Istanbul Welcomes the Yellow Bouncy Castle

Istanbul attracts all sorts of heroes and magnificent freaks. And I am not talking about Sean Connery or Liam Neeson. Meet Thomas, who calls himself...

5 Tips for Learning Turkish as a Native English Speaker

I've found myself having the same conversation with various people over the past few months. It generally goes like this: "It's just different for native...

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...

Letters from Istanbul: The Sum of Our Travels

The other day I was having lunch at Café Nero with one of the new teachers. She said she came from Austin. Since I grew...

Letters from Istanbul: Yeldeğirmeni’s Quiet Renaissance

Author’s note: Last week, I wrote about the stories behind some of Istanbul’s street names, and the week before that I traced some of...

City Scherzos: Chopin in Koşuyolu

Some time back, I decided to try a new approach to my Istanbul stories. Up until that point, the stories, though carefully written, were missing...

25 Eco-Signs You Live in Turkey

Living in Istanbul comes with many joys alongside many compromises. If you are the kind of person who tries to lead a green life,...

A Moment for the Victims in Ankara

This weekend has seen the country suffer its worst terror attack to date, with two bomb blasts in Ankara leaving over 95 dead and 240 injured. The tragic...

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...

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...

Letters from Istanbul: City of the Blind (Or, Why You Shouldn’t...

I live in Kadıköy, the “city of the blind.” Have you heard this one? Well, in ancient times, the first Greeks who arrived from Megara set...

Permaculture: A Growing Trend in Istanbul

By Abdelrahman Mahmoud Permaculture. Does the word ring any bells? If yes, and you are already well acquainted with the concept, then hold on a minute...

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...

Confused Letters from Istanbul: Rude Sheiks and Mad Rams — A...

It is almost a cliché to say that behind every name in Istanbul there is a story; nevertheless, the saying is true. For instance, I...

My Dinner With Gökhan

A friend of mine, whom I’ll call Gökhan, loves eating. It is one of his great passions in life. As the son of an...

Letters from Istanbul: The Journey of a Tissue Pack

In the city of Istanbul many poor old women sell packets of tissue in the streets, mostly to passing motorists and the people sitting...

A Guide to Correctly Queuing in Istanbul

A few days ago I was waiting for the bus in the ridiculously long line at Beşiktaş Square - some mornings the line turns...

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....

Yabancı Abroad: When in Rome…Levitate

When we got off the bus at Rome’s Termini Stazion, the first thing we saw was an Istanbul Kebab Shop. My girlfriend Ozge laughed at...

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the ‘Bul

During my first few months in Istanbul I wasn’t exactly bowled over by the place. I thought it was pushy, crowded, ugly and disorganised....

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....

Istanbul: What I Remembered, What I Forgot

Memory is a funny thing. As much as it keeps record of reality, it also creates a reality of its own. As expats, we...

Turtle Conservation Volunteering in Dalyan: DEKAMER – My Experience

In my previous article, I discussed the on-going conservation work taking place at Iztuzu Beach, a place of magnificent natural beauty, and an integral...

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