Istanbul ATTRACTIONS See all

Hippodrome (At Meydani) Tours

Originally built in the third century, the Hippodrome of Constantinople was the sporting and cultural center of the former Byzantine capital for over 1,000 years. With a U-shaped race track and two levels of spectator galleries, the Hippodrome likely held more than 100,000 people. While the Byzantine emperors (and later the Ottoman sultans) took great pride in the Hippodrome and devoted significant efforts to embellishing it, little remains of the original structure today.

Sultan Ahmet Square (Sultanahmet Meydani or At Meydani)now covers the former site of the Hippodrome and largely follows its ground plan and dimensions.  Pavement marks the course of the old race track and several interesting monuments remain as well.  You can’t miss the towering Obelisk of Theodosius, the oldest monument in all of Istanbul. Made of pink granite, it was originally erected at the Amun Re temple at Karnak in Egypt, but was brought to Istanbul by the Emperor Theodosius in the fourth century.  South of the Obelisk, you will find a spiral column that once formed part of a golden basin brought to the city by Constantine the Great from the temple of Apollo in Delphi. You can also see what is known as the Walled Obelisk – the stone core of a 10th century obelisk that was once covered with bronze plaques. At the base of the obelisks and column, you can see where the original ground level of the Hippodrome once stood, about 2.5 meters below ground.

Near the northern entrance to the square, you will find the Kaiser Wilhelm’s Fountain, a stone gazebo with a mosaic-tiled dome that was a gift from the Kaiser in 1901.

Practical Information

Located in the heart of Istanbul’s primary tourist district, Sultan Ahmet Square is bordered by Atmeydani Sokak and Atmeydani Caddesi. The northern entrance is across from one of the most famous sites in Istanbul – the Blue Mosque.  If you aren’t staying in the area, you can take the tram to the Sultanahmet stop from elsewhere in the city and from there, it is just a short walk to Sultan Ahmet Square.

Tours & Tickets

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Private Tour: Highlights of Istanbul, Istanbul, null
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Private Tour: Highlights of Istanbul

This tour is a wonderful introduction to first time visitors.  This private tour includes the major sites of the city and your private will bring the sites ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)

From USD $243.00
Historic Off the Beaten Path Tour of the Real Istanbul, Istanbul, Private Sightseeing Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Historic Off the Beaten Path Tour of the Real Istanbul

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 8 Reviews

See Turkey like a local on this historic off-the-beaten-path tour of the real Istanbul. Go where the locals go, and experience life in the back streets of ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 7 hours (approx.)

From USD $83.80
Morning Istanbul: Half-Day Tour with Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Hippodrome and Grand Bazaar, ... 
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Morning Istanbul: Half-Day Tour with Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Hippodrome and Grand Bazaar

4 star rating: Recommended 6 Reviews

Enjoy this 4 hours tour with visits to the highlights of the old city. Firstly visit the magnificent Byzantine church of St Sophia. After here continue to ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $38.00
Top Sites Of Istanbul: Half Day Small-Group tour, Istanbul, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Top Sites Of Istanbul: Half Day Small-Group tour

The best choice for any first timer, Top sites of Old Istanbul, is a half-day, small group tour. Discover what has made Istanbul such a majestic and ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 6 hours (approx.)

From USD $77.81
Private Tour of Istanbul With Hotel Pickup and Drop-off, Istanbul, City Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Private Tour of Istanbul With Hotel Pickup and Drop-off

Go to all of the major sites in Istanbul on a private, full-day tour. Admire the Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque, see Topkapi Palace and learn about the ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 7 hours (approx.)

From USD $140.00
Istanbul Highlights Morning Tour, Istanbul, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Istanbul Highlights Morning Tour

Dive into Istanbul's rich history and discover the major sights in the heart of old city on this half-day morning tour. You will see the Blue Mosque, so called ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $41.90
Private Guided Istanbul Day Tour, Istanbul, Half-day Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Private Guided Istanbul Day Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 5 Reviews

Explore Istanbul's rich history and magnificent architecture as you visit the Hippodrome, the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, and the Grand Bazaar ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: Flexible

From USD $120.00
Private Istanbul Tour from Istanbul Hotels and Port, Istanbul, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Private Istanbul Tour from Istanbul Hotels and Port

With this private tour explore magical Istanbul "City of Sultans". Enjoy a day of history and sightseeing of Old Istanbul.

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 6 hours (approx.)

From USD $110.00
Highlights of Istanbul, Istanbul, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Highlights of Istanbul

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 1 Review

Experience the beauty of Istanbul’s Old City with a fully-guided small group walking tour. On this 7-hour tour, spend the day wandering through the Hagia ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 7 hours (approx.)

From USD $119.71
Full Day Istanbul Classics and Bosphorus Cruise Tour, Istanbul, City Tours
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Full Day Istanbul Classics and Bosphorus Cruise Tour

Explore the highlights of Sultanahmet, where Turkey’s Ottoman and Byzantine empires located before. Visit the UNESCO-Listed Hagia Sophia, breathe taking Blue ...  Read more

Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)

From USD $77.81

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