One of the most unique destinations in the world, Istanbul is a city that straddles the continents of Europe and Asia, giving it an eclectic blend of culture and tradition.
With an Avis car hired from Taksim in Istanbul, you’re free to explore this fascinating city at your own pace.
Plan your journey from Taksim Istanbul
Set on the European side of the city, Taksim is the heartland of tourism in Istanbul. When you collect your hire car from the Avis pick-up point, you’ll have easy access to the major tourist attractions, eateries and nightlife Istanbul is renowned for.
Istanbul is an ancient city full of historical sites, mostly from the Ottoman and Byzantine periods. Hagia Sophia should be your first port of call. This incredible Roman construction dates back to the 6th century and has functioned as both a church and a mosque. Today it exists as a museum chaptering Istanbul’s history. Call in at the Blue Mosque – the city’s most photographed building. Dating back to the early 17th century, this huge attraction has six minarets, a number of domes and is adorned with blue İznik tiles, which give the mosque its name.
The Museum of Innocence is another top attraction and well worth visiting. Created by Nobel Prize-winning novelist Orhan Pamuk, this incredible museum houses displays of quirky objects from the mid-to-late 20th century, giving insight into local life. It’s located in a 19th-century timber house.
Drive over to the Asian side of the city and you’ll immediately notice a change in atmosphere. This more relaxed and tranquil region is ideal for shopping and dining. Bagdat Avenue is the principal street and where a wealth of fashion boutiques, charming cafes and acclaimed restaurants can be found. Here you can purchase typical Turkish apparel before treating yourself to a Turkish ice cream on the street.
Beyond Taksim Istanbul
With a car hired from Avis in Taksim, it’s possible to reach a wealth of fascinating Turkish sights beyond the city.
This coastal city, surrounded by the Maramara Sea on one side and sunflower fields on the other, is just under a two-hour drive from Istanbul. The Tekirdağ Archaeology and Ethnography Museum is its star attraction, featuring comprehensive displays of ancient artefacts, the oldest of which date back to 4500 BC. The mummified body of a Thracian king is one of the stranger items exhibited here. The local culinary specialty is meatballs, so be sure to sample some before you leave. Marmara Ereğlisi
The small coastal town of Marmara Ereğlisi sits 90 minutes west of Istanbul. There are many Roman ruins here, including the old town walls, an amphitheatre and even the remains of a mansion that belonged to Constantine. Here you will also discover conical hills – made by the Thracians before the Greeks and Romans arrived. Scattered around the city, these grassy hills were built as mausoleums for Thracian kings.
An Avis car hired from Taksim in Istanbul gives you total freedom to explore the rich history and culture this city and its surroundings are famed for. All you have to do is sit back and enjoy the drive.