7 - 10 Hour
Private Layover 1 Day Tour in Istanbul; In this ultimate Istanbul city tour, the itinerary prepared for you to cover the major iconic attractions and try some local experiences in a 6 – 8 hour layover tour in Istanbul.
You will be greeted at the international arrival gate by the welcome host and you will be escorted to private driver & van at the pickup point. After meeting your driver and getting on your private vehicle, you will be transferred to the tour guide’s location in the old city in 1 Hour. Major attractions of Istanbul are situated in the same vicinity. After reaching the old city, the transfer vehicle will leave and thereafter, you will continue this walking tour with your friendly enthusiastic guide on foot. At some point, public tramways and ferries can be used in order to save time.
During your tour, you’ll explore the Roman Hippodrome and visit renowned monuments such as the Serpent Column, Walled Column, and Egyptian Obelisk. You’ll also have the opportunity to discover other iconic landmarks at your own pace, including the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern, Topkapı Palace, and your choice between the Grand Bazaar or Arasta Bazaar. The amount of time spent at each attraction will be tailored to your preferences.
Depending on your interests, your guide will arrange optional additions such as traditional Turkish breakfast, lunch, dinner Turkish Bath Experience or Bosphorus Ferry Ride, as time permits.
Once the tour has been concluded, you will be transferred back by private van and dropped off at the international departure’s gate or at your layover hotel.
After clearing passport control and customs, our Meet & Greet partner, M44, will be ready to meet you at exit gate No: 14, International arrival terminal. Once you have spotted the sign of M44 and shared your booking information, you will be accompanied to your driver and a private vehicle. Following meeting your driver and getting on the private vehicle, you will be transferred to your guide's location in the old city, where major attractions are grouped in the same vicinity. Duration: 45-60 minutes depending on traffic or whether it is a working day or not.
Tasting some local Turkish breakfast or famous turkish coffee or tea before starting the tour.
Stop At: Hippodrome The equivalent of Maximus Circus, city of Rome was imitated in new capital of Roman Empire as we call Byzantine Hippodrome; Hear the stories of glory chariot riders and amazed with monuments erected by the ambitious Roman engineers; Egyptian Obelisk, Serpent Column and Column of Constantine. Duration: 30 minutes Admission Ticket Free
Stop At: Blue Mosque As an operating mosque, your guide will take you inside of mosque complex in between praying times and help you to barrow a scarf or skirt if needed. it is closed until 14.30 pm on Fridays due to Friday service. Duration: 30 minutes Admission Ticket Free
Stop At Hagia Sophia. Walk through with our licensed tour guide and explore the 8th wonder of the world (possibly) from the aspects of architecture, religion and politics. Hagia Sophia is not a museum anymore since 2021 and visiting hours change based on praying times. It is closed until 14.30 pm on Fridays due to Friday service.
Stop At: Basilica Cistern As you walk down the stairs, you will see a palace looking underground water system built in 6th C. by Romans. Its massive size could store enough water to provide for Roman Palace and surrounding neighborhood until it was forgotten. Admission fee is 450 TL or 15 USD Duration: 30 minutes Admission Ticket Not Included
Explore the history of one of the world's longest-reigning empires with the guidance of our licensed experts as you visit the Topkapı Palace. This remarkable palace graces the tip of the historical peninsula and offers an expansive expanse with four courtyards. Inside, you'll discover the palace's various departments, including the Harem, Kitchens, Armory, Audience Hall, Council Hall, and numerous artifact halls. Marvel at the kiosks and soak in breathtaking views of the Bosphorus and Golden Horn. Please note that the palace remains closed on Tuesdays. Admission to this historical gem is priced at 550 TL or 20 USD, and the duration of the visit is approximately 120 minutes. Please be aware that admission tickets are not included in the tour.
Get the taste of rich Turkish Cuisine in local restaurants; Starter, Kebabs, Turkish Pizza (Lahmacun), Vegetarian options and more...
Grand Bazaar: The world's oldest shopping mall was built in 1460s by the order of Ottoman Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror, in order to generate income for maintaining their newly converted mosque. The city, being in the meeting point of oriental trade routes made the bazaar Grand and Famous. Today, with 3000 thousand shops offer huge range of colourful item from simple souvenirs to expensive items such as jewelry, carpets, mosaic lamps, magnets, leather. Grand Bazaar is closed on Sundays. Spice Market and Arasta Bazaar is open 7 days of week. Duration: 60 minutes Admission Ticket Free
This historic mosque has been in active use since 1556 and bears the name of its illustrious patron, the renowned Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent. Situated atop the third hill of the old city, it offers a captivating journey. A brief stroll from the Grand Bazaar, along the walls of Istanbul University, leads you to a guided experience. Here, you can pause and admire the breathtaking vistas of the Asian side and the modern city from the terrace.
Embark on a captivating Bosphorus sightseeing ferry ride and behold the city's breathtaking panorama from an entirely new perspective. As you sip on a glass of traditional Turkish tea, you'll relish the beauty of simultaneous views of the Old and the New. The duration of this delightful experience is approximately 90 minutes, and please note that admission tickets are not included.
You will be transferred back to the airport at least 2 hours prior to the departure flight. Please note that travelers can use the departure transfer at any set time, as the tour already includes 2-way airport/hotel transfer regardless of when it's needed. Feel free to ask the tour operator to adjust the requested departure transfer in the itinerary.
Yes, you are allowed to leave airport during layover as long as you will have a valid visa obtained.
Yes, the process is quite simple for passport holders from certain countries, including the US and Canada, to obtain their e-visa with just a few clicks online. To check the requirements and apply online, you can visit the official website of the Turkish Republic at https://www.evisa.gov.tr/en/.
Recommended minimum layover duration is 7 hours layover for international connected flight and 6 hours layover for domestic flights from Istanbul International Airport. We can accommodate business travelers with shorter layover duration.
For international flights, if the luggages are checked through to final destination, and already have your boarding pass, you will be dropped off 2 hours prior to departing flight. For domestic flights, 1 hours is suffice.
You can use attended baggage storage or baggage storage lockers that are available 24 hours a day in Istanbul Airport.
We offer airport pickup services starting as early as 6:00 AM on weekdays and 6:30 AM on weekends and pickup service from the city hotels as early as 06:30 AM on weekdays and 07:00 AM on weekends.
The longest guided tour spans 8 hours, including the tour itself, along with 2 hours allocated for airport and city transfers. We can also arrange supplementary activities to fill any free time you may have and offer flexible return transfers to either your layover hotel or the airport at your preferred time of day. Depending on the arrival and departure times of your flights, we can customize a tour plan spanning 2 days to align with your specific interests.