Guided Tours
Hotel Sapphire is offering the following guided tours to our valuable guests:
Half Day Tours, Full Day Tours and Anatolia Tours

Please contact the front desk for more information about these guided tours.
You may also e-mail us at sapphire@hotelsapphire.com

Half Day and Full Day Tours


ST. SOPHIA This ancient basilica, built by Constantine the Great in the 4th century and reconstructed  by Justinian in the 6th century, is one of the architectural marvels of all time.
SULTANAHMET IMPERIAL MOSQUE Across from St. Sophia built in the 16th century by the architect Mehmet, is known as the BLUE MOSQUE because of its magnificent interior decoration of blue İznik tiles.
HIPPODROME Ancient Hippodrome, the scene of chariot races, with the three monuments; the Obelisk of Theodosius, the bronze Serpentine Column and the Column of Constantine.

TURKISH & ISLAMIC ARTS MUSEUM
GRAND COVER BAZAAR
In this labyrinth of streets and passages are more then 4,000 shops with each trade having its own area: the goldsmiths' street, the carpet sellers, Turkish arts and crafts, such as handpainted ceramic plates, hand-honed copperware, brassware and trays, water ewers, onyx-ware and meerschaum pipes.

TOPKAPI PALACE The great palace of the Ottoman sultans from the 15th to the 19th centuries housing an exquisite collection of cyrstal, silver, and Chinese porcelain, robes worn by the sultans and their families, the famous jewels of the Imperial Treasury, miniatures, the Holy Mantle; enshrining relics of the Prophet Mohammed.
SÜLEYMANIYE MOSQUE The mosque of  Süleyman the Magnificent was built between 1550 and 1557 by the famous architect Sinan whose wish was to surpass the builders of  St. Sophia which is conspicuous from its great size, emphasized by the four minarets rising one from each corner of the courtyard.

CLOSED
St. Sophia - Turkish & Islamic Arts Museum on Monday / Replaced
with Underground Cistern. Topkapı Palace on Tuesday / Replaced
with Beylerbeyi Palace

ST.SOPHIA
BLUE MOSQUE
HIPPODROME
GRAND COVERED BAZAAR
LUNCH

TOPKAPI PALACE
SÜLEYMANİYE MOSQUE

Also visioned during the tours:
Aquaduct of Valens, Obelisk of Theodosius, Serpentine Column, German Fountain of Wilhelm II, Galata Bridge, Golden Horn

BOSPHORUS ON PRIVATE BOAT
OPERATES BETWEEN 1 JULY - 30 SEPTEMBER
(WITH REGULAR BOAT BETWEEN 1 OCTOBER - 30 JUNE)

SPICE BAZAAR:(Egyptian Bazaar)
The air here is filled with the enticing aromas of cinnamon, caraway, saffron, mint, thyme and every other concievable herb and spice.
BEDESTEN exhibits the traditional silk weaving courses carpet weaving courses authorised by the Ministry of National Education. Possibility to see jewellery, handicrafts center and leatherware show. Free time provided for shopping.

BOSPHORUS ON BOAT
A traditional excursion by boat along the waterway seperating Europe and Asia.The shore is lined with old wooden villas, palaces of marble, fortresses, and small fishing villages. During the excursion you will pass the magnificent Dolmabahçe Palace, and further along, the parks

and imperial pavillions of Yıldız Palace. On the coastal edge of this park, is Çırağan Palace, 300 meters of is marble facade faces the shore. At Ortaköy a great variety of artists gather every Sunday to display their work along the street. Ortaköy is a symbol of tolerance with a church, a mosque and a synagogue existing side by side for centuries.

RUMELİ FORTRESS Built by Mehmet the Conqueror in 1452 prior to the conquest of Istanbul, was completed in only four months to control and protect Bosphorus. It is one of the most beautiful works of military architecture anywhere in the world.

