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Travel Istanbul

TRAVEL ISTANBUL

“If the whole world was a state, Istanbul would be the capital of it.” Napoleon BONEPART

Etravel agency istanbulzan voice melt in the morning, screams of Seagulls and they start chasing the public ferries sailing from Asian side to European side and the students, workers or young lovers waiting for disembarking and on the way, ferries salutes each other with their horn while Bosphorus Ferry starts its journey to the legendry shores of the Bosphorus where is adorned with old wooden houses or with palaces. This ferry might have taken a place in the photo of Bosphorus that is taken from the balcony of Galata Tower, then next photo will be the Huge dome of the Hagia Sophia but at the same time tens of people would take the photo of the Dome from inside next to the other. Some of them thrilled with the courage of the architecture of Hagia Sophia and get more curious about another architect lived in 16th century, Mimar Sinan the Great. While watching the balanced portions of the Suleymaniye mosque, some people start thinking about which mosque tiles are the best, Blue Mosque, Rustempasa Mosque or Sokollu Mosque. Maybe the tiles in circumcision room of Topkapi Palace. On the other hand, some start thinking about the different variation of tiles, mosaics and can’t decide if the mosaics or the frescoes are the more interesting and fascinating in Chora Museum. Seagulls stop chasing the public ferries and the ezan voice start dancing with the last lights of the sun while seagulls start flying around the minarets.

 

 

 

DID YOU KNOW ABOUT ISTANBUL?

» UNESCO declares Istanbul as a World Heritage Site.

» Hagia Sophia was the biggest cathedral on the world for thousands years and still it is the 4th biggest one.

» The four bronze horses of San Marco Cathedral that welcomes the guest today in Venice, were taken from Istanbul.

» In the Middle Ages, Istanbul had more than 1400 public toilets in the city meanwhile there weren't any in European cities.

 

Cappadocia Tours HIGHLIGHTS OF ISTANBUL

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HAGIA SOPHIA

It was the biggest Cathedral in the world at the time being of its construction in the 6th century and finally took its place as the fourth biggest church in the world. The Mosaics are the best preserved ones in Turkey.

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BOSPHORUS

Symbol of Istanbul, Bosphorus is a strait between Black sea and Marmara Sea. It was mentioned in many stories of Greek mythology such as in ''Argonauts''.

 

   

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SULEYMANIYE MOSQUE

It was and is the biggest ottoman mosque in Istanbul but within time it became more important because of the precisely calculated balance of proportions and air circulation. It was   progressive according to the Blue mosque.

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TOPKAPI PALACE

It is a complex of buildings which were added within different periods and for more than 300 years Ottoman Sultans ruled the country from here. Today you can visit all sections and see the treasures including an 86 carats diamond.

 

   

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UNDERGROUND CISTERN (YEREBATAN)

Water reservoir from the 6th century, capacity of 900.000 m3 water and consists of 336 columns combine each other with brick vaults. It is the best preserved Byzantine cistern example in the world.

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CHORA CHURCH/KARIYE MUSEUM

Best Byzantine building in the city with dapper facade and high drum little domes. But it is well-known as hosting the best 14th century Byzantine frescoes and mosaics.

 

   

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DOLMABAHCE PALACE

This palace was built by Balyan’s, an Armenian Family worked as the main architects of the Ottoman Empire and their buildings reflect the glory of the Ottoman Empire throughout with their own signature of decoration and style.

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GRAND BAZAAR AND SPICE MARKET

Bazaars are the centre of daily life and Grand Bazaar is mainly used for gold, textile and leather and the Spice Market is mainly for more common things like spices or foods.

