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Dolmabahce Palace (Dolmabahce Sarayi)

When the Ottoman sultans wanted to update their living space, they moved from the sprawling Topkapi complex on Seraglio Point to the more classically proportioned Dolmabahce Palace, also known as Dolmabahce Sarayi. The sultans lived here from ... 

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Certiļ¬ed reviews by travelers like you.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
July 2015

The guide was very knowledgable about the various locations. She was professional and friendly. The Dolmabahce Palace must be seen to be believed. Gorgeous European Palace! Greek Orthodox Church and Pasha Mosque were also beautiful. Enjoyed this tour immensely.

Doing what: Istanbul Small-Group Tour Including Dolmabahce Palace and Luxury Transport

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
June 2015

The best half day tour I have ever taken anywhere in the world. The palace was spectacular. A
balanced tour including a mosque, church and Istanbul's Museum of modern art. Our tour guide was exceptional. This tour takes you to Istanbul's hidden secrets.

Doing what: Istanbul Small-Group Tour Including Dolmabahce Palace and Luxury Transport

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
June 2015

The tour guide arrived early and she spoke very good clear English. She was very informative touring the Palace and afterwards since we were the only 2 in group we got to choose where we wanted to go for the next 2 hours. One of the highlights was the Spice Market and she made very good recommendations. When the tour was over she took us to the rail and helped us get on the correct one. She made the tour

Doing what: Istanbul Small-Group Tour Including Dolmabahce Palace and Luxury Transport

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
May 2015

Enjoyed this tour the most of the tours we did in Istanbul. The Spice Markets are incredible, smell, noise, soak it up whatever you do. The palace you have enough time to see the must see and you have the option of staying if you want to see more. Probably could have left the tour there, but if you want to see the Asian side definitely go.

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
November 2014

Well worth a visit. Still mostly furnished so able to see how the last sultans actually lived [ Topkapi Palace older and also very interesting but more of a museum]. Also lovely setting on the Bosphorous. Very good guide and hotel transfers went smoothly. Not enough time to see much of the harem unfortunately but otherwise excellent tour.

Doing what: Dolmabahce Palace Tour in Istanbul

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
September 2014

This was a good tour, and our guide was very knowledgeable and made it very entertaining. We enjoyed the tour to the palace most of all. Will recommend. The only minor reservation was that we were joined by German speaking tourists, so the guide kept switching from English to German constantly.

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
July 2014

This one was very interesting tour I been in Dolmabahce Palace before but I did it again for my daughter and my grand daughter were very enthusiastic .

Doing what: Bosphorus Bridge, Camlica Hill and Dolmabahce Palace Tour in Istanbul

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
July 2014

Istanbul is a beautiful city and the cruise was incredible because of the beautiful sightseeing. The Dolmabahce Palace was something unexpected, very well preserved, magnificent palace that worth a visit.

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
June 2014

Excellent tour. It was great to see Europe from Camlica Hill in Asia. Except for the ever-present traffic of Istanbul, the trip over the Bosphorous Bridge and around the city was interesting. Enjoyed the palace tour. Excellent guide and well-planned tour. Definitely worthwhile.

Doing what: Bosphorus Bridge, Camlica Hill and Dolmabahce Palace Tour in Istanbul

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2013

A great tour and a must for your list of things to do, the cruise was fabulous and informative, the Palace interesting

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2013

This tour was definitely a must for any traveler to Istanbul , the Dolmache palace took our breath away , the cruise on the Bospherous was enjoyable and easy .

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
July 2013

This tour was amazing! We had a wonderful day with an extremely helpful tour guide who waited for us when we were late for the bus, helped us with small issues, and showed care and concern for all the fellow tourists. Moreover, the cruise was the highlight of the day, followed by the magnificent Dolmabahce Palace. Excellent work Plan Tours!

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
May 2013

Our guide, Osman, was full of energy and knowledge of the palace. Entertained us with stories of the past. A must visit place in Istanbul.

Doing what: Dolmabahce Palace Tour in Istanbul

4 star rating: Recommended
August 2015

Dolmabache Palace is worth seeing. Istanbul Walks is a good company with friendly guides. Logistics and scheduling could be a lot better. I know these companies maximise revenues by mixing half and full day tours, but it can be a challenge logistically I had to do some waiting because my afternoon start time meant the full day group had to come meet me. I think guides in general, not just in Istanbul, should make its high priority to introduce guests by name at the outset of the tour. I often introduce myself to guests, but I believe it would be in the guides' best interests to do this and take responsibility, making for better group chemistry. I've been on a lot of tours this summer, and only a fraction of them included the guides' eliciting names from participants at the beginning. If I'm spending between four and eight hours with someone, it's more comfortable if I know his or her name.

Doing what: Bosphorus Bridge, Camlica Hill and Dolmabahce Palace Tour in Istanbul

4 star rating: Recommended
July 2015

Our guide was really great and the palace and cruise were beautiful

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

4 star rating: Recommended
June 2015

This tour was worth doing up to the Dolmache Palace. Then they took us up to a viewing point that was just a restaurant. It was so hazy that you could not see anything. Then we were caught in traffic and we were two hours late getting back.

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

4 star rating: Recommended
April 2015

Good guide but a bit pointless going inside the palace if you cannot take photographs

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

Mr. John
United States of ... 

