Things to Do

Events, places and people to get you in-the-know

Sport and fitness

Istanbul’s best pools

As summer approaches our soul heats up. While planning a vacation full of sea, sun, and sand is great for some, it is torture for those who have to spend their whole summer working in the city. If you don’t have the time to head to the beach this summer, enjoy Istanbul’s best pools. 

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Restaurants

Istanbul’s best terraces

An indispensable list for those who want to enjoy a view of the city away from the crowds, in peace accompanied by delicious food.

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What's on in Istanbul

Things to do

From Crafts to Design at Istanbul Modern

The first project by the Istanbul Modern Platform for Crafts, Art and Design, 'From Crafts to Design' focuses on five materials: bone, copper, wood, glass and mother of pearl. This new initiative highlights nearly forgotten handicraft customs by bringing together craftspeople with artists and designers to put a modern spin on materials that have been shaped using traditional methods thus far. What makes the project even more fascinating is that the artists used materials they hadn’t worked with before. In theory, furniture designer Adnan Serbest teaming up with master woodcarver Sezgin Yalçın makes sense, but the result of their collaboration is far from predictable: the wooden bowl designed by the duo, 'Fraxinus', is an impressive piece for a designer with no prior experience creating decorative objects. Perhaps the most notable member of 'From Crafts to Design' is Fatma Ayran, the only female mother of pearl crafter in Turkey. Despite her young age, Ayran has already mastered the art of working with both mother of pearl and bone. Her contributions to the project include the mother of pearl cufflinks created with painter Ekrem Yalçındağ as well as the bone shaving brush named 'Blackcrow' created with fashion designer Hatice Gökçe. Other must-see works include the glass napkin rings created by Camekan Glassworks cofounder Gamze Araz Eskinazi and sculptor Seyhun Topuz as well as the copper tray crafted by designer Atilla Kuzu and coppersmith Battal Yakut. These items will rem

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Art

Drawings from Sainte Anne

Our setting is the Sainte-Anne Psychiatric Hospital in Paris in the ’50s. A familiar face roams the courtyard, gardens and dormitory, always with a pencil or a blue pen in his hand. He starts off drawing rooms and buildings on crumpled pieces of paper, later favoring human figures and portraits. If we’ve managed to pique your interest, you can see these drawings at the Operation Room this month. Curated by Ilgın Deniz Akseloğlu, the exhibition showcases 43 drawings of painter Fikret Muallâ Saygı, who periodically spent time in the psychiatric hospital in France. Of these drawings, 32 are originals from the personal collections of Ferit Edgü and Metin Deniz. Despite all of the pain, fear and traumas he endured, Fikret Muallâ was an artist who valued his craft above all else. Whether you’re familiar with the artist or not, this is one of the month’s can’t-miss shows. WHAT IS IT… An exhibition featuring the works of legendary Turkish painter Fikret Muallâ. WHY GO… To see the drawings Muallâ created more than half a century ago.  

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Things to do

Istanbul Shopping Fest

What’s so special about this shopping festival?Now in its sixth year, Istanbul Shopping Fest is a series of events aimed to boost sales at various markets, shopping districts and particularly shopping malls throughout the city. Is it a conspiracy to get Istanbulites into malls?Istanbul Shopping Fest’s real aim is to get tourists to see the city as a shopping destination, but if locals start spending more time in shops and malls as a result, we’re sure the organizers (along with the municipality) won’t mind. What are some events we can look forward to?Most events take place at the following malls: Akasya, Akbatı, Akmerkez, Cevahir, Forum Istanbul, İstinyePark, Kanyon, Mall of Istanbul, ÖzdilekPark, Palladium and Zorlu Center. The focus is on music, dance and kids’ events not to mention tempting discounts and deals aimed at boosting sales. The highlight of the festival is July 2, when 350 shops all offer great discounts from 21.00 to midnight at Mall of Istanbul. Ralf Cebeci --Jul 1-31. For more info on venues and events, see istshopfest.com.

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The best of Istanbul

Film

Istanbul’s best outdoor cinemas

We usually associate outdoor cinemas with summer and even though there aren’t that many in the city we have listed the best ones. Here’s to hoping more open up… 

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Shopping

Istanbul’s best tattoo parlors

The dozens of tattoo artists in Istanbul, each with their own style, create portable works of art that last a lifetime. Perhaps it’s time to finally get that tattoo you’ve been thinking about for years.

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Kids

Istanbul's best places for kids activities

The best activities for kids to spend their holiday break in the city; in fact there are dozens of activities you can enjoy together.  

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Sport and fitness

Istanbul's best beaches

As you relax on the beach looking out to the sea peaceful thoughts occupy your mind, like whether or not you applied your sunscreen evenly. Isn’t life better in the summer? You can enjoy the summer season in Istanbul as long you head to the beaches we’ve listed. 

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