EuroTribe

your guide to Europe off the beaten path

4 Power Banks You Can Buy on AliExpress For Less Than $30

Power banks are must haves to keep your gadgets going, especially when traveling but also in everyday life as battery life can be somewhat limited. If you’re planning to charge…

Power banks are must haves to keep your gadgets going, especially when traveling but also in everyday life as battery life can be somewhat limited.

If you’re planning to charge your devices once in a while only there’s no need to break the bank with super expensive models.

In fact, you can even get a strong one for less than $30 on sites like AliExpress.

4 Power Banks You Can Buy on AliExpress For Less Than $30

power banks you can buy on aliexpress for less than $30
Baseus Power Bank 10000mAh with 20W PD Fast Charging

power banks you can buy on aliexpress - 0000mAh Redmi Power Bank
10000mAh Redmi Power Bank

power banks you can buy on aliexpress - Baseus 20000mah Power Bank 22.5W:65W PD

Baseus 20000mah Power Bank 22.5W/65W 

Mini 80000mAh Power Bank Portable Charging

Mini 80000mAh Power Bank Portable Charging 

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A Brief History of Whirling Dervishes (And Where To See Them)

Although Turkey is a vibrant land of impressive cultural heritage, one phenomenon stands out from the rest. It captures the attention of tourists and believers from the entire world, but…

Although Turkey is a vibrant land of impressive cultural heritage, one phenomenon stands out from the rest. It captures the attention of tourists and believers from the entire world, but it’s equally interesting to locals. It’s hypnotic, unusual and, in a way, calming. Yes, we are talking about the whirling dervishes.

Their authentic dance is a mixture of meditation and a religious ritual. In the text below, we will unpack everything, starting with what the word dervish means to this specific ceremony. At the very end, we’ll show you where you can witness it yourself. Continue reading for a captivating story!

Who are they?

To fully appreciate it, you should understand a thing or two about this spectacle. First of all, let’s start by defining the term dervish in the most simple way possible.

A dervish or a darwish is a type of Sufi (Sufi being a person who practices Sufism). Sufism is a mystical form of Islam which focuses on the inward search for God. It accentuates the personal, spiritual connection with God and self-improvement through various rituals and practices.

Although Sufism is present in many Islamic countries, Turkey is known for the Mevlevi Order of Sufis and their whirling. The order was formed in the 13th century and it still exists to this day.

The members, known as whirling dervishes, are all followers of the very famous Persian poet Rumi. It is believed that he created their well-known traditional ritual called Sama or Sema. The proof is that some references to it have been found in his poetry!

The Whirling Dervishes Ritual – Basics

Sama is one of UNESCO’s Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. It includes music, prayer, various stunts, and their signature spinning.

The point of the ritual is reaching spiritual perfection and maturity through hypnotic states and trances. The goal is to abandon your ego completely, disconnect from your earthly possessions and focus solely on love and God. The trances are the culmination of the practice and they can last up to several hours!

via GIPHY

Sometimes, the trances are so deep that the dervishes go through unimaginable physical and mental strain almost effortlessly. It’s not rare that they pierce their cheeks and throats with large needles without feeling a thing!

The ritual is very precise and well planned and that’s why there are always exactly four stages of it. They are packed with symbolism relating to Islam, the power of God and the gift of life.

The Phases of the Ritual

If you decide to witness one of these rituals, you should be introduced to its phases. It will help you notice their switches and really understand their significance.

The first phase is called Naat and Taksim. During this part, a solo singer recites or sings the Noble Eulogy, which praises the Islamic Prophet Muhammad. This part is followed with a solo improvisation played on the ney (a flute heavily used in Middle Eastern music).

During the second segment, Devr-i Veled, dervishes walk counterclockwise around the sheikh (the ritual leader) three times. They then bow to each other and remove their dark cloaks which mark their earthly life.

The third portion is known as The Four Selams. This is where the magic actually happens. Pay attention to the position of their body – it is not accidental! Their right palm is turned upwards, towards God’s blessings, while the left one is facing the Earth, distributing those blessings.

The first Selam describes humans accepting that they are creatures of God. Then, the second one celebrates the rapture of humans when they witness and experience God’s omnipotence.