 

   

 

 

 

FAVORITE ISTANBUL TOUR PROGRAMS

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IMPERIAL NEIGHBORHOOD

Istanbul, served as a capital city respectively administrative centre for the Empire of Byzantium (4th-15th centuries) and for Ottoman Empire as well(16th-20th centuries) and therefore as a consequence, is the old city nowadays adorned with magnificent monuments. We start with the Hagia Sophia, built in the 6th century with its huge dome. It was the biggest cathedral for decades where you can see the best “Deisis” from the 12th century. Then, we will continue with the marvelous Topkapi Palace that served as the palace of the Ottoman Sultans between the 15th and 19th centuries. We will have the opportunity to see the Treasury, where the extensive exhibits include priceless world-class collections of jewelry, porcelain, textiles and costumes of the Sultans. After lunch break, Blue Mosque will be our next stop. It still serves as a mosque with a vibrant atmosphere. Underground or Basilica Cistern is the “sine qua non” for this part with its 336 columns. The Grand Bazaar will be our last stop which dates back to Byzantine period. You will get lost while checking the shops and items in Grand Bazaar area, a cluster with more than 3000 shops will amaze you.

*Hagia Sophia is closed in Mondays.

*Topkapi Palace is closed in Tuesdays.

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LIVING COLORS

Smells of the spices will welcome us before entering the famous Egyptian Market or Spice Market located in the busy part of the city. Outside of the market is as interesting as its inside. While we are wandering around, we will reach the Rustem Pasa Mosque where you can see well preserved antique tiles on the walls. While we are getting amazed with those decoration materials, it is better to visit the most interesting Byzantine churches in the city the Church of the Holy Savior of Chora, called in Turkish, Museum. The mosaics and frescoes are far the most important and extensive series of Byzantine paintings in the city and among the best and the most beautiful in the world. So we will have a chance to compare them. We start our day with good smells and finish our day with another attracting scent, smell of the salt and moss from the sea. After a drive to Ortakoy, we will relax there. Before getting a little boat, have some Turkish tea with a view of the Bosphorus strait. These little public boats will make a 45 minute trip that allows us to see the best parts of the Bosphorus.

*Chora Museum is closed in Wednesdays.

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EUROPEAN INFLUENCE

Since the old times, every civilization lived in peace, mixed up together and created new cultures. In this concept, fascinating Dolmabahce Palace will be the best option to see the European Influence in Ottoman times. This magnificent imperial palace was built between 1843 and 1856 that represents the westernization of the Ottoman Empire. Crystal Staircases, Baccarat Crystal Chandeliers and Candleholders, Limoges Fireplaces are worth seeing. Then, we will visit the Galata Tower, was built by the Genoese in 1348. The Old Pera district was given to them by the Ottoman Empire because of their help in defeating a Crusade. After a short gentle walk, we take the oldest functioning subway in the world. The Tunel”, completed in 1873, it is the shortest subway that was ever built. It connects Karakoy to Beyoglu, followed by a window-shopping pedestrian street called ''Istiklal'' street. This is the heart of Istanbul with its various options for everyone. While walking in this street keep your eyes upwards to see the upper parts of the  buildings because the architecture is different than other sites and you can see the best examples of  Art-Nouveau.

*Dolmabahce Palace is closed in Mondays and Thursdays.  

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SPECIAL ISTANBUL TOURS

Backyard of the Old City: Off the beaten track in Old-city. If you like the details and less-touristy places, you will be stunned with the fascinating facades of the Old Byzantine churches or the faces of the fountains. From Zeyrek Mosque (Pantokrator Church) to Yedikule, you will be able to see different buildings from different centuries.

Walk among the Hidden Treasures: Old city is famous for its narrow streets and it will be pity if you miss this little adventure. We offer you a little surprising tour with professional tour guides. While you are visiting the old building, you will also witness the lifestyle in Istanbul of today.

Respect to Mimar Sinan: This special tour is dedicated to Mimar Sinan, the greatest Imperial main –architecture from the 16th century. Founder of the Classical Ottoman Mosques plans. You will be able to see his most important monuments in chronologic order which will help you to understand his development.

 

*Please do not hesitate to contact us for specially designed tour programs by considering your needs and interests in Istanbul.
 

