About & Contact

When you’re born in one place and then continue to move to another every three to four years, a sense of belonging is not something you’re imbued with. It has its pros and cons. I was born in Austria, grew up mostly in Germany, spoke Turkish at home and became a native English speaker when we ventured to the U.S. during my early pubescence. After spending more than seven years honing my writing and editing skills at American universities, I returned to my roots by moving to Istanbul in 2011 and landing my dream job writing about the city’s gastronomy, culture and nightlife scenes for one of the its oldest English-language magazines.

By 2015, I decided to become fully freelance, having grown weary of office-life-limitations, and began sharing my accumulated Istanbul knowledge under my own name. I’ve written countless online and print articles about travel and culture in Istanbul (and other destinations in Turkey), inspiring Turkish personalities in the creative scene, and Turkish entrepreneurs in Istanbul and Berlin. I’ve also authored several print Istanbul city guides, most notably my own comprehensive city guidebook, The 500 Hidden Secrets of Istanbul.

This website is a showcase of my favorite work from over the years and is updated regularly as I continue to write about the people and places defining contemporary culture in Turkey (and sometimes abroad).

*For new commissions and projects please contact me via e-mail: fyalav@gmail.com

*Follow me on Instagram: @fyheck


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