BEYLERBEYİ PALACE The summer residence of Ottoman Sultans with its original furniture and magnificent gardens with the HAREM on the ASIAN.
BOSPHORUS BRIDGE Unique chance to step from one continent (ASIA) to another (EUROPE)
ÇAMLICA HILL The highest point in Istanbul. At the top of it you can rest and admire the magnificent panorama of Istanbul and the Bosphorus from the beautiful gardens, landscaped in traditional style.
SHOPPING POSSIBILITY AT BEDESTEN exhibits the traditional silk weaving girls at the carpet weaving courses authorised by the Ministry of National Education Possibility to see jewellery, handicrafts center and leatherware show. Free time provided for shopping.

CLOSED
Spice Bazaar on Sunday
Beylerbeyi Palace on Monday & Thursday / Replaced with Chora Church and Eyüp Mosque. / Rumeli Fortress on Wednesday

SPICE BAZAAR
BOSPHORUS ON BOAT
RUMELİ FORTRESS
BEYLERBEYİ PALACE
BOSPHORUS BRIDGE
ÇAMLICA HILL
SHOPPING - BEDESTEN



OPERATES ALL YEAR

Cruise in MARMARA SEA to PRINCES' ISLANDS, retreats for the Byzantine princes are famous for their beautiful pine woods and beaches. The largest and most enjoyable of the islands is Büyükada. There you can enjoy a ride in a horsedrawn carriage among the

pine trees after relaxing on the beaches in the numerous coves of its coast. Evening return to Istanbul and transfer to hotels.


Operates Between 1 June - 30 September only on Sunday

Departure by private boat from Golden Horn and cruise through Bosphorus seeing the architectural masterpieces from different times of history and natural beauties of the Asiatic and European shores.
Cruise continues passing under the Bosphorus Bridge and by the Leander's Tower for Büyükada, most popular amongst the Princes Islands where lunch will be served at a fish restaurant.
Swimming possibility depending on the weather condition.
Evening cruise back to Istanbul transfer to hotels.

ALSO VISIONED DURING THE TOUR
Topkapı Palace - Leander's tower - Üsküdar
from sea

 


SPICE BAZAAR
BOSPHORUS ON BOAT
RUMELİ FORTRESS
&
TURKISH BATH

In Istanbul, if you want to live a part of your holiday which is full of unforgetable memories in a public bath, to satisfy your longing for a good massage in a authentic public bath with a history longer than 400 years, to live the history in the marble basins under the faucet in the bath through which the water flows with the memories of history, join us.
The Turkish bath has tree areas:
1) An area for undressing; you an take off your clothes in the rooms in this area and keep your clothes and valuables locked in those rooms.
2) The cool room; Skin-rubbing area
3) Heated marble platform; this area has a part with a heated marble platform in the center and parts with washing areas around the platform.
The first thing to do is to lie on the heated marble platform sweating and to have a massage, after the massage is over you can lie down, if you wish, on the marble platform, or you can rest in your own changing room with your towel.


Drive through illuminated Istanbul and tour on the Bosphorus coastline. Dinner at a first class restaurant with half a bottle of wine or a soft drink included, watching spectacular. FLOORSHOW of famous BELLY DANCERS, typical ANATOLIAN Folklore Groups featuring popular musical einstruments and Turkish singer.


Operates on mondays & thursdays

Chora Church (Kariye Museum): A beautiful example of the beginning of Byzantine renaissance with its mosaics and frescoes depicting the scenes from the lives of the mother of god and christ.

Eyüp Mosque: The holiest mosque of Istanbul dedicated to the memory of prophet mohammed's Standard-Bearer Eyüp Ensari. Behing the mosque, there is the Türbe (Burial Site) of the standard-bearer which has the most beautiful samples İznic tiles.
Cafe Pierre Lotti: Wonderful view of Golden Horn and Istanbul. Famous French author Pierre Loti (1850-1923) came to this place and wrote a lot of poems about Istanbul, the Golden Horn and Life in the Harem, here.
Kariye Museum is closed on Wednesday.

