The Beauty of San Sebastián at Sunset

The Beauty of San Sebastián at Sunset

San Sebastián- Basque Country’s most beautiful city, is never more stunning than at sunset, especially from the summit of Monte Igueldo. From there you can soak in the views of San Sebastián, which contain beach and sky and mountains.

Though I know I’m an amateur photographer at best, I think theses are some of the best photos I’ve ever taken, which is in no small part due to San Sebastián inherent natural beauty.

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Istanbul by Instagram

Istanbul by Instagram

I won’t lie- I kind of love Instagram. And I definitely loved Istanbul. So why not feature a post that combines the two?

Here are my favorite shots from my recent trip to Istanbul, a complicated, exotic and stunning city I got to know over a too-short span of five days.

Simit.

Istanbul Instagram

A simit is essentially a Turkish bagel: dense, crunchy and coated with sesame seeds. Simit very quickly turned into my go-to snack because they’re filling, delicious, dirt-cheap and sold on every street corner.

 

Spices.

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Turkey is overflowing with spices- from smoky, dark red sumac to pül biberi, or spicy red pepper flakes. I brought back tons to gift to friends as well as add to my own personal stash.

(Side-note- I’m kind of obsessed with spices.)

 

Dried fruits and nuts.

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The food.

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Turkish food and Turkish hospitality are equally amazing- did I mention how much lamb I had in Istanbul? I tasted everything from lamb loin to lamb chops to lamb heart (which, by the way, is so flavorful and tender).

All I can say is it would be very hard to be a vegetarian in Turkey.

 

Turkish coffee.

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Turkish coffee in four words is uber-thick, bitter, grainy and strangely addictive.

 

The Blue Mosque.

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Unlike the Hagia Sofia, the Blue Mosque is still a working mosque, meaning we took off our shoes and women covered their hair.

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I loved the cobalt blue paint paired with the intricate gold script.

 

The Hagia Sofia.

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Though I thought the Blue Mosque was absolutely magnificent, it pales in comparison to the ethereally beautiful Hagia Sofia.

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I could’ve taken a thousand pictures of the Hagia Sofia- it was truly magnificent.

So, which Istanbul Instagram did you like best?  And let’s connect on Instagram! My account is naturally @AshleyAbroad.

Snow? In Paris? A Photo Series

Snow? In Paris? A Photo Series

So one unremarkable night in January, something happened that so many had told me I would never see:

It snowed in Paris.

Paris in the Snow

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And Lonely Planet would kill me, but… it was magical.

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I also witnessed my first Parisian déménagement, which I had no idea was such a process. I guess how else would you get all of those heavy Baroque candelabras and Cruella DeVille dial phones out of your apartment?

Paris is the Snow

Paris in the Snow

Montmartre Jan1

But the most important thing I discovered on that snowy day was actually something I rediscovered – the beauty of Paris. Living here can jade you to the city’s uniquely Parisian charms: the art deco métro signs, the oh-so-French mansard roofs, the strangely appealing beige monochrome of the city. At times I even get sick of the baguettes. (And how is that even possible?)

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The snow went as fast as it came, and serves as a metaphor for my experience here- I only have five months left in France, and I plan to cherish them as much as possible. Because they’ll be gone before I know it.

Montmartre Jan

Have you ever seen it snow in Paris?

Paris in the Rain: A Photo Essay in the City of Lights

Paris in the Rain: A Photo Essay in the City of Lights

Happy Friday everyone! So now that I’ve shown you what I do on a day-to-day basis, I want to show you what I do on my day off.

On my days off I can generally be found wandering Paris in the rain.

Paris in the rain – yes, an undoubtedly cliché photo subject, but certainly a charming one. And let me say, it rains a lot in Paris. Whenever I see the sun I throw on my riding boots and run outside – it’s not a common occurrence in these parts!

Paris in the Rain

Le Marais

Paris in the Rain

Paris in the Rain

Paris in the Rain

Paris in the Rain

Paris in the Rain

Paris in the Rain

Paris in the Rain

Paris in the Rain

Paris in the Rain

Paris in the Rain Note to other photographers – when I lower the shutter speed enough for the subject to be blurry like the man on the bicycle, it way over-exposes the entire image. How do you avoid that?

Anyway, if you are ever in Paris, make sure to wander the city by yourself. Whether you spot the yamaka-wearing children getting out of school at the Le Marais synagogue or the tourists toting their bright umbrellas there’s always something interesting around the corner in Paris.

Have you ever wandered Paris in the rain?

And if you aren’t sick of me yet then check out my Atlas Sliced interview with Alexa Hart! In the video I talk a lot about how to become an au pair while swishing my hair like Justin Bieber and giggling.

Doors from Around the World

Doors from Around the World

It turns out that over the years I have amassed a sizable photo collection of doors, who knew! The doors are surprisingly very interesting and really reflect the countries in which I took them.

The post would be more aptly titled “anything you walk through”, considering the collection also includes lots of archways and gates. I cobbled this post together after I made the photo series Street Art from Around the World.

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Street Art from Around the World

Street Art from Around the World

I love street art and like to snap pictures of it wherever I go. Here is some of the best I’ve seen all over the world; from European cities like Barcelona, Paris and Brussels to South American cities like Santiago and Valparaiso. There is also some art from less visited places like Portugal, Uruguay and Mallorca and even my hometown of Detroit, Michigan.

Here is my favorite street art from around the world.

Hint – scroll over the photos to see which city they are from.

Barcelona Street Art

Street Art Brussels

Street Art Brussels

Brussels Street Art

Street Art Santiago

Street Art Santiago

Street Art Paris

Street Art Mallorca

Street Art Valparaiso

Street Art Valparaiso

Valparaiso Street Art Tree

Street Art Brussels

Street Art Valparaiso

Street Art Valparaiso

Street Art Colonia, Uruguay

Street Art Girona, Spain

Street Art Porto, Portugal

Street Art Detroit

Street Art Santiago

Street Art Santiago

 

Where have you seen the coolest street art?