The third symbolizes complete surrender and submission to God and his power and love.

Finally, during the fourth Selam, the sheikh joins in and the dervishes descend back to the Earth to continue serving.

The fourth and final part of the ceremony is the reading of the Qu’ran and a prayer led by the sheikh.

Why spinning?

There’s a clear answer to that.

If you think about it, the continual movement is the natural state of things in the universe. The planets of the Solar system revolve around the Sun, atoms and their components move without stopping, etc. Therefore, the dervishes chose their whirling and dancing as a crucial part of the ritual. They view it as moving in complete harmony with all dynamic things created by God.

The Clothing and Its Symbolism

The practitioners’ outfits are also a very important part of the Sama. They wear long white robes that end in skirts and they symbolize the ego’s shrouds. Over that, they have dark cloaks which, as you remember, represent the earthly life, which is why they’re removed during the ceremony.

They also wear tall dark hats, which are viewed as tombstones of their egos.

Besides being a religious ritual, the whirling dervishes show is a very popular tourist attraction. Witnessing it is an entertaining, mind-blowing experience, but remember: be respectful and never applaud during the ceremony!

Whirling Dervishes Istanbul

Now that we’ve explored this fascinating practice, here are some suggestions on where you can enjoy it. Istanbul is one of the best places on Earth to see whirling dervishes and here are the exact places where you can do that.

Galata Mevlevihanesi

This is one of the most popular spots for whirling dervishes ceremonies. You can enjoy the show each Sunday at 5pm, but you can’t buy tickets before Saturday. Therefore, there’s a chance you won’t be able to get in. If you do, though, you will be in awe of their performance!

Address: Şahkulu Mah. Galip Dede Caddesi No: 15 Tünel PK:34420 Beyoğlu/İstanbul

Hodjapasha Cultural Center

In case you miss the Sunday show, the Hodjapasha Cultural Center has them each Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday at 7pm. You can also visit one of their exhibitions dedicated to whirling dervishes.

Address: Ankara Caddesi Hocapaşa Hamamı Sok No: 3.B;
Sirkeci/İstanbul

Yenikapi Mevlevi Lodge

If you’re on a budget, this is one of the places where the entrance is free of charge! The rituals are held on the first and the third Thursday of the month, as well as the last Friday. However, you must call them in advance to make a reservation. You can ask your hotel or a host do it for you.

Address: Merkezefendi Mah. Fatih Sultan Mehmet Üniversite Kampüsü, 34015 Zeytinburnu/İstanbul

If you’re ready to explore more of Turkey, here are five must have adventures.

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The Best of Icelandic Cuisine: 15+ Dishes You Must Try

Iceland, “the land of fire and ice”, is famous for its many natural beauties. Most tourists visit so they could see its stunning volcanoes and lagoons from which you can…

Iceland, “the land of fire and ice”, is famous for its many natural beauties. Most tourists visit so they could see its stunning volcanoes and lagoons from which you can see the Aurora Borealis. Along with the untouched nature, Iceland’s greatest treasures are its friendly, warm people and their hospitality.

However, Icelandic cuisine is not as well known as some others in Europe. That’s why many foreigners have a problem when it comes to picking what to eat once they’re in Iceland. If you’d like to explore the most famous dishes and get to know the eating habits of Icelanders, continue reading!

Although fish and other seafood are very common ingredients, Icelandic cuisine is much more diverse. It’s also based on lamb, dairy and delicious mouth-watering pastries and bread.

Here’s an overview of the things that the majority of Icelanders enjoy eating:

Icelandic Breakfast

Many Icelanders have the habit of eating breakfast at home. Although it keeps becoming more common to grab something on the go, they prefer preparing breakfast in their own kitchens.

One of the most common dishes is hafragrautur. The more simple and well-known translation would be – oatmeal! Icelanders usually sprinkle it with brown sugar and raisins and prepare it with fresh milk.

Another frequent option is skyr, a traditional dairy product. Although it has the consistency and appearance of Greek yogurt, technically, it is considered cheese. It can be eaten plain, but also with fruit, sugar or mixed into oatmeal. It’s a must!

