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October 2, 2018

Istanbul

Istanbul is the most spectacular city to visit as there are so many phenomenal things to see. Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace are  just one of the highlights of Istanbul. Join a local tour in this beautiful city.

Explore Istanbul with one of our local tour. Istanbul is the onliest city in the world that stands upon two continents: Asia and Europe. It has been the capital of the world’s largest three empires. Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires between the 4th and till the 20th centuries. Besides that, it is a transcontinental city as it is on the Bosphorus waterway in northwest Turkey. It is between the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara. Additionally Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque and Topkapi Palace are located in the old city.

From the  Judas tree color of Zeyrek Mosque (Monastery of Christ Pantakrator) and sacred shrine of Eyüp Sultan. Furthermore to an immense nostalgia and the Sultan’s number one hermitage on Golden Horn.

Natural Naval harbour of the Byzantines called as Golden Horn. Due to its hornlike shape and golden reflection of the glittering waves under the beautiful sunshine when observed from the hill tops.

It is metropolitan with a population of nearly 15 million people. As matter of fact, it is the financial, industrial and cultural capital of Turkey.

Sultanahmet Mosque, Istanbul

Blue Mosque, Istanbul by R. Erman Tezgör

If you have only one day in Istanbul. First of all start with Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace and Blue Mosque.

Start a local tour from the Galata, walk down to Karaköy to walk across the Galata Bridge. Moreover, you see the bridge is full of fishermen. Galata Bridge is the center point of Istanbul’s stirring and rolling everyday life. During the day and early evening a constant stream of pedestrians and traffic runs across the bridge among Eminönü and Karaköy. There are many restaurants on the lower level of the bridge too. In addition you will see cafes with hubble bubble where you can sit down and enjoy the sea view.

Sarayburnu is  just besides the Galata Bridge where the Bosphorus and Golden Horn connect and pour together to the Sea of Marmara.

Topkapi Palace, Old City of Istanbul

Topkapi Palace, Istanbul by R. Erman Tezgör

A Walk Through the Old City of Istanbul

If you look uphill from Sarayburnu, you will see the Topkapi Palace. Just follow the tram tracks and turn left after the Gülhane tram stop to enter Gülhane Park. Walk up to the right through the cobbled stone street, pass the Istanbul Archaeological Museums. Thereafter, get in the charming gardens of the Topkapi Palace.

Topkapi Palace

The Topkapi Palace was first official imperial residence of the Sultans during the Ottoman period. Many written sources affirm that the construction of the palace started around 1459. It continually grew and changed just like a living organism. Hence, Topkapi Palace is not a building, it is a complex Don’t miss the Holy relics and Harem Apartments. After you visit the palace, you walk back and exit from the .gate. Then to the right of the Palace, you will see the stunning structure of Hagia Sophia. Continue touring in the old city. Right across the Hagia Sophia, you will see another structure, the Blue Mosque or Sultanahmet Mosque. Book Now

Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia is one of the most prominent temples of the Byzantine Empire.  Byzantine historians claimed that Saint Sophia was built during the reign of Constantinus the 1st 324-337. This structure which had the blueprint of a basilica, burnt down in 532 during the Nika rebellion. Then Emperor Justinianus constructed the church in 527-565 and built the Hagia Sophia that we see today.

Especially, the majestic dome of the Hagia Sophia is truly amazing. This building alone, for a thousand years the biggest on earth. Hagia Sophia was used as a church for 916 years and as a mosque for 481 years. Even this justifies a trip to Istanbul. The church of Hagia Sophia or Holy Wisdom, later the mosque of Ayasofya and since 1935 a museum.  Book Now

Blue Mosque

The Blue Mosque is one of the most outstanding landmarks of Istanbul with its six minarets. Further more, Blue Mosque is one of the most famous monuments of Turkey. Inside the Blue Mosque, there are more than 20.000 astonishing pieces of glazed Iznik tiles. The name of the Blue Mosque came from its blue glassy Iznik tiles. Also, it is the only historical mosque built with six minarets. Book Now

Around the Hippodrome

Blue Mosque is located on the site of the ancient Hippodrome. Hippodrome, one of the most popular monuments of Byzantine Empire. Next to the Hippodrome, there is the Palace of Ibrahim Paşa which is now the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts.

Across the tramline from Hagia Sophia, you will see the Basilica Cistern. The most visible of architecture masterpieces, it is the most invisible. Above all, Basilica Cistern is a substructure originated to hold water. Furthermore lots of it, to please the thirsty community.

At the South West corner of the Hippodrome, there is a tiny street which will take you Su Terazisi street. You will find Sokullu Mehmet Paşa Mosque which is possibly the most beautiful of the smaller mosques of Istanbul. Even more this tiny masterpiece built by the Great Architect Sinan. After you see this beautiful mosque, you can walk down to the street and find ‘SS. Sergius and Bacchus’ now called Little Hagia Sophia Mosque, converted from one of the most beautiful Byzantine churches in the city, now it is an active mosque. Moreover, it has a beautiful courtyard where you can relax and have a Turkish coffee or tea.

Join a local tour

BookMeGuide.com expertise private and specialty tours in Istanbul. Moreover, proudly presents services that scales from an Istanbul local tour to walking tours to excursions outside the city.  Tours inside the modern districts and heap urban grounds of the city to the assorted tiny and glamorous neighborhoods.

Old City in Istanbul

You will take a stroll around Sultanahmet and the Hippodrome. Moreover, visit most of the mosques, monuments, obelisks and museums. Also, fell the buzz of the Grand Bazaar and Spice Market where you find valuables and upbeat bargains. Allow yourself over to the rashness and haste of Eminönü’s coast markets. Then climb up to the great architect Sinan’s hilltop mosques. Also, see the amazing Süleymaniye and catchy Şehzade. Then you will see in their shade is the zealously tiles of Rüstem Paşa Mosque. Catch the horn of heaps. Zigzag your path over the old walled city. Let the ferry take you to the stream.

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