Observatory Time: With Man Ray in Anamur

It’s always a good idea to get out of Istanbul, to escape the traffic, the noise and endless grind of people and machines. My wife...

5 of Turkey’s Best Eurovision Performances

With Eurovision being a week away, selected artists are already making their way to Kiev, Ukraine, where this year’s song contest will be held....

John Freely: A Tribute – The Imaginary Interview

Disclaimer: This interview is a work of fiction. Several months ago I had the idea to try and contact the legendary John Freely, about...

Expat Spotlight Recap: #1 & #2

Expat Spotlight, in collaboration with ATÖLYE, is our monthly series showcasing the inspiring contributions being made by Istanbul’s diverse international community to the city’s...

Ataşehir and Ümraniye: Portraits of the City’s ‘New Hope’

At first glance, Ataşehir seems to embody everything you hate about modern Istanbul. At second glance, it doesn’t get much better. You can insert here...

Letter from Karaman: Night of the Dervish

The city of Karaman stands on the low wheat plains of Anatolia, about an hour south of Konya, the birthplace of Rumi. Arriving from Istanbul,...

Living with Terror

Let’s first and foremost acknowledge the great privilege of being able to choose your place of residence. Most people are not granted the luxury...

A Strange Fast

With the start of the holy month of Ramazan this past week,  many Turks have been fasting and praying. It’s not easy, especially  in...

Out Now: “Letters from Istanbul, Vol 3: Living with Terror” by...

We're delighted to announce that long-time contributor James Tressler has recently released the third volume to his Letters from Istanbul series, available for purchase via Lulu....

Weekend Getaway: Xanthi & Thessaloniki (Part 1)

Part 1 focuses on Xanthi, Greece. Part 2 focuses on Thessaloniki. Our family loves travelling. Whenever we have such an opportunity we always use it. We’ve been to lots...

Levantine Lessons: Discovering Syria in Istanbul

“Light is more important than the lantern, The poem more important than the notebook” ― Syrian poet, Nizar Qabbani To the general public, Syria has become...

House-Hunting in the Age of Terror

My wife wants to buy an apartment. That’s a pretty common goal for many people in this city, since it’s a sound investment. The...

Remembering Prince: A Purple Paisley Park in My Heart

'The girl on the seesaw is laughing For love is the color this place imparts... Admission is easy, just say you believe And come to this place...

In Memory of Barış Mumyakmaz

It's with great sadness today that we've learned of the passing of long-time friend and contributor Barış Mumyakmaz. A graduate of Galatasaray University and the...

166 Reasons Not to Leave Istanbul

These last months have not been easy. Our hearts ache for the country that has been a welcoming home away from home for so many of us....

A Moment for Istanbul

This weekend has seen the country suffer yet another senseless terror attack, leaving 5 dead and 39 injured in the heart of our beautiful,...

Beating the Istanblues: A Night at the Spa

My wife Özge and I can’t afford many luxuries. We’re a working couple, with different schedules. We don’t even share the same days off. We...

Broke and Lost in Istanbul

“Habitash! Habitash!” The unfamiliar deckhand appeared as a silhouette, repeatedly emphasizing this made-up word as though I would finally understand what it meant the sixth...

That Pink Elephant Mystique: A Celebration of International Women’s Day, in...

“Silence is the worst. Whenever a thick cloud of silence descends, the yapping voices inside me become all the more audible, rising to the...

Construction Fever: Will It Save Us from the Next Big One?

Bağdat Caddesi is a long, wide shopping avenue on the Asian side of the city, Istanbul’s equivalent of 5th Avenue or Rodeo Drive. Nearby are...

Songs for an Unfinished City (An Istanbullu’s Listening Guide)

Every great city has its own soundtrack, or at least, deserves one. If it doesn’t, you should think about moving somewhere else. I think of...

On the Road to Gebze: Surviving in the Industrial Heartland

On the road to Gebze, where I teach twice a week, I have a lot of time to contemplate the passing landscape. Out on the...

Romancing the Old City: A Somewhat Cynical Love Note to Istanbul

To-morrow is Saint Valentine's day, All in the morning betime, And I a maid at your window, To be your Valentine. Then up he...

Top 10 Yabangees – The Creme de la Kaymak of Eccentric...

Someone recently described Istanbul to me as a city where you can "have the best day of your life, followed by the worst day”,...

Yabangee Essentials

Yabangee Classics