Bosporus Strait

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Bosporus Strait: Our most recommended tours and activities

Istanbul: Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Entertainment

1. Istanbul: Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Entertainment

Climb aboard a pleasure boat for a luxurious cruise along the Bosphorus Strait, while dining from a 3-course menu of Turkish meze and local drinks. Sail past some of Istanbul's greatest monuments, while watching traditional entertainment along the way. Following a pick-up from your hotel, transfer to the yacht for the start of your journey. Get a welcome cocktail on deck as you begin to sail as far as the Black Sea. Cruise between Europe and Asia, passing under the Bosphorus Bridge and Fatih Sultan Mehmed Bridge. See the summer palaces of the Ottoman sultans, such as Dolmabahçe Palace, Çırağan Palace, and Beylerbeyi Palace. Admire the grand Ottoman fortifications of Rumeli Castle and Anatolian Castle. Soak up some of Istanbul’s legendary nightlife as you pass famous nightclubs, such as Reina and Sortie. Marvel at the waterside mansions and villas that line the European and Asian coasts. As you feast on a meal of typical meze dishes and mains, watch live folk dances from different regions of Turkey. Be seduced by the sensual moves of a belly dancer, and relax to international music by the on-board DJ. Back on dry land, enjoy a free shuttle transfer back to your hotel.

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Istanbul: Turkish Entertainment Bosphorus Dinner Cruise

2. Istanbul: Turkish Entertainment Bosphorus Dinner Cruise

Climb aboard a pleasure boat for a luxury cruise along the Bosphorus Strait. Get a welcome cocktail on arrival and then set sail for the Black Sea passing some of Istanbul's most famous monuments along the way. Cruise between Europe and Asia and pass under the Bosphorus Bridge and Fatih Sultan Mehmed Bridge. See the summer palaces of the Ottoman sultans, including Dolmabahçe Palace and Beylerbeyi Palace. Admire the fortifications of Rumeli Castle and Anatolian Castle, and marvel at the mansions that line both coastlines. Watch live folk dances from the regions of Turkey, be seduced by a belly dancer and relax to international music played by the on-board DJ.

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Istanbul: Bosphorus Cruise with Audio App

3. Istanbul: Bosphorus Cruise with Audio App

Take part in one of the best Bosphorus Cruise in Istanbul and admire the cosmopolitan city from a completely different perspective while enjoying the beautiful views of the Orient and the Occident at the same time. The Bosphorus is 32km long, separates Europe from Asia and connects the Marmara Sea to the Black Sea. Cruise along the Bosphorus between Asia and Europe and discover Istanbul tourist attractions, magnificent palaces, ancient castles, and other historical sites, as well as fine seaside residences and the Bosphorus bridge. Historical places you will see from the distance include Galata Tower, Topkapı Palace, Hagia Sophia, and Blue Mosque. Furthermore, you will have a glance at the spectacular pieces of authentic civic architecture on the European and Asian coast.

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Istanbul: Bosphorus Sunset Cruise on a Luxurious Yacht

4. Istanbul: Bosphorus Sunset Cruise on a Luxurious Yacht

A sunset on the water is an amazing way to end your cruise experience and an equally amazing way to start your evening. Whether it is to impress that special someone with a picture-perfect moment or just to appreciate a great time with great friends, a sunset cruise is something everyone will remember.  Few places in the world are as mesmerizing as Istanbul in the setting sun. Aboard an elegant yacht, drinking traditional Turkish drinks, and nibbling on canapés and fruit from tastefully arranged platters, glide by palaces and minarets as you sail along the Bosphorus. When dusk sets in, a soothing breeze arrives from the Sea of Marmara and the sky over the city puts on a colorful show, tinted with shades of orange and rose. The muezzin calls from a towering minaret. Majestic palaces and villas standstill along the strait’s banks, as if nothing has changed over a millennium. Breathe in the legacy of ancient Byzantium, Constantinople, and mighty Ottoman Empire with each breath of fresh salty air. Kick back and ride gentle waves on the comfort of a yacht. Watch the city and its iconic landmarks pass by, which is the perfect way to unwind after a busy day of sightseeing. The tour starts at Kabatas Pier and ends at Karakoy Pier.

