Istanbul - Moda photo safari

On Thursday it was time for some changes. First of all, I left my apartment and moved over to Büyük Londra hotel, my old favorite place to stay in Istanbul. As usual I got a warm welcome and a good upgrade for our rooms.
But I only stayed long enough to deposit my suitcase and was back on my way again.

As my plans for a Sunday walk in Kadiköy and Moda had been ruined by heavy rain, I now profited from the better weather. So down to Karaköy and on the ferry I went!
Under the bridge... I was of course standing on the upper deck, outside, and the Galata bridge seemed so close that I automatically wanted to duck!
Kadiköy ahead
The Big Three in one picture: Blue Mosque, Hagia Sofia, Topkapi palace.
Haydarpasa, the former train station. Apparently now under renovation to go back to its old purpose.
Kadiköy is an extremely busy harbor, only one spot left for us.
Back on solid ground, walking along the shore. It was nice and quiet, a good way to relax.
Looking back to where I came from
Istanbul loves rainbow stairs, it seems...
The café at Moda Sahil, currently closed.
Some green in all the grey
Three types of free roaming animals that make out Istanbul: seagulls....
...cats...
...dogs.
Another rainbow stair, this time sideways. I climbed up and walked more inland.
I went to have some breakfast at the first restaurant that I encountered. I was still so full from all the food of the previous night that up until this point I hadn't really felt hungry. But since I had been walking for about 40 minutes, a rest was welcome.
View from my seat by the window.
Walking into Moda I passed by this church. Like the other ones I saw, it was closed. So I only took a quick outside picture.
Old school Turkish house
Newer neighborhood street. Moda seems more quiet and clean than other areas I had seen on this trip.
There's even an opera house!
It had a free exhibition of costumes from different productions over the past years.



Imagine this hall filled with people, dressed up for a night at the opera...
Doors to the private booths for spectators.
Out on the street I found these crochet balls.
How the opposition sees certain politicians...
There are just a few shops because basically Moda is all about food & beverage. You can find many restaurants, bars and cafés of all kinds of styles.
I dropped into this hole-in-the-wall crêperie that only had some tiny tables. Time for the fish eye lens!
This is Memedo. He was pissed about the humans sitting in his spot!
The restaurant from outside. Delicious crêpes, I recommend it!
The street dogs here are massive and totally relaxed. Also note how all street animals of Istanbul are well cared for. You don't see a single starving cat or dog.
Street art for Malala
Spring is coming!
And then I arrived back atthe sea where I had walked before, at Moda park.
A friend had told me to get ice cream here, how could I resist?
To complete the Moda experience I took a ride in the ancient tram. Wooden seats and all...
I had marked a small street in Google Maps but couldn't remember why - so I went to check it out. It was lined with antiques shops and yes, I wanted to look for some small metal boxes for my bathroom. In the third shop I went to, I already found some for a really good price and got two of them.
Here they are!
This concluded my Moda adventure and I got back on the ferry. These boats are always followed by flocks of seagulls.
A closer look at Haydarpasa
And we're almost back!
Right by the harbor of course: a little fish market.
Walking on through the hardware bazar - every trade has its own street here.
You know you're in Beyoglu when the buildings get grander.
Another stair - the most famous one.
Hello Galata tower - one day in the distant future I will climb you!
Back at the hotel I went up on the terrace to soak up the evening sun. Just half an hour later, my little shopping group arrived, three highly motivated women who had booked my tour and were determined to have a great time in Istanbul, no matter what!
I figured that a drink on the terrace was just the way to introduce them to the city. Who could resist this view?
Then I took them down to Istiklal Caddesi for a first look at the shops - and the street musicians.
We walked all the way up to Taksim square and back - by then we had worked up quite an appetite and went for dinner at Ficcin restaurant where the food was great as always.
With our newfound energy the ladies were ready to start shopping, and that's what we did until 10 PM when the shops closed.