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One Month Left for the Biggest Gypsy Party

Oriental Istanbul is taking you to a wonderful and unique journey in Turkey where you will enjoy a great week full of Romani dance, culture and street parties.

You will be taught the technique and style of the Romany dance from master teachers Dalia Carella and Reyhan Tuzsuz. After going through an intense course in Istanbul, we will travel to Edirne, the heart of the Gypsy community in Turkey to celebrate Hidrellez together with the locals in town. Enjoy dinner with a local Gypsy band in the festival field in Edirne!

Don’t miss to be a part of this experience this year!

Here are some photos from Oriental Istanbul’s Hidrellez Tour 2014 & 2013:


Freshly Recommended Garden Tours!

Our garden tours have been recommended in Trip of a Lifetime: Istanbul & The Turkish Coast book wroten by Leeann Murphy. The book involves many touristic areas, and in sports and recreation parts, Murphy provides a couple of nice experiences information about Büyükada, Gülhane Park and Belgrad Forest. At the final, Murphy mentiones Unison Turkey’s exciting garden tours which gather the most beautiful gardens and botanic parks from all over Istanbul.

You can kindly find this very informative and stimulating book of Leeann Murphy in many top bookstores.

Trip of a Lifetime: Istanbul & The Turkish Coast unison turkey garden toursTrip of a Lifetime: Istanbul & The Turkish Coast unison turkey garden tours


“Raqs Sharqi” Photograph Exhibition

“Dance of the East” at Galatea Art Gallery!

“Raqs Sharqi” (Dance of the East) by photographer John Wreford will be exhibiting at Galatea Art Gallery in Beyoglu, Istanbul. The exhibition will continue until 1 November.

Wreford explains his work as; beautiful fine art images of Oriental Dance, not the stereotypical image we are used to seeing but showing emotion, grace and movement.

The opening will be at 18:00 on Tuesday 14 October.

Raqs Sharqi Dance of the East John Wreford


5 Little Heavens Near Istanbul

Istanbul, timeless city… Stressful business life, traffic jam and crowds here bore us sometimes. Pınar Yeşilova from made a list of easy-to-go places near Istanbul in maximum 2 hours. We highly recommend you to visit the top 5 of these places without thinking any city-related thoughts…

1. Pinarli Village



You have to go to Sile firstly to reach this heaven village 97 km far away from Istanbul. When you arrive in Sardala Bay, do not forget to swim in the icy water. This place is an awesome camping place for those that want.



2. Polonezkoy



It would not be false if we call there the greenest part of the region.. This 32 km far away green heaven is exactly an oxygen-rich for those that breathe away from city center.




3. Agva



Agva, 97 km far away from Istanbul, can be the most beautiful place near Istanbul, maybe an extraterrestrial village to some.. You can swim there or be drunk with natural beauties of there. You will love wooden structures, all the shades of green, and romance of the area…



4. Cigdem Upland



This about 1500 m high upland gave its name from colchicum blooming after snow. You can highly enjoy fresh air, blue sky and green gardens there!




5. Terkos Lake



For those that like to do picnic and read book on the lake shore, Terkos Lake is a heaven that is 45 km far away from Istanbul.


What about Horticulture experience in Turkey?

This spring in Turkey will be awesome again! What about taking a journey along Turkish history and culture through its horticulture, gardens and botany? If yes, we recommend you to check out the itinerary of the “Horticulture & Culture Tour of Turkey with Gursan Ergil” between 25 April and 11 May, 2014.



Istanbul, Edirne, Canakkale, Ayvalik, Ephesus, Kutahya and Bursa… This 17-day horticulture tour will take you through; Historical Parks & Gardens, Lectures, Private Landscapes, Arboretums, Nature walks for wild flowers, Organic Farms, Vineyards, Artist Studios, Botanic Gardens, Nurseries and Authentic Local Life while paying a visit to beautiful towns and cities along our way.

.. and our tour leader: Gursan Ergil

Gursan Ergil spent six years living in the United States and studying landscape design, history, and preservation at Harvard University’s Arnold Arboretum, where he later lectured on Islamic Gardens for two years. Ergil currently works as landscape curator at Prince’s Island Museum in Istanbul and he is the author of the book ‘Gardens of Princes Islands’.


What’s up in Town? | Dec 2 – 8, 2013

ART | Paul Morrison: Black Light

Famous painter known for his botanical landscape paintings presents works from his Black Light series. This free-entrance exhibition can be visited until Dec 28 at Dirimart Art Gallery in Nisantasi, Istanbul.

ART | The Journey

Sinan Demirtaş’s new exhibition offers you a journey through the concrete and the abstract. We recommend you to see The Journey in the first half of this Dec at Gallery Merkur, Istanbul.

ART | Yet Another Story About the Fall

In Yet Another Story About the Fall, artist Fatma Bucak aims at your heart to affect by her photography and videography works. The free-entrance exhibition at Arter, Beyoglu for whole Dec.

MUSIC | Borusan Quartet

The bests of Borusan Philharmonic Orchestra will take the stage on Dec 2, at Sureyya Opera House, Istanbul.

MUSIC | Riff Cohen

28-year-old Israeli musician, Riff Cohen, will take the stage on Dec 3, at Eskiyeni Bar, Ankara.

MUSIC | Dave Kilminster & Murray Hockridge

The musicians will meet their Turkish fans in company with their special acoustic performance. The concert will be on Dec 4 at The Big Bus Ankara.

FESTIVAL | Red Bull Music Academy Radio Festival

This is the first festival of RBMA! Don’t miss out the special offers for ticket.. The date is Dec 7, and the place is Istanbul Modern.

SPORT | Galatasaray Liv Hospital – Unicaja Malaga

In Turkish Airlines Euroleague 8th week match, GS Liv Hospital will host the Spanish team Unicaja Malaga in Abdi Ipekci Arena, Istanbul on Dec 5.

SPORT | Fenerbahce – Fethiyespor

In Ziraat Turkish Cup 4th tour match, current league leader Fenerbahce is against Fethiyespor from PTT 1st League. The event will be on Dec 4 at Sukru Saracoglu Stadium, Istanbul.


What’s up in Town? | Nov 25 – Dec 1, 2013

ART | Rafael Lozano-Hemmer
The exhibition is waiting for its enthusiasts till Feb 16, 2014. The exhibition area is at Borusan Contemporary in Baltalimani, Istanbul.

ART | Mahmut Karatoprak
Karatoprak’s all paintings that belong to Yellow Flowers of Patience are with you at Gallery Selvin in Arnavutkoy, Istanbul. Now his subject is women who are in a state of absolute awareness, and who each express a unique way of being alone. The exhibition will end Dec 15.

FESTIVAL & FAIR | Istanbul Design Week
With its many workshops, exhibitions and events, Istanbul Design Week is between the date of Nov 27 and Dec 1 at Kucukciftlik Park, Istanbul.

PERFORMING ARTS | The Ears of Midas
The Ears of Midas is a two-act opera directed by Yücel Erten. We recommend to join them on Nov 27, 28, 29 or 30 at Sureyya Opera House, Istanbul.

MUSIC | Andre Rieu
One of the most important musicians of this century, Andre Rieu, will take the stage on Nov 29 in Sinan Erdem Arena, Istanbul.

MUSIC | Andrea Lucchesini
Italian pianist Lucchesini will be in Antalya on Nov 26, 2013 for 14th International Antalya Piano Festval.

FESTIVAL & FAIR | Blues Festival 24
The last two city in Anatolia with the wind of blues… Blues Festival 24 will be in Canakkale and Edirne on Nov 25 and 26.

SPORT | Anadolu Efes – Strasbourg
In the match that seventh week of Turkish Airlines Euroleague , Anadolu Efes will host the French team at Abdi Ipekci Arena, Istanbul on Nov 29.


Anish Kapoor in Istanbul!

One of the living legends of contemporary art is in Turkey! Exhibition that includes never before seen works of Anish Kapoor can be seen in Sakip Sabanci Museum, Emirgan until January 5, 2014. The exhibition has caught the attention of hundreds of students, artlovers, and people of all ages who are pouring in the museum every day. Besides, every wednesday and friday, free guided tours are available for the exhibition. We share with you photos of some fine art by Anish Kapoor. Enjoy!















We recommend you not to miss this inspirational exhibition in the capital of culture and art, Istanbul. We also recommend you to visit the Horse Mansion located in Sakip Sabanci Museum, where you can view the rich collection of calligraphy and paintings belonged to Sakıp Sabancı -one of the most important Turkish businessmen- . The furniture of the mansion is also very attractive and interesting.



50 Signs you have been in Turkey too long

TimeOut Istanbul Magazine identifies “50 Signs you have been in Turkey too long” on the latest issue. Let’s see how well you know Turks :)

1. You automatically take off your shoes when entering a house.

2. You’ve tried all the types of street food Istanbul offers: corn, stuffed mussels, chickpeas on rice, nuts, pomegranate juice, popcorn…

3. Not a day goes by without drinking at least one çay (tea). If it does, you feel weird about it.

4. Friends don’t invite you to their homes for dinner, but for breakfast.

5. You know the name of the guy at the bakkal (corner store) on your street.

6. Everything is çok (very): çok güzelçok iyiçok ayıp

7. You have started to answer questions by repeating the answer (evet, evetvar, varhayır, hayıryok, yok).

8. You’ve forgotten what it means to recycle.

9. You no longer hear the honking of car horns.

10. You know there is always traffic in Istanbul: the question is whether there is traffic or A LOT of traffic.

11. You know you’ll find a portrait of Atatürk everywhere you go.

12. You have learned to accept yogurt as something salty you drink with your food rather than something sweet you eat for dessert.

13. You hardly hear it anymore when the mosques issue the call to prayer. Five times a day. Starting at 05.30.

14. You have drunk çay when it’s 35 degrees Celsius outside.

15. You know the only way to cross the street is kamikaze-style, with the cars passing just a few centimetres away. Traffic lights? What are those?

16. You know the first rule about Atatürk is: you do not say anything bad about Atatürk.

17. And the second rule about Atatürk is: you do not say anything bad about Atatürk.

18. You ask for a student discount or try to bargain for almost everything.

19. Remember when you used to notice how there was always a smartass jumping the queue without anyone complaining? Now you’re that smartass.

20. You go to the Tarlabaşı market every Sunday to buy fruits and vegetables at extremely cheap prices. And you still try to bargain for a better deal.

21. You know where all the happy-hour places are in Taksim.

22. You always drink the biggest beer because “it’s just one lira more.”

23. You’re still looking for the cheapest kebab in the city.

24. You have a nazar boncuğu (“evil eye”) in your house or your room.

25. You do not say “ok”; you say “tamam.”

26. You kiss both cheeks with your close male friends.

27. It doesn’t surprise you anymore to see two macho guys walking together with linked arms.

28. The entrance to your house looks like a shoe store.

29. You have accepted olives and cheese as part of your breakfast.

30. You have accepted that there will always be soup and yogurt with your food.

31. You have a favourite brand of rakı.

32. You have accepted yogurt as a sauce.

33. You are thinking about growing a moustache to look cool.

34. You think it’s normal to “drink a cigarette,” “close the phone” or having it be “raining snow.”

35. You call older neighbours “aunt” and “uncle.”

36. You say “allah allah” to complain or express anger.

37. You don’t get surprised when some people still give prices in millions of liras.

38. You compare the price of an alcoholic drink to the food you could eat for that same amount.

39. You now expect to get a wet-wipe soaked in lemon scent at the end of a restaurant meal.

40. When you need groceries, you call the shop on the corner and have them sent up to you in a basket.

41. You know that kahvaltı means “under or after the coffee” – and that there is never coffee after breakfast.

42. You have eaten an islak (wet) hamburger after partying.

43. You have eaten midye dolma (stuffed mussels) after a night out. And you’ve stopped asking yourself where they come from or how they’re prepared.

44. You know you’ll always find the sugar served in cubes

45. You’ve stopped expecting sauce in your döner kebab and know it is normal to find French fries in it instead.

46. You expect to climb a ton of stairs to reach a bar or nightclub.

47. You only go to the historic part of the city when your friends visit you.

48. You think it’s normal for motorcyclists to ride in the wrong direction, without a helmet.

49. You know every building has a name of a person on it, and usually two numbers: the old one and the new one.

50. You have learned to play tavla (backgammon). Better yet, you’ve spent a whole afternoon drinking çay, smoking nargile (hookah) and playing tavla.

By Santiago Brusadin – The full link of the article


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