Chora Church

Chora Church: Our most recommended tours and activities

Istanbul: Tourist Pass with Over 75 Attractions & Services

1. Istanbul: Tourist Pass with Over 75 Attractions & Services

Save time and money with a convenient 2, 3, 5 or 7-day passport to Istanbul. The Istanbul Tourist Pass is an online city Pass that provides access to some of the city’s top sights, during the days you choose. It is the only city pass available that allows you to enjoy Istanbul in a simple, convenient, and fun way. All the passes include a chat service during available hours with professional guides over WhatsApp. By presenting your GetYourGuide voucher at the entrance, gain access to: • Hagia Sophia Guided Tour in English (check meeting point and tour schedule) • Topkapi Palace Museum Guided Tour in English (check meeting point and tour schedule) • Basilica Cistern Guided Tour in English (check meeting point and tour schedule) • Dolmabahçe Palace Guided Tour in English (check meeting point and tour schedule) • Blue Mosque Guided Tour (check meeting point and tour schedule) • Grand Bazar Guided Tour (check meeting point and tour schedule) • Hagia Irene Museum in English (check meeting point and tour schedule) • Turkish and Islamic Arts Museum Guided Tour in English (check meeting point and tour schedule) • Tiled Pavilion Museum (check meeting point and tour schedule) • Museum of the Ancient Orient (check meeting point and tour schedule) • Photoshoot in Ottoman attire (1 per/pass, not per/person) • Şerefiye Cistern Guided Tour • Madame Tussauds Wax Museum • SEA Life Aquarium • Sapphire Observation Deck with 4D Skyride Simulation • Museum of Illusions • Hop-on hop-off Bosphorus boat cruise (1-ring or 1-day, Bosphorus Strait or Golden Horn) • Bosphorus boat tour • Princes’ Islands boat trip • LEGOLand (adults cannot enter without a child) • Xtrem Aventures • Pera Museum • Dialogue in the Silence • Istanbul Airport Shuttle (One way) • Jungle & Dungeon & Safari • Sakıp Sabancı Museum • Upside Down House Photo Experience • Jungle & Dungeon & Safari (cannot be visited without children) • The Museum of Selfies • Dialogue in the Silence • Bursa Day trip • Sapanca Lake & Maşukiye Daily Tour • Istanbul Segway Tour • Emaar Aquarium and Underwater Zoo • Istanbul Toy Museum By making reservations in advance and presenting your GetYourGuide voucher, get access to the following:• Discounted 1-way airport transfer. You are allowed to choose the direction • Whirling dervishes ceremony (requires a reservation in advance) • Bosphorus dinner cruise. Dinner and shows included (requires a reservation in advance) • Dialogue in the Dark • Combined Miniaturk Park Istanbul and Eyup Sultan Mosque and Pierre Loti Tour • Discounted COVID PCR Test • Discounted unlimited Wi-Fi device

Istanbul Half-Day Historic Tour of Byzantium

2. Istanbul Half-Day Historic Tour of Byzantium

This 4-hour tour takes you back to the days when Istanbul was capital of the Byzantine Empire, a period of more than 1,000 years, from the 4th to the 15th-Century AD. You will start at the natural naval harbor of the Byzantines, named the Golden Horn due to its hornlike shape and golden reflection under sunshine when viewed from the hill tops. Visit the Patriarchate at Fener, the seat of Orthodox Christianity after Constantine The Great declared Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire. Continue to the Church of Panagia of Blachernae, the best known and most celebrated shrine of the Holy Virgin, famed for its “Hagiasma” (holy water) and the “Hagion Lousma” (sacred bath). You will stop at St. Savior in Chora, now the Kariye Museum, but originally a Byzantine monastery with fantastic mosaics and frescoes that portray scenes from the bible. Next you will go to Anemas Dungeons, part of the Blachernae Palace and unique in the world for its architectural structure. Used as a prison for high ranking statesmen, it consisted of 14 separate dungeons, each with 2 basements below sea-level. Tour Tekfur Palace, built in the 12th-Century, adjacent to the city walls, and the only surviving pavilion of the Blachernae Palace. Finally you will see the remains of the 5th-Century Byzantine city walls, which surrounded the acropolis of Byzantium and were 13 miles (22 kilometers) long, with 96 towers and 9 main gates.

