Book of Travels: The Evliya Çelebi TV Show

These days quasi-historical shows like Game of Thrones are the most watched (and pirated) shows on TV. Also, Muhteşem Yüzyıl, “The Magnificent Century”, a prime-time...

In Conversation with Musician Enzo Ikah

Foreigners living in big cities all have something in common: the desire to live a better life. Most of them remain anonymous, but some,...

In Conversation with Samer Al-Kadri of Pages, Istanbul’s First Arabic Bookstore...

Located within quick reach of the historical Chora Museum, Pages, the first Arabic bookstore in Istanbul, marks a historic moment for the city and...

In Search of Mantı

As you walk down the streets of Istanbul, the air swirls with color and unfamiliar smells. Occasionally, you stop and peer into shop windows,...

Letters from Istanbul: In Search of the ‘Real’ English

On the way to work the other morning, the taxi driver, noticing I was a yabancı, asked the usual, inevitable question. “America,” I answered. “Amerika?” the driver...

Istanbul Street Names: The Stories They Tell

Having only laid claim to most of their monikers since the declaration of the Republic, Istanbul’s street names often go unnoticed (highly due to...

Istanbul’s Hidden Architecture: Şemsi Pasha Mosque

Mimar Sinan was, without a doubt, the greatest architect of the Ottoman empire. His importance and influence are often compared with his contemporary Michelangelo, and it's an established...

In Conversation with Hilary Sable, Founder of “Cihangir…Cool for Cats”

As soon as I sit down at an outside table of a café in uber-trendy Cihangir, I am spied by a rather dusty looking...

Walking the Rainbow: Istanbul’s Colorful Stairs

Protest in Turkey can take many forms. Sadly enough, few of them will leave a positive imprint on your memory: TOMAs and tear gas,...

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall: Turkish Fortune-Telling Culture

After observing several overturned coffee cups with increasing curiosity during my first few months here, it became apparent that one does not simply sip...

Gold Day Recipes: Delicious Eats for a Day of Socializing and...

Like every other Turkish kid who grew up in the 90s, I have been to many “gold days” (altın günü) hosted by my mother...

9 Tips to Know Before Visiting a Turkish Home

One day, after having heard our neighbor's son practicing his guitar almost daily, I went to her door and asked in piecemeal Turkish if...

The Byzantine Chronicles: The (Re-imagined) History of Byzantium from Constantine to...

The Byzantine Chronicles, a new blog by Yabangee contributor Timothy Mottram, sets out to shed light on some of Byzantium’s history through fictitious narratives. Each...

Want to Learn Turkish? Try World Café

It wasn't so long ago that we promoted the first iteration of World Café, a language learning project organized by local university teachers. After...

Winter Drinks: Searching for Real Sahlep

With all the snow in Istanbul this winter, and the unforgettable sights it brought of children sledding, snowmen in coats, and seagulls waddling in...

Sketching Istanbul’s Hans Part 2: Rüstem Paşa Han

Emilie Varlet and Gabrielle Reeves began exploring Istanbul's hans in the summer of 2014, when they first started their sketching adventures in the city. They have...

Sketching Istanbul’s Hans Part 1: Büyük Valide Han

Emilie Varlet and Gabrielle Reeves began exploring Istanbul's hans in the summer of 2014, when they first started their sketching adventures in the city. They have...

In Conversation with the Editors of Sofra: A Gathering of Foreign...

Having been one of the contributors to the Tales from the Expat Harem anthology over a decade ago, I was excited to see a...

There’s No Such Thing as a Simple Turkish Wedding

The marriage bureaucrats at the Şişli marriage bureau seem like the unhappiest people in the world. Just a few meters from the miniature theater, where everyday...

The Pursuit of Happiness in the ‘Bul

In this megacity, which delivers stress in seemingly increasing dosages year by year, I’m realizing that it is essential to wear a different pair...

Resources for Learning Kurdish in Istanbul

Maybe you’re thinking of traveling to eastern Turkey. Perhaps you want to get on better terms socially with Kurdish-speaking friends. Or maybe you just...

Discussing the Dönme with Artist and Researcher C.M. Kösemen (Part 2)

Dayla Rogers continues her conversation with artist and researcher C.M. Kösemen about the Dönme and their history.  You are a person of Dönme background. A...

Discussing the Dönme with Artist and Researcher C.M. Kösemen (Part 1)

It is well known that the Ottoman Empire was a place of incredible cosmopolitanism. What is often overlooked is the existence of “syncretic” peoples,...

The Dönme: A Profile of a Hidden People

“A Doenmeh friend of mine told me his father had informed him that his father’s mother used to go to the beach every Friday...

Yabangee Essentials

Yabangee Classics