Roughly translated, kaleiçi means 'inside the castle'. In Edirne it is used to describe the old streets to the south of Talat Paşa Caddesi and west of Saraçlar Caddesi. Dating from the medieval period, this is the heart of the old city and it retains a number of ornately decorated timber houses dating from the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries, as well as a couple of handsome stone civic buildings.

When exploring, look out for the Kırkpınar Evi opposite Polis Parkı (Police Park). Its collection of memorabilia associated with oil wrestling is drab, but the building itself is a good example of Edirne's traditional houses. Some of these have undergone recent restoration (the Mihran Hanım Konağı in Gazipaşa Caddesi is a good example), but many are in a sad state of disrepair. Other interesting buildings include the police station in Maarif Caddesi and the recently restored Great Synagogue on Maarif Caddesi, which was built in 1906 and has now been reopened to the public.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Edirne attractions

1. Kırkpınar Evi

0.08 MILES

A dusty shrine to the sport of oil wrestling, the museum in this 19th-century timber house features press clippings, photographs and a few naff mannequins…

2. Grand Synagogue of Edirne

0.26 MILES

Reopened in 2016 after a 36-year closure and a five-year US$2.5 million restoration project, Edirne's Grand Synagogue is the sole reminder of when a…

3. Üç Şerefeli Mosque

0.26 MILES

Edirne's merkez (town centre) is visually dominated by this mosque, which was built by order of Sultan Murat II between 1437 and 1447 and has four…

4. Old Mosque

0.32 MILES

Though not as prominent on Edirne's skyline as the Selimiye and Üç Şerefeli mosques, the Eski (Old) Mosque is an important landmark in the city and has a…

6. Selimiye Foundation Museum


This museum is housed in a handsome building in the Selimye Mosque's külliye (mosque complex; in a medrese in the southeastern corner of the courtyard)…

7. Selimiye Mosque

0.52 MILES

Designed by Ottoman architect Mimar Koca Sinan (1497–1588), whose best-known works adorn İstanbul's skyline, this exquisite World Heritage–listed mosque…

8. Edirne Turkish & Islamic Art Museum

0.55 MILES

The small rooms of the elegant darül Hadis (Hadith school) in the northeastern corner of the Selimiye Mosque's courtyard house an eclectic collection of…