The land of fairy chimneys – Cappadocia, Turkey 1

Cappadocia land of fairy chimneys Swirling in front of me, against the cloudless blue sky is a group of dervishes caught amidst a frenzied performance. But they seem lifeless and their music cannot be heard anymore. It seems like a witch had come upon them while they were performing and turned them into stone. I look at them again and it feels like everything around me is a mirage and am seeing things that don’t exist. As a child I have always wandered into the recesses of my mind, letting my wild imagination conjure up images and tell me stories. […]

Turkey, dondurma

Dondurma , the elastic Turkish icecream 2

Dondurma, elastic Turkish icecream There is more to Turkey than just Turkish coffee or the apple tea. If you love sweets, then you do not leave Turkey without a taste of baklava and its many flavours.  But if there is one delicacy that you must not miss, it is dondurma or the Turkish icecream. As you walk around Istanbul you will find these hot men in costumes sitting in small icecream shops at street corners, teasing you with icecream that stretches on a stick. Ask them for the icecream, they will pretend to offer it to you and then they will […]

Hagia Sophia in Istanbul 3

Hagia Sophia Istanbul Turkey I am on the road, travelling from one continent to another. My destination is the European quarter of the old city, Istanbul.  A melange of cultures across different timelines merges here as the Bosphorus strait bridges Asia and Europe in this ancient city. The skyline of Istanbul appears around me, dotted with minarets and mosques, palaces and churches and each one of them has a story to tell. There is the Top Kapi Palace and the Blue Mosque . But if there is one monument that can tell the story of Istanbul, then it is the […]

Hagia Sophia, Turkey, Istanbul

Blue Mosque, Istanbul

Eid Mubarak – At The Blue Mosque in Istanbul 15

Celebrating Eid Ramadan in Blue Mosque Istanbul Eid Mubarak ! Every year around this month, my mind takes me to a trip to Istanbul that I went a years ago. Every evening, we used to walk around The Blue Mosque where families would gather together , sit on the lawns and break their fast. Children playing around, men and women relaxing and relatives greeting each other – the atmosphere was so festive. As the lights came up in the city, I used to just sit there and take in the moment and join  my travel companions as some of them […]

An open air museum in Goreme, Cappadocia, Turkey 5

Imagine that you are standing in front of a giant earth pyramid with gaping holes in it that look like windows and doors to a nether world. Now pan your head from left to right and see yourself surrounded by these tall pillars and cones that seemed to have mushroomed everywhere around you. The holes in them look larger as they open into a world which was once homes and hiding places, churches and caves where monks once lived.  I am in Goreme in Cappadocia and this is what they call an open air museum. In Cappadocia,  I realize words […]

Churches in Goreme, open air museum, Cappadocia

Pushkar, market, rajasthan

Five favourite markets around the world 22

Every market tells a story – of a culture, a craft and a tradition and it is this story that gets sold in the form of souvenirs in tiny little lanes and stalls. There is so much of energy, life and colour in every market and each one of them is unique. Historic and intrinsic to a country’s culture, we visit five different markets from around the world. Taling Chan Floating Market in Bangkok In a city which is flocked by shoppers, where bargains are a way of life, there is no dearth for markets. But my favourite is the […]