You should know that Iceland is full of amazing bakeries that prepare fresh goods in the early morning hours. Some of the most famous dishes are kleina (donut-like pastry), fresh sourdough bread and sandwiches with smoked salmon or herring.

Iceland is famous for its very high consumption of coffee, so you should definitely enjoy a cup while you’re here. What better time than breakfast? If you’re not a coffee drinker, try the Icelandic moss tea!

Icelandic Lunch

Lunch is often served in the form of smörgåsbord – a Scandinavian buffet that serves both hot and cold dishes. Many restaurants offer this buffet, although you can also order à la carte.

Cold fish dishes are always available on the buffet, such as harðfiskur (wind-dried fish) and hákarl (fermented Greenland shark). These can also be consumed as snacks, between meals.

Be careful with the fermented shark – it has a strong taste that won’t appeal to everyone. Some absolutely love it and some hate it. The famous chef Anthony Bourdain called it “the worst thing he had ever tried”.

Icelanders often eat warm, hearty soups for lunch, as well. The traditional ones are the fish soup (fiskisúpa), meat soup (kjötsúpa) and langoustine soup (humarsúpa). You’ll find them in every restaurant and they are often the cheapest meals on the menu.

If you’re on the go, grab a hot dog. Although they’re not originally a product of Icelandic cuisine, they are incredibly delicious here. The key is in the toppings, which include crunchy fried onions and brown mustard.

Another great Icelandic version of a popular foreign specialty is fish and chips. The locally caught fish (usually cod, salmon or haddock) is fresh and full of flavor. Also, some of the dips are made with the Icelandic skyr, which gives it a unique taste.

Icelandic Dinner

Just like in many western countries, dinner is the main meal of the day for Icelanders. Icelandic cuisine offers a variety of authentic specialties that you must taste at least once while you’re there!

The star of Icelandic cuisine, besides seafood, is the lamb. The Icelandic sheep is a local breed that is grass fed and not given any hormones, which guarantees great quality meat. The lamb is usually slow cooked or roasted, although it can be made into a stew as well.

They also eat some parts of the sheep that aren’t commonly eaten, like the head. It is a great delicacy in Iceland, especially when it’s smoked. If you want to try some of the more controversial specialties you can start with this one.

When it comes to seafood, there are different ways to prepare it. It is either boiled, grilled or fried. You should try the freshwater trout (silungur), Arctic char (bleikja) and monkfish (skötuselur), as well as shrimp (rækja) and blue mussels (kræklingur). All are beyond delicious!

Icelandic Desserts

Although Icelandic cuisine features rather healthy food, Icelanders have quite of a sweet tooth! They have many traditional desserts, some similar to other Scandinavian sweets, but with a unique twist.

Snúður is essentially a cinnamon bun topped with melted chocolate or caramel. Eat it alone or with a cup of coffee, as true Icelanders would!

Pönnukökur and rúgbrauðsís are some of the most famous desserts in Iceland. Pönnukökur are Icelandic pancakes topped with sugar, similar to French crepes. On the other hand, our recommendation is rúgbrauðsís – rye bread ice cream, available only in Cafe Loki in Reykjavik!

Vegetarian Food in Iceland

Although it might seem like fish and meat are impossible to avoid, that’s not the case. There are plenty of vegetarian options that are just as delicious and filling.

For starters, skyr should be on your list, whether you’re vegetarian or not. You can customize it by adding different toppings, sweet or savory, or by adding it to salads or veggie dishes. It’s very refreshing and quite healthy.

Many restaurants have vegetarian and vegan menus. Vegetables can be rather expensive in supermarkets, so sometimes eating out won’t cost much more than preparing veggies at home.

Make sure you take advantage of the country’s amazing whole wheat bread. It’s vegan and incredibly delicious.

Icelandic Food Recipes

If you’re going through post-travel nostalgia, you should consider making some Icelandic cuisine gems in your own kitchen! Except for some exotic ingredients, you can find most of them in large grocery stores pretty much anywhere. Have fun recreating the most authentic food from this beautiful country.

Click here for recipes of some of the most delicious Icelandic specialties.

