Note that this trip is 99% a walking trip, so wear comfortable clothing and walking shoes! The car simply picks you and the rest of the group up from the hotel and drops you off at the first sight--you don't see it until much later in the day. Overall it was a great trip, the price you pay here includes all your entrance fees into Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, and the Basilica Cistern. I did feel a bit rushed at the Basilica Cistern, but make your concerns clear to your tour guide and they will usually try to accommodate you as much as possible. Lunch is also included, it consisted of kabobs, rice, salad, and dessert. Drinks were NOT INCLUDED in the price and we had to pay that out of pocket. Later in the day our tour guide dropped us off at a carpet shop where they served us tea and gave us a pitch to try and sell us the ridiculously expensive handmade rugs. It was a complete waste of time and we couldn't find our guide for a while, but the employees at the shop are hospitable and not too pushy. Afterwards we went to the Grand bazaar which was nice, but don't just accept the price they give you, HAGGLE them down. My suggestion for tourist shopping: Go to the Egyptian Spice Bazaar, it is much smaller but has many of the same items at the Grand Bazaar and for much cheaper!
We were so happy with out Old City tour that we purchased tickets for the next day's Bosphorus Sea Tour. It was overpriced for sure, but worth the convenience of being picked up and having people that talk English. The entire ship was our groups (not public)and the tour guide pointed out the landmarks we were passing by over the microphone, but we could barely hear him and sounded somewhat boring and monotonous.
We loved Turkey and wish we could go back again! Definitely recommend this tour if you have a day or 2 in Istanbul and want to cover all the major attractions.
Private guide picked us up on time, took us to the Hagia Sophia, Cistern, and Bazaar, gave us private time, and transferred us back to the hotel. Could not have been better.
Our guide was fantastic. He can be considered a walking historian. The best thing is we skip the line when we visited the underground cistern ( or else we had to wait at least 1 hour due to the queque). Enough time to venture at all places and most importantly, they were punctual when they pick us up at the hotel.
Very good tour, which was booked at the last minute. The pace was just right and the content was informative without being overbearing. The guide spoke excellent English and she tweaked the agenda to suit the group. We all agreed to skip the grand bizaar in order to spend some time at the cistern basilica. Lunch was also very good. Much better than the normal expectation for a tour so all in I would and have recommended bith the guide and the tour to collegues travelling to Istanbul.
I would recommend the full day tour, but we only had a half day available. Good tour guide and interesting tour. Suggest you copy what is on tour (its not on the voucher), as our tour guide would have left out the Roman Cisterns (which was a highlight), if I had not reminded her.
Once again our tour guide, Omar was very knowledgeable. The Blue Mosque was amazing. The Palace is a must see! I quite enjoyed the cistern--what advanced thinking on the part of the architect. Both the tours I took were outstanding and made my trip to Turkey better than expected!!
Love love loved this tour!! Omar our tour guide was amazing!!!! He was so informative and gave us such a personalized account of Istanbul. We were picked-up where our ship docked, and were taken to all the great sites Istanbul has to offer. We were given ample time to take pictures and have free time at each stop. We had a delicious lunch, and even got to see the cistern and some amazing carpets. This was such an amazing tour and I would do it again!!!
i booked this at the last minute. the guide was incredibly friendly and helpful. our group was about 9 people, all wonderful. there were 20 somethings and 60 somethings. the tour was great and an outstanding value. i had some doubts going into it, but after this experience i will keep coming back. i wish i had known about this earlier! had a wonderful time. my only suggestion is that the add one more stop, the cisterns, as it is so close to everything else and can be done in 30mins or less. if you only had one day in istanbul this would be the only way to do it!
Included the most important things to see in Istanbul. The guide was very knowledgeable and spoke perfect English. You must see the stops on this tour while in Istanbul. It would be good it this tour included the cistern which was in the same area and alos a must see venue.
Our guide was excellent! He arrived promptly, and we walked the short distance to Sultan Ahmad Mosque, then the Hippodrome, Aya Sofya, lunch opposite the Spice Market, carpet shop, cistern, and finished at the Grand Bazaar. The guide was not only knowledgeable about the sites we visited, he knew their place in the greater scheme of history, which made the discussions very rich. He was fluent in history, archaeology, and English, and was fun to be with.
The tour was very interesting - our guide Omar very well informed, helpful and friendly. We even visited sights that were not on the program such as the Basilica Cistern! The only negative points: we had problems finding the departure place of the bus as we could not be picked up in front of our hotel. A lady at Neon Tours was supposed to send me a map but she never did. Furthermore we were taken to a presentation/selling at a carpet shop which we (and most of the group) didn't appreciate at all. All in all, the tour is absolutely worth while, especially as you don't need to queue at the sights, the guide providing the entrance tickets. The lunch was very much ok too.
pick-up from the port was very smooth. the driver seemed to be a nice guy but we did not have much chance to know him, as we were stopped at the very biginning on the street due to random police check, since then we lost our private bus - later were told there was a mismatch of personal details given!
the guide decided to continue the tour by tram which turned out to be not a very bad idea as we beated the traffic. the tour covers what we wished to see especially the Cistern - main reason we booked a private tour. all points of interest were covered by foot. - can't really complain though as traffic in Istambul is chaos.
the 4th star was given to our guide Recep. he was very patient when waiting for a second mini bus to transfer us back to the port after the tour and even shouted us with an apple tea. well done.
overall it is a nice experience and i will still stay with viator next time visiting Turkey.
Value for money. Very, very long lines and we did not have to wait to buy tickets. We moved fast. Good guide. Nice lunch, comfortable transport. Underground cisterns were included. We would not be able to visit the 5 places on our own time in one day.
We really enjoyed this tour the guide spoke fluent English and was very knowledgeable. However we were left to explore many of the areas by ourselves while our guide sat outside and we didn't see the underground cisterns. The lunch was excellent. We just said no to the carpet factory which was fine.
Our guide was extremely knowledgeable and enthusiastic, 10/10 for him. The only disappointment was that Grand Bazaar was closed because it was first day of Eid - and we were not offered anything in it's place to compensate (like the underground cisterns or Sulaimaniya). The included lunch was okay, but not wonderful, as a lot of Turkish food can be and we felt we were being rushed through to make way for other incoming tours.
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