4 star rating: Recommended
January 2015

Enjoyed going to the Spice Bazaar and sightseeing in the Bosphorus Cruise. AM group was dropped off in Taksim Square, and the PM group continued to the restaurant for the free lunch. The tour in the Dolmabahce Palace was awesome, too bad no photos allowed inside. Then we proceeded to the Asia side of Turkey for a quick panoramic photo-op of the city. Fighting through the traffic was half the battle.

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

4 star rating: Recommended
December 2014

I appreciated the tour especially the Bosphorus cruise and the Domabahce Palace. I did not appreciate the sale pitch for Turkish clothing and the stop for a coffee, this was a waiste of time and it could have been used for some other cultural activities.

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

4 star rating: Recommended
October 2014

This was a good short tour. We were picked up on time and driven to the Asian side. Had some time to take pictures. Then went to the tour at the palace, which is amazing. I was very impressed. The guide was informative and took his time. At the end, we were dropped off at our hotel.

Doing what: Bosphorus Bridge, Camlica Hill and Dolmabahce Palace Tour in Istanbul

4 star rating: Recommended
June 2014

the tour was great that palace was amazing. i would give it 5 stars. but i gave it 4 for the lunch it was not that good

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

4 star rating: Recommended
May 2014

I had the tour all to myself. It's operated by Istanbul Walks. The pick up was prompt and the guide was engaging and friendly. They take you to the top of the hill and you can see Istanbul if it's clear. After, we went to the Palace which was interesting and the guide provided a lot of interesting information during the interior tour. If you want to see the last Ottoman palace built in Istanbul, it's worth the afternoon.

Doing what: Bosphorus Bridge, Camlica Hill and Dolmabahce Palace Tour in Istanbul

4 star rating: Recommended
April 2013

We booked this two days ahead while already in Istanbul to fill up an otherwise open Monday. When we found out that Dolmabahce Palace was closed on Monday, we contacted Viator and were able to change it Sunday instead - Thanks. Note to Viator, don't sell this tour on Mon/Thur when the Palace is closed.
Here is your day:
Pickup in shuttle van in the morning. Taken to muster point where a number of tours then reassemble and depart on two decker tour buses (open upstairs).
First stop is the spice bazaar. You're given about 45mins to stroll around. Once you've been in the first shop or two, it's more of the same.
Next up is the 90 min Bosphorus cruise. Hopefully you'll have a fine day where you can enjoy the terrific sightseeing up one side and down the other. The boat was clean, open and offered great views.
After that, you're taken to a "leather demonstration". This is no more than a cheesy leather jacket fashion show, after which, you're hustled to their showroom where 50% discounts off inflated prices are offered. We chose to sit outside in the sun instead.
Conveniently, the lunch restaurant is next door. Lunch is simple and everyone else in the restaurant is doing exactly what you are - taking a break from their tour.
After lunch is the Palace. This is truly a highlight of the day (along with the cruise) as you gaze in awe at the amazing splendor that rivals anything in the world.
When you reassemble after some free time in the palace gardens, it's off to a trip over the Bosphorus Bridge, then on to a snack restaurant that overlooks back to the European side. There were no available tables or chairs for our tour, so everyone just milled around for 45 mins.
You are then dropped back at your hotel around 6p.
This is a good way to do both the cruise and the palace, along with some guided narration. The leather demonstration was meaningless and if you don't want to make the trip to the Asian side, you can always leave the tour after the palace.

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

3 star rating: Worth doing
August 2015

The Tour was really good with the sights you see, Dolmabache Palace was amazing. The fashion show is like oh yeah nothing special. But the part that ruined the entire tour was at the end of the day cause the driver didnt want to drive through the traffic he started just dumping us at locations near the hotel, saying just walk that way and youll see your hotel, Thankyou for just dropping me off in a random location and allowing me to have to try and find my way back to the hotel when you picked me up from my hotel door to begin with!

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

3 star rating: Worth doing
September 2014

My wife and I took this tour last week. Sept. 2014. The Cruise was wonderful. Beautiful, informative, relaxing. Highly recommended.

The tour advertised a trip to the Spice Bazzar and "IF" time was available a trip to a leather store. Well that happened. However, we spent a grand total of 13, yes, 13 min. at the Spice Bazzar. WOW, that was fun!!! The leather store was over 30 min. Many people on the tour were not happy about that.

The Dolmabahce Palace was amazing. Truly beautiful. The problem was, we had gone back and forth around Istanbul 3 times that day, we didn't get to the Palace until late afternoon and it was blazing HOT inside. Our guide looked liked he had been sprayed with a water hose. Plan the sequence of events better and the tour could be accomplished in 5-6 hours instead of 8-9 hours.

Our guide spoke English with a very heavy accent ( he was German). Normally not a problem but he spoke very fast and his articulation was terrible. We missed most of what he said. Furthermore, he was bored and was simply "regurgitating" information. All of the other Viator tours we have taken have been great. Guides have been helpful, friendly and seemed happy to be showing you their city. NOT this guy. Oh yea, he did smile one time.....when I gave him 10 Euro at the end of the tour.

Viator needs to validate their local tour operators better in Istanbul. Great tour, Bad tour operator.

Doing what: Best Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

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