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Central Asia

Turkey - Istanbul

Turkey - Istanbul
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Istanbul (once Constantinople) is a frenetic city with a wealth of culture and history. The city is split in two by the Bosphorus Strait and is the only city in the world to straddle two continents - one foot in Europe, the other in Asia.


Turkey - Haghia Sofia, Istanbul

Turkey - Istanbul
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Haghia Sofia - the "church of holy wisdom" is more than 1400 years old and was built in the Byzantine period. The Emporer Justinian built a church on the site in 537AD. Later in the 15th century the Ottomans converted it into a mosque.

This diverse history gives it an amazing mix of Christian and Muslim architecture.


Turkey - Topkapi Palace, Istanbul

Turkey - Istanbul
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Topkapi Palace - the home of the Sultan, was founded by Sultan Mehmet II (th Conqueror) in the 15th century.

For 400 years the Ottoman sultans ruled their empire from this vast palace on Seraglio Point occupying a natural strategic position at the meeting point of the Golden Horn, the Sea of Marmara, and the Bosphorus. It is also famous for containing some of the most holy relics of the Muslim world such as the prophet Muhammed's cloak, sword, seal, letter, foot print and keys to the Kaaba in Mecca.


Kyrgyzstan - Arslanbob

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Arslanbob is a large wild walnut forest located in the Jalal-Abad Province of Kyrgyzstan. Legend says exander the Great led his troops here completing his campaign and returned home with fruits and nuts grown in the forests. This is how the walnut from the Kyrgyz Mountains appeared in Greece - the "Greek nut".

Arslanbob (meaning "the King of Forests") is also the name of a village near the forest. The village is a traditional, mainly Uzbek community.



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Kyrgyzstan - is a country of stunning landscapes, but also some wonderfully warm, hospitable and friendly people. This set of of photographs shows some of those I encountered as I travelled in this remote part of the world.



Mongolia to China
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Mongolia (to China)

A collection of photographs from the Mongolian/Chinese part of an epic train journey from St Petersburg to Beijing on the Trans-Siberian and Trans-Mongolian railways.

Uzbekistan - The People of Khiva

People of Khiva
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Khiva - The city of Khiva is said to have been founded by Noah's son Shem after a vivid dream. It was probably founded in the 5th century AD though. This old walled city (the Itchan Kala, or Shakristan) is now like an open air museum.



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Turkmenistan - a surreal place at times, especially on the streets around the palace in Ashgabat. As I found to be the case throughout Central Asia Turkmenistan was full of colour and some amazing people.


Uzbekistan - Margilan & Kokand

Margilan and Kokand
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Uzbekistan - This set of pictures is from Margilan and Kokand in the Fergana valley.

The valley is famous for it's millennia-old history and its master craftsmen in silk, ceramics, woodcarving and a bounty of other ancient arts.


Uzbekistan - Samarkand market near the Bibi Khanum mosque

Samarkand market
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Uzbekistan - Samarkand Market - One of the many highlights of any travelling is to check out the local markets. The market near the Bibi Khanum Mosque in Samarkand is one that I would recommend.


Trans-Siberian/Mongolian Railway - Russia, Mongolia, China

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Trans-Siberian/Mongolian Railway - Russia, Mongolia to China ... ...