Tekirdağ, located on Edirne-İstanbul route, became an important summer resort during the Ottoman period. There are many must-see architectural attractions in Tekirdağ city centre, especially the historical Ottoman houses and the Rüstempaşa Complex (Rüstempaşa Külliyesi) which bears Mimar Sinan’s signature.
The museums in Tekirdağ are also important in terms of presenting the historical and cultural riches of the city to its visitors.
Traditional Houses in Tekirdağ
Some of the 18th and 19th century houses in Tekirdağ have survived the onslaught of urbanisation. Some of them are wooden houses, while others are built out of stone or bricks in the Mediterranean style. The hill between the bus station and the town centre, overlooking the sea, is a good place to see these traditional houses. The streets overlooking the sea between Archaeology and Ethnography Museum (Arkeoloji ve Etnografya Müzesi) and Rakoczi Museum (Rakoczi Müzesi) are also a good area to view these old houses.
The 3-storey traditional Ottoman house which was home to Hungarian People’s Liberation Hero Ferenc Rakoczi II from 1720 to 1735 and was restored by the Hungarian government to be made into a museum. The museum’s collection comprises, Rakoczi's statue, documents about his life, as well as items used in that period. On the second floor, there are oil paintings of those who participated in the Hungarian independence war with Rakoczi.
Tekirdağ Archaeology and Ethnography Museum
The museum building was initially constructed as the Governor’s Mansion during the early republican period. The four sectioned museum includes stone works hall, archaeological artefacts’ hall, ethnographic artefacts’ hall and the old Tekirdağ room. The museum exhibits cultural heritage dating back to 4500 BCE. The collection includes architectural pieces from the Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine periods, sarcophagi, stelae, altars, milestones. Inscriptions from the Ottoman period, fountains and fountain mirrors and tombstones are on display in the large garden of the museum.
Rüstempaşa Mosque and its Complex
The Islamic social complex consisted of a mosque, medrese, bedesten (covered bazaar), caravanserai, Turkish bath, imaret and library. Today, the complex’s mosque, hamam, bedesten, medrese and library are still standing. It was built in 1554 under Sadrazam Damat Rüstem Paşa and it bears Mimar Sinan’s signature. The mosque is made of cut limestone and the single balcony minaret is located on its right. The entrance door made out of walnut tree with inlayed ivory. The door wings and window sash are decorated with geometric motifs. The round, 5-column marble fountain in the garden was added under the reign of Abdülmecit.
Namık Kemal House
The museum was founded in memory of Turkish writer, journalist and poet Namık Kemal not far from where he was born in Tekirdağ in 1840. The building is a replica of an old Tekirdağ house. Namık Kemal House exhibits the works of Namık Kemal as well as works written on him.
The Museum of Old Tekirdağ Photographs
The family mansion that belonged to Mavridis Family before the exchange of populations in 1922, was converted into a museum and has, today, a 150-year-old collection of more than 1500 Tekirdağ photographs owned by Dimitrios Mavridis.
İbrahim Balaban Museum
The museum exhibits the paintings and personal documents of painter İbrahim Balaban donated to Süleymanpaşa Municipality.
Music Technologies Museum
The museum presents a collection of musical instruments as well as tools used in the production of musical instruments.