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Culture in Istanbul

Turkey is the only country with extremes of both Eastern and Western Cultures. The Ottoman Empire before 1923 was a multiethnic state, meaning people from different religions were not allowed to mingle.

After the Ottoman Empire's collapse, Istanbul adopted a more secular approach to mixing to form one identity and be recognized alone. As a secular state, Turkey gives freedom of practicing their religion to Non-Muslims, with different religious sectors, where all individuals and cultures feel respected. 

Istanbul was proclaimed the European Capital of Culture in 2010. Performers from all over the world performed in the stadiums. Events like the opera and the theater took place to celebrate Istanbul. Even though Turkey has progressed in more modern ways, some traditions, like folk dances, music, and literature, have survived. And they have been celebrated to connect to our culture. 

Many people from the world are familiar with The Evil Eye, made from blue glass with different shades of blue, which is an integral part of Turkish culture. Turks believe that the evil eye helps prevent bad things from happening. You can see these hanging in offices, homes, and cars and given to the mother at the child's birth for keeping evil eyes off. It also makes a good souvenir option for tourists to take back home.

The Turkish Hamam was created as Roman Public Bath Houses at first. However, it was later modified by the Ottomans. The Turkish Bath is where people enter the hammam and get scrubbed with a special loofah to get the dead skin out. It is one of the most visited places for tourists. The architecture of the Turkish Hamam is unique, and the visitors feel completely clean after leaving it.

The Turkish tea tradition Turk's national drink is tea, and they only drink their variant of coffee. The black-colored tea is served in tulip-shaped glasses, with the level of sweetness adjusted according to the drinker's preference. Turkish tea is such a tradition that people from the villages and cities gather in tea shops, play games, and drink Turkish tea.

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