Istanbul: 1, 2 or 3-Day Private Customizable Guided Tour

3. Istanbul: 1, 2 or 3-Day Private Customizable Guided Tour

Explore Istanbul according to your own interests on a tailor-made sightseeing tour. Meet your guide at your hotel or port and work together to create an itinerary that suits you best, leaving you satisfied that you have seen all of Istanbul. On 1st day, marvel at monuments from the Byzantine and Ottoman empires, such as Topkapi Palace, Blue Mosque, Grand Bazaar, Hagia Sophia and Byzantine Cistern. On 2nd day, take the public ferry to Bosphorus to see both Istanbul’s European and Asian sides. From here, visit Dolmabahce Palace, Taksim Square, Istiklal Street, Galata area and the Spice Market. On 3rd day, guide takes you on a walk through the streets of Fener-Balat neighboorhood. Enjoy a cable car ride and soak up views of Pierre Loti Hill, then visit Iron Church, and see the Suleymaniye Mosque. You can create your own itinerary with your tour guide on tour day, to have an idea, here you can see our suggested tour itineraries are below; Day 1 - Hagia Sophia, Hippodrome Square, Byzantine Cistern, Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace, Hagia Irene Church, Sogukcesme Street, Grand Bazaar Day 2 - Spice Market, Bosphorus Cruise, Dolmabahce Palace, Taksim Square, Istiklal Street, Cicek Passage, Galata Tower (from outside) Day 3 - Suleymaniye Mosque, Fener and Balat Districts, St. Stephen Church (Iron Church), Pierre Lotti Panoramic Hill, Rahmi Koc Museum (or alternative options)

Istanbul: Off-the-Beaten-Track Istanbul Fener and Balat

4. Istanbul: Off-the-Beaten-Track Istanbul Fener and Balat

This particular tour includes some of the unique places in the city but also which are difficult to visit on your own. The tour will take you to the roots of historic Istanbul with visits to the Muslim, Jewish, and Christian monuments. You will meet with your guide at 09.00 am at your hotel reception. The first stop is Suleymaniye Mosque was built on the order of Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent and constructed by the great Ottoman architect Sinan. Construction began in 1550, and the mosque was finished in 1557. The mosque is partly modeled on the style of a Byzantine basilica, particularly the Hagia Sophia, which was perhaps a conscious move by the sultan to create a continuity and a symbolic connection with the city's past. After the mosque, we will have a tea-coffee break at Kadinlar Pazari under the shadow of the aqueduct of Valens. An authentic square filled with "buryan kebab" restaurants. Walking along the aqueduct will end at one of the oldest and most influential churches, now a mosque in the city, Zeyrek Mosque or Monastery of the Pantocrator, A unique combination of two former Eastern Orthodox churches and a chapel. The Zeyrek Mosque is the second largest religious edifice after the Hagia Sophia, built by the Byzantines remaining in Istanbul. The next stop will be the Gul Mosque; Gul Mosque started life as the 11th-century Church of St Theodosia and was converted into a mosque by the Ottomans. We will then continue to the beautiful districts of Fener and Balat to discover the Aya Nikola Greek Orthodox Church before visiting the Fener Orthodox Patriarchate. The Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople is one of the fifteen autocephalous churches that compose the Eastern Orthodox Church. Since 1586 the Ecumenical Patriarchate has had its headquarters in the relatively modest Church of St George in the Fener district of Istanbul. Afterward, enjoy a break from sightseeing to have a drink. We will then wander around the labyrinth cobblestone streets of Balat to see Phanar Greek Orthodox College, this Fener landmark, known locally as Kirmizi Mektep for its castellated red-brick facade, still functions as a Greek school. Then we will visit Saint Mary of the Mongols, an Eastern Orthodox church in Istanbul. It is the only Byzantine church of Constantinople that has never been converted to a mosque, always remaining open to the Greek Orthodox Church. Please note that some visits will be only panoramic from outside because of the restoration works.

Istanbul Byzantine Monasteries Full-Day Tour with Lunch

5. Istanbul Byzantine Monasteries Full-Day Tour with Lunch

If you are fan of Byzantine Art and civilization and want to know more about Byzantium Empire, then this is the tour for you. Istanbul is the capital of the Byzantium Empire that rocked the world from the 4th to the 15th centuries. Today, walk in the footsteps of the Byzantine rulers who once called Istanbul home. Visit the St. Polyeuktos church ruins, Pantokrator Church, Aspar Cistern, Pammakaristous Church (Fethiye Camii), the Chapel of St. John the Forerunner,the Monastery of St. Saviour in Chora, and Tekfur Palace on this incredible walking tour. Byzantine art and civilization paved the way for the Renaissance and modern world as we know it today. The center of this empire rested right beneath your feet, and on your walking tour of Istanbul's greatest Byzantine heritage sights, your guide will point out the monasteries and ruins of Constantinople. You will discover mystery and legend buried deep in these stone houses, cisterns, dungeons, and palaces.

