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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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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: 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
May 2014

This cruise was very enjoyable. The tour guide was very acknowledgeable and shared so much interesting information about the history of Turkey as we cruised pass fortresses, museums, palaces, and under impressive bridges contacting Europe to Asia. A highlight was landing in Asia and getting to tour a magnificent palace belonging to a Sultan. My wife and I highly recommend taking this tour.

Doing what: Bosphorus Strait Cruise with Rumeli Fortress or Kücüksu Palace Tour

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: 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: 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: 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: 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
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: 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: Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

3 star rating: Worth doing
July 2014

The Bosphorus is beautiful, but we didn't have the greatest time on this trip. The guide on the boat didn't say a whole lot other than "This is the European side, and that over there is the Asian side", and maybe pointed out just a few items of interest along the way. There was also a timing problem, so that when we were going up the strait, it was entirely blocked off due to a swimming competition from the Asian side to European side, which certainly wasn't the fault of the tour, but they could have planned better, since it was a yearly event they knew about in advance. We didn't even get to stop on the Asian side at all, which was a big disappointment. We wound up stopping at the Maiden's Tower, which was okay, but definitely not worth the 45+ minutes we had to spend there to make up for not seeing the palace. Additionally, since the cruise was over lunch (11:30-2:00 or so, although we took off 15 or 20 minutes late), it was unfortunate that they only sold drinks/snacks at the very beginning of the trip, with nothing available after the stop at the Maiden's Tower when everybody was hot, hungry and thirsty.

Doing what: Bosphorus Strait Cruise with Rumeli Fortress or Kücüksu Palace Tour

3 star rating: Worth doing
July 2014

The cruise and the palace were amazing. I wished we would have had more time at the spice bazaar. There are so many shops to see and so little time to spend there. I think the leather fashion show is absolutely useless. It is a complete waste of time and that time could be better spent in the spice bazaar. The leather shop has zero relevance to the overall tour. It really does lower the rating of the tour as it was complete nonsense.

Doing what: Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

3 star rating: Worth doing
November 2013

This tour would be highly recommended if the following issues are corrected:
- The group was not only English speaking and first guide (Mr. Ali) was speaking in various languages for all the tourists, this resulted in passing by some landmarks and getting the explanation in your comprehensible language after the landmark has been passed by.
- The visit to the leather jacket shop was not on the itinerary and we did not pay for that, nor we wanted it, it was a complete waste of our paid time.
- The visit to the Dolmabache palace was not complete because we did not see the whole palace, although the guide was really good (Mr. Emre) we did not visit the harem section of the palace, the time wasted in the leather shop could be used for the harem section.

Doing what: Istanbul Tour with Bosphorus Cruise and Dolmabahce Palace

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