Turkey’s second-largest city with over 5 million inhabitants, Ankara is first and foremost the country’s political capital. The city is home to the headquarters of the Turkish government, to all central administration services, to many foreign consulates and embassies, and to international institutions. As a result it is an international, outward-looking city, attracting a number of foreign professionals.
To help you decide where to settle in Ankara, here is an overview of the city’s assets, neighbourhoods and general housing conditions.
Getting to know the city
Located in central Anatolia, Ankara used to be an important cultural and commerce centre in ancient times and boasts a rich historical and cultural heritage.
In addition to remnants of Bronze Age civilisations like the Hittites, visible at the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations for example, the historic centre of the city comprises many sites of archeological interest — the Roman theatre, the temple of Augustus, the Roman baths — as well as more recent historical landmarks like the Anitkabir, the mausoleum of Turkey’s founding father Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.
The city is also renowned for its music and arts scene. The Ankara State Opera and Ballet and the concert hall of renowned Bilkent University regularly stage classical music concerts and dance performances by internationally reputed artists.
Ankara is comprised of 25 districts, the most lively and popular of which is likely that of Cankaya. In turn, Cankaya encompasses very different neighbourhoods, offering various advantages and amenities.
Kizilay, the busy and crowded city-centre, is a shopping and entertainment centre revolving around malls and pedestrian streets with countless shops and restaurants.
Notably thanks to the presence of the Bilkent University and of the Middle East Technical University, Ankara is a young city with intense student life and activity. Such neighbourhoods as Kavaklidere and Bahcelievler cater to the needs of the city’s youth and students with popular nightlife venues, restaurants and bars.
On the other hand, calmer residential neighbourhoods like Anittepe, Ayranci, or Mebusevleri offer the perfect setting for family life - unless you can afford one of the splendid villas of the high-standing Mustafa Kemal area.
Prices in Ankara
The price can vary significantly depending on the housing option you chose - you can, for example, elect to share a flat, to rent one, or buy your own home. To learn more about the different types of accommodation solutions available in the country, see our article Accommodation in Turkey.
For property purchase, the prices in Ankara reached over 2,000 Turkish liras per square metre in 2015, up from about 1,750 in 2014 — a 22% rise.
Rent prices however remain relatively affordable in Ankara: you can expect to pay from 700 Turkish liras for a studio and 1,300 for a three-bedroom flat in Cankaya.
Bills (water, electricity, heating, telephone and internet access) are typically not included in the rent.
Ankara neighbourhoods map: www.haritamap.com/sehir/ankara
Apartments for rent: www.sahibinden.com/kiralik/ankara
Apartments for sale: www.sahibinden.com/satilik/ankara
9 Flats: www.9flats.com
Gabino Home: turkey.gabinohome.com
Air Bnb: www.airbnb.com