See Hagia Sophia, the Grand Bazaar, and the Blue Mosque in Istanbul’s Old City
On this seven-day, five-night vacation to Istanbul, you’ll stay at the Recital Hotel, a centrally located boutique hotel within walking distance of many of the city’s historical attractions, including the Blue Mosque. While you’re at this sprawling city along the Bosporus, you’ll take a guided city tour, but you’ll also have plenty of free time to visit the city’s bustling markets, stunning religious sites, and Turkish baths at your leisure. The trip includes round-trip airfare, departing from Washington, DC (IAD), New York City (JFK), Chicago (ORD), Los Angeles (LAX), or Toronto (YYZ).
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After your overnight flight to Istanbul, you’ll have plenty of time to rest at the Recital Hotel, an elegant hotel located in Istanbul’s Old City. From here, you’re within a few miles of the Grand Bazaar, a covered market bustling with Turkish ceramics, jewelry, decorative hanging lamps, and ornate rugs.
In the morning, you’ll take a sightseeing tour of the city, focusing on Istanbul’s imperial heritage. The tour stops at the Blue Mosque, a nearly 400-year-old landmark known for its blue-tiled interior and its six towering minarets, and the Topkapi Palace, once the primary residence of the Ottoman sultans. You’ll also visit the Hippodrome—a public square that once was Byzantine Constantinople’s principle social venue, hosting political activities, rebellions, and chariot races.
You can use these three days to sightsee on your own or take an optional tour (extra fees), such as a cruise through the Bosporus Strait and its Golden Horn, the inlet that divides the city. On day six, you can hop aboard an optional museum tour to see the Alexander Sarcophagus at the Istanbul Archaeological Museums and the Basilica Cistern, the largest of Istanbul’s underground cisterns, featuring stone pillars carved into the image of Medusa.
Board your flight to return home.
Read the Fine Print for important info on travel dates and other restrictions.