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Culture of Istanbul. Places to visit - old town, temples, theaters, museums and palaces

Istanbuls Sunsets Istanbul is home to numerous old buildings and religious sites. Hagia Sophia Cathedral is one of the most popular places of interest among tourists. It was built in the beginning of the 6th century. After the capture of Constantinople the great cathedral was converted into a mosque. In 1934 the building of the cathedral was turned into a museum. Nowadays visitors can see here priceless collections of art objects.
Discovering the architecture of Istanbul from bird's eye view! Hagia Sophia, Suleymaniye Mosque, Galata Tower, Maiden Tower, New Mosque, Ortakoy Mosque, all those monuments are defining the image of Istanbul … Open
The mosque of Sultanahmet is a more recent religious monument. The building of the masque was completed in 1616. This is one of the most beautiful mosques of the city, which is famous not only by its elegant architecture, but also by carefully selected interior decoration. Travelers should also not forget to visit Sultanahmet Meydanı – the most famous square of the city and an ancient hippodrome. During the reign of emperors the square was the venue for gladiator fights. Thousands of townspeople gathered here to watch this exciting spectacle.
Fans of excursions will find much interesting in visiting Yedikule fortress, which now hosts the exhibition of a museum. The castle was built by Byzantine craftsmen and was long used as a prison. Today in several halls of the fortress you will find collections of antique torture instruments. The museum is open for all guests. The building of beautiful Dolmabahce Palace was completed in 1853. The palace has the right to be considered the most luxurious palace of the city. As many as 14 tons of gold and 40 tons of silver were used for the interior decoration of the palace. Dolmabahce Palace has become a real synonym of "oriental luxury". Copyright
East is East and West is West, and never the twain shall meet... wrote Rudyard Kipling in one of his poems. However, there is a place on Earth, where this wise statement simply doesn’t … Open
Topkapi Palace is a no less interesting architectural monument, which construction started by the order of Mehmed II and took place more than four centuries ago. Inside the beautiful palace is stored a priceless artifact - a mummified hand in a silver frame. According to an ancient legend, the hand belonged to Prophet Muhammad. Many interesting stories and legends are connected with Topkapi Palace, which may be very interesting to hear for every traveler. The bridge of Galata is another interesting attraction. It was built in the late 19th century. Today the bridge is not only an important historical object, but also a popular entertainment center. Here you will find spacious and viewing platforms, cozy restaurants, and various shops.
In the section below, you can get one of our excursion tickets or city discovery tours over Istanbul and surroundings. Our website offers 10-30% lower ticket prices, when compared to the offline purchase on the spot.

City tours, excursions and tickets in Istanbul and surroundings

Istanbul - guide chapters 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17

What to visit during two-day excursion in Istanbul

Turkish Baths
Where: Vezirhan Cad. No, Istanbul; Telephone: +90 212 522 79 74;
Topkapi Palace
Where: Babihümayun Cad., Sultanahmet, Istanbul; Telephone: +90 212 512 04 80;
Aya Sofya
Where: Ayasofya Meydani, Sultanahmet, Istanbul; Telephone: +90 212 522 17 50;
Sultanahmet Or The Blue Mosque
Where: Hippodromen, Sultanahmet, Istanbul; Telephone: +90 212 518 13 19;
Where: Prof Siddik Sami Onar Cad. Sultanahmet, Istanbul; Telephone: +90 212 514 01 39;
Chora Monastery / Kariye Camii
Where: Kariye Camii Sok. Edirnekapi, Istanbul; Telephone: +90 212 631 92 41;
Boat trips
Reference information
Map of all palaces
Public palaces near Istanbul
♥   Palace 'İbrahim Paşa Palace' , 1.6 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Palace 'Tophane Palace' , 1.7 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Palace 'Topkapı Palace' , 1.8 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Palace 'Aynalıkavak Palace' , 2.3 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Palace 'Dolmabahçe Palace' , 3.8 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Palace 'Ihlamur Palace' , 4.7 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Palace 'Çırağan Palace' , 5.2 km from the center. On the map   Photo
Map of all art museums
Art galleries in Istanbul and around
♥   Art museum 'Rezan Has Museum' Istanbul, 0.9 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Art museum 'SALT (institution)' Istanbul, 0.9 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Art museum 'Museum of Turkish Calligraphy Art' Istanbul, 1 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Art museum 'Tiled Kiosk' Istanbul, 1.6 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Art museum 'Turkish and Islamic Arts Museum' Istanbul, 1.6 km from the center. On the map   Photo
Map of all churches
Cathedrals and basilicas near Istanbul
♥   Ayatriada Rum Katoliki Kilise, Istanbul, 2.5 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   Basilique-Cathédrale Saint-Esprit, Istanbul, 3.4 km from the center. On the map   Photo

Unique spots in Istanbul and near

Bosphorus bridge

From the series “Unbelievable and magnificent bridges and viaducts”
The main bridge of Istanbul is characterized by impressive size. Its length is 1 560 meters, and width - 33 meters. The bridge is 64 meters above the water. Officially, the bridge was opened in October 1973, although its foundation began much earlier, still in 1950. The grandiose project cost more than 200 million US dollars. The specialists of the German company Hochtief as well as the employees of the English company Cleveland Engineering have participated in the construction of the bridge. … Read further

Istanbul Lale Festivali

From the series “Most enchanting and vibrant festivals”
Although the festival is held for just a few years, its history dates back to the reign of the Ottoman Empire. In ancient times tulips were considered the flowers of sultans, they were presented in reverence and respect for the nobles and rich people. Luxurious clothes and dishes have been decorated with floral print and paintings with the images of tulips have adorned the walls of mosques. … Read further
Car rental on Rentals in Istanbul

Photogallery of cultural heritage of Istanbul

Landmarks of culture on Istanbul map: art-galleries, monuments, palaces, etc

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Excursions over cultural sights of neighbours of Istanbul

Culture guide to Istanbul. Which fascinating sights to visit once you are in Istanbul: temples, museums, churches, museums, theaters and castles. Recommendations (with addresses, phone numbers and links) on the places 'must visit' in Istanbul. Plan your own city excursion by using this page info! - online travel reservation expert providing reliable car rental and hotel booking services. We feature more than 25.000 destinations with 12.000 rental offices and 200.000 hotels worldwide.
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