Explore the most important Byzantine and Ottoman monuments in the world on this full-day tour of Istanbul. See the Hagia Sophia museum and the iconic Blue Mosque, built in the 17th-Century and notable for its beautiful blue tiles and 6 minarets.
What to Expect
This full-day private tour of Istanbul takes you to all the major sights of the Byzantine and Ottoman eras. Following a hotel or cruise ship pick-up, you will start at the legendary Hagia Sophia, the oldest building in Istanbul, and for more than 1,000 years the largest cathedral in the world.
Continue to the iconic Blue Mosque, one of the most prominent landmarks in the city when viewed from the Sea of Marmara and Bosphorus. Gaze at its beautiful domes and semi domes, its courtyards and its 6 slender minarets.
Move on to the Hippodrome and the Obelisks, located on the square outside the Blue Mosque. The site of the former circus of the Byzantine Empire, it was used for horse and chariot racing and was excavated in the 1950s.
You will visit the Egyptian Obelisk, the Serpentine Column, the German Fountain, and Topkapı Palace, the former imperial residence of the Ottoman rulers. 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.
Go into the museum to see the Iznik tiles, the ornate stateroom of the harem, the sacred Islamic relics, Chinese porcelains, and many other artifacts.
Explore the 16th-Century Süleymaniye Mosque, the largest mosque in Istanbul and a masterpiece of Sinan, the greatest of all Ottoman architects..
End your tour at the vibrant Grand Bazaar, the oldest and the largest covered market place in the world. Boasting nearly 4,000 shops, wander the jumble of streets looking for souvenir gifts among the jewelry, carpets, gold trinkets and other goods.
- Entrance tickets
- Transportation in a Mercedes van
Know Before You Go
• Hagia Sophia is closed on Monday and replaced by the Basilica Cistern
• Topkapi Palace is closed on Tuesday and replaced by the Turkish Islamic Art Museum