Istanbul is a never-sleeping city. And when there are festivals going on, it becomes even more bustling. Istanbul has something for everyone, and festivals are available for those who enjoy dancing, watching stage plays, or trying new foods. Moving ahead, here is the ultimate guide to the most popular festivals in Istanbul that unfold Turkish culture, art, and entertainment.
Istanbul Film Festival
Istanbul Film Festival 2021: 1 April – 29 June
Istanbul Film Festival initiated in 1983 under the name of “Cinema Days”. Cinema Days was a weekly film screening event. For the past 28 years, the Istanbul Film Festival has been organized annually in April under the auspices of an institutional body such as the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (KSV). During the festival, there are short and extended film screenings as well as biennials. Turkey’s oldest and most significant international film festival is the Istanbul Film Festival. It has screened 5759 films from 110 countries and attracted over 4.2 million viewers to date. In Beyolu, Kadköy, Zincirlikuyu, Tepebaş, and Nişantaş, the festival will be screened in large cinemas. Istanbul film festival 2021, one of the famous festivals in Istanbul, commenced on Thursday, 1 April and concluded on Tuesday, 29 June.
Istanbul International Dance Festival
Istanbul International Dance Festival 2021: 25 – 29 October 2021
The Istanbul International Dance Festival, one of the world’s major dance festivals, takes place every year for about a week at the end of March and the beginning of April. In workshops, dancers from Turkey and around the world demonstrate new dance styles and demonstrate their abilities. Workshops and training are offered from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. throughout the festival, which is held at a different hotel each year. Then the parties begin, and there is no end to the joy until 7 a.m. You can enjoy yourself with the International Folk Dance and Music festival from 25 to 29 October 2021.
Istanbul Jazz Festival
Istanbul Jazz Festival 2021: 1 – 24 September
The Istanbul Jazz Festival is another worldwide festival sponsored by KSV. The festival spans from the end of June until the middle of July, and the city is alive with jazz during that time. Every year, thousands of jazz fans from all over the world attend to enjoy one of the more than 30 concerts. Concerts are hosted at ancient sites throughout Istanbul, including the Hagia Sophia Eirene Museum, Esma Sultan Mansion, Istanbul Archaeological Museums, as well as lovely outdoor spaces and courtyards of some of the city’s most iconic structures.
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Istanbul Coffee Festival
Istanbul Coffee Festival 2021: 19 – 22 September
The Istanbul Coffee Festival, which takes place every year in the last week of September, hosts seminars, events, workshops, and contests. There are sessions in the morning, midday, and evening at the festival in Küçükçiftlik Park. The cost of tickets varies depending on the session. Tickets provide you access to two sessions on the chosen day, one before and one after midday. The Istanbul Coffee festival is one of the popular festivals in Istanbul.
International Istanbul Tulip Festival
International Istanbul Tulip Festival 2021: Later in April
Tulips may be seen all around Istanbul during the International Istanbul Tulip Festival, which is organised by the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality. The festival is particularly well-known for events held in unique locations such as Emirgan Grove, Kadköy Göztepe 60. Yl Park, and Sultanahmet. You can stroll around tulip-filled gardens and parks, have a picnic, and take photographs. In addition, the Tulip Festival hosts an ITF international tennis competition and a beach football tournament between institutions.
Istanbul Book Fair
Istanbul Book Fair 2021: October
TÜYAP Fairs has been organizing the Istanbul Book Fair since 1983. Having around 500,000 people, it is considered the industry’s greatest event, with the highest access to readers in Europe. Hundreds of events and book signings are planned, making the fair one of Istanbul’s most popular cultural events. The Turkish Publishers Association is collaborating on the event. Thousands of books are available, and you can meet your favorite authors to discuss their work. There will be interviews, panels, performance poetry, and workshops with Turkish writers and poets as well as writers and poets from around the world.
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Istanbul Theatre Festival
The Istanbul Coffee Festival, which takes place every year in the last week of September, hosts seminars, events, workshops, and contests. There are sessions in the morning, midday, and evening at the festival in Küçükçiftlik Park. Ticket prices vary. Istanbul Theatre festival is considered one of the most admired festivals in Istanbul.
Istanbul Puppet Festival
The Istanbul Puppet Festival takes place every year from the end of October to the middle of November. The event, which is organised by the Istanbul Karagöz Puppet Foundation, brings together puppet enthusiasts from all over the world. The event features film and video screenings as well as interviews in addition to puppet acts. It takes place in the elite locations of Beyolu and Beşiktaş, and participants come from Europe, the Far East, Asia, and Africa.