Hiring a car from Istanbul airport

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Hiring a car from Istanbul airport

Pick up your hire car in Istanbul and enjoy a stylish Turkish delight of a city.

60-second guide to Istanbul airport

in its own head

"We're now the hippest city on the planet - and if you don't believe us, read Vogue or Wallpaper. Hip bars, boutique hotels, stylish restaurants... We've got 'em all. And let's not even begin on our evocative history!"

but more realistically

Europe's largest city is indeed a buzzing, hip metropolis full of stylish locals and a huge array of bars, clubs and restaurants. But it's still a city of historically significant buildings and architectural wonders.

the vibe

If there's one action that sums up Istanbul, it's pulling up a chair in the Grand Bazaar and watching the world while puffing on a herbal fruit hooka and drinking a Turkish tea.

the natives

The locals are an enterprising bunch and pretty sharp to boot - try haggling with a market stall holder to see them in action.

the weather

In summer, Istanbul can get outrageously hot - up to 40 degrees on some days. In winter, there's often lots of snow.

the local speciality

Authentic Turkish delight is very different to the chocolate-covered bars you get in the UK. The best stuff is bought fresh from one of the many stores in the city.

the celebrity

Nese Erberk had men all over the continent drooling when she was named Miss Europe 1984.

did you know?

Istanbul is the world's third largest city after Mumbai and Karachi.

they say

"If one had but a single glance to give to the world, one should gaze on Istanbul." - French poet Alphonse de Lamartine

5 to see in town...

1. Hagia Sophia

The vast mosque was the largest enclosed space on the face of the planet for nearly 1,000 years. The Byzantine building houses acres of mosaic surfaces and has some fascinating stories attached to it.

where to park?

There is a public car parking area by the entrance of the mosque but if this is full, you can use the Yeni Konak Garaji in Piyerloti.

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2. Topkapi Palace

The home of the Ottoman Sultans between 1465 and 1853 is another incredibly ornate Byzantine structure. You could quite easily while a day away marveling at its elaborate artwork.

where to park?

You can use either the Yeni Konak Garaji in Plyerloti, Kilicliglu Otopark in Nobethanec or the Zafer Otopark in Nobethane C Darussade.

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3. The Blue Mosque

Unsurprisingly, this mosque, built under the reign of Sultan Ahmed I in the 1600s, is predominantly lined with blue tiles. Rumour has it the Sultan popped down to help the builders on occasion but died within months of its completion.

where to park?

There is a free on-site parking area. If this is full, use the Hagia Sophia car park.

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4. Suleymaniye Bath

A visit to Istanbul wouldn't be complete without a Turkish Bath, or a Hamam, as the locals say. This one is a mixed bath, so the family can all enjoy it together.

where to park?

There are two car parks in Suleymaniye: Dindar Otopark in Fetva Yks Nazir Izzettlefendi S or the Fan Ticaret car park in Fetva Yks Nazirizzet Efendi S.

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5. Galata Tower

You'd be hard-pushed to miss this huge, cylindrical tower which dominates the skyline in the Galata side of the city. If you manage to get to the top, you'll be rewarded with a stunning vista.

where to park?

The nearest car park is the Istanbul Otopark in Karabas Dereboyu S.

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and 4 to drive to...

1. Sile

This costal town is famous for its fabric and its lighthouse, but arguably the best things about it are its long beaches and fish restaurants.

how to get there?

Cross Fatih Bridge and take the E80. It should take about one hour.

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2. Kilyos

Another beach resort, the Kilyos locals like to celebrate summer with plenty of open-air festivals and beach parties.

how to get there?

Kilyos is approximately 22 miles from Istanbul. Follow the road north out of Istanbul, and you will pass through the Sariyer district and the Belgrade forest.

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3. Kemerburgaz

There's plenty to do in this picturesque town - try your hand at horse-riding, golf or hunting, or just have a dip in the sea.

how to get there?

Head north of Istanbul on the Istanbul Cevre Yolu road, until you join the Hardou-okmeydan Bagrantisi road, continue towards Nurtepe and Mimarsinan and then Kermerburgaz.

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4. Polonezkoy

This small village on the Asian side of Istanbul was founded by Polish settlers at the end of the 19th century. The cemetery makes for an interesting visit.

how to get there?

Take the E80 to Sile, then follow signs for Polonezkoy. It takes approximately 50 minutes from there.

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