I mentioned in my “Introduction” page that I am from Turkey, I was born and raised in Istanbul. I really liked Istanbul growing up because I found comfort in it being such an urban-crowded place, and living in one of the most centralized places in the city I had many different experiences. I consider myself very lucky to have grown up in such a diverse community. In Istanbul I got to live in a community with people from all kinds of different religions, ethnicities, sexualities, styles… And it was wonderful seeing all this diversity in one place all (most of the time) very accepting of each other. I think having grown up in Istanbul really helped me to be open minded and accepting of LGBT community, people from different ethnicities or religions and just all other minorities. I think it also helped me to be more accepting of my own, and to be more comfortable experimenting with differenting stuff.
Istanbul is a big city with it’s malls and skyscrapers and all the large stuff that just make you drop your jaw, but it also has a rich History and lots of little pieces here and there left from different eras and you never know what you might find. It’s not the greenest city, unfortunately, but still I got to often visit the Belgrad Forest and some parks such as Gülhane, Bebek, Maçka and I liked the parks I was around, they were enough for me.
In this post I also wanted to share some visuals of my personal favourite places in Istanbul. In order of appearance the places are: Istiklal Avenue -Taksim, The Bosphorus Bridge, Maiden’s Tower, Galata Tower, Gülhane Park and Kadıköy. Honorable mentions: Nişantaşı, The Grand Bazaar, Hagia Sophia, Haliç/Golden Horn, Beyazıt Square. If you happen to pay a visit to Istanbul I highly recommend you visit some of these places.
I’m not sure how much longer I’ll stay in this city, as although I’d LOVE to stay in this city I feel if the current political situation continues I’d feel more comfortable and more safe in another country. For a while I was certain I’d go to college in Canada or the US but recently I realised how much I love this city and being so close to my family and all the people I grew up with, and honestly I want to experience living in this city as an “adult” (its questionable how much of an adult one is at college) so I decided I’d take the exams here and keep living here until I’m done with college. I don’t know what the future has to offer, perhaps I’ll leave right away after college, or perhaps I’ll stay here forever. For now all I know is that I’m glad I got to grow up in this country and this culture.