Twenty-seven-year-old Turkish globe-trotter Anıl Ünlü has been traveling the world with his trusty saz for the last five years. Wherever he goes, he entertains locals with Turkish folk songs. However, Ünlü's latest journey was no picnic. He climbed Mt. Everest in Nepal and sang “Dağlar Var” ("There are Mountains"), a Turkish folk song by Pir Sultan Abdal. Ünlü says he may be the first person to have played saz and sung a Turkish folk song at this altitude, adding: “This is something I have been dreaming of for the last two years. When it began to snow, I was afraid I wouldn't be able to keep the saz in one piece; however, I manage to keep it safe and sing my song on the peak. This has put a smile on my face. I have been smiling for the past three days nonstop.” Ünlü has been to 45 countries over the course of his travels. Everywhere he goes, he tries to learn more about new cultures while introducing his own to others. “I travel without any prejudice against anyone or any culture. I aim to absorb as much as I can as I continue my travels. My saz is my companion on this journey,” said Ünlü. The ambitious wanderer has since returned to Turkey to prepare for his long trip to Africa in the coming days. The saz, often referred to as "bağlama," is a stringed instrument mainly used in classical Ottoman and Turkish folk music.
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