Istanbul City Break
Explore Istanbul; where Asia meets Europe and was the capital for 3 different empires. Walk on the ancient street of the historical peninsula and witness monuments bearing the traces of 3 different empires such as Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, Blue Mosque, and Hippodrome. Learn history about Romans, Byzantines, Ottomans, and Modern Turks from your expert local guide. Take photos from the best photoshoot points, experience shopping with locals in Grand Bazaar. Enjoy cruising on Bosphorus and watch traditional Turkish Dance Shows, taste typical Turkish food and enjoy the panoramic view of Ottoman Mansions, Ortakoy Mosque, and Bosphorus Bridge
Day 1: Arrival Istanbul
Upon arrival at Istanbul Airport greeted by your driver and drive to your hotel. Check-in and the rest of the day are yours to explore the city. Overnight in Istanbul.
🏚️ Hotel Option: Avicenna Hotel or similar.
Day 2: Treasures of Istanbul (B, L)
Upon breakfast at the hotel check out. According to your tour pick-up time meet with your guide and start your full-day tour. Explore Hagia Sophia; Meaning Divine Wisdom, Hagia Sophia was the largest building on earth barring the Egyptian Pyramids or the Great Wall of China. Today’s Hagia Sophia was built by Emperor Justinian in 537AD. It was the religious center of the city during the Byzantine period. It was used as a church for 916 years and as a mosque for 481 years, In 1934, by the order of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk it was converted into a museum and since it is open to the visitors.
Next; Topkapi Palace; As well as being the imperial residence of the Sultan, the palace was also the seat of government for the ottoman empire. It housed the Ottoman sultans for nearly 400 years until the Dolmabahçe palace was built. In 1924 it was converted into a museum. Today it is famous for the harem, royal treasury, and holy relics sections.
Continue to with Hippodrome; Built by the Roman Emperor Septimus Severus in 203AD, during the Roman period hippodrome was the civil center for the people of the city where once 100,000 spectators could be held. Located in the heart of Sultanahmet surrounded by Blue mosque, Hagia Sophia, and Topkapi Palace, today it is home to The Egyptian Obelisk (Dikilitaş), The Serpentine Column(Burma sütun), The Constantine Column, and the German Fountain.
Next, Blue Mosque; Built by the Ottoman Sultan Ahmet I in the year 1616, is located opposite the Hagia Sophia. Blue mosque today is one of the most famous landmarks of the old city with its famous six minarets and magnificent dome. Although it is officially called Sultanahmet Mosque, the name Blue Mosque was given to it by the visitors because of the amazing blue tiles decorating the interior walls.
Next, Grand Bazaar; With 18 entrances and more than 4000 shops, it is one of the greatest bazaars in the world. It was built between 1455-1461 by Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror. Today, shops selling the same kind of merchandise tend to be congregated in their own streets or inns as it was in the original Ottoman system. At the end of the tour drive you back to your hotel. Overnight in Istanbul.
🏚️ Hotel Option: Avicenna Hotel or similar.
Day 3: Bosphorus Cruise&Spice Bazaar Tour (B)
Upon breakfast at the hotel check out, According to your tour pick-up time meet with your guide and start your half-day tour. Visit Spice Bazaar; Built in 1664 it is in an ‘L’ shape with six gates. It was called Egyptian Bazaar during the ottoman period because shopkeepers used to sell herbs and spices brought throughout Egypt and Asia. Today still many spice shops and herb specialists are continuing their business there, You can get the mesmerizing spice smells from a mile away.
Next, Cruising on Bosphorus; where you will enjoy a magnificent view. Great history and beautiful nature. The Bosphorus divides EUROPE & ASIA geographically but connects culturally & historically. The shore is lined with old wooden villas, palaces of marble, fortresses, and small fishing villages. During the excursion, you will pass the magnificent Dolmabahce Palace, Rustem Pasa Mosque, Rumeli Fortress, and further along with the parks and imperial pavillions of Yildiz Palace. This cruise will be the highlight of your trip to Istanbul. At the end of the tour drive you back to your hotel, take your luggage, and drive you to Istanbul airport/bus station for your next destination. End of our service.
Specification: Istanbul City Break
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