Sunday, June 26th, 2022
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Photos | City of little tigers

Istanbul is the city that connects two continents, Asia and Europe. Many civilizations, kingdoms, empires and countries have wanted to have Istanbul throughout history. Right now, it is in the land of the Republic of Turkey — but the true rulers of the city are definitely its cats.

Istanbul is famous not only for its historical sites but also for its many stray cats. While they are stray, Turkish people pet, feed and take care of them so well that some may even look healthier than house cats. You may see 15 of them in a single street — so imagine a megacity full of cats. The cats have become a well-known symbol of Istanbul.

So if you visit Istanbul one day, don’t be surprised by the number of stray cats. They are friendly and will come to you to get petted. If you are scared of them, just say go away, and they will leave you alone. They are smart and have a special connection with people.

On Oct. 29, 2021, Turkish Republic Day, people were on the street to celebrate. Of course, they weren’t the only ones who were on the street: stray cats are a symbol of Istanbul and always will be.

A sleeping black-white cat lays curled up on the stone ground.
A sleepy cat lies on the street in Istanbul.

A orange-black cat walks along the side of building.
A walking cat.
A black-white cat looking at the camera from under a car.
A cat looking at the camera from under the car.
An orange-black cat rubs its head against a metal bar along a walkway.
A cat posing for the camera.
An orange cat sits on a wooden platform on the sidewalk.
An orange cat looks at people who come from the subway.
Two cats walking along a stone pathway. One looks at the camera, while the other looks to the side.
A poser cat looks at the camera while his cat friend ignores it.
A cat lies upside-down, looking into the camera, on a brick pathway.
A cat gets shocked by the camera.
A black-white cat sits on a mailbox on the side of a building.
A black-white cat sits on a mailbox.
A brown cat sits on a mailbox on the side of a building.
A brown cat sits on a mailbox.
An orange-white cat walks down the street alongside stone obstacles.
An orange-white cat walks down the street.
An orange-white cat sits behind the construction scaffolding and boxes.
An orange-white cat behind the construction work.
A black cat sits on a mailbox next to an orange building.
A black cat sits on a mailbox.
A gray-white-orange cat yawns on a wooden porch.
A gray-white-orange cat yawns.
A black-white cat lays next to a pole by a stone wall overgrown with vines.
A black-white cat notices the camera.
A black-brown-white cat look up from a brick walkway.
A curious cat looks up to the sky.

Photo gallery by Elif Aslıhan Alp. Alp is a high schooler producing content as a part of the The Stanford Daily’s 2021 High School Multimedia Workshop.

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