The first capital city of The Ottoman Empire!
Departure by ferryboat to YALOVA then drive to Bursa to visit the Grand Mosque, the Green Mosque and the Green Mausoleum famous with their Iznik tiles.
Lunch will be served in a special 'Iskender Kebap' restaurant.
Also visit the historical Covered Bazaar and old Silk market, then climb by cable car to Uludağ (Olympos) mountain overlooking Bursa for the magnificient panoramic view.

Anatolia Tours

DAY 1: ANKARA-CAPPADOCIA Morning visit of Ankara with the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations museum which has the most unique and priceless collection dating back to the Prehistoric Era. The Mausoleum of Atatürk is the next stop.

This magnificent structure serves as a tribute to the founder of modern Turkey. After lunch drive to Cappadocia via Salt Lake. Dinner and overnight in Cappadocia.

DAY 2: CAPPADOCIA After breakfast full day tour of Cappadocia begins with the naturel citadel of Uçhisar which will enable you to get a panaromic view of the region and continues with the Göreme valley which is the highlight of the day houses tge Göreme open air museum with is churches hewn out of rock and the colourful frescoes which decorate them.

The next stop is Zelve and the caves of this ancient village, continuing with the Avanos and  Çavuşin villages. Lunch will be served at a typical regional restaurant. Dinner and overnight in Cappadocia.
DAY 3: CAPPADOCIA-ANKARA
After breakfast morning visits will begin with the underground city of Kaymaklı or Derinkuyu which are refuges carved out in the aerly Christian Era as   safeheavens from persecutors. Lunch will be taken on the way to Ankara, transfer back to Istanbul in the evening.

DAY 1: ANKARA-CAPPADOCIA Morning tour of Ankara to visit the Hittite Museum and Mausoleum of Atatürk. After lunch drive to Cappadocia. Dinner & overnight.
DAY 2: CAPPADOCIA
After breakfast, morning visit to the underground city of Kaymaklı & Citadel of Uçhisar. After lunch continue with the valley of "Göreme" open air museum. The last sites will be Paşabağ valley and Avanos. Return to hotel for dinner & overnight.
DAY 3: CAPPADOCIA / KONYA / PAMUKKALE Early  departure for Konya. On the way visit the 13th century Seljukian caravanserai "Sultanhan".  The next stop will be Konya which is famous with Mevlana Museum and the Theological School of Whirling Dervishes. Lunch enroute, drive to Pamukkale.
DAY 4: PAMUKKALE / APHRODISIAS / KUŞADASI
Breakfast and visit the ancient city of Hierapolis. The ruins of the biggest Necropolis Graveyard of the ancient world, Roman Baths, Bazilica and calcium cliffs. Drive to Aphrodisias. After lunch visit the Greco-Roman settlement which is remarkably well preserved. The ancient city is dedicated to the goddes of Love, Aphrodite. Drive to Kuşadası, dinner and overnight.
DAY 5: KUŞADASI / İZMİR After breakfast at the hotel drive to Meryemana and visit the House of Virgin Mary. Continue to Ephesus, the Roman Capital of Asia Minor. Visit the ruins of Odeon, Hercules Gate, the temple of Hadrian, the magnificient library, Agora and fantastic greco-roman theatre. After lunch visit the Basilica of St.John drive to İzmir.

THE MOST FAMOUS AND THE MOST VISITED HISTORIC SITE IN TURKEY
Early flight to IZMIR, birth place of Homer, and departure for EPHESUS and visist the HOUSE OF VIRGIN MARY, where she spent her last days. Then, visit EPHESUS, the most complete ancient city ever excavated. Ypu will feel yourself as if you were in ancient Ephesus while you are walking

through the FOUNTAINS of POLIO HADRIAN - TRAJAN and temples of DOMITION AND HADRIAN VARIUS OR SCHOLASTICA BATHS, BROTHL, CELCIUS LIBRARY, BOULETORION and the GREAT THEATER. After a delicious lunch in Selçuk, we will visit the TEMPLE of ARTEMIS, once one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world, St. JOHN BASILICA and ARCHEOLOGICAL MUSEUM of Ephesus. Return to Izmir and flight to Istanbul.

