(Half Day Afternoon Tour)
DOLMABAHCE PALACE, last residence of Ottoman Sultans, was built in Ottoman-European style in order to dispel rumors of the empire’s bankruptcy. Interiors were done by the designer of the Paris Opera. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the Turkish Republic, also used the palace as his İstanbul base during the early years of the republic. He dies at the palace in 1938. If you want to visit the palace individually you might have to wait long minutes, may be hours. You need to join a guided tour in order to kip the line.
BOSPHORUS BRIDGE, located between Ortaköy and Beylerbeyi, connects not only these two neighborhoods but also Europe and Asia continents. During your 2 minutes drive from Europe to Asia on Bosphorus Bridge, you’ll have a chance to see and also took photos of one of the best views of Bosphorus.
CAMLICA HILL, 268 meters above the sea level, one of the highest points of the city with a splendid Bosphorus view.
Meet your guide at your centrally located Istanbul hotel, then hop aboard your air-conditioned coach and cruise to Dolmabahçe Palace. During your drive, learn how this palace was one of the final palaces constructed by the Ottoman Empire. Arrive and admire this ornate blend of European and Ottoman architecture that rests along the banks overlooking the Bosphorus Strait.
Step into the palace and discover eye-popping rooms that once hosted sultans and their royal guests. Alongside your guide, stroll into pristine marble rooms and gaze up at twinkling crystal chandeliers.
As you wander down the Medhal Hall, gain insight about Mustafa Atatürk, the first president of the Republic of Turkey. Hear how all the clocks in the palace were set at 9:05am, the approximate time the exalted Atatürk passed away. Then, see the Crystal Staircase and imagine the aristocrats that once sauntered along its red carpets.
Following the palace tour, pop back into your coach and voyage across the iconic Bosphorus Bridge that connects Europe to Asia. Then, depending on traffic on the day of your tour, cruise up to either Yeditepe or Çamlıca Hill. At either location, enjoy marvelous views of the cityscape and gather friends and family to snap photos. Finally, cruise back to your hotel, on the European side, where your tour ends.
Special note: On Mondays and Thursdays Dolmabahçe Palace is closed and will be swapped with Eyüp, Miniatürk and Pierre Loti Coffee House.