inform yourself before heading there since some parts of Istanbul might result dangerous. Overall, people reacted very well when shot and I mostly got smiles. I found Turkish people to be very friendly and helpful. The biggest trouble I got in was an old lady shouting at me in the middle of a square. Note that I also found some reluctance in Central Turkey, especially in small villages.

Leica M8 with 35mm Lux Asph at F2.8, 1/500, ISO160

Favorite locations for street shooting
– the Ferries docks at Eminonü
– the Galata bridge and its fishermen (a Ara Güler classic)
– Fener and its veiled women
– the sunset at Kadikoy on the Asian side

Leica M8 with 35mm Lux Asph at F2.8, 1/750, ISO160

Hotel recommendations
– Hotel Town Palace in Sirkeci by the piers. A bit more expensive than we would have liked (Istanbul resulted much more expensive than expected) but great value for money (49€) and great breakfast with view on the Bosphorus

– Hotel Valley Park in Goreme, Cappadoccia. Again a great terrace with view on Goreme for 27€ a night. Not a luxury place but a friendly owner and a good way to meet many people.

Thank you to all the great people we met here, we surely will be back one day !

Leica M8 with 35mm Lux Asph at F2.8, 1/8000, ISO160

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