Guided tour

Istanbul Classics Tour

3.5 / 5

50 reviews

Activity provider: Gray Line Turkey

Istanbul Classics Tour

Activity provider: Gray Line Turkey
Likely to sell out

From US$ 50.98 per person

Likely to sell out

Enjoy a half-day tour of Istanbul and explore the Byzantine and Ottoman heart of the Old City. See Istanbul icons such as the Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, and Hippodrome, and stroll through the lively Grand Bazaar looking for souvenir gifts.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund
Reserve now & pay later
Keep your travel plans flexible—book your spot and pay nothing today.
Covid-19 precautions
Special health and safety measures apply. Learn more
Duration 3 hours
Check availability to see starting times.
Skip the line through a separate entrance
Live tour guide
English, German, Spanish

Experience

Highlights
  • Visit the monumental Hagia Sophia
  • See the splendid Blue Mosque, icon of Istanbul
  • Go to the Hippodrome and follow in the footsteps of chariot races and athletic events
  • Stroll through the lively Grand Covered Bazaar and pick up a souvenir bargain
  • Enjoy complimentary pick-up from all centrally located Istanbul hotels
Full description
Take a 3.5-hour tour of Istanbul’s "Sultan Ahmet Center," and discover the heart of the Old City, the seat of the former Byzantine and Ottoman Empires. During the guided tour, you will visit some of Istanbul’s major icons, including the Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, and the Hippodrome Skip the line at the magnificent Hagia Sophia, one of the greatest marvels of architecture, constructed as a basilica in the 6th century by Emperor Justinian. Opposite the Hagia Sophia lies the Blue Mosque, also known as the Sultanahmet Mosque, famous for the stunning blue İznik tiles that furnish its interior. Its 6 minarets stand proudly over the horizon, and can be seen from all across the city. You will also visit the ancient Hippodrome, center of chariot races, athletic events, and political activities in ancient times. See the Serpentine Column, the Obelisk of Theodosius, and the German Fountain of Wilhelm II, among other superb monuments. Use your free time to head into the crowds at the Grand Covered Bazaar, Istanbul’s most attractive shopping center, and the largest souk in the world. Explore more than 4,000 shops selling everything from antiques, to jewelry, to gold, carpets, leatherware, and souvenir items. Try your hand at haggling and see if you can walk away with a bargain!
Includes
  • Tour guide
  • Air-conditioned transportation
  • Skip-the-line entrance ticket to Hagia Sophia
  • Pick-up service from centrally-located Istanbul hotels
  • Hotel drop off
Covid-19 precautions

You must book this activity online because the ticket office is closed

Safety measures in place
  • All areas that customers touch are frequently cleaned
  • You must keep social distance while in vehicles
  • The number of visitors is limited to reduce crowds
Traveler requirements
  • You must bring your own headphones
  • You are required to bring and wear a mask
  • You will receive a mandatory temperature check

Select participants and date

Participants

Date

Meeting point

Guests should come to the meeting point which is in front of the Tamara Restaurant or The Marmara Taksim Hotel at 08:00.

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Important information

What to bring

  • Passport or ID card
  • Comfortable shoes

Not allowed

  • Pets
  • Oversize luggage
  • Smoking
  • Luggage or large bags
  • Alcohol and drugs

Know before you go

  • The Grand Covered Bazaar is closed on Sundays - on this day of the week it will be replaced with a visit to an authentic shop
  • On Friday mornings before 1:00 PM, the Blue Mosque is only visited from the outside because of the noon prayer
  • Please note that there may be long waiting times for entry to the Blue Mosque
  • Pick-up is only available for centrally located Istanbul hotels
  • Free shuttle pick-up is offered between 8:00 AM and 9:00 AM (depending on the location of your hotel), and takes 45 to 60 minutes
  • Please note that on the afternoon tour you will visit other authentic shops instead of the Grand Bazaar
  • Hagia Sophia is closed on Mondays. On this day of the week, this part of the tour will be replaced by a visit to the Yerebatan Cistern. Hagia Sophia is not closed on Mondays on high season
Customer reviews

Overall rating

3.5 /5

based on 50 reviews

Review summary

  • Guide
    4/5
  • Transportation
    3.5/5
  • Value for money
    3.3/5
  • Safety
    4.3/5

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Star rating:

Great guide, terrible organization

The tour was very good and our guide excellent and knowledgeable. The organization however was a disaster. We were picked up from our hotel at 08.00 (as instructed in the email) in a bus, we were driven around the old city picking other guests, we met other buses near the sea, where an exchange of passengers was done between the buses and finally we arrived at the start point of the tour at 09.00 to realize that it was just 100 meters from our hotel! We were never offered the option of just meeting the group at the start point of the walking tour at 09.00. This option was always offered to us in other tours we had in other European cities. No pick up from the hotel and drive around for hours, just meeting at the meeting point where the tour actually starts. We just woke early and spend one hour just sitting in a bus.

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December 7, 2017

Top quality short tour and guide!

An excellent short tour to experience the main attractions of Istanbul, Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque and the Grand Bazaar. The Basilica Cisterns too by the way. Very good guide (sadly forget the name!), he was very detailed and patiently explained everything the tour party posed. Fluent english. The pick-up and drop to the hotel too was efficient.

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November 19, 2016

Quick and summary, not excellent guide. Monuments with few descriptions, laughable museum approach. Rather disappointed by the Blue Mosque. Aghiasophia deserves but poorly visited.

February 24, 2019

Product ID: 2285