Meet your private guide at 9AM, after your breakfast at your hotel lobby.
Your journey will start with the oldest surviving Byzantine monument in Istanbul, Little Hagia Sophia. The building was constructed under the emperor Justinian near the southern city walls on the shores of the Sea of Marmara in A.D. 527–536. It’s away from crowds, cosy and very quiet. You can observe and perceive the smallest of the structure and imagine the huge version of St. Sophia.
After that, your guide will lead you to Hagia Sophia (St. Sophia), whose name means “holy wisdom”, is a domed monument originally built as a cathedral in Constantinople in the sixth century A.D. It was one of the historical architectural wonders that still remains standing today, has an important place in the art world with its architecture, grandness, size and functionality.
Following Hagia Sophia, you will visit Basilica Underground Cistern, the largest of several hundred ancient cisterns that lie beneath the city of Constantinople. This fascinating chamber of the underground water systems is remarkable for its practical and artistic value. You will walk along the wooden platforms beneath the dark, vaulted ceilings of this cathedral-sized cistern and see its famous Medusa-head pillar and Hen's Eye column. Your private guide will offer an interesting description, including its history and what effect it has had on modern society.
You will discover old Hippodrome area that is ancient Greek stadium designed for horse racing and especially chariot racing. It was a circus that was the sporting and social centre of Constantinople. Hippodrome was the centre of Byzantium's life for 1000 years and of Ottoman life for another 400 years, and has been the scene of countless political dramas.
You may have a lunch after visiting Hippodrome before heading up to Chora Church, in a traditional Turkish restaurant where you may have vegaterian options as well. On your way to Chora Church, you will see City Walls of Constantinople. They are a series of defensive stone walls that have surrounded and protected the city of Constantinople since its founding as the new capital of the Roman Empire by Constantine the Great. The walls themselves date back to the reign of the Byzantine emperor Theodosius II, who reigned in the first half of the fifth century A.D.
Your last destination will be Chora Church, one of the most beautiful examples of a Byzantine church. It is also one of the most beautiful structures that remains from the Eastern Roman Empire period, known for its intricate and stunning frescoes.
In the end of this memorable journey, your guide will drop you off right to your hotel about 4PM in the afternoon.