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“Well worth the visit” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hodjapasha Cultural Center

Hodjapasha Cultural Center
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US$26.35*
and up
Whirling Dervish Show in Istanbul
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: 1. Istanbul Dervishes: Mevlevi Sema Ceremony / Everyday except Monday and Friday at 19:00 Price: 60 TL pp / Free refreshments including tea , Turkish Cofee , water and fruit juice + Free booklet + free DVD for every online purchase of 2 tickets. 2. Rhythm of the Dance :Featuring variety of charming folkloric dances of Anatolia , Balkans and Caucasian regions combined with exotic oriental dances. Tuesday Thursday Saturday 21:00 Alternating biweekly with White Rose . Price : 70 TL pp / Free refreshments including tea , Turkish Cofee , water and fruit juice + Free booklet + free DVD for every online purchase of 2 tickets. 3. White Rose : A theatral dance show that sensationally combines oriental dance , harem dance and modern dance together. Theme is based on an extraordinary true love story of an Ottoman slave woman and ambassador during Tulip Period in 17TH Century. Tuesday Thursday Saturday 21:00 Alternating biweekly with Rhythm of the Dance . Price : 80 TL pp / Free refreshments including tea , Turkish Cofee , water and fruit juice + Free booklet + free DVD for every online purchase of 2 tickets. See our website for the calendar of the shows.
Paphos, Cyprus
Level Contributor
52 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Well worth the visit”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 October 2013

We really enjoyed the Whirling Dervishes show; as much for the education it gave us into its origin and spiritual meaning as for the dance itself. The ceremony is only for an hour and is performed in a small circular theatre where you are only a couple of arm lengths from the performers.

Try and ask for a front row seat, because the seats in the two rows behind are not elevated very much, meaning that for a short bodied person sight could be a little restricted. Any ladies in the front row should plan to wear something that covers their legs or they will be asked to make use of a light blanket that will be provided.

The theatre is not in the best part of town, but if you study a map it is within a 15 minute walk of the Blue Mosque. There are signs posted advising against using the taxis that wait after the performance.

Visited October 2013
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Thank paulhZ9321KR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Montreal, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Spiritual, authentic, moving artistry”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 October 2013

Beautiful music and inning, and you can feel the energy and emotion of the dancers in the Sema ceremony. I was so moved I fell into a meditative trance. Very authentic, elegant building (repurposed hamam), sets the mood perfectly. Every place around th world has an arts or untrue venue that takes pride in providing quality, authentic artistic expressions, this is the plce or Istanbul. Yes it is full of tourists, but it is popular for a very good reason and quality and authenticity is not comprimised. The Sema ceremony really makes you appreciate the spirituality in the air in Istanbul. Complimentary Tukish tea and coffee and exhibits describing regional dancing arts is a nice touch. Must see! Nothing remotely close to the dervish dancers at restaurants - much more spiritual as the dancers are supposed to be.

Visited October 2013
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1 Thank Globe T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
96 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Authentic and realistic dervishes but very boring!”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 October 2013

After watching the dervishes show i have to agree that the advice i received while travelling here is that this is the place to see authentic dervishes. They really take it seriously and until the performers you don't realise how much devotion and physical effort it is to keep their arms raised with inverted hands, who's spinning and while moving in a circle and while constantly lifting and dropping one leg. Remarkable for sure.

However the whole thing is so serious here, that i did find it boring. I suppose it's like ballet and Opera, I'm just a simpleton and wanted to see the 'Hollywood' version. There is no explanation apart from the free literature which i find only read after event and anyway it was too wordy. Also the frequent bowing almost became comical. I would have appreciated 5–10 mins of dervishes, abbe more explanations.

On a positive, the qawal (quran recitation) performed as a backdrop to the dervishes was top notch.

Also, toilet facilities are very limited, some were eventually using the men's.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank The_Judge_786
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wroclaw, Poland
Level Contributor
91 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
“Whirling Dervish - Something I've never seen before”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 October 2013

Before going to Istanbul - don't think whirling dervish was on my radar. But the research points to Hodjapasha Cultural Center has the best show in town. The center is a little hard to find but worth it. The setting makes it feel more authentic, it also is nicely done on the inside. Get tickets ahead of time as it seems like it fills up and there are limited seats. We were able to get front row seats which was amazing - but I think any seat in the room would be a decent view. Seats are assigned so no worries about getting there early unless you don't have a seat assignment yet.

They do offer, tea, coffee and water while you wait for the show.

They start off with some music, then they bring in another group of musicians who start playing the music that will set the dancers in motion for the next hour or so. Amazing how much strength and training must go into it.

The only thing that would have been nice was if before the show started - give a little of the history. Also, you can't take photos during the show (for obvious reasons) but would have been neat for them to come back out after so people could take a few photos to remember the experience - but maybe that ruins the mood it sets.

All in all though - a nice activity to plan on while in Istanbul and worth seeing the better show - not the guys at rando restaurants - just not really the same.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank GoGlobalTravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AZ
Level Contributor
247 reviews
153 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 107 helpful votes
“Touristy yet worth it”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 September 2013

An evening of dance of various Turkish tribes from ancient times to 1900. It's it a touristy thing to do with few to no locals? Yes. Is it worth it? Yes. The atmosphere is great because its in an old Turkish bath, the lobby and bar areas have exhibits on the history of dance and Turkish culture. Finally, it's a great show. Good holiday fun.

The neighborhood might look sketchy, but it's safe for tourist. Just treat it like any other city situation. There are a nu,ber of yummy restaurants nearby too.

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank TravelinSuz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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