Duration: 7 hours
Tour starting point: Hotel or Cruise Port
Tour ending point: Hotel or Cruise Port
Includes: Officially licensed tour guide, private tour
Excludes: Entrance tickets, lunch, drinks, transportation (unless option booked), gratitudes ( recommended)
Sights to see:
Day 1 - Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Hippodrome, Basilica Cistern, Topkapi Palace, Grand Bazaar
Day 2 - Spice Market, Bosphorus Cruise, Dolmabahce Palace, Taksim Square, Istiklal Street
Day 3 - Suleymaniye Mosque, Chora Church, Fener and Balat Districts, Pierre Lotti Panoramic Hill
Professional Local Guide
Meet your tour guide in your hotel or cruise port and start the tour with the highlights of Istanbul;
Hagia Sophia; Built in the 6th century by the Emperor Justinian, played a very important role in the Christian and Islamic World. After the Ottoman conquest the bells, altar, iconostasis, and sacrificial vessels were removed, and many of the mosaics were eventually plastered over to convert the church into a mosque.
Hippodrome; where the chariot races were held in the Roman Empire times.
Basilica Cistern is a subterranean wonder and one of the greatest of Istanbul’s surviving Byzantine sites, in fact a former water storage chamber.
Blue Mosque; Built in the early 1600s for Sultan Ahmet I, Blue Mosque is truly a magnificent masterpiece of architecture with amazingly delicate proportions for a building of such massive scale.
Grand Bazaar; One of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world with over 4,000 shops.
Topkapi Palace; More than just an Imperial Residence of Ottoman Sultans, it was the seat of the Supreme Executive and Judiciary Council for almost 400 years long. Topkapi Palace is a great monument of Oriental architecture.
Spice Market is a colorful indoor bazaar and has lots of shops offering a variety of spices, purses, flavored teas, Turkish delight, nuts, as well as ceramics and small souvenirs.
Take the public ferry for Bosphorus Cruise to see both Istanbul’s European and Asian sides, Galata Tower, Dolmabahce Palace, the Rumelian Fortress, old Ottoman villas, Bosphorus bridges, mosques.
Dolmabahce Palace; Elegance and beauty with the most luxury decoration, chandeliers, rugs, crystals, ceramic fireplaces. Beautiful palace, right on the Bosphorus with gorgeous furnishings, paintings, porcelains.
Taksim Square; A great place defining modern Turkey. Close to Istiklal Street and Galata Tower. Has very good food joints, cafes, shops, bars, night clubs around.
Note: Booking a private van is suggested.
Suleymaniye Mosque is the largest mosque in Istanbul and is as impressive on the inside as it is on the outside. In the garden behind the mosque, the terrace offers lovely views of the Golden Horn and Bosphorus.
Chora Church; considered to be one of the most beautiful examples of a Byzantine church. With its glorious mosaics and frescoes about the scenes of the Holy Bible she holds an important place.
Fener District; Continue exploring Istanbul’s rich religious history with a stop at the Church of St. George. Since the 1600s, the church has been the location of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople and is recognized as the spiritual leader of the Eastern Orthodox Religion.
Balat District; lines of drying laundry stretch across steep, winding streets. Century-old Ottoman houses lean against each other in a combination of reds, blues and greens. And art galleries and design shops dot the area along the water.
Pierre Loti Hill and Cable Car is one of the most popular sights to visit since it offers great views for the visitors. Take the cable car to reach to the top and enjoy the beautiful scenery while sipping your Turkish coffee or tea.
Note: Booking a private van is suggested.
Topkapi Palace is closed on Tuesdays.
Hagia Sophia is closed on Mondays between November 1 and March 31. Hagia Sophia is open to visit on Mondays between April 1 and October 31.
Grand Bazaar is closed on Sundays.
Dolmabahce Palace is closed on Mondays. Due to regulations, live guide service is not available at Dolmabahce Palace.
Blue Mosque is closed until 2pm on Fridays.
Children aged 12 and under are free of charge. Please make sure that you have passport copies of children as we have to verify their ages at museums for free tickets.
Annual Closing Dates of all museums and bazaars in Istanbul as follows;
Q: How to meet my tour guide?
A: Your tour guide will be waiting in your hotel lobby to meet you at a determined time.
Q: Can I state the departure time for my tour?
A: Of course! We operate tours on private basis, so you can customize the departure time.
Q: Can I choose the sights to visit on my own?
A: Sure! You can choose the sights and museums along all sort of criteria you like in accordance with your tour guide.
Q: How to buy museum tickets?
A: No need to buy tickets in advance, during the tour your tour guide will help you to purchase them. Official tour guides have priority at museum ticket offices.
Q: Am I traveling with a group on the tour?
A: No, we provide Private Guided Istanbul Tours for your best experience so you will have a private professional tour guide in your preferred language.
Q: How about the transportation?
A: When you book your tour with a van, you will be picked up from hotel, be transferred to the sights and then back to hotel. Otherwise, once you meet your tour guide at your hotel, you will be advised the best option for transportation such as taxi or tram.
Q: How about shopping in Istanbul?
A: We do not include any shopping stops unless you wish to visit one of the traditional workshops of handmade rugs, tiles, jewelry. If you have any interest in workshops, please indicate while booking.
Q: How do I book this Private Guided Istanbul Tour?
A: Easy! All you need to do is;
Fill the 'Booking' form where you will put your full details such as personal information, date, hotel or cruise name, arrival and departure times. Once you complete your booking we will get back to you with a confirmation email within 24 hours.
Q: How do I pay?
A: After filling the Book Now form and secure the booking, the payment will be in cash directly to the tour guide during the tour. You can choose to pay in Usd, Euro or Turkish Lira.