The Museum of Innocence is both a place and a book, created simultaneously by Orhan Pamuk. The book was published a few years before the museum opened, and it is in no way required to read it before visiting the museum but don't be surprised if you're inspired to do so afterwards. The story behind the book is one of a kind of obsessive love, but seeing a physical manifestation of it reminds you of what else the book is about: Istanbul itself. The book gives an intimate glimpse into the city's past, specifically the cultural shift (westernization/modernization) that took place in the 70's.
There are numbered displays filled with everyday objects representing every chapter in the book. The effort put into the details is astounding, as are the feelings you take away from the whole experience. A few sentiments that stuck with us after visiting:
The consolation of objects -- this is the idea behind the whole museum (and book). While we might not hang on to every single item for sentimental reasons, who hasn't been consoled by an object every now and then?
This quote: "happiness means being close to the one you love, that's all." That's all.