- Skip the line at Hagia Sophia and the Basilica Cistern
- Enjoy a guided tour of the Blue Mosque
- Small groups of only 15 people or fewer for a more intimate experience
- Led by fully-qualified, expert local tour guides hand-chosen
Across the ancient Hippodrome next to Hagia Sophia. Once a church, then a mosque and now a museum, Hagia Sophia (also know as Ayasofya) has many tales to tell. As one of the most-visited sites in Istanbul it also usually has a queue stretching up to several hours in the heat of high season. Never mind; traveling with our fully-licensed local tour guides you’ll skip those long lines to gain express entrance. Once inside you’ll receive a guided tour of the incredible mosaics, learning how easily Christian icons became Islamic. At this site in particular you’ll gain a deeper understanding of not just Turkish history and culture, but of the startling similarities between all major world religions. Few monuments protest this so loudly as the beautiful Hagia Sophia.
The last stop of the morning is pretty cool (in more ways than one). Once again availing of your guide’s skip the line access, you’ll descend a level beneath the streets of Istanbul to the Basilica Cistern. Once a cistern which provided water to the city, it’s now a beautifully preserved space full of medusa-head columns and eerie lighting.
Traveling in small groups of 15 people or fewer with headsets for every guest, your tour will be more friendly and comfortable. A good thing too since these guides are some of the best in Istanbul, hand-chosen by the Walks of Turkey team for their excellent English language skills, passion and fantastic inter-personal skills. With all-inclusive pricing and a No Surprise Guarantee you can leave your wallet at home too. Guides have no external affiliations, guaranteeing that you’ll never have to visit a carpet shop or feel pressure at any point in your tour: So you can relax and enjoy the very best of Istanbul without waiting in line!
- Express entrance tickets for Hagia Sophia and the Basilica Cistern
- Expert Istanbul tour guide
- Headsets on groups larger than 6
- Small groups of 15 people or fewer
- Hotel Pick-Up/Drop-Off
Please note that the tour meeting time is 15 minutes prior to the start time. No refunds or re-bookings can be provided for late arrivals or no shows after tour commencement or departure.
Please remember that the Blue Mosque is a holy place, and attire must be appropriate for the visit. Both men and women are asked to take off their shoes when entering (you will put them in a plastic bag, provided by the Mosque, and bring them with you). Both are also asked to have their knees and shoulders covered. Women are asked to wear a head covering when entering. Please bring a scarf with you. Walks of Turkey cannot be held responsible for denied entry due to improper dress.
Note: We advise our clients that the Blue Mosque may be closed during special celebrations/festivities. These closures are generally only announced a few days prior. If this occurs during your visit, we will spend more time at other sites. Your guide will still give you full information on the Mosque should you wish to visit this on your own at a later occasion. We are unable to provide refunds or discounts.
If cancelling less than 48 hours before the chosen start date no refund applies.