Old City Tour: Byzantine & Ottoman Relics

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Old City Tour: Byzantine & Ottoman Relics

Let's feel the daily life of the Ottoman Dynasty in their home at Topkapı Palace and see some of their final resting place just next to St. Sophia.

Duration: 8 Hours
Live Guide: English, French, Spanish, Italian, German, Arabic.
Pick-up Services: Pick up is available from centrally located hotels.


  • Explore the cultural treasures of the Ottoman and Byzantine Empires.
  • Visit the heart of the Old City.

Full Description

     Basically Sultan Ahmet&Old City Tour, the main point of Old City where the Ottoman and Byzantine Empires lived. St. Sophia the church of miracles and wisdom. Where it is built 3 times in its history, and the last one which is built by Justinian the Emperor could reach to present day with some renovations. Its four minarets have been built by four different Ottoman Sultans.
     Just as a neighbor of St. Sophia we can see the Sultan Ahmet Mosque know as Blue Mosque due to its blue Iznik tiles. It has in total 6 minarets. According to a myth, in one command of the Sultan when he says gold (means in Turkish Altın) the architect, Sedefkar Mehmet Agha understood six (means in Turkish Altı,) That's why it is said that is the reason of the 6 minarets. Just next to Blue Mosque we see the area where the old Hippodrome has been built and collapsed in times, but present-day we can see a part of the Hippodrome on the sea side of the area.
     Now there are Serpentine Column, Obelisk of Theodosius and German Fountain of Wilhelm II on Hippodrome's area. When it is seen these spectacular monuments in a few minutes walking distance we meet the Grand Covered Bazaar where is the most attractive shopping mall of Ottoman Empires with nearly 3600 shops selling leathers, golds, carpets, and antiques. (As upon request we can see an art demonstration of Turkish carpets).
     After all these tiring morning it goes well a good lunch at a local Turkish Restaurant. When the lunch finishes it is time to visit the residence of the Ottoman Family even if there are not at home. We will see there imperial treasury, sacred Islamic relics of Prophet Mohammed, kitchen, Chinese porcelain, weapons.
     Live guide commentary is not allowed in some special sections. In this option, we are unable to visit the Harem section of the Palace. The Sultan Tombs are located on the right side of St. Sophia. There are 5 tombs of 5 Ottoman Sultan and their families. It can be seen there the beautiful ceramic panel samples with colorful flower motives from the 16th century. When you enter their tombs you may think the things that you see are their coffins. But do not worry they are just their sarcophaguses.



  • Free pick up and drop off from/to city center hotels.
  • Entrance fees.
  • Guiding services.
  • A/C transportation.
  • Drinks.

Meeting point

Your hotel lobby.


Know Before You Go

  • Hagia Sophia is closed on Mondays and replaced with Underground Cistern.
  • Grand Covered Bazaar is closed on Sundays and replaced with authentic shops around Grand Bazaar.
  • Topkapı Palace is closed on Tuesdays and replaced with Tour to Byzantium.

About your Host

Plan Tours

Plan Tours, licenced “A Group” by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, is a major tour operator in Türkiye, based in İstanbul since 1984. (licensee for City Sightseeing Worldwide and Gray Line Worldwide, official travel agency of Turkish Airlines, member of TÜRSAB – Association of Turkish Travel Agencies and ICVB – İstanbul Convention and Visitors Bureau)...
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Customer Reviews

9.20 Superb Based on 5 reviews
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Jack - February 01, 2019

Our guide Ilker was very nice and funny. We had a nice bunch 7 people in total so it was very cosy and easy.

Billy - January 29, 2019

Very impressive and informative, small groups and a lovely Guide

Cecil - June 01, 2019

Car arrived to hotel approximately 15 minutes late. We began our tour as negative. I thought it will be a day spent for nothing. At the end of the when we returnedto our hotel the at the reception as why we are still laughing. Guide was so funny and we forgat the beginning of the tour. Hospitality is just a touch. The point is; not to hurt. We saw this in our guide s kindness.

Lynn - July 25, 2019

If you say YES, to learn 600 years in 8 hours, this works for you. One day passed suddenly. Very informative tour. Even if you don t like the history you do not get bored when you listen your guide.

Isabel - April 09, 2019

We were staying on Old City side. On our first day we saw these places but did not visit. I found this tour on our third day. These are not just buildings. The tangible side of a living history.

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