DAY 1 Flight to Istanbul
Arrival at Istanbul Atatürk Airport. Meet PAKERO TRAVEL representative and transfer to the hotel. Welcome meeting. Dinner at the hotel at Taksim Square, the center of new town. (D)
DAY 2 Full Day Istanbul City Tour
We begin our day with a tour of the Sultan Ahmed square, located at the heart of the “Old City” from where the Byzantine and the Ottoman Empires were ruled from. We will walk the Hippodrome square, which was the epicenter of the sportive events and political activities of Constantinople in Roman and Byzantium periods. We will see and talk about the histories of the Obelisk of Theodosius, the Serpentine Column and the German Fountain of Wilhelm II. Next we enter the Turkish Islamic Arts Museum, which is located in the 16th century Palace of İbrahim Pasha. Exhibitions include centuries old handicraft examples of textiles, tiles, manuscripts, calligraphy and carpentry. Then we take a short walk to the Blue Mosque, famous with its blue Iznik tiles and with its unique 6 minarets, built in the early 17th century. Next we visit the Hagia Sophia, one of the greatest marvels of the art & architecture history, constructed as the patriarchate cathedral in the 6th century by the Emperor Justinian. Lunch in a local restaurant. After lunch our next stop will be the Topkapı Palace complex with beautifully decorated gardens and impressive examples of Turkish architecture that housed the Ottoman Royalty and their unprecedented collections of imperial treasury, Chinese porcelains, weapons, calligraphy, and holy relics for over four centuries. The final destination of the day will be the narrow alleys of the Grand Covered Bazaar for exploring its maze of 4000 shops for an authentic oriental shopping experience.
DAY 3 Full Day Istanbul City Tour
We start our tour with a panoramic drive along the old city walls dating back to the 5th century and renowned as one of the greatest examples of a fortification system ever build to defend a city. Next; a short drive to Chora Museum, a small church that was decorated with the most beautiful biblical mosaic panels and frescoes in the 14th century. After visiting the Chora we will be heading towards a 17th century mall called ‘the Egyptian Spice Bazaar’ which still functions as a spice and dried foods market with mystical smells and aromas, spreading around from hundreds of shops selling spices, fruits, vegetables, nuts, flowers, fish… Free time will be allocated for shopping in this bazaar. Lunch in a local restaurant. We end the day up with a relaxing Bosphorus Cruise, through the waterway separating the two continents, Asia and Europe, with its picturesque views of marble palaces, 15th century castles and ancient wooden mansions of the Ottoman architecture. Dinner at a local restaurant. Overnight in Istanbul. (B, L, D)
DAY 4 Full Day Istanbul City Tour
Today we will discover the Asian part of Istanbul. Our day will begin with the panoramic drive on the Bosphorus Bridge that connects Asia to Europe. Our first site to visit on the Asian side will be The Beylerbeyi Palace. This beautiful 19th century water front palace was a summer home for the Ottoman royalty and their royal visitors from other countries. You will be listening to the stories of the past of the palace as you walk through the magnificently decorated reception halls, rooms and gardens. For the lunch we take a short drive to Kadıköy district center, the most vibrant market place of Istanbul where we will be mixing up with the locals for some great culinary experiences. After lunch we cross the Bosphorus back to Europe by a public ferry and meet with the tour bus and drive to the mosque of Suleiman the Magnificent, built in the 16th century by Sinan the master architect of the Ottoman Empire and since then has been recognized as the finest example of the Ottoman classical mosque architecture. Tonight you can join to an optional folkloric and belly dancer show in a first class restaurant serving dinner. (B)
DAY 5 Flight Back to Home
Take the last drive to the airport to take the flight to back home.
“For pricing and more planning details contact to Pakero Travel”