Istanbul
Sightseeing Walking Tours

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Our most recommended Istanbul Sightseeing Walking Tours

Hagia Sophia: Entry with Guided Tour

1. Hagia Sophia: Entry with Guided Tour

Meet with your professional local guide in front of Hagia Sophia. Hear a short history of the Old City then start the Hagia Sophia Tour.  Your guide will explain the mystery of the magnificent Hagia Sophia. Hagia Sophia is a great architectural beauty and an important monument both for the Byzantine and the Ottoman Empires. Once a church, later a mosque, and now a museum at the Turkish Republic, Hagia Sophia has always been a precious building. 

From Istanbul: Best of Turkey 8 Days, 7 Nights Guided Tour

2. From Istanbul: Best of Turkey 8 Days, 7 Nights Guided Tour

Day 1: Arrival in Istanbul Be picked up from the arrivals terminal at Istanbul or Sabiha Gokcen Airport. Be transferred to your accommodation and enjoy some time to relax in the city after your journey.  Day 2: Full-Day Istanbul Tour (Breakfast) Start with pickup from your accommodation and discover the highlights of Istanbul on a guided tour. Visit the Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, and Hippodrome, where chariot races and the Byzantine riots took place. Visit the Grand Bazaar for some shopping and bargain hunting. Be returned to your hotel at the end of the day and spend a second night in Istanbul. Day 3: Istanbul to Cappadocia by flight – Cappadocia Tour (Breakfast – Dinner) Begin the third day with an early-morning pickup and transfer to Istanbul airport for your flight to the Cappadocia region. Upon arrival in Cappadocia, your tour guide will meet you at the airport. Start by visiting the Three Sisters Fairy Chimneys in Urgup which are the iconic symbol for the region. Descend into the Kaymakli underground city, which is one of the largest and the deepest of its kind in the region. After the tour, be transferred to your hotel for the night. Day 4: Full-Day Cappadocia Tour (Breakfast – Dinner) Discover the lunar-like landscape of Cappadocia with spectacular rock formations in the Devrent Valley. Enjoy lunch in Avanos, a center of terracotta artwork since 3000 BC. Watch a demonstration in a traditional pottery workshop. In the afternoon, visit the Goreme Open Air Museum and Uchisar Rock Castle to get a panoramic view of the valleys of Cappadocia. After the tour, be returned to your hotel. Day 5: Cappadocia – Konya – Pamukkale (Breakfast – Dinner) Begin the journey to Pamukkale early in the morning. On the way, visit the Seljukian masterpiece of Sultanhan Caravanserai, built in the 13th century. Arrive in Konya and visit the Mausoleum of Mevlana, the world-famous mystic. Continue the journey to Pamukkale and enjoy an overnight stay in a Thermal Hotel. Enjoy a swim in the hotel's rejuvenating thermal pools. Day 6: Pamukkale – Kusadasi (Breakfast – Dinner) In the morning, visit the ancient Greek city of Hierapolis known for its Theater, Apollo Temple, and magnificent Necropolis. Travel onwards to Kusadasi for an overnight stay. Day 7: Kusadasi – Ephesus – Istanbul by flight (Breakfast) Depart from Kusadasi and visit the Artemis Temple which is one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Continue to the famous Grand Theater of Ephesus. After Ephesus, visit the Catholic shrine of the House of the Virgin Mary. Located on the Aladag Mountains 5 miles from Ephesus, it is said that the Virgin Mary lived here for the remainder of her life after Christ's Ascension into heaven. Then drive to Izmir airport for your flight back to Istanbul. Upon your return to Istanbul, meet a representative of the local partner and be transferred to your hotel for the night.  Day 8: Departure from Istanbul (Breakfast) After breakfast, check out from your hotel and enjoy a private transfer to Istanbul airport for your flight back home to complete the 8-day excursion.

Istanbul: Dolmabahçe Palace Admission and Guided Tour

3. Istanbul: Dolmabahçe Palace Admission and Guided Tour

Explore Dolmabahçe Palace - the biggest royal residence of the sultans and the imperial family of the Ottoman Empire. Meet your licensed English-speaking guide outside the monument and enter with your skip-the-line admission ticket. Begin a guided tour of the stunning interiors. Learn about how the palace was built by the orders of Sultan Abdülmecid I and opened in 1856. Admire the greatest collection of Baccarat and Bohemian chandeliers on the planet, including the biggest Bohemian chandelier ever. Marvel at the vast collection gold inside, specifically on the ornate ceilings.  As you continue the tour, learn about the distinct differences between the Dolmabahçe Palace and the Topkapı Palace - for example, the architectural style and the way that the furniture was used. Find out about how the Dolmabahçe Palace was the last headquarter of the empire and was served until 1922. At the end of your one hour tour, you can explore Imperial Harem on your own freely, without a guide.

