TRAVEL & PHOTOGRAPHY: AN ODE TO ISTANBUL BY ANNA SERRANO
“I am listening to Istanbul, intent, my eyes closed.
The Grand Bazaar’s serene and cool,
An uproar at the hub of the Market,
Mosque yards are full of pigeons.
While hammers bang and clang at the docks
Spirng winds bear the smell of sweat;
I am listening to Istanbul, intent, my eyes closed”
Poem: “I am listening to Istanbul”.
Author: Orhan Veli Kanik
Welcome back to our travel & photography series! Today we travel to Turkey thanks to the inspiring work of renowned travel photographer Anna Serrano.
Anna Serrano travels frequently and her instagram account will make you want to travel the world with her. Anna captures beautiful images of people, landscapes and busy city streets, and provides her followers with little digital postcards from very different parts of the world.
After some months in Canada, Anna is currently based back in her native Barcelona though always ready to move. Anna grew up as an adult in Rome and spent a lot of her life in her beloved Istanbul honoring the city with an extraordinary collection of photos.
World Kids: Anna, what makes Istanbul so special?
Anna Serrano: Istanbul has changed a lot in these last years. It has been transformed but it is still a magical place. Despite the city’s traffic problem and the daily challenges it’s truly a unique city. Its orography is amazing (to the south lays the Marmara Sea, to its north the Black Sea, the western part of the city is in Europe and the Eastern part is in Asia). I am still impressed by the Bosphorus, the street markets, experiencing the call to prayer at the Blue Mosque, the authentic Tea Gardens and the kindness and humanity of its residents. The recent modernization has not taken away yet the essence of the city.
WK: Why did you choose Istanbul?
AS: I am not sure if I choose Istanbul or if Istanbul chose me. Anyway, it is like an old dream come true.
WK: What’s your favourite memory of Istanbul?
AS: Sitting at the Bosphorus shore in silence and watching the ferries go by. Rain or shine, night or day, just listening to the ships’ sirens for hours.
WK: Could you share some tips for travellers planning to visit Istanbul soon?
AS: Istanbul is an eternal city, just like Rome. In fact, both cities were part of the same Empire, and I feel deeply connected to both of them. I know them really well, inch by inch. Istanbul’s secrets need to be discovered slowly, day by day, taking one’s time to walk through its narrow streets. After ten years in the city – just like it happens also in Rome- you can still discover a new corner, a new point of view. That’s why I consider Istanbul an eternal city. It never ends!
WK: Where is the best place to fall in love with the city?
AS: I would reccomend sitting at Rumeli Hisari, a fortress castle located in the Sariyer district and just let time pass by. Also, the Sakip Sabanci Museum holds an extraordinary collection of otoman caligraphy and a beautiful garden.
Thank you Anna for sharing with World Kids this ode to Istanbul!