Discover the delights of Istanbul on this 5-day Istanbul city stay package. Admire the Blue Mosque’s towering minarets and visit the 6th-century Hagia Sophia Museum. Explore top city attractions including Topkapi Palace, widely considered the jewel in the crown of the Ottoman Empire. Wander through the Grand Bazaar, where shoppers and traders hustle for bargains. Enjoy free time to explore at your leisure.
|DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION||Istanbul (Your Hotel)|
|DEPARTURE TIME||Pickup @ 8 am from hotel.|
Day 1: Arrival
Arrival in Istanbul, where you will be wel comed by your local guide and transferred to your hotel.
DAY 02: Hippodrome
• After breakfast you will depart for a full day city tour, starting in the Hippodrome, the former Roman horse and chariot racing stadium, where you can see the following monuments: the Serpent Column, the Egyptian Obelisk, the Walled Obelisk and the German Fountain. You will proceed to the Sultan Ahmed Mosque, popularly known as the Blue Mosque for the blue tiles adorning the walls of its interior.
The Sultan Ah med Mosque is one of two mosques in Turkey that have with six minarets. After lunch break you will visit the Süleymaniye Mosque, the second largest mosque in the city, and one of the bestknown sights of Istanbul. The mosque was built by the great Ottoman architect Mimar Sinan in the 16th century. From here you will continue by bus along the Golden Horn, a historic inlet of the Bosporus, a natural harbour that has sheltered Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Otto man and other ships for thousands of years. Before return to the hotel you will visit a leather fashion show.
• Evening (facultative): Take an Istanbul Night Tour, a bus drive through the beautifully illumi nated streets of Istanbul, take photos during numerous photo breaks at the wonderfully illuminated onuments of the city, then pause in the Taksim Square, the main pedestrian zone of the city, a major hopping, tourist and leisure district famed for its restaurants, shops and hotels, a popular destination for both tourists and the native population of Istanbul, where you can experience the vibrant life of the metropolis.
DAY 03: CITY TOUR
• Today your discovering of Istanbul contin ues with a visit to Hagia Sophia, a church from the 6th century, the largest cathedral in the world for nearly a thousand years, until the completion of the Seville Cathedral in 1520. Then you will visit the Egyptian Bazaar, also known as Spice Bazaar, where you can enjoy a typical atmosphere of an Oriental market, most of the customers are still locals, and the goods sold are authentic. You can find a wide range of spices, sweets and nuts mainly here. Spicescented, you will take a ride along the Bosporus to have a lunch in an exclusive restaurant on the shore, after which you board for a romantic Bosporus Cruise. No Istanbul experience is complete without a cruise on the Bosporus, it is as crucial as visiting any of the other major sightseeing spots. After ar rival at the Golden Horn you will visit a jew ellery manufactory.
• Evening (facultative): Enjoy seafood speciali ties of Istanbul in Kumkapi, a district known for its meyhane’s (traditional restaurants) and fish restaurants. This small neighbourhood is just inland from the fresh fish market still located on the shore of the Marmara Sea. Kumkapi is well known to the Turks and also of interest to visitors because of the lively atmosphere, excellent food and nightly entertainment
provided by street mu sicians. You will be served famous Turkish hot and cold appetizers first, then enjoy a main course of fish.
DAY 04: Asia
• Your visit of Istanbul would not be complete without a visit of the Topkapi Palace, the official and primary residence in the city of the Ottoman Sultans for 400 years of their 624 year reign, a major tourist
attraction today, containing the most holy relics of the Muslim world such as the prophet Mohammed’s cloak and sword. Topkapi Palace is among those monuments belonging to the “Historic Areas of Istanbul”, which became a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The palace is full of examples of Ottoman architecture and also contains large collections of porcelain, robes, weapons, shields, armour, Otto man miniatures, as well as a display of Ottoman treasure and jewelry. Once being in a city lying on two continents, you deserve a ride to Asia. After a ride along the city walls and a lunch in a typical restaurant, you will cross the Bosporus Bridge to have an opportunity to overlook the whole city, but mainly the Bosporus and the European part. After a ride through the Asian part of Istanbul you will visit a carpet shop, as well as the famous Grand Bazaar, one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world.
• Evening (facultative): Enjoy your last evening in Istanbul in one of the most beautiful night clubs by a socalled Turkish Night Show with belly dancers, folklore dancing (regional dances from the Thrace and Anatolia regions), live music and singing and other performances. Dinner and local wine included.
DAY 05: DEPARTURE
• Transfer to the airport for departure to your homeland.