 

 

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6 Less-Known And Alternative Things To Do In Prague

The city of Prague is one of Europe’s most beautiful destinations, famous for its lovely architecture, world-class museums, and eclectic cuisine. In this post, we highlight some less-known and alternative…

The city of Prague is one of Europe’s most beautiful destinations, famous for its lovely architecture, world-class museums, and eclectic cuisine. In this post, we highlight some less-known and alternative things to do in Prague.

6 Less-Known And Alternative Things To Do In Prague

The Museum of Alchemists and Magicians of Old Prague

This museum is located near the Prague Castle and it’s where the alchemist Edward Kelley lived. The exhibition is dedicated to a number of alchemists including Rudolf II ( known as the “Mad Alchemist”), the magician Žit and others.

The exhibition consists of a magical room of Faust’s house which you can walk through, the spiral staircase from the 16th century which was built by Kelley, and an authentic laboratory.

You’ll also find plenty of information about the alchemy in general. Bring your camera with you and capture this unusual and eclectic tourist attraction.

Go On a Culinary Tour

less-known and alternative things to do in prague

One of the best experiences to have when traveling is trying new food. A unique way to sample delicious Czech food is by going on a culinary tour in Prague. A culinary tour is an awesome way to do something new, enjoy a portion of great food, and at the same time learn more about the culture of that place. You’ll also get a good introduction of many things you can eat while you’re in the city.

Some famous foods you can try in Prague include chimney cake, gingerbread, sauerkraut soup, kulajda, goulash, and many others.

Idiom Installation

Bibliophiles will appreciate seeing this installation made by Matej Kren. A tower of books that appears to go on forever. What more can you ask for?

Originally, this installation appeared in 1995 for the first time, during the Sao Paolo International Biennial, but it found its permanent home at the Prague Municipal Library in 1998.

Matej Kren has done another fantastic book-themed installation called the ‘Gravity Mixer’.

Franz Kafka’s Head and the Franz Kafka Museum

The head of Franz Kafka is an outdoor sculpture done by David Cerny. It’s made of 42 rotating panels and is 11 meters tall. These panels form the face of this world famous Prague-born writer. The sculpture depicts Kafka’s tortured personality and self-doubt.

You’ll find this statue just next to the Quadrio business center.

David Cerny has also done another complementary state called Metalmorphosis which is located in the North Carolina, USA.

Those who have read the works of Franz Kafka should also visit his museum which was open in the summer of 2005 and since then became one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city.

Taste Beer At The Alternative Bars

Trying beer when in Prague is not really an alternative thing to do. It’s essential. After all the city is one of the best destinations for beer lovers. However, you can enjoy world-famous Czech beer at some of the city’s alternative venues.

Here’s a list of some great ones:

  • Cross Club
  • Pivovarsky Klub
  • Black Angel’s Bar
  • Riegrovy Sady Beer Garden
  • Letna Beer Garden
  • Vinohradsky Pivovar

See The Spanish Synagogue

The Spanish Synagogue in Prague is a beautiful piece of architecture that you should see. The building was inspired by Alhambra which explains its exotic interior style. Nowadays, the synagogue belongs to the Prague’s Jewish Museum. It houses different cultural exhibitions and concerts of classical and sacred music.

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Europe’s Feminist Friendly Cities Worth a Visit

The travel businesses that support women around the world and feminist travel trends, in general, are quite often missing in the mainstream travel publications.  The travel industry is still far…

The travel businesses that support women around the world and feminist travel trends, in general, are quite often missing in the mainstream travel publications. 

The travel industry is still far behind when it comes to catering to women’s needs, despite their undeniable presence in travel. 

In this post, we’ve highlighted 4 European feminist friendly cities with spots and attractions that have either played an important historical role or that are helping advance women’s rights in current times. 

Feminist Friendly Cities in Europe Worth a Visit

London

Florence Nightingale Museum 

Florence Nightingale was the founder of modern nursing who truly changed the world. A museum dedicated to this heroine was opened in 1989 and today it represents a key part of London’s feminist heritage offer. 

Being born in a wealthy family, Florence had to rebel against the norm and the trivial lives that most upper-class women led. After she expressed a desire to become a nurse, Florence’s parents were horrified. After nine years of struggle, they reluctantly allowed her to enroll as a student in Germany. 

