Immerse in Istanbul's rich heritage on this 8.5-hour walking tour of the UNESCO-listed Old City. Discover the Hagia Sophia cathedral-mosque, the vast Blue Mosque, and the Roman-era Hippodrome. Wander the grounds, courtyards, and chambers of Topkapi Sarayi, where Ottoman sultans held their court, and shop for souvenirs at the legendary Grand Bazaar.
Your guide will collect you from your hotel around 8am in climate-controlled comfort to embark on a walking tour of Istanbul's Sultanahmet, the heart of the Old City and both Byzantine and Ottoman Empires. Your first stop is the 1500-year-old Hagia Sophia, with its grand, gilded dome: your guide will explain its rich heritage and history.
Next, stroll to the Blue Mosque, with its six slender minarets. Built for Sultan Ahmet I in the seventeenth century, it's one of the best-preserved examples of Ottoman architecture.
Continue to Istanbul's Hippodrome, once the site of epic chariot races, and also the center of Byzantine life for a thousand years. Your guide will explain the countless dramas that have unfurled on the site.
Stop at the historic Caferaga Medresesi to learn about traditional handicrafts and music, before breaking for lunch at a local restaurant. Your next stop is Topkapi Sarayi, the home of the Ottoman sultans, their harem, and their eunuchs for around 400 years.
Finally, delve into the stalls and alleyways of the Grand Bazaar, one of the most famous markets in the world. Haggle for jewelry, leather, or carpets, or simply window shop. Your tour finishes at 5pm in central Sultanahmet.