The Mevlevi Dervish order was founded in the 13th century by the followers of the Persian Islamic scholar Jalal ad Din Rumi. The order is based on a specific interpretation of Islam and the rites and obligations of devotion to God. It grew in prestige in Turkey and the Levant, especially after its leaders established a blood relationship with the Ottoman Sultans. As a result, the order, which was based in Konya, had widespread political, social, economic and religious influence throughout the Empire. They had their own regiment in the army and established outposts in various sections of the Empire. With the proclamation of the Republic in 1923, they fell out of favour with the new governing class, and were banned in 1925. Many of their lodges were seized by the state (including this one), and they survived only by becoming apolitical organizations devoted to religious and social works. Despite the new establishment's hostility to the dervishes, their cultural and religious traditions are preserved to some extent, including in museums such as this one, in order to conserve the memory of the important role played by the dervishes in Ottoman society and politics.
Istiklal Caddesi is the name of the street that goes from Taksim square down to Tünel. It's an experience to go there because of the architecture, the crowd - the street is always packed with people - and all the restaurants, bars and shops that is all around Istiklal. It's on the street and on the side streets and paralell streets around Istiklal.
There are many tasty foods to be found in Istanbul, with flavors ranging from Arabic countries to Aegean and Greek to Ottoman era to the Black Sea regions. One of my favorite things to do is get together a bunch of friends and go to eat fish and mezes (tapas/small plates) out in Nevizade.
Frequently the meals are accompanied by strange music called fasil, at places called meyhanes. Anyway, A trip down Nevizade street near the fish market will amaze you. There are pubs and street sellers and terrace roofs and music all around.
Explore, and I am sure you will find adventure.
The old district of Pera gave place to the modern Beyoglu, with the inevitable Istiklal Caddesi, dominating the area. However, a few signs of the classical quarter do remain, showing the Ottoman architecture.
This is the artery of the Taksim district. You start right one corner of the square and end in Tunel. There are tons of shops, restaurants, some bookstores, record shops, embassies, churcnes, hotels, bars and many perambulating people along the way. Watch out for the trams!
that place is full with nice people, many locals and foreigners are living together in the old building. there is no luxus, only nice people. a mother is the cook in the cafe and is cooking home food, which is cheap and good. the accomodation is cheap and good.
"new" part of the city in early Ottoman times. This area of the city has the modern shopping areas and also the later Ottoman Palaces. The main landmark of this area is the Galata tower.
I wanted to share my favourites in Beyoðlu with VT members who're interested in natives point of view.
Levant is a popular suburb, very nice and popular to live. But overall it is somewhat of a business area, there is a mall with many big shops.