Discover the Black Sea together!

Discover the Black Sea together!

EN » Destinations » Istanbul » Tours » Istanbul at a Glance

Istanbul at a Glance

Duration: Approximately 5 Hours

Activity:  Moderate

Venues visited: St. Sophia Museum, Topkapi Palace, the Grand Bazaar

 

Begin your day by traveling over the Golden Horn en route to Old Town. St. Sophia Museum which originated as a church in 360 AD under Constantine. Hagia Sophia was converted into a Mosque when the city was conquered by the Ottomans in 1453 by Sultan Fatih Sultan Mehmet. Following the museum, next stop will be Topkapi Palace. Topkapi Palace is a great walled complex hugging the shores of the Bosphorus and Golden Horn and it was once the residence of the Ottoman Sultans. Mehmet II built the palace-city, home for three centuries of Sultans, in the mid-1400s as a summer palace. Topkapi was enlarged by Suleiman the Magnificent into the Sultan's principal residence and with the successive Sultans grew into a great complex of buildings set in lovely gardens. A series of courtyards connect various buildings which now house an astonishing collection of Chinese porcelain, treasures, the Topkapi dagger and the celebrated Topkapi Diamond plus much more. Conclude your day with a visit to one of the most colorful sites of Istanbul; the Grand Bazaar, the heart of commerce in Ottoman times. The bazaar is composed of two sections; the covered part and the modern part. The covered part is a whole quarter on its own and is surrounded by a wall which can be entered through eleven gates. The maze of streets and lanes are one of the greatest sights in the city, where various trades such as carpets, jewelry, leather goods, silver; varieties of souvenirs, textile, antiques, and home textile are segregated into particular sections of the bazaar. You will have the chance to explore the exotic atmosphere of the covered part for a brief period of time. You will also have the opportunity to visit the open and modern section of the Grand Bazaar which offers the best artworks and most reliable shopping. During your time in the Grand Bazaar, you will be taken for a presentation on the unique art of Turkish carpets and you will have time to shop

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