Florence became famous for her pioneering nursing work during the Crimean War, when she organized a group of thirty-eight nurses in Scutari. 

She has an important role in English feminism, thanks to her essay ‘Cassandra’ in which she passionately protested the learned helplessness of women. 

A rejection of intellectual inactivity is perhaps the most known theme of Florence’s life. 

To find all about her achievements visit the museum that is located on 2 Lambeth Palace Road or attend a walking tour called ‘Florence’s London’ that explores her life through the places where she lived and worked. 

Address: 2 Lambeth Palace Road
Admission: £8

The Feminist Library 

This year, the Feminist Library in London celebrated 44 years of archiving and activism. The library is 100 percent run by volunteers. The vast collection of feminist books places a particular emphasis on second-wave material, from the late 1960s to the 1990s. It’s a fantastic place to stock up on some new books over a cup of coffee.  

Address: 5 Westminster Bridge Road

Velvet Underground Tattoo 

Velvet Underground is London’s first female-only staffed studio. It was founded by Roxy Velvet. The studio is among the few in London to be awarded 4/4 by the Tattoo Hygiene Rating Scheme. 

Each artist in the studio has its distinctive style. There’s no copying and no rush as everything functions by an appointment. The studio offers 30 minutes free consultation. 

If you ever wanted to get inked in the British capital, what better place than Velvet, whose artists are experts in crafting bespoke designs. 

What better ink than an empowered one! 

Address: 103 Whitecross St

Zagreb 

Centre for Women’s Studies 

City’s feminist past is marked by the presence of first-wave feminist, female journalist and romance writer Marija Jurić Zagorka.

Her statue is located near the Bloody Bridge which she often described in her novels. 

Centre for Women’s Studies is located in her apartment where visitors can see various personal items, complete oeuvre, and extensive feminist library. 

Address: Dolac 8 

Passage of Sisters Baković 

Other important historical figures are sisters Baković who bravely resisted the fascists and were proclaimed Yugoslav national heroes.

A passage dedicated to them is actually an alley that runs between Masarykova and Warsaw Street in Zagreb. 

Address: Masarykova/Warsaw Street 

Autonomous Cultural Center – Attack

Formerly an industrial building, Attack was occupied by punks and activists in the late 1990s. New inhabitants organized various protests and happenings, and Attack became home of pioneering all-female performance troupes and bands. 

Exhibitions, book fairs, and occasional free lunches can still be found there. Attack hosts interesting clubbing events such as queer party Zbeletron.

Address: Pierottijeva 11

Craft-Beer Spots 

There has been an increase in women-owned businesses during the last few years. Few of them make craft beer such as Brlog Brewery, which is one of the most established ones. 

Their famous beer “The Blondie” is sold in bars all over the city. Juta/Kota Bar is a charming place in the city center with a fine selection of drinks and occasional theme parties. (Address: Medulićeva 20) 

The other great ones are Botaničar (Address: Trg Marka Marulića 6) and The Beertija (Address: Pavla Hatza 16). 

Vienna 

Stadthalle Hotel 

If you have ever wanted to stay at a female-owned, environmentally-friendly hotel, Stadthalle is your go-to place. 

The majority of the staff is female and the owner – Michaela Reitterer – employs people from different backgrounds. 

This is the first hotel in the Austrian capital with the zero-energy balance. The guests are encouraged to save energy and to participate in the Zero Waste project

Best of all? Stadthalle hotel offers equal pay for the same job. 

Address: Hackengasse 20 

Frauen-Werk-Stadt 

Frauen-Werk-Stadt (Women- Work-City) I & II are subsidized social housing complexes in Vienna’s 10th and 21st districts. Both of them are designed by female architects and are focused on the everyday needs of women. 

Gender mainstreaming has been in place in Vienna since the early 1990s. The city’s administrators support laws and regulations that benefit men and women equally. This is most visible in the areas of education, healthcare, and urban planning. 

