The former capital city of the empires; Roman Empire (330-395), Byzantine Empire (395-1204, 1261-1453), Latin Empire (1204-1261), and the Ottoman Empire (1453-1922). Istanbul was founded by the Roman Emperor Constantine the Great and named the city Constantinople which means “the city of Constantine,” then declared it as the new capital city of the Roman Empire. Since Istanbul is situated between Europe and Asia, it has always been such an important city. With the Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman remainings, Istanbul is in Unesco World Heritage list city that the whole city is like an open-air museum. The mosques, palaces, churches, synagogues, modernity, and history make Istanbul a world civilization city with all these contrasts. We offer a private guided Istanbul tour to witness all these with your own eyes. In Istanbul Old City Tour, you are visiting:
The Hippodrome: an ancient chariot races U-shaped stadium with 100,000 spectators. Even though the Hippodrome had lost its seats, walls, and much of the remainings, the three monuments are still standing: the Egyptian Obelisk, Serpent Column, and Constantine Columns.
The Blue Mosque: an Ottoman imperial mosque that Sultan Ahmet built between 1609-1616. Even if it is called officially as Sultanahmet Mosque, the travelers named the Blue Mosque after they saw the blue tiles inside.
The Topkapi Palace: Once was the heart of the Ottoman Empire as a residential palace and headquarters. Sultan Mehmet II built the palace in the 15th century, and then it became the center of the Ottoman Empire. Since 1924, The Topkapi Palace serves as a museum.
Hagia Sophia: built by the Roman Emperor Justinian between 532-537 and became the highest and the biggest cathedral globally. The church was converted into a mosque by the Ottomans in the 15th century and became a museum in 1934. Hagia Sophia lost its museum status in July 2020 and has become a mosque again. Like the other mosques, Hagia Sophia is open to visitors.
Basilica Cistern: located by the Hagia Sophia, built by the Roman Emperor Justinian in the 6th century as an underground water reservoir. The cistern is 138 meters by 65 meters and about 9,800 square meters in area. It serves as a museum, and the most remarkable subjects rather than columns, are the Medusa heads which are upside and right-side down as marble bases.
The Grand Bazaar: the oldest and the largest functioning market globally that it houses over 4,000 stores, 61 streets, and completely covered. Sultan Mehmet II built the Grand Bazaar in the 15th century; then, it was enlarged by the following sultans. Your guide will be more than happy to help you find your masterpiece of Turkish art upon your request.
Istanbul is the only city situated between the continents and two seas; the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea. The strait of Istanbul, called Bosphorus, splits the city into two parts; the Asian and European sides, and stretches from South to North of Istanbul about 31 km. There are many historical buildings, palaces, mosques, churches in the settlements of the Bosphorus. The Bosphorus itself is a highlight of Istanbul, where even the locals spend time in the cafes, restaurants, or fishing. We are recommending doing two hours Bosphorus Cruise with the public boat which departs every hour by the Golden Horn, and after the cruise, you can also visit:
Bosphorus Cruise: The strait divides Istanbul into two continents and stretches about 32 km between the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara. Along the Bosphorus, there are many settlements to see, such as great Palaces, hotels, yali (private houses), etc. While you are on the boat, you will see the highlights of the Bosphorus including the Dolmabahçe Palace, Ortaköy Mosque, Çırağan Palace, Bosphorus Bridge, Rumeli Fortress, Küçüksu Palace, Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge ( the second bridge on the Bosphorus), Maiden’s Tower to name a few.
Dolmabahce Palace: built by the Ottoman Sultan Abdulmejid between 1843-1856 as the residential palace for the Ottoman royal family. The palace was designed by the Armenian architects Garabet Balyan, Nigogayos Balyan, and Evans Kalfa. Dolmabahce Palace contains 285 rooms, 6 baths, 46 halls.
Taksim Square-Istiklal Street: for the majority of the residents, Taksim Square and Istiklal Street are the heart of Istanbul, where the cafes and the restaurants are located along the pedestrianized avenue. The Street stretches between Taksim Square and the Galata Tower, which is 1,4 kilometers (0.87 miles).
Spice Market (Egyptian Bazaar): built by Turhan Hatice, the Sultan Mehmed IV mother, between 1660-1665. The market is the center for spice trade in Istanbul, where you can even find sweets such as Turkish Delights, Baklava, and souvenirs.
Note: the Dolmabahce Palace is closed on Mondays. Private Guided Bosphorus Cruise is a walking tour. We suggest you wear casual clothes and comfortable shoes. The tour Duration is between 09:00 am-5:00 pm. The tour price does not include transportation. If you are staying far away from the old city, you can take a taxi or if you wish we can arrange your round transfer.
This tour is for those who have already explored Istanbul’s historical sights and desire to explore the hidden gems of the Asian side. We have recently created the Istanbul Asian Side Tour to introduce the local neighborhoods of Istanbul, which have existed since the Roman and the Ottoman periods. This tour is also called “Istanbul, Between the Two Bridges” Those neighborhoods are located on the Asian side of the Bosphorus:
Uskudar: the district was called Khyrsopolis, which means “the golden city” in ancient times. Uskudar is the most historical district of the Asian side with the Ottoman Mosques. The most well-known symbol of the district is the Maiden’s Tower.
Kuzguncuk: this is the first Istanbul’s Jewish settlement that it is unknown when they settled exactly. The sources of the 17th century say that Kuzguncuk was a small Jewish settlement. Today, Kuzguncuk is famous for the colorful wooden classical Turkish, Roman private houses.
Beylerbeyi: one of the most beautiful Istanbul neighborhoods was located by the Bosphorus Bridge and Beylerbeyi Palace. It is famous for its cafes and seafood restaurants. You should take a seat and have a cup of Turkish Coffee and feel the breeze of the Bosphorus.
Çengelköy: the neighborhood was called Sophianai, which derived from the Roman Palace, built by the Roman Emperor Justinian II in the 6th century. There were the most beautiful Ottoman mansions, which are cafes and restaurants today. Once, they used to grow the most delicious cucumbers in Çengelköy.
Anadolu Hisarı: the name of the neighborhood derives from an Ottoman Fortress built by the Ottoman Sultan Yildirim Bayezid between 1393-1394, long before Istanbul’s conquest by the Ottomans. Anadolu Hisarı neighborhood contains an Ottoman pavilion which s called Küçüksu pavilion, built by the Ottoman Sultan Abdulmejid in the 19th century.
Kanlıca–Hidiv Pavilion: Kanlıca is located by the second Bosphorus Bride ( Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge) and famous for yoğurt topped with caster sugar. Hide Pavilion was built by the last Ottoman Egypt governor Abbas II I 1907. The pavilion is located on top of a hill where you can see the Bosphorus. Moreover, it possesses a huge garden where the locals walk among the trees and relax at its cafe.
Note: This tour can be organized maximum of 10 people. Please wear casual and comfortable shoes.
3 Days Private Guided Istanbul Tour Package. We suggest you to wear casual cloths and comfortable shoes.
The tour Duration is between 09:00am-17:00pm.
The tour price does not include transportation(Except Asian Side Tour).
If are you staying far away from the old city, you can take a taxi or if you wish we can provide you a transfer.
Your guide can meet with you in your hotel or at the meeting point (Hippodrome, Constantine Column), shown in the map.
at 09:00 a.m