Istanbul: Blue Mosque & Hagia Sophia Small-Group Tour

4. Istanbul: Blue Mosque & Hagia Sophia Small-Group Tour

Check out Istanbul's greatest Islamic monument on this small walking tour. Meet your guide in the Sultanahmet neighborhood, at a hot spot for traditional Turkish delicacies where you can purchase water or snacks. Then let your guide lead you to the Blue Mosque, the most visited monument in Istanbul.  Marvel at this imperial Ottoman Mosque, commissioned by Sultan Ahmet. Witness the evocative power and splendor of its past as you enjoy a comprehensive guided tour of the Blue Mosque and its complimentary buildings with a professional guide. Afterward, enjoy the courtyard for breathtaking views of modern Istanbulites and take a gentle stroll around the neighborhood.  Walk through the Hippodrome, the social and political center of the city, and learn about the significance of the famous obelisks. Visit the Hagia Sophia and witness the most significant site of the Greek Orthodox religion in Istanbul and learn how it was converted into a mosque after the Ottoman conquest of Constantinople. On this 3-hour tour, you’ll explore the museum with a licensed guide. In the interiors of each building, you’ll see elements of a mosque and a church standing next to each other. Admire the basilica’s stunning dome and minarets, and countless mosaics, paintings, columns, and mosaic gallery. Learn how the impressive İznik tiles were added over time in the Mosque, how the stunning Virgin Mary mosaic was made, and why the Ottomans chose to bury their sultans in the courtyard.

Istanbul: Topkapi Palace Guided Tour and Skip The Line

5. Istanbul: Topkapi Palace Guided Tour and Skip The Line

Skip the line and visit the most important museum of Turkey and the Balkan Peninsula. Discover how the Topkapi Palace was built between 1466 - 1478 and served for over 400 years as the residency and administrative headquarter of the Ottoman Sultans. The guide will explain to you the entire story of the Palace during a one hour tour. Marvel at the great architectural beauty of this important monument of the Ottoman Empire.

Topkapi Palace and Harem: Guided Tour with Admission Ticket

6. Topkapi Palace and Harem: Guided Tour with Admission Ticket

Immerse yourself in Istanbul’s best sight on this exceptionally well-led guided tour. Discover Ottoman history in the Palace and the life of Sultan's family in the harem.  Meet your dedicated guide at a hot spot for traditional Turkish delicacies, where there are restroom facilities and you can purchase water or snacks. Then let your guide take you to Topkapi Palace. Enjoy a 3-hour tour of Topkapi Palace, the heart of the Ottoman Empire. The complex of low buildings, pavilions, and courtyards was a self-contained city, which most inhabitants rarely left. Explore the outer-terraced gardens and admire the view over the Golden Horn. Visit the harem, ruled by the Queen Mother who wielded domestic and political power. The harem housed hundreds of women and family members as well as hundreds of eunuchs, who performed a wide range of duties. Admire cupboard doors inlaid with mother of pearl and tortoise shell and stunning Iznik tiles with verses from the Quran. The tour ends with a visit to the holy relics and the imperial kitchens.

Istanbul: Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, and Grand Bazaar Tour

7. Istanbul: Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, and Grand Bazaar Tour

Like most visitors to Istanbul, especially first-time visitors; you will want to see and photograph the Blue Mosque. Complete with its 6 minarets and ornate glass windows, this site is a must when visiting Istanbul. Following that, you will travel next door to the Hagia Sophia Museum. A magnificent Byzantine Church, it is one of the finest and largest architectural works of art in the world.  After the Hagia, you'll find your way to the entrance of the Grand Bazaar, one of the oldest covered markets in the world. In addition to its historical importance, it's a bazaar that will tempt even those without an interest in shopping with its rich collection of precious handmade carpets, jewellery, leather, and souvenirs.

