Kick off your tour at your Istanbul accommodation or cruise port, where you’ll greet your guide and board an air-conditioned vehicle destined for the city’s historical highlights. Your first stop is the Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmed Camii), an iconic Istanbul landmark famed for its ornate domes and minarets. Head inside the 17th-century mosque at your own expense and admire its magnificent internal courtyard.
Travel back in time at the Hippodrome, the former sporting and cultural center of the Byzantine capital, and gaze at the colossal Obelisk of Theodosius, the oldest monument in all of Istanbul.
Facing the Blue Mosque is Hagia Sophia (Aya Sofya), a confection of golden mosaics, soaring domes, and tapered minarets considered one of the world’s most beautiful buildings. The palace's interior, which inspired the basilica of San Marco in Venice, is nothing short of spectacular.
After feasting your eyes on Hagia Sophia, you’ll descend to the tranquil subterranean space of the Basilica Cistern. Deep underground, water lapping on marble and rose-tinted lighting create an idyllic space in which to admire Byzantine architecture. The cisterns are wet so ensure you bring suitable footwear.
Then, your tour culminates with a visit to Topkapi Palace, characterized by its Ottoman architecture and opulent grandeur. Positioned at the top of one of Istanbul’s seven hills, the palace commands panoramic views of the Golden Horn, Bosporus, and the Sea of Marmara.
Your tour concludes with drop-off at your Istanbul accommodation or cruise port.
Please note: On Mondays, Hagia Sophis is closed and on Tuesdays, Topkapi Palace is closed.