From Istanbul: 4-Day Small Group Istanbul & Cappadocia Tour

6. From Istanbul: 4-Day Small Group Istanbul & Cappadocia Tour

Your guide will meet you at your hotel between 08:00 and 08:30. Visit the Istanbul old city area which includes Hippodrome, Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Grand Bazaar and Topkapi Palace. Have lunch during the tour. The average duration of this tour is 8-hours. At the end of the tour, your guide will leave you back at your hotel. On the second day, your guide will meet you in the hotel lobby between 08:00 and 08:30. During this tour, you will visit the Golden Horn, the old city walls of Istanbul, the Spice Market and Dolmabahce Palace or Chora Museum. There will be a lunch stop during the tour. The tour will end at around 17:00. Please do not forget to take your luggage in the morning. After the tour, you will be transferred to airport for your flight to Cappadocia. Once you arrive in Cappadocia, you will have organized transfer from the airport to your hotel.  On your third day, your guide will meet you in the lobby of your hotel at around 09:00. You will enjoy a tour of southern Cappadocia, also known as the Green Tour, which will include the following sites: Derinkuyu Underground City (the largest underground city in the area with 7 floors 85 meters deep; not recommended for claustrophobic guests) and Ihlara Valley (1.5-hour trekking). Have a lunch stop in the village of Bellisirma. Afterwards, you will visit Piegon Valley (panoramic visit), Selime Monastery and Esentepe (panoramic view). After the tour, you will be dropped back off at your hotel. On the fourth and last day, your guide will meet you in the hotel lobby at around 09:00 and take you on a tour of northern Cappadocia, known as the Red Tour, to Rose Valley, Goreme Open Air Museum (important early Christianity center), Monks Valley, Cavusin village (one of the oldest settlements in the area), Avanos village (with stop at a traditional pottery workshop), Uchisar Castle and Dervent Valley. The average tour duration will be 8-hours. After the tour, you will be transferred back to the airport for your return flight to Istanbul.

Istanbul Full-Day Private Christian (Byzantium) Tour

7. Istanbul Full-Day Private Christian (Byzantium) Tour

Take a full-day tour of Istanbul and explore it from the perspective of the Byzantine Empire. See ruins of Byzantine churches, Byzantine stone houses, superb mosaics and frescoes at the Church of St. Saviour of Chora, the city’s underground cistern, and more. Traveling by air-conditioned coach, you will drive to the Church of St. Saviour in Chora. The Turkish word "Kariye" is derived from the ancient Greek word "Chora," meaning outside of the city. It is known that there was a chapel outside of the city before the 5th century when the city walls were erected. The first Chora Church was rebuilt by Justinianus and, in the era of Komnenoi, served as the court chapel for important religious ceremonies. Continue to the Fener Orthodox Patriarchate, the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople and the seat of Orthodox Christianity since Constantine the Great’s declaration of Christianity as the religion of the Roman Empire. Visit Zeyrek Mosque, the former Pantokrator Church. Representing the most typical example of architecture of the Byzantine middle period in Constantinople, it is the second largest religious edifice built by the Byzantines still standing after Hagia Sophia. Hagia Sophia is your next stop. For centuries it was the largest church in the world, and it still boasts the 4th largest dome after St. Paul`s in London, St. Peter`s in Rome, and the Duomo in Florence. Dedicated to the Hagia Sophia, or “Divine Wisdom,” it is one of the greatest examples of Byzantine architecture in survival, and has been called “The 8th Wonder of the World” for its spectacular art and architecture. End your tour at the Basilica Cistern, or Yerebatan Sarayı ("Sunken Palace"), the largest of several hundred ancient cisterns that lie beneath Istanbul. Located 500 feet (150 meters) southwest of the Hagia Sophia, on the historical peninsula of Sarayburnu, the magical atmosphere of the underground palace dates back to the 6th century reign of Emperor Justinian I.

Istanbul: Sunset Bosphorus Boat Tour

8. Istanbul: Sunset Bosphorus Boat Tour

The 2-hours Bosphorus and Golden Horn boat tour. The Bosphorus Strait connects the Black Sea with the Sea of Marmara and splits the European and Asian sides of Turkey. This romantic cruise along the Bosphorus will allow you to admire the Dolmabahce Palace, the Beylerbeyi Palace, the Ciragan Palace and Rumeli fortress. See ancient wooden villas and bridges and all the wonderful unique maritime landscapes.