Address: Frauen-Werk-Stadt I – Donaufelder Straße 95-97; Frauen-Werk-Stadt II – Troststraße 73-75 

Women of Vienna Community 

24 women from all over the world and different backgrounds came together to create a community whose only goal was – make Vienna feel like home. 

Their aim is to act as a support system and to provide the space for women to lead the way in making change. 

This community has nearly 20,000 women in their Facebook group

There’s a range of subgroups too – from literature and LGBTQ+ to culture and housing. 

Copenhagen 

Mariam Mosque 

Mariam Mosque is Europe’s first women’s mosque that challenges patriarchal interpretations of the Quran. It was established in 2016 and besides religious practice, it offers spiritual care and support through abortions, divorce and more.

The Friday prayer is reserved for women only but other than that, the mosque welcomes anyone. Currently, there is a team of 3 female imamahs. 

Sherin Khankan is controversial – not just as a female imam but also as a person who called for the reformation of Islam with a feminist agenda. The mosque’s vision is to implement 9 principles of Muslim reform

Address: Købmagergade 43, 1st floor

Warehouse9 

This small art gallery and performance space is located in the Brown Meat Packing District. Warehouse9 organizes a wide range of exhibitions, events, and concerts throughout the year. Most of them focus on queer and feminist themes. 

If you’re looking for an edgy cultural experience while in the Danish capital, this is the place to be.

Address: Halmtorvet 11C

Ved Siden Af Club

This is one of Copenhagen’s best underground clubs with high-quality music and a fantastic sound system. 

No phones are allowed on the dancefloor and the club has a safe space policy – anyone visiting the club regardless of sexuality, gender, and the outfit should feel safe and inclusive. 

Ved Siden Af is known for hosting International Women’s Day parties with an all-female DJ night.

Address: Vesterbrogade 2B  

Cafe Cadeau 

Cafe Cadeau is run by a bunch of enthusiastic and hard-working volunteers from different backgrounds. Their goal is to create a community by embracing different cultures. 

The cafe organizes a wide range of cultural events – from art and music to international-themed food evenings (yum!). 

Come for the great experience and sample some great dishes in a pleasant and friendly atmosphere. You’ll find plenty of vegan options too.

Address: H.C. Oersteds Vej 28

These top 10 free attractions in Copenhagen are also worth checking out.

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Portable Blenders You Can Get Under 30 Dollars on AliExpress

Portable blenders are exactly what they sound like – blenders that you can easily take everywhere with you. Some of them need to be plugged in to charge, but there…

Portable blenders are exactly what they sound like – blenders that you can easily take everywhere with you. Some of them need to be plugged in to charge, but there are also types that are powered by removable batteries.

Another thing that sets them apart from regular blenders is that they’re smaller in size and weight. They can even fit into the water bottle compartment of your backpack! Depending on the model, some can even be held in the cup holder of your car. All of them are very light and easy to transport.

Portable blenders usually hold from 10 to 14 ounces, which is perfectly enough to feed one person. However, some models hold up to 18. This means you could make a bigger portion of your favorite smoothie or even make two servings.

They are ideal for travelling, picnics and spending time in nature in general. However, the fact that they’re smaller doesn’t mean that they aren’t as powerful – some can even crush ice cubes! This could be great for your favorite beverages, such as cocktails or lemonades.

These devices are especially popular among moms on the go. It’s incredibly easy to make some baby food quickly and with fresh ingredients. Some portable blenders have advanced settings, so that you can blend hot food and reach the perfect consistency easily.

Regular blenders can be very pricey. If you’re on a budget or you simply live alone and don’t need a full-sized one, portable blenders are a good option. Most of the time they’re significantly cheaper and some even cost around twenty to thirty dollars!

They are one of the best novelties in the world of healthy living. If you want to keep up with your good habits at all times, you might want to consider getting one.

Portable Blenders You Can Buy Under 30 Dollars

 

350ml Portable Electric Juicer Electric USB Rechargeable

300W Portable Personal Mini Food Blender Mixer

380ml Portable juicer and blender for travel use

TINTON LIFE Portable Electric Juicer & Blender

WXB portable blender

Mini Portable Electric Fruit Juicer

You can also check our selection of 50 awesome travel products you can get on AliExpress for less than $20.

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