While one could spend countless days exploring fascinating and dynamic sites of Istanbul, some only have a half day or full day in their schedules to visit. Our Half or Full-Day in Istanbul tours are carefully curated to share the most of this wonderful city in a short period of time. (Please note that some of the museums, sites and bazaars are closed on certain days of the week and during religious holidays).
Your Licensed Professional Tour Guide and private, deluxe, air-conditioned vehicle will meet you and your party at the Istanbul Cruise Ship Pier or at your hotel. You will first visit the Blue Mosque, distinctive with its six minarets and its interior decoration with beautiful Iznik tiles. Then, you will continue to the famous Hagia Sophia Museum, which was built in the 6th Century (and for a long time remained as the largest Christian Church in the world). You will then walk by several ancient monuments, including the Serpent Column (transported from the Greek city of Delphi), the Egyptian Obelisk (brought from the Temple of Karnak in Egypt), as you tour the Hippodrome Square, where ancient chariot races used to take place.
For those continuing on a Full-Day Tour, after lunch you will visit much of the Topkapi Palace (Museum), which was the former Imperial Residence of Ottoman Sultans, where you can see priceless displays of imperial artifacts, jewelry, and rare porcelain collections. Do not miss the giant Kasikci (Spoonmaker’s) Diamond or the famous dagger that was featured in the movie Topkapi. Afterwards, continue to the historic, and world-famous, Grand Covered Bazaar (Kapali Carsi) with its 4,000 shops under hundreds of domes and arches, before returning to your cruise ship or hotel.