PRE/POST CRUISE ISTANBUL TOUR PACKAGESPRE & POST CRUISE ISTANBUL TOUR PACKAGES

Matiana Travel offers you the most exclusive services before and after your enchanting cruise. You will experience Istanbul with the small elegant touches of luxury and pureness.

 

shore excursions istanbulSHORE EXCURSIONS ISTANBUL

You will experience stunning Istanbul with the difference of Matiana Travel. You will find your own style with our services and have a great shore excursion that meets your expectations the best.

 

HOTELS, WE "LOVE" TO USE

 

 

 

Please do not hesitate to contact with Matiana Travel Advisors and Concierge for the best room suggestions, other hotel alternatives and upgrade possibilities.

 

         
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CIRAGAN PALACE KEMPINSKI

Hotel consists of 2 sections, Palace with presidential suits and the hotel building. Hotel rooms have 45 degree angle allows to have a great view of Bosphorus or the Old city.

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FOUR SEASONS SULTANAHMET

It was an original Ottoman Mansion which is converted into a boutique Hotel with great luxury and feelings of high-selection. They provide “private to guest” services.

         
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PARK HYATT HOTEL

Elite, well-located, stylish, home-like… Those four words are the most commons about this special Hotel. You will be in the middle of Nisantasi district, surrounded with well-known shops & restaurants & cafés.

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RADISSON BLU

If you want to stay in a contemporary hotel with Bosphorus view, Radisson Blu will provide all the comfort. It is located where you can reach Ortakoy, a picturesque corner of Istanbul, in about a minute.

         
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PERA PALACE HOTEL

Would you like to stay where the Agatha CHRISTIE, Alfred HITCHCOCK or Greta GARBO stayed? It was the official hotel for Orient Express and today, it is offer you better comfort as well as good service quality…

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MIA PERA HOTEL

If you want to be in a vibrant part of the city, Mia Pera Hotel will provide peaceful area in this energetic neighborhood. With its chic architecture, fine decoration and good services, it will make difference…

         
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OTTOMAN IMPERIAL HOTEL

Standing between Hagia Sophia and Caferaga Madrasah, hotel already has great feelings of Istanbul. Especially, Junior Suites with Hagia Sophia view are just amazing.

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SULTANHAN HOTEL

High-ceiling, spacious room in Old city but away from the crowds with its great location. If you want to fascinate, just visit their terrace and look at the view that you will see every morning during breakfast…

         

RESTAURANTS, WE "LOVE" TO TASTE

 

Please do not hesitate to contact with Matiana Travel Concierges for the best table reservations and suggesting for other restaurant alternatives.

 

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SUNSET GRILL & BAR

Since it opened 15 years ago, Sunset Grill & Bar has lost none of its appeal or popularity. It offers exceptional, high quality service and serves international cuisine by a stunning view of the Bosphorus.

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LACIVERT RESTAURANT & BAR

This is the perfect location to admire the beauty of Bosphorus as well as its fresh fishes. In this restaurant you can enjoy with your fresh fish along with small appetizers with stunning view of Bosphorus.

         
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ULUS 29 RESTAURANT CLUB BAR

It has one of the best Bosphorus views and service quality in Istanbul. They serve the best samples of international cuisine, but their classical Stone oven tastes are so unique.

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REINA RESTAURANT

Queen of the Bosphorus is always attractive with its five different restaurants with differnet taste and ambiance. You can enjoy your delicous meal with great view and late eveining continue with club in the same place.

 

Please fill out our "Customize Your Own Trip Questionnaire" or e-mail us, to get the unique experience that fits your interests and needs in Turkey.

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Travel Insurance Matiana Travel

 

TRAVEL INSURANCE

 

All of our tour programs include Travel Insurance. Click here for the details of travel insurance policy.

 

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Barbaros Bulvari, IBA Bloklari, 44/10 Balmumcu 34349  Besiktas / Istanbul, Turkey  Phone: +90 (212) 288 1171  Fax: +90 (212) 288 1363  Toll-Free: 001-866-978-636

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