FAMOUS FOR ITS ONE OF THE LARGEST LIBRARIES AND MAGICAL CENTERS IN THE ANCIENT WORLD.
Early flight to Izmir and drive to PERGAMUM, once the ancient world's major power and center of learning and the arts. Visit the LIBRARY, once held 200.000 bokks, TEMPLE of ATHENA,

TEMPLE of TROJAN, ALTAR of ZEUS, the GYMNASIUM situated on terraces, the lower AGORA, and the RED BASILICA dedicated to God Serapis. After lunch, visit the ARCHEOLOGICAL and the ETHONOGRAPHICAL MUSEUMS, then the ASCLEPION, the ancient health center. return to Izmir and flight to Istanbul.

NATURAL WONDER KNOWN AS "COTTON CASTLE"
Early flight to IZMIR, drive to PAMUKKALE which is unique in the world with is cascading water from the ciffs forming crystallized, dazzling white "Frozen Waterfalls The thermal waters have been used for therapeutic treatments since the Roman

period. You will have time to enjoy the therapeutic hot spring waters. Then, visit the Roman city. HIERAPOLIS which contains wonderful necropolis and the theatre. Return to Izmir and flight to Istanbul.
 

Flight to ANTALYA, visit to Perge Theatre, Agora, Stadium and Columned Street. Proceed to ASPENDOS one of the best preserved theatres in the world. Lunch and swimming break at SIDE and visit the site, museum, theatre and temples.
MANAVGAT WATER FALLS before return to ANTALYA. Dinner and overnight. Flight to Istanbul.


BY CAR OR PLANE

Early start to the ancient city of TROY, famous with the legendary TROJAN HORSE from the times of beautiful Helen and Paris. Ferry across DARDENELLES Visit to GALLIPOLI, famous battle-field of ANZACS of World War I. Late evening return.

Day 1 Early morning start for "GALLIPOLI", famous battle-field of World War I, graveyards and memorials of ANZACS, Crossing DARDANELLES, lunch at Canakkale, visit to the ancient city of TROY and TROJAN HORSE. Walking back to "Bronze Age" 3000 B. C. at ASSOS, who had hosted Lydians,

Persians, Romans, Byzantians and Ottomans finally, Dinner and overnight.
Day 2 Start after breakfast. Visit to PERGAMUM, ancient center of healing and culture, AESCULAPIUM, built in the name of Aesculapis, "God Of Medicine". Drive to Izmir, birthplace of Homer. A short tour of the city. Dinner and overnight.
Day 3 Start after breakfast and drive to EPHESUS, famous ancient settlemet, visit to the HOUSE OF VIRGIN MARY at Mount Solmissos, St. JOHN BASILICA and TEMPLE OF DIANA, one of the "Seven Wonders of the Ancient World". Return back to Izmir. Dinner and overnight.
Day 4 Start after breakfast, visit to SARDES, capital of ancient Lydia. View the TEMPLE OF CYBELE and DIANA, ACROPOLIS. Visit to one of world's oldest synagogues. drive to BURSA and Lunch of famous "Kebab of Alexander the Great" and city tour seeing ULUCAMI (Grand Mosque), GREEN MAUSOLEUM, GREEN MOSQUE, OLD SILK MARKET. Dinner and overnight.
Day 5 Start after breakfast. Cable-Car (Teleferik) to the first stage of ULUDAG, the legendary "MOUNT OLYMPOS". Drive to IZNIK (Nicea) the meeting place of the Oecumenial Council at 325, also very famous with the tiles. Evening return to Istanbul.

 

 

 

HOTEL SAPPHIRE
ibnikemal Caddesi No:14 Sirkeci / Istanbul-Turkey
Call 0090 212 5205686 or Fax 0090 212 5201009
Questions and Comments may be directed to:
sapphire@hotelsapphire.com

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