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Turkey’s hidden tourist gems

Turkey has some fantastic sights away from the crowds, from spectacular mosques to the ancient city of Sagalassos

Kastamonu is something of a museum in itself. Ottoman mansions perch on rocky outcrops and ancient Paphlagonian tombs are carved into the cliffs. The nearby coast is unspoilt by motorways or tourism – perfect for exploring. The Mahmut Bey mosque, in the tiny village of Kasaba, a half-hour drive north-west of Kastamonu, is a real masterpiece. It was built in the second half of the 14th century, and the motifs painted on its elegantly carved wooden columns are still vibrant after 650 years. It is one of Turkey’s very few surviving monuments from the Beylik period, when warring principalities competed for the scraps of the declining Selçuk and Byzantine empires.
• In Kastamonu, stay in either the Ugurlu Konarklari or Toprakçilar Konaklari (kastamonukonaklari.com, B&B doubles from €60)

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Walking tour of Berlin’s architecture

From the jagged angles of the Jewish Museum to the inner “vineyards” of the Philharmonie, Berlin boasts some of the world’s finest architecture. And the best way to see it is by foot

• View an interactive map of the walk here

Buildings, in Berlin, tend not to be just buildings. They are manifestos, propaganda, memorials, battlefields. It is the city whose Wall was one of the most political works of architecture of all time. The confrontation of superpowers was condensed into Berlin’s urban form, and the apartment blocks in the old eastern and western halves are imprinted with competing ideologies. Nazism, Communism, social democracy and capitalism have all felt the need to say it with buildings.

The biggest names of modern architecture also left their mark: Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier, Walter Gropius, Alvar Aalto. In the 1920s new ideas in architecture fomented there and, since the fall of the Wall, contemporary stars such as Frank Gehry, Rem Koolhaas, Norman Foster and Richard Rogers have been invited in. A good place to start a tour of highlights is the Kulturforum, where large sums were invested in cultural monuments by West Germany’s government in order to boost West Berlin and to demonstrate its superior commitment to the highest works of civilisation.

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