After breakfast, check out from your hotel as we will not be back in time. Your luggage will be stored. We depart at 8:30am for your guided Istanbul city tour.
Topkapi Palace: Beginning from the Mehmed the Conqueror, the Topkapi Palace which was the official residential of the Ottoman Sultans until the Sultan Abdulmecid the thirty-first Sultan’s time has been used as a center for the state administration, education and art of the Empire approximately 400 years. The palace is full of examples of Ottoman architecture and also contains large collections of porcelain, robes, weapons, shields, armor, Ottoman miniatures, Islamic calligraphic manuscripts and murals, as well as a display of Ottoman treasure and jewelry.
Sultanahmet Imperial Mosque: The mosque, built between 1609 and 1616, is popularly known as the Blue Mosque for the blue tiles adorning the walls of its interior. With its six minarets and a great cascade of domes, the mosque is a worthy sibling to Ayasofya (Hagia Sophia). Pope Benedict XVI visited the Sultan Ahmed Mosque on 30th November 2006 during his visit to Turkey. It marks only the second papal visit in history to a Muslim place of worship.
Hippodrome: Today the area is officially called Sultan Ahmet Square, and is carefully maintained by the Turkish authorities. The course of the old racetrack has been indicated with paving, although the actual track is some 2 m below the present surface. The surviving monuments of the Spina, the two obelisks and the Serpentine Column, now sit in holes in a landscaped garden. The German Fountain, an octagonal domed fountain in neo-Byzantine style, which was constructed by the German government in 1900 to mark the German Emperor Wilhelm II’s visit to Istanbul in 1898, is located at the northern entrance to the Hippodrome area, right in front of the Blue Mosque.
Spice Bazaar: The Spice Bazaar, or Egyptian Bazaar is one of the oldest bazaars in the city. Located in Eminonu, it is the second largest covered shopping complex after the Grand Bazaar. The air here is filled with the enticing aromas of cinnamon, caraway, saffron, mint, thyme and every other conceivable herb and spice.
Please make your own arrangements for departure transfers or simply ask TravelShop Turkey staff.