8. Istanbul: 3-Day Hotel & Tour Package with Dinner Cruise
Explore Istanbul on this 3-day and 2-night package that includes visits to major attractions and a spectacular dinner cruise. Start the tour with pick up from Ataturk Airport/Sabiha Gokcen or New Istanbul Airport then transfer to the Rose Garden hotel in the Old City center of Istanbul Sultanahmet. At 7: 30 PM a driver will pick you up for your dinner cruise along the Bosphorus River - a memorable way to spend your first night in this incredible city. Admire the handsome mansions of the Ottoman elite that line the river banks. The dinner cruise includes a 4-course Turkish meal and live entertainment that features traditional music and belly dancers.
Start your morning at 8:30 AM the next day to begin your comprehensive guided tour of Istanbul's main highlights. Discover how, originally named Constantinople, the city was once the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire and Europe’s wealthiest metropolis. Visit the iconic Blue Mosque, one of the most famous monuments in both the Turkish and Islamic worlds, and notable for its exquisite blue Iznik tiles. Cross over to the Hagia Sophia. Now a museum, this jewel of Christian architecture dates from the days of the Roman Emperor Justinian, and was converted into a mosque after the Ottoman conquest. Continue to Topkapi Palace, the largest and oldest palace in the world, and the crown jewel of the Ottoman Empire.
Head back to the days of Roman and Ottoman charioteers at the Hippodrome, once the heart of Constantinople’s political and sporting life, and the scene of games and riots through 500 years of Ottoman history. End your day at the Grand Bazaar, one of the world’s largest covered markets. With 58 streets and over 4,000 shops, the bazaar is especially known for its jewelry, leather, pottery, spices, and carpets. End the tour with a convenient transfer back to the same hotel.
On the final day, a representative will escort you to the airport for your onward journey.