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Culture Smart Turkey by Charlotte McPherson

This pocket size guide to the essential customs and culture of Turkey is a must read whether you’re coming to Turkey for the first time or plan to live here for a while. Unlike the usual guide book or personal travel narrative, Culture Smart Turkey contains a carefully thought out wealth of information about the…

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Istanbul Dreams: Waiting for the Tulips to Bloom – a preview

There’s an awful lot of information on traditional Turkish life available, but things change. Read on to get a taste of contemporary life in Istanbul through this excerpt from my memoir Istanbul Dreams. “…Since I first came to Turkey more than twenty years ago, trade has opened up, overseas travel has become cheaper, and society…

Teaching English in Turkey – Learning Curve Part I

Teaching English in Turkey seemed like a good idea before we arrived in the country. Once there, dealing with the students was the least of our worries. We’d already been at the government university in Kayseri for a week, and despite numerous meetings with our director were still no further along in discussions about what…

Kurban Bayram – My first Feast of the Sacrifice
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Kurban Bayram – My first Feast of the Sacrifice

I can vividly remember the first time I came face to face with the results of the feast known in Turkey as Kurban Bayram. It’s the traditional religious holiday when all Muslim are expected to commemorate the strength of Ibrahim’s faith by sacrificing a cow, sheep or goat (read more about the meaning of Kurban…

Getting a Turkish Residence Permit: No Walk in the Park
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Getting a Turkish Residence Permit: No Walk in the Park

Getting a Turkish residence permit has always been complicated. As a resident of Istanbul I’ve lived through the days of queuing all day for a ticket (to get another ticket) to the new online appointment system. However the system is configured, there are always hoops to jump through, making it a nervewracking experience. “I walk through…