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Istanbul: Dinner Cruise on the Bosphorus

5. Istanbul: Dinner Cruise on the Bosphorus

After departing from your hotel, you will jump into this unforgettable boat excursion up the Bosphorus, the bridge that separates Europe and Asia. Its shores offer a delightful mixture of past and present, grand splendor and simple beauty. During the journey you'll pass magnificent Dolmabahçe Palace as well as Çırağan Palace, refurbished in 1874 by Sultan Abdulaziz and now restored as a grand hotel. Overshadowing Istanbul’s traditional architecture is one of the world’s largest suspension bridges, the Boğaziçi Bridge, linking Europe and Asia. Tour Program Welcome cocktail on deck D.J. Katibim (traditional Turkish melody musical performance) Asuk Masuk (imitation play of little people from the Taseli district of Silifke, performed by 2 male dancers) Belly dancer Henna ceremony Turna folk team Turkish romany dance Meal Menu Cold Starters: Cold and smoked meat plates Selection of fine cheeses Ottoman-style appetizer plate Special sultan spring rolls Exotic medallions Main Dishes: Grilled filled steak or Meatball with rice and garlic or Tornado chateau with mushroom sauce or Grilled spring chicken breast or Filled sea bass pane or Chef's recommendation From the Garden: Seasonal salad Orient house salad Dessert and fruit: Selected Turkish dessert or Seasonal fresh fruits or Fresh fruit salad Drinks Drinks are available for an additional fee Turkish coffee Alcoholic beverages are included if you choose the corresponding option.This option also includes unlimited local drinks including local wines, beers, spirits, and soft drinks. After the cruise you will be dropped off at your hotel.

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Istanbul Bosphorus Sunset Cruise with Wine on a Luxury Yacht

6. Istanbul Bosphorus Sunset Cruise with Wine on a Luxury Yacht

See Istanbul landmarks, hear thousand-year-old stories, and awe at the sunset with snacks and a glass of wine. Avoid the crowds on this safe and luxurious yacht with an experienced captain and crew. Numbers are limited to a maximum of 15 guests, so this will be a semi-private experience to remember. Board from the European side of Istanbul and be welcomed by a licensed guide. They will accompany the tour with fascinating facts about Istanbul's history, and the outstanding sites you will see. Relax as you see famous landmarks like the Dolmabahce Palace, Ortakoy Mosque and the vibrant district of Uskudar. Enjoy the sights of the city's Euoprean and Asians sides you sail the famous Bosphorus Strait. Sit back and relax as you are served traditional Turkish snacks. Take in a famous Bospherous sunset while enjoying fruit and a glass of Turkish wine.

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Highlights of Istanbul: 1 or 2-Day Private Guided Tour

7. Highlights of Istanbul: 1 or 2-Day Private Guided Tour

Day 1 – Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Hipporome, Topkapi Palace, and the Grand Bazaar Explore the highlights of Istanbul on this private full-day walking tour that covers the major attractions, from the Hagia Sophia Museum, to the iconic Blue Mosque, to the bustling maze of the Grand Bazaar, to the obelisk of the Hippodrome of Constantinople. The 8-hour excursion starts with a pick-up from your Istanbul hotel and a walk through the lively streets of Turkey’s largest city to visit the dramatic former basilica of the Hagia Sophia, a great architectural beauty and an important monument during the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires. For many centuries, this was the largest church in the world, and it still boasts the 4th largest dome after St. Paul's in London, St. Peter's in Rome and the Duomo in Florence. Dedicated to the Hagia Sophia  or 'divine wisdom', it is one of the greatest surviving examples of Byzantine architecture. Move on to the Blue Mosque, more officially known as the Sultanahmet Mosque. The mosque’s striking blue tiles give it its more common name and make it one of Istanbul’s most iconic attractions. Located close to Topkapi Palace, Sultanahmet Mosque was considered the Supreme Imperial Mosque in Istanbul. Continue to Topkapi Palace, a relic of the glory days of the great Ottoman Empire. The former palace boasted a population of about 4,000 people at its peak and was home to 25 sultans over a period of 400 years. Located on a promontory overlooking the Golden Horn, it sits in tranquil gardens that provide shade from the blazing heat of the summer. Pop in to the museum to see the gorgeous Iznik tiles and the ornate stateroom of the harem, among other attractions. You will also visit the Hippodrome, the former circus built in 203 AD by the Roman Emperor Septimus Severus. Three monuments from the original building remain, including the Egyptian Obelisk, the Serpentine Column, and the Constantine Column. You will also pause to look at the German Fountain of Wilhelm II, made from 8 marble columns. Your day won’t be complete, however, without a visit to the Grand Bazaar, one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world. With hundreds of small handcraft shops selling everything from handmade carpets to Turkish coffee, the atmosphere is electric, and it's a great place to try out your bargaining skills. Day 2 – Spice Bazaar, Bosphorus cruise, Dolmabahce Palace, Istiklal Street, Taksim The spice bazaar is located in Fatih. It's known as the Egyptian Market because, during the Ottoman period, Egyptian exports were sold there. The Bosphorus is a narrow, navigable strait between Europe and Asia that connects the Black Sea to the Marmara Sea. Rumeli and Anadolu Fortresses are located at the narrowest point of Bosphorus. There are also magnificent Ottoman palaces and mosques along the Bosphorus. Keep an eye out for them! Built in the 19th century, Dolmabahce Palace was the administrative center of the Ottoman Empire and housed some of the last Ottoman Sultans. The palace site was created by filling in the small bay on the Bosphorus. This gave rise to its name, in Turkish, Dolma means 'filled' or 'stuffed,' and bahce means 'garden'. Istiklal Street is brimming with life. There, you'll find a plethora of shops, restaurants, and bars. From there, it is a 2-kilometer walk down to the Tunel Galata Tower area.

