4 - 6 Hour
Istanbul Layover Morning Tour: If you have an early afternoon or midday departure flight and want to make the most of your stopover in Istanbul, our tour is the perfect option. This personalized and private tour begins as you’re greeted at the international arrival gate by our welcome host. From there, you’ll be escorted to a private driver and van at the pickup point. After meeting your driver and boarding your private vehicle, you’ll be transferred to the tour guide’s location in the old city within 1 hour. Many major attractions of Istanbul are conveniently situated in this area. Once you reach the old city, the transfer vehicle departs, and you’ll continue the rest of the tour on foot with your friendly and enthusiastic guide. At some points in the tour, public tramways and ferries may be used to save time or just for experience. Depending on your layover duration, you can request your guide to arrange either a proper Turkish breakfast or a quick snack along the way. Then, it’s time to explore the iconic sites of Istanbul’s Old City at your own pace, including the Byzantine Hippodrome, Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern, and the Grand Bazaar. Finally, you’ll be transferred back to the airport with ample time for security procedures and reaching your gate on time, as we always ensure.
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 breakfast or famous turkish coffee 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 to embark on a guided exploration with our licensed tour guide. Delve into the architectural, religious, and political facets of what's often considered the 8th wonder of the world. Today, Hagia Sophia serves a dual purpose, functioning as an active mosque for Muslim worshippers and a museum for international visitors. Please note that the admission fee is 850 TL or 28 USD. The duration of this enlightening experience is approximately 45 minutes. Admission ticket not included.
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 600 TL or 20 USD Duration: 30 minutes Admission Ticket Not Included
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
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.
We offer airport pickup services starting as early as 6:00 AM on weekdays and 6:30 AM on weekends.