Dolmabahce Palace: Skip-the-Line Ticket and Audio Guide

8. Dolmabahce Palace: Skip-the-Line Ticket and Audio Guide

Meet your guide at the main entrance of the Dolmbahce Palace, skip the long ticket lines and enter the world's most luxurious Palace the shortest way. Save up to 2 hours by not standing in the famous ticket lines. Follow your guide through a 10-minute tour inside the garden of Dolmbahce Palace. Learn about the highlights inside the Dolmabahce Palace and find out where the best spots are to capture the most amazing pictures. Afterwards, receive your audio guide so you can explore the inside of the Palace at your own pace. Spend the whole day inside or just have a quick glance at its impressive beauty. Gaze in awe at the palace's beautiful location on the Bosphorus and its more than $1.5 billion worth of luxury decoration.

Private Istanbul Tour with Car and Guide

9. Private Istanbul Tour with Car and Guide

Explore Istanbul/Turkey with a professional licensed tour guide. You will travel in a private car or a mini van and can choose where you want to go and what you want to see. Your guide will take you on a customized tour throughout Istanbul or other cities in Turkey. You build the itinerary and your licensed and experienced tour guide keeps your sightseeing smooth and informative. They will give you information about the sites that you visit and the areas in which you travel, leaving you with fantastic and vivid memories of your time in Istanbul and Turkey. This tour guarantees that you will be taken care of from the moment you enter Turkey. You will travel in full luxury without the need to navigate language differences or worry about where and how to find transportation.

Istanbul Food and Culture Tour: Taste of 2 Continents

10. Istanbul Food and Culture Tour: Taste of 2 Continents

Explore the cuisines of Istanbul on a 5-hour food tour of the city on both sides of the Bosphorus. Starting at Fuego Café and Restaurant in the Sultanhamet neighborhood, board a local tram to Eminonu Port to transfer by public ferry across the Bosporus Strait to Kadikoy Port in Asia. Enjoy views of 2 continents on the journey. Then, stroll around the Kadikoy neighborhood visiting local markets and diving down a maze of streets lined with local shops selling all kinds of produce. Go to the fish market to try some delicious mussels stuffed with rice and spices. After a break at a café, full of locals playing backgammon and okey, follow your guide to a restaurant that specializes in home cooked food from the Kurdish area of south east Turkey (vegetarian and gluten free options available). Stomach full, head back to Europe on the ferry, enjoying panoramas of Istanbul at night. By now you should have room for something sweet, so your guide will take you to an establishment where you can sample a typical Turkish dessert, before taking the tram to a 300-year-old madrasah that has been converted to a café. Relax with a drink as you watch the locals going about their business. Try the fruity flavors of an authentic Nargile (water pipe), washed down with some Turkish beverages, such as chay Turkish coffee, sahlep

Frequently asked questions about Istanbul Sightseeing Walking Tours

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Other Sightseeing Options in Istanbul

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What people are saying about Istanbul

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 2,133 reviews

What a great tour! Exactly what I was expecting but actually it even Exceeded my expectations. The group was small, there were only 5 of us including Saleh, our guide. I was on my own and didn’t know the other participants but they turned out to be nice and sociable people. Saleh - our guide - was very knowledgable with good people skills, had plenty of interesting stories to tell about the places we visited and included everyone in conversations. We tried so many different delicacies, mainly in the Asian Market, that towards the end of the tour I started falling asleep due to the amount of food I tried ( I definitely wasn’t bored!). The tour ended in a local shisha place in Sultanahmet, the ambience and history of the place was extraordinary. Overall a great tour - highly recommend it. One tip though if you’re planning to attend - don’t eat anything at least 4 hours before as you’ll need plenty of free space in your belly!

The whole experience was amazing! The monument is magnificent, the guide was polite and explaining enough and he was speaking slowly and everything was understandable. Still he was not talking all the time so that you could be able to enjoy the energy and the tour. I especially enjoyed the explanation in concern to converting the orthodox church to mosque. The history and the energy of this place are inspiring and if there is one ‘must see place’, i would highly recommend that one.

Everything was great. Hagia Sofia is definitely worth a visit, and our guide was excellent. She pointed out all the interesting details, as well as data from the history of Hagia Sofia, but also Istanbul. It was a 5 star activity

Prompt, polite, knowledgeable guide. Great overview of site, and good introduction to key areas. Time left at end to explore further or to re-visit areas of interest.

My guide to the Hagia Sophia was extremely knowledgeable and never made me feel rushed.