|From Byzantium to Istanbul|
“Stambul, peerless of cities, thou jewel beyond compare,seated astride upon two seas, with dazzling light aflare!” Ottoman poet Nedim, 18th c.
This tour can be designed as one day, two days..or more. It covers remarkable places from different periods in the history timeline of Istanbul. The places that will be selected from the tour samples below can be put together. There may be slight changes in the prices according to the sights selected.
Rates for the packaged private tours (includes transportation in an air-conditioned van, guiding, entrance fees & parking fees)
In the morning we start strolling through the streets of the Old city center-Sultan Ahmet-which has a unique series of historical monuments. Our visit includes the Hippodrome (The Square of Horse Games), Saint Sophia ( the Byzantine Basilica-greatest of all Byzantine buildings, the excellent museum of Islamic and Turkish art in the Ibrahim Pascha Sarayi, Mosque of Sultan Ahmet I (Blue Mosque) and Spice market. Here, you can start to taste and smell delicious Turkish delights, spicesand herbs
Istanbul is known to the ancient world as the great trading city with several harbours. We start the day going up the Galata Tower, the apex of the Genoese fortifications of medieval Galata. After watching the view of this magnificent city, we take a walk along the pedestrian street called “ Beyoglu”.Then we drive to Sariyer to explore the ethnographical and archaeological sections of the Sadberk Museum which has one of the best private collections. Before lunch we take the boat cruise along the Bosphorus, the most popular waterway of the world. We finish the day visiting the old Spice market and the marvellous Mosque of Rustem Pascha built by the great architect Mimar Sinan
This day is spent concentrating on the old heart of Istanbul, beginning with the Topkapi Palace (The Cannon Gate) which was the center of the administration and residence of theOttoman Sultans. It was also the seat of the supreme executive and judical council of the Empire, the Divan. Then, we start walking through the streets of the old neigbourhood admiring the old wooden houses and Ottoman fountains. Continuing, we visit a remarkable colonnaded cistern, Yerebatan Sarayi, built in the 6th century AD. After exploring the remains of the ancient Hippodrome we also visit a beautiful 15th century Ottoman Mosque Sokulu Mehmet Pascha built by the great architect Mimar Sinan. We finish the day at the Covered Bazaar, which is like a small city with its various buildings, avenues, streets and squares.