What you should know before hiring a car in Istanbul
Car hires in Istanbul: practical information
Where to rent a car in Istanbul
Istanbul, Turkey's most populous city, is a mecca for culture and for the senses. Most arrive via flights to Istanbul and picking up a cheap car hire is the easiest from the airport, whether you arrive at Istanbul Atatürk Airport or Sabiha Gökçen International Airport. If you're arriving at Atatürk Airport, you'll be spoiled for choice. There are at least a dozen rental car companies located at the airport.
The best place to find a car hire in Istanbul's city centre is on the European side, in Sultanahmet, the Old City. You'll see that most international car hire companies have offices here, most times inside hotels like the Best Western, Prestige Hotel and Acra Hotel. You do not have to be a guest at the hotel to rent a car.
Driving in Istanbul: parking and other tips
Istanbul traffic can be chaotic, parking is even worse. There is a huge lack of street signs in the city, including signs indicating where you can and cannot park. It's best to find a hotel in Istanbul that offers parking and leave your car there for the day, only using it to take trips out of the city.
There is a huge shortage of parking in Istanbul and oftentimes you'll see the locals parking this way and every way. Most of the time we say, "do as the locals do" but this time we're telling you, do not park as the locals park, that's the easiest way to get your rental towed.
Road trips from Istanbul: what to do, what to see
Kilyos is right on the sea side, the Black Sea that is, just a half-hour drive north of Istanbul on the European side. This village has a host of beaches, a great place to swim and relax in the summer sun.
Ever heard of a living tree museum? Check out the Atatürk Arboretum, a definite stop for nature lovers. It's also on the Black Sea coast and is a prime spot in autumn when the tree leaves change colour.
The Prince's Islands are car-free but you'll need a rent car to reach them. They're a group of islands on the southern coast of the Asian side of Istanbul. The biggest, Büyükada, is easy reached by ferry. The islands are great spots for a day out of the city with a picnic.