Istanbul: Dolmabahçe Palace and Uskudar Guided Tour

9. Istanbul: Dolmabahçe Palace and Uskudar Guided Tour

Set off in your vehicle right from your hotel and drive over the first intercontinental bridge connecting Europe and Asia. The Bosphorus Bridge was built in 1973 and the length between its two legs is 1074 meters. At the time of its construction, it was the fourth-longest suspension bridge of the world. Explore the Ottoman mosques of Uskudar neighbourhood. After a photo stop, you will cruise along the suspension bridge before arriving at Dolmabahçe Palace. Explore the Dolmabahçe Palace, an architectural jewel in the heart of Istanbul. On Mondays, the palace is closed and will be replaced by Chora Museum. Led by a guide with specialist knowledge of the 19th Century Ottoman period, listen to the stories behind this luxurious building. Built by the Ottoman Sultan Abdulmecid between 1843 and 1856, the Palace is a mixture of Turkish and French influences. The exquisite and luxurious tastes of the era are evident everywhere you look. This palace boasts 285 rooms, 6 baths, 68 toilets and a ceiling made from 14 tons of gold. Splendid bohemian chandeliers adorn nearly every room and the famous crystal staircase is another example of the era’s decadence.

Istanbul: 6-Hour Byzantine Tour Along the Golden Horn

10. Istanbul: 6-Hour Byzantine Tour Along the Golden Horn

Want to discover the Istanbul of Byzantine Constantinople? Have you finished the famous sites in Sultanahmet and ready to walk in areas where tourists do not go? Then this Byzantine Istanbul (Constantinople) tour along the Golden Horn will be the perfect choice for you. The vastness of the vision and boldness of the design of Byzantine era Constantinople is expressed through the Hagia Sophia located in Sultanahmet but medieval Constantinople around the Golden Horn offers more information. Poke around forgotten corners just over this hauntingly beautiful inlet – the Golden Horn and walk to see Constantinople before the Ottoman Conquest of 1453. Your Byzantine Istanbul Constantinople tour will start with a ferry ride from Eminonu or Karakoy zigzaging both sides of the Golden Horn to end in Ayvansaray. Ayvansaray is where Constantinople officially ended, so you’ll see and walk along the mighty Byzantine walls of Theodosius from the 5th century. Your first visit will be to an extraordinary Greek Orthodox Church – Mary Blachernae. The only church in the whole world where there’s a service on a Friday morning. Built on a sacred water source, the church is a pilgrimage site for the Greek people in Istanbul. Climb the 7th hill of Istanbul as you make your way to one of the oldest Byzantine palaces from the 13th century (Tekfur Sarayi). Then, walk your way back through Balat which houses one of Istanbul’s surviving mediaeval synagogues and trendiest houses that are now enjoying their second or even third type of use. In Fener, you will see the Greek Orthodox patriarchate housing a column, which is believed to have been used for the binding and flogging of Jesus in Jerusalem.

  • Guided tours
  • City cards
  • Multi-day trips
  • Day trips
  • Private tours
13 activities found
Sort by:

Other Sightseeing Options in Chora Church

Want to discover all there is to do in Chora Church? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Chora Church

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 509 reviews

The guide is easy to use with great support via WhatsApp. It paid for itself easily. The guided tours were informative, not too long and generally allowed free time afterwards to enjoy the attraction. Only issue was that it kept logging me out and it was a faff to get the user name, type it in and log in. Never figured out how to use the card for Galatea Tower though. Only criticism was the partners they used. I booked two trips, the guide on the full day trip was really rude. The second guide on the half day trip clearly didn’t want to take me, firstly she told me there was construction and Miniaturk was closed (this was after driving me around various hotels for picks ups for 90 minutes). When she eventually did agree to take me there was no construction and the park was clearly fully open. During the tour she was on her phone the entire time, walked ahead only said three things to me :-1. 10 minutes, 2. 10 minutes, 3 1 hour.

This was a fantastic tour! Istanbul is a wonderful city and Ekrem was an outstanding guide. The tour was well organized, covering all the main sites such as Aya Sofia, Topkapi palace, Dolmabahce palace and more . Ekrem was very knowledgeable and provided us with interesting historical and cultural insights, all in perfect English. He was also kind and patient in answering all of our questions. He was flexible, adjusting the program to avoid the rain, beat crowds and for us to spend more time at the Grand Bazaar (which we loved!). He also suggested great food and was very helpful in guiding us on how to use the tram and find our way around the city. Overall, my husband, adult daughter and I highly recommend this tour - be sure to ask for Ekrem as your guide!

a very pleasant one-day experience through Topkapi Palace, St. Sophia Mosque, (Blue Mosque under repair, impossible to visit), Basilica Cisterns, Grand Bazaar and Egyptian Bazaar with a private guide, who was very knowledgeable subject, of great availability and flexibility. Absolutely correct value for money. To recommend

Sinan treated us wonderfully, very friendly and a very good guide, it was a pleasure to get to know the city with his help, thank you very much.

Great experience!! Guides were excellent. Very helpful. Very easy to plan everything thanks to the tourist pass.