Duration: Full day (08:30 to 19:30)
Price: 95 Euro (per person-min 04)
Run: Everyday (private)
After picking up from hotel or Istanbul port, we will go to the ancient part of Istanbul (historical peninsula). There we will meet the most prominent landmarks of 3 Empires once hosted by this city: Blue Mosque, ancient Roman Hippodrome, and Hagia Sophia Basilica.
Roman Hippodrome and Obelisk: The ancient Hippodrome is an important public entertainment arena that once had a capacity as many as 100.000 zealous fans watching executions, the chariot races, and mock battles. Once the centre of Byzantine civil life, it is designed by the Egyptian Obelisk, the Column of Constantine and the Bronze Serpentine Column.
Blue Mosque: It was done between the 1609 and 1616, the Sultan Ahmet Mosque is more familiarly famous as the Blue Mosque because its internal gleams with superb panels of blue and white Iznik tiles. After seeing and taking the photos of Blue Mosque, we will have a break for a short stop to drink traditional Turkish tea in a charming garden.
Gourmet Details: It is the most popular thing in Turkey 'TEA'. Wherever you go, you will be offered a glass of tea. It is prepared in boiling water and serving it in thin, small, clear glasses to show the deep red color and to feel the heat to the hand. If you wish, you can also try simit the most popular tea snack. Simit is a pastry like bagel, and covered with sesame ring-shaped. Turkish people also prefer eating simit with cream cheese in breakfast, especially if they are at work.
Hagia Sophia Basilica: Built by Byzantine Emperor Constantine in the 4th century and rebuilt by Justinian in 537 A.D., it was the greatest and the biggest church in Christendom for thousand years, ruins of architectual masterpiece today. The Ottomans changed the basilica to a mosque in the fifteenth century, but today the Hagia Sophia stands as a public museum, well-known for its magnificent serenity and nice Byzantine mosaics. At the end of the visit we will go down to the shore of Golden Horn to have lunch at Hamdi Restaurant.
Gourmet Details: Hamdi Restaurant, stands on the top floor of historic building, panaromic view to Golden Horn Bay, known with its famous kebabs, or charcoal grills, one of the most famous combinations of Turkish dishes. You will have the taste of special and traditional Turkish bread, will be served a starter with special and local "tulum" cheese and butter; miniature lahmacaun also known as Turkish Pizza; fresh salad and of course superb kebabs.
After finishing our lunch, we will stroll to near-by Spice Market. Spice Market was built in 1664 as a part of the Yeni Cami, which is built next to it. Shops used to sell only spices during Ottoman times. Today, in additon to spice shops, there are also the others selling dried fruit, borek (traditional pastry), basket work, haberdashery,drapery, jewelry,and so on. The bazaar is “L” shape and has got six gates.
In the afternoon you will give an end to historical part of the city and go to Taksim – centry of İstanbul. Walk along İstiklal Street , main pathway street of the area. You will go ahead to Fish Market, to join in tasting safari.
Gourmet Details: Being in a covered alley, Fish Market is doing the connection with historical Flower Passage. Before serving as fresh fish market for local people of the area –where its name comes from. Even today you can find fish stalls to the end of the area , but the entrance pf İstiklal to the market is taken over with small fast food shops. You will have the chance to choose many of the traditionla Turkish food made by residents–mercimek kofte (mashed red lentil balls wrapped in a lettuce leaf), kumpir (oven-baked potatoes with different fillings), and many other types of Turkish appetizers - meze, midye tava (fried mussels on a stick), .
We walk through near Nevizade Street, well-known with its pubs and taverns. Here is the place where the people gather to have their rakı and mezes for a lovely and friendly chat with each other.
After the tour, you will be transferred back to the hotel or Istanbul cruise port.
Please take note of the following:
* 30% discount for children below the age 7, free for the ages 0-2
* Hagia Sophia Basilica is closed on Monday, replaced with Galata Tower
* Egyptian (Spice) Bazaar is closed on Sunday
* Clothing: Entrance to Mosques and Churches visited in our tours is not allowed to gentlemen and ladies with no proper outfit.
* You are kindly requested to present your self at the pick up point 15 minutes prior the pre advised pick up time
* Smoking is not permitted but all tours make frequent stops
* Pick up and drop off at your Hotel or Cruise Port
* Transportation by air-conditioned non-smoking tour coaches
* Professional Guide licensed by the Ministry of Tourism
* All entrance fees to the archaeological sites and museums, parking and road tolls
* Lunch at local restaurant (drinks extra)
* Local taxes