A Travellerspoint blog

Turkey’s Next Top Model

sunny 10 °C

Who knew? My favourite show has migrated and settled in the streets of Istanbul. Watch out Tyra! The girls of Istanbul are smeyesing and there is nothing you can do to stop it. Way up on the Golden Horn, behind the famed Fatih Mosque, next to the beautiful Chora Church, alongside the ancient city walls... a top model is waiting.

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(Not me, the little one. Obviously.)

Walking around the streets of conservative Balat, you never know what you’ll find. Impromptu fashion shoot? Why not? The minute I pulled out my camera, latent top models were unleashed from years of pent up hiding. The whole neighbourhood came to watch, hanging from their windows and door stoops, commenting on the shoot in Turkish. They might have been condemning our superficial influence on their children, but we just smiled and kept clicking. What you don’t know can’t hurt you! Click click.

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We stumbled upon this crew while meandering our way to the Pierre Loti Cafe in Eyüp; a secluded spot named for the French author who haunted its terrace while swooning over Aziyade, a married woman who escaped her harem any chance she got to be with her French lover. Typical. Settled at the top of a scenic cemetery, the Piyer Loti Kahve (as it's known in Turkish) is particularly renowned for its spectacular views over the Golden Horn. Using our primo sense of direction to get us there, we followed the ancient city walls like sailors tailing the North Star. Perhaps the smell of baked bread altered our sense of direction, because it quickly led us to top model alley, where roosters crowed and chickens clucked.

Hmmmm.

Clearly, this was not the right location. Thankfully for the neighbourhood man watching our shenanigans out the window, we were quickly informed that we were not at all in the right area. Speaking 5 words of English, which included Piyer Loti Kahve, he pointed us in the right direction and we parted from our new fashionista bffs, waving our arms enthusiastically until we rounded the corner at the top of the hill. Meaning, we waved our arms like crazy white ladies for about 300 meters. Great workout!

After such fervent exercise, the teleferik was the perfect solution to reach the cafe on the hill. Just sit and watch, perfect! Who needs exercise anyway. So we made it to our final destination unharmed, with a new portfolio to boot. Amazing!

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Posted by erehel 13:18 Archived in Turkey Comments (4)

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