Istanbul Sapphire Combo Tour
- Cruise the Bosphorus and see where Asia and Europe meet
- Discover the Old City, from where the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires were ruled
- Enjoy a traditional Turkish lunch with your group
Cruise on a private boat to see the Bosphorus, one of the most beautiful sights in the world and explore the heart of the old city of Istanbul. From the bus, see Golden Horn, the arm of the Bosphorus and a natural harbor of the historical peninsula separating the old and the new parts of Istanbul where the first colonies settled during the Byzantine era - the residential area for Byzantine Jews, Italian traders and other non-muslim minorities. Drive along the traces of history at Balat, viewing the Metal Church of St. Stephen the Bulgarian, the Jewish Hospital (Or-Ahayim), the Fener Orthodox Patriarchate and the 22 km. long Byzantine City Walls - the strongest fortification of the middle ages. Check out the Spice Bazaar (Egyptian Bazaar) with its mystical smells and different aromas of various spices. Visit shops selling fruits, vegetables, fish, flowers and more. On your cruise, you will pass through the waterway separating Europe and Asia, with the possibility to take photographs of marble palaces and ancient wooden villas of Ottoman architecture next to modern residential and luxury apartments. From the boat, you will see Rumeli Fortress, a historical armament and unique example of military architecture built by the Conqueror to control and protect the Bosphorus.
Enjoy lunch at a typical Turkish restaurant and take a tour of the "Sultan Ahmet Center," the heart of the "Old City" from where the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires were ruled. Take in the splendor of the Hagia Sophia, the Church of Divine Wisdom, one of the greatest marvels of architecture constructed as a basilica in the 6th century by Emperor Justinian. See also the Blue Mosque, facing Hagia Sophia, famous with its blue Iznik tiles and six minarets, built in the name of Sultan Ahmet. See also the Hippodrome with its Serpentine Column, Obelisk of Theodosius and German Fountain of Wilhelm II.
Lastly, explore a unique place for art lovers - a family owned atelier producing handmade ceramics along with Hittite productions of terra cotta, quartz Seljuk, quartz Iznik (Nicea)-Ottoman productions and various examples from the Turkish tradition.
- Free pick up and drop off service from most central hotels
- Muesum entrance fees
- Donations to the Mosques
- Transportation with A/C vehicles
- Drinks at lunch
- Optional gratuities
- Infants 2 years of age and under: free
- Children 3-17 years of age: reduced
Pick-up from most central Istanbul hotels
- Every day at 9.00am
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