Istanbul, Turkey
Utku, 27
Publisher, Nordik Simit
see his Istanbul city guide

ask Utku about

What do you do and why do you do it?

I own an online Nordic culture and art magazine + we are organizing tours to Nordic countries. I love traveling, I love exploring and I love minimalism. Those three points meet at North!

Were you born and raised in Istanbul? If not, where did you grow up and what brought you to Istanbul?

I grew up in the middle of Black Sea coast. I came here, Istanbul to study university in 2012.

What’s your current hood in Istanbul and what’s the best/worst thing about it?

It is a neighborhood near my school. Mostly students live here, there are nice places to hangout but nothing special. I really like here.

What kind of music do you listen to and what kind of music do you absolutely HATE?

I love to listen songs that let me dream into the lyrics, put it on a story I made up. That means I can listen all kind of music if I can daydream about it. But I kinda doesn't like rock.

You’re broken hearted - what tracks does your heartbreak playlist consist of?

Odd Beholder - Landscape Escape, Daniel Herskedal - The Mistal Noir, James Vincent McMorrow - If I Had a Boat, Fever Ray - Keep Streets Empty For Me, London Grammer - Nightcall, Birdy - Shelter. I have a whole playlist about that:

Name the best TV shows of all time, and what makes them so good?

Broadchurch, Forbrydelsen. You feel like time has been stopped while watching those two. Scenery, story, acting all of them make you part of the scenes, you really feel like you are in the story.

Name some spots in Istanbul that are good for a Tinder date.

Maçka Park, Arter,

Which public figure would you want to see “roasted”? (every public figure is fair game).

I think I am not allowed to say his name in such a sentence :)

Who’s your hero and where in Istanbul would you take them out for a serious hang?

I think we have to have a serious talk before I show him around, because he died before 50's. There are lots of things to tell! So a quite cafe. Hmm. Institut français à Istanbul or Türk-Alman Kitapevi Kafe

Where do you buy those fabulous clothes of yours?

Terkos Pasajı. Just joking but you should try there. It is crazy. There are lots of clothes from well known brands for 3-5 euros. But product quality is on pajama level.

What’s the area/ spot in town you’ll never be caught dead in?


What’s the thing you LOVE to do in your city that you never get to do?

Exploring Belgrad Forest in Istanbul.

Where do you go in Istanbul for a casual night out?

Bomontiada and Geyik is my favorites but I mostly hangout near my apartment.

Where would you go in Istanbul to celebrate some freaking good news?

Kilimanjaro Bomonti

What’s your choice of transportation in Istanbul and why?

Walking + Subway. If you here for summer, don't use crowded buses :). Oh don't forget to take ferry across Bosphorus.

What are the Istanbul spots a first-time visitor can’t miss?

It is a little but off the touristic grid but Arnavutköy.

What are the Istanbul spots tourists should run from screaming?


Tomorrow’s your last day in Istanbul. How do you spend it?

I would go a hill near Bosphorus and listen my favorite songs that will remind me Istanbul later. I'd spend my evening with beloved friends and at night, I have to walk alone in Istanbul for a last time.

What’s your favorite vacation city in the world and why?

Berlin. It is so chill. I can spend my whole day swinging around beautiful parks trying different type of beers.

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Alperen Ergin