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Day trips from Istanbul

Our most recommended Istanbul Day Trips From

Istanbul: Bosphorus Sunset Cruise on a Luxurious Yacht

1. Istanbul: Bosphorus Sunset Cruise on a Luxurious Yacht

Take a sunset cruise on the Bosphorus Strait to see the European as well as Asian half of Istanbul. Jump aboard a luxury yacht from Kabatas and keep your cameras ready as you cross mosques, palaces, and seafront villas. Learn about the city’s centuries-long history through your guide. Start the tour at Kabatas Pier aboard an elegant yacht, drinking traditional Turkish drinks, and nibbling on canapés and fruit from tastefully arranged platters. Glide by palaces and minarets as you sail along the Bosphorus.  When dusk sets in, feel the soothing breeze from the Sea of Marmara on your skin as the sky puts on a colorful show, tinted with shades of orange and rose. Few places in the world are as mesmerizing as Istanbul in the setting sun. Hear the muezzin's call from a towering minaret. Cruise past majestic palaces and villas along the strait’s banks. Breathe in the legacy of ancient Byzantium, Constantinople, and the mighty Ottoman Empire with each breath of fresh salty air. Kick back and ride gentle waves in the comfort of a yacht. Watch the city and its iconic landmarks pass by, which is the perfect way to unwind after a busy day of sightseeing. End the experience at Karakoy Pier.

Istanbul: Best of the City Private Full-Day Walking Tour

2. Istanbul: Best of the City Private Full-Day Walking Tour

This private experience is the perfect introduction to Istanbul for first-time visitors. Enjoy a guided full-day tour to discover the best of the city. The tour can be fully customized to suit your needs, simply tell your guide what interests you the most.  Visit the historic Hippodrome, the exquisite Blue Mosque and the iconic Hagia Sophia. Experience the lavish lifestyles of the Ottoman Sultans with a tour of Topkapi Palace, or browse the colorful stalls of the Grand Bazaar. The choice is yours. Benefit from pickup and drop-off at your centrally-located hotel. With your private guide you’ll enjoy priority entrance to all the sights, so standing you won’t waste time standing in queues.

From Istanbul: Day Trip to Cappadocia with Flight and Lunch

3. From Istanbul: Day Trip to Cappadocia with Flight and Lunch

Tour the most important landmarks of Cappadocia along with its fascinating rock formations on an all-day guided tour. Get picked up from your hotel in Istanbul and arrive at the airport for a 1.5-hour flight to Kayseri. Meet your local driver and enjoy the ride to Cappadocia, where you will join other group participants and begin your tour. Explore the Goreme Open Air Museum and study the many rock-cut churches from as far back as the 10th century. Next, visit Devrent Valley, famous for its quirky animal-shaped rocks, and feel like you're in another world. Head to Pasabag, also known as Monks Valley, and see the chapel dedicated to St. Simeon along with a hermit's shelter. Admire some of the most striking fairy chimneys with a unique mushroom shape. Stop for a typical Turkish lunch in Avanos. Then learn to make pottery with local experts. Take in the best views of the fairy chimneys from Goreme Panorama before marveling at more magnificent landscapes from Uchisar Rock Castle. Drive back to Kayseri for your return flight to Istanbul where your driver will greet you and take you back to your hotel.

Troy: Full-Day Tour from Istanbul

4. Troy: Full-Day Tour from Istanbul

This tour is specially designed for those visitors who want a more detailed tour with an expert guide, and who wish to walk in the footsteps of characters from Homer's Illiad and learn of how a long lost city was rediscovered. Start the tour at the door of your hotel in Istanbul, where you will be met by our driver before boarding a specially configured bus, designed to provide more space and greater leg room for your comfort. On arrival in the town of Eceabat, once the ancient city of Madytos, located on the shores of the Dardanelles Strait, stop to enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. After lunch, your guide will accompany you on a 25-minute ferry trip across the Dardanelles to Çanakkale, where you will board the tour bus for the drive to nearby Troy. During the tour, your guide will explain the mythology surrounding Troy, as well as the history and discoveries of the archaeological excavations from its discovery by Heinrich Schliemann in the 1870s to the present day. 9 cities have been discovered built one on top of the other dating back to before 3500 BC, with the city made famous by Homer in his book the Iliad describing the 10-year war being just one of the layered settlements. Not only will you see the still impressive defensive walls of the ancient city and learn the story of the Trojan War, but you will also be able to walk past the ruins of everyday houses dating back more than 3000 years, and walk the same paths as the people of the city did three millennia ago. Following the tour, re-board the tour bus to be carried back to Çanakkale, from where you will return by ferry to Eceabat. After a brief break, board the bus for the return trip to Istanbul, to be dropped at your hotel door.

