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3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

Irvine, California
Level Contributor
248 posts
21 reviews
3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

I have 3 and half days to spend in Istanbul. I will be there Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and half Thursday.

I am planning to visit these sites and I am wondering if I have enough time for all of them. I really appreciate any feedback or suggestions:

1. Hagia Sofia

2. Blue mosque

3. Basilica cistern

4. Hippodrome

5. Topkapi palace

6 Suleymaniye mosque

7. Constantinople walls

8. Galata tower, Galata bridge and Istiklal avenue

9. Ortakoy mosque

10. Boat trip to Uskudar and then to Kiz Kuesi to view the maiden tower (Any suggestions on how to get there from sultanahmet area?)

11. Dolmabahce palace

12. Bosphorus cruise (Which one do you recommend?)

13. Cora church

15. Balat area to take photos (How do I get there from sultanahmet area)

16. Karakoy

17. Grand Bazar

13 replies to this topic
Istanbul
Level Contributor
2,995 posts
13 reviews
1. Re: 3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

A busy schedule. Mostly doable, but some things may fall by the wayside. Are you planning on sitting down for food, will you ever go to the loo? :)

10. The ferry from Eminönü or the Marmaray line from Sirkeci, then by boat from Salacak (runs every 15 minutes). Getting there from Kabataş is also possible, but that only runs on the hour.

12. The long Şehir Hatları one. …sehirhatlari.istanbul/en/timetable/full-bos…

15. A short ferry ride up the Golden Horn from Eminönü, or a taxi. There must be a bus too, but I'm afraid I don't know which.

Have fun.

Edited: 22 September 2018, 01:51
Mugla, Turkey
Level Contributor
581 posts
192 reviews
2. Re: 3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

Topkapi is a full day, on leaving visit the Blue Mosque. Hagia Sofya is another day followed by the Bascilica Cistern. Dolmabache Palace is a morning tour, make sure you buy a ticket for the Harem to see Atatürks bedroom, then Ortakoy. Grand Bazzar is interesting but be wary of prices, if you want to shop and eat walk to 'University and then down the hill to Emiönü. Ortakoy is good, especially on sunday, but