Bosphorus Cruise and the Grand Bazaar
- Bosphorus cruise: Squeeze between Europe and Asia through the world's narrowest navigable strait, a dividing line that also connects the Black Sea with the Mediterranean.
- Palaces, fortresses, and villas: Admire ancient Istanbul on both coasts as you pass golden-domed mosques, towering minarets, splendid palaces, and the bridges that connect continents.
- Grand Bazaar: One of the most visited places on earth is a raucous maze of seemingly unending lanes packed with haggle-worthy textiles, leather goods, jewelry, trinkets, and more.
About this Istanbul tour
Sail along the Bosphorus Strait, which takes you through the heart of one of the world's most intriguing cities. Thriving with life, decorated by domed mosques and exquisite palaces, the city's ancient main artery courses between imperial palaces and ancient fortresses, small fishing villages and wooden yal's (that's Turkish for these bizarre wooden houses) along the shore.
You'll see the Anatolian Fortress, built in the 14th century by Ottoman Sultan Bayezid I, nicknamed "the Thunderbolt" for his electrifying performance in battle against the Keramanids in the 1380s.
His reputation may have preceded him, but Bayezid I was no flash in the pan. He constructed the fortress on the Asian side of the Bosporus Strait to lay the groundwork for an Ottoman siege of Constantinople, one of many that would finally result in the city's capture in 1453. Bayezid's grandson Mehmet followed his lead nearly 50 years later, building Rumeli Hisari on the European side. Mehmet controlled all traffic on the mighty Bosporus Strait and made it a critical part of the conquest.
You'll end the day on a different kind of battleground: the winding streets of the world's oldest and largest covered market. You can find pretty much everything you can imagine and that will fit in a stall at the Grand Bazaar, but the merchants are seasoned veterans. So if you see something you like, stand your ground and haggle him down. In Istanbul, anything worth having is worth fighting for.
A torrid love affair between the king of the gods and a mortal led to one of the strangest names ever. Bosphorus comes from the ancient Greek for "crossing place of the cow" and refers to Zeus' lover Io, turned into a cow by jealous Hera (Zeus' wife). As a parting gift, the queen of the gods created a horsefly that would repeatedly sting the heifer's hindquarters. Io lunged herself across the strait to escape.
Please proceed outside of the Cruise Terminal to the coach parking lot and look for our tour representative with the displayed logo sign. Call the operator once you are at the designated meeting point.
The Grand Bazaar, one of the most colorful sites of Istanbul, is where you'll have the chance to experience Turkish weaving arts and a carpet presentation.
Due to the nature of this tour, it is not recommend for travelers using walkers or wheelchairs. Participants must be able to walk approximately 2 miles over uneven, paved and cobblestone surfaces, inclines and steps for embarking/debarking the boat.
Scenic, Shopping, Boat Tour, Cultural, Family Friendly
English, German, Spanish, French, Italian
Tour Participation Requirements
This experience is rated mild. To participate fully, you may be required to walk over primarily even surfaces at a leisurely pace. You may encounter a limited number of steps, cobblestones, or uneven surfaces, and you may have to stand for extended periods of time.
Suitable for all ages.
Full refunds issued for cancellations made 7 full days prior to the date and time of requested services. Cancellations made within the 7-day and 72-hour window will receive a 50% refund of purchase total. Purchases are non-refundable inside of 72 hours.
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