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Istanbul: New Year's Party Cruise with Buffet and Drinks

8. Istanbul: New Year's Party Cruise with Buffet and Drinks

Celebrate New Year’s Eve with an unforgettable cruise on the Istanbul Bosphorus. Experience Istanbul at its most romantic. Eat and drink your fill and watch live performances as you drift across the Bosphorus Strait. Be picked up from you hotel and board your boat. Kick off the night with a cocktail, then dance on deck as you enjoy stunning views of palaces, bridges, and mansions that line the water’s edge. Watch performances by traditional dancers and relax over a sumptuous buffet dinner with unlimited drinks. See the stars come out over the city and watch a midnight firework display. Gaze in wonder at Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge which connects Asia to Europe. Dine on traditional Turkish appetizers, spring rolls with cheese, fresh seasonal salad, roasted turkey with rice, mixed fruits, and dessert.

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Istanbul Bosphorus Cruise with Dinner and Entertainment

9. Istanbul Bosphorus Cruise with Dinner and Entertainment

Your 5-hour program begins with a free pick-up at your Istanbul hotel between 19:00 and 20:00. When you board the cruise ship you’ll enjoy a complimentary welcome drink that you can enjoy along with the live music. Relax and get ready to enjoy an evening cruising along the Bosphorus Strait. Your cruise follows a route that passes historical sites, including Ottoman palaces, and stunning bridges illuminated by night. For dinner, you can choose from a fish or meat main course on a menu that features 3 courses. While you enjoy your meal you’ll be entertained by traditional belly dancing, a henna ceremony, a Romany dance, folk dancing, a live DJ, and an asuk-masuk show. You’ll be picked up and transferred back to your hotel, arriving by midnight.

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Istanbul: Golden Horn and Bosphorus Tour with Audio App

10. Istanbul: Golden Horn and Bosphorus Tour with Audio App

After finishing your busy day of sightseeing around Istanbul, you can relax on this 2-hour Golden Horn and Bosphoros cruise. You will meet your guide across from the Hagia Sophia, from where you will go together down to the pier behind the building. From there you will discover the Golden Horn, including the 32-kilometer-long Bosphorus which separates Europe and Asia. You will be able to see Istanbul’s main attractions, including magnificent palaces, ancient castles, and famous hills and parks, as well as spectacular seaside residences from different centuries. All of this sightseeing will of course include your passing under Istanbul's many famous bridges. You will pass by Dolmabahce Palace, Ciragan Palace, Ortaköy Mosque, Bosphorus Bridge, Rumeli Fortress and Beylerbeyi Palace. You will also get to see some historical landmarks from a distance, such as Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, Maiden Tower, and Galata Tower. 

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Other Sightseeing Options in Bosporus Strait

Want to discover all there is to do in Bosporus Strait? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Bosporus Strait

Overall rating

4.2 / 5

based on 4,671 reviews

My guide Borek was excellent! Since I was the only one taking the tour that day he was able to show me so much of the food culture in Istanbul while walking! We had a great tour, through Taksim, the Spice Bazaar in the Old City and also crossed to the Asian side of Istanbul via ferry for lunch! We tried so many foods, and he is very knowledgeable and patient and made sure I got back to my hotel safely! I would recommend this tour to anyone coming to Istanbul! 5 stars! Keep it up!

An amazing event with very talented artists. A suggestion: request a good table. Tolga made sure I got a very good view of it all. Other than the fact that I felt a bit unsafe since COVID is back again and there was absolutely no masking and social distancing, the actual evening was a lot of fun! A definite recommendation to all Istanbul first-time visitors. Should not miss this one!

Outstanding 3 days with Semih as my guide to Istanbul, saw all the major sites, but also lots of places that I probably wouldn't have got to without a guide. Semih's had lots of information on each site, and I came away with a much better understanding of the history of the city. This was the best way to get to learn about the city

The Bosporus cruise was great and very educational. The boat was clean and the pick up was very organized. The speaker guide explained all the places in detail, which I appreciate as a non-local, so it was great and it made me feel like the crew put a lot of emphasis on safety.

Worth the money, everything deserves 5 stars, specially the driver and the food was amazing too.