2-Day Cappadocia Tour From Istanbul Optional Balloon Flight

5. 2-Day Cappadocia Tour From Istanbul Optional Balloon Flight

Start the first day by visiting Devrent Valley, also known as 'Imagination Valley', this is the most surreal-looking landscape. Your next stop will be Pashabagi also called the Monks Valley. Proceed to Avanos the pottery centre of Cappadocia, this village is set on the banks of the Red River. You will have lunch in a local restaurant before continuing to Goreme Open Air Museum. The world’s most important Byzantine cave churches are found in these once remote valleys where monks and nuns pursued monastic life from the 3rd century on. Here you can see the best preserved Byzantine cave wall paintings and frescos from the Iconoclastic period through to the end of Seljuk rule.  Then admire a spectacular view over Goreme, you can see fairy chimneys, rock formations, and cave houses. You have the option of also booking a pre-sunrise hot-air balloon flight for the next morning. While your guides complete the final preparations for your flight, you are served breakfast. Your pilot will show you all the unique beauties of Cappadocia from the Red Valley to Goreme. While witnessing an amazing sunrise up in the air, you will get to see perfect panoramic views of Urgup, Goreme, Ortahisar,Uchisar, Avanos, and Nevsehir. After the landing, a celebration with refreshing drinks (non-alcoholic) will be waiting for you. On the Blue tour you hike along the Red and Rose Valley, the most breathtakingly and mysteriously beautiful valleys in the region. Conclude your hike at the Cavusin Cave Village. Marvel at the rock castle and troglodyte dwellings where people lived until the 20th Century. Enjoy lunch in a local restaurant. Descend towards the center of the earth with a trip to the Underground City of Kaymakli, one of the largest and deepest of Cappadocia’s many such settlements. Discover this underground city and its stables, cellars, storage rooms, refectories, churches, and wineries. Visit the Pigeon Valley. See spectacular view of dovecotes (pigeon or dove houses), old abandoned cave homes, and old Greek houses of Uchisar and Ortshisar Castle, as well as the biggest mass of fairy chimneys in Cappadocia.

Full-Day Private Pamukkale and Hierapolis Tour from Istanbul

6. Full-Day Private Pamukkale and Hierapolis Tour from Istanbul

After being picked up between 5:00 AM and 5:30 AM from your hotel in Istanbul, you will be driven to the airport where you will catch a flight to Denizli. Meet your private guide in Denizli and make your first visit to Pamukkale.  The beautiful white cascades of Pamukkale is well worth a trip to see eye candy of a natural site. Walk through Pamukkale and find a chance to relax in the hot waters of the ancient pool. Built just above the hot spring waters of Pamukkale, Hierapolis is a mighty ancient city and a UNESCO world heritage site. Hierapolis was built in the 2nd century B.C. by the King of Pergamon and became a Roman city. The city was famous for several important sanctuaries and also as an important trade center. Hierapolis was famous for purple dye and cloth making and it is still famous for textile products. Afterwards, drive back to Denizli airport to make your flight back to Istanbul. The Istanbul tour guide will met you at the Istanbul airport and transfer you to your hotel in Istanbul.

From Istanbul: Day Trip to Ephesus with Flight and Lunch

7. From Istanbul: Day Trip to Ephesus with Flight and Lunch

See the highlights of Ancient Ephesus including the popular pilgrimage sites such as the Temple of Artemis and the House of the Virgin Mary. Get picked up from your hotel in Istanbul and arrive at the airport for a 1.5-hour flight to Izmir. Meet your local driver and enjoy the ride to Selcuk, where you will join other group participants and begin your tour. Start off with a visit to the House of the Virgin Mary, a popular Catholic pilgrimage site known as the house where Mary spent her final days. Contınue on to explore Ancient Ephesus, one of the best preserved classical cities in the Eastern Mediterranean and once considered the most important trading center in the region. Marvel at the Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Feel like you’ve stepped back in time as you walk along the streets of Ephesus and admire beautiful monuments such as the third largest library of the ancient world and the largest Roman theater on the Asian continent. Drive back to Izmir for your return flight to Istanbul where your driver will greet you and take you back to your hotel.

Sapanca Lake and Masukiye Full-Day Tour from Istanbul

8. Sapanca Lake and Masukiye Full-Day Tour from Istanbul

Enjoy a full-day tour away from the hustle and bustle of Istanbul on a day trip to the Gulf of Izmit and the freshwater lake of Lake Sapanca. Following a pick-up from your hotels in the city center, transfer to Lake Sapanca for a walk in nature. Located on a tectonic hole, between Izmit Bay and the Adapazari Meadow, Lake Sapanca is known for its scenic beauty. Continue to the picturesque village of Masukiye to enjoy lunch under a canopy of trees. Then, drive to a waterfall before climbing Kartepe Mountain. Hike in the mountains, or take the ski lift if you prefer. Discover a popular area for picnics in summer and ski breaks in the winter. Transfer back to your hotel in Istanbul for the end of tour services.

Gallipoli Full-Day Tour from Istanbul

9. Gallipoli Full-Day Tour from Istanbul

Take a trip into the past on a full-day tour of Gallipoli from Istanbul, traveling by air-conditioned minibus to the battlefields and war memorials of the ANZAC campaign of the Battle of Gallipoli during World War I. Depart Istanbul early in the morning, stopping en route for refreshments. Upon arrival on the Gallipoli Peninsula, your tour will focus on the ANZAC sector of the infamous battlefields. Stop at 11 different points of interest to learn more about the fateful events of the Australian and New Zealand troops, including ANZAC Cove where the troops first landed and set up base. Go to Beach Cemetery, where many of the soldiers who died during the Battle of Gallipoli were buried. Pause to reflect at the Lone Pine Memorial, one of 5 memorials on the peninsula that commemorate servicemen of the former British Empire killed in the campaign but who have no known grave. Visit the battlefields of The Nek and Chunuk Bair, where experienced guides will paint a picture that brings the war to life. Then, return to Istanbul by comfortable 25-seat minibus for a hotel drop off and the end of the tour services.

Ephesus and Pamukkale: Day Trip by Plane from Istanbul

10. Ephesus and Pamukkale: Day Trip by Plane from Istanbul

Enjoy a full-day package trip that takes you on a guided tour from Istanbul to 2 of Turkey’s most fascinating attractions: the ancient cities of Ephesus and Hierapolis. Spend a full day marveling at ancient, multi-cultural architecture and monuments without worrying about any of the details of traveling and organizing. You’ll start your day with pickup from your hotel in Istanbul, bright and early at 5:15 AM for a transfer to the airport for your 7:30 AM flight to Izmir. Upon arrival, you’ll be greeted and brought to Ephesus to meet with your guide and take your Ancient City Tour. Ephesus is an iconic former-Greek city, built in the 10th century, famed for its temples, monuments, and theaters. Known as the commercial, religious, and social center of antiquity, this is sure to be the highlight to your whole visit to Turkey. Explore the city’s combination of Greek, Roman and Byzantine markers of civilization. Visit the Fountains of Trajan, Polio, the Temples of Hadrian and Domition, the Library of Celcius, the Great Theater (with capacity for 24,000 spectators), the Temple of Artemis, and the House of the Virgin Mary.   On the second half of your day, you’ll be taken to Pamukkale, known for its natural thermal spring waters. Pamukkale means “cotton castle” in Turkish—due to the chemical properties of the water, pure white colored travertines and stepped water terraces have been created on the mountain’s slope, resembling piles of cotton. Visit the ancient city of Hierapolis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The highlight of this site will be the Sacred Pool, which you can enter if you choose. There, shallow thermal waters ripple over a wonderful scattering of ancient Roman ruins that lie beneath. You’ll also see its Necropolis, which contains 1200 gravestones, including that of Marcus Aurelius Ammianos.   After your tour, you’ll be transferred back to Denizli Airport for your 7:00 PM flight to Istanbul, and then taken back to your hotel.

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What people are saying about Istanbul

Overall rating

4.3 / 5

based on 683 reviews

Our guide, Josh, was very knowledgeable, nice and informative. We saw the main parts of the old city, it all took adeguate time and we were never rushed or stayed more than necessary. It was very interesting. Bring gokd walking shoes!

Excellent tour! The tour guide Natchi was well read and informed and providing a detailed account of all sites visited! Very impressed. Would recommend this service. Thank you for a incredible experience

Absolutely fantastic! From the transportation from Istanbul to our guide! I am not really into war but our guide made it so interesting that I would go back in a heartbeat. Can’t recommend it enough!

Good value for money. It was not a luxury yacht as mentioned but respectable. Left later due to stragglers, so yacht did not moor for sunset. Drinks and tastings were up to par. Attentive staff.

It was a great experience to see the city from the water! Everyone was very nice and we really enjoyed the tour!