Kadir Gecesi

Kadir Gecesi

Kadir Gecesi is thought to be the most important of the five holy nights in the Muslim calendar called kandil. According to the 97th chapter of the Koran and the traditions of the Prophet Mohammed, it is the night on which the first verses of the Koran were revealed to Mohammed. “We revealed the Koran on…

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Turkish Toilets: A Five Star Review

Back in 1990 when I first visited the country, Turkish toilets, whether squat or what we think of as ‘normal’ but the Turks call Ala Franga, were a constant topic of discussion among tourists and travellers. There were plenty of toilets around, in mosques, restaurants, bus stations and even in free standing facilities in parks,…

Modern Turkish Weddings: At the Registry Office

Modern Turkish Weddings: At the Registry Office

Visitors to Turkey often stumble across colourful Turkish weddings in small towns and villages. They are great fun to attend. But what about the legally required civil ceremony part of Turkish weddings, do you know what goes on there? Find out in this extract from my memoir Istanbul Dreams: Waiting for the Tulips to Bloom.”…

Hidrellez Traditions: May Your Wishes Come True

Hidrellez Traditions: May Your Wishes Come True

I’ll begin my story on Hidrellez traditions in the manner of a traditional Turkish folk tale. Once there was and once there wasn’t a Turkish Australian friendship between a woman from Istanbul, Turkey and a woman from Sydney, Australia. They met at a language exchange night in Kadikoy and became good friends, going out to…

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New Year’s Eve in Turkey – Red is for Health

If you’ve lived here for more than a year you’ll likely have had at least one conversation with a Turkish friend or colleague about Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve in Turkey. Despite your best efforts at explaining that Christmas is celebrated on the 25th of December and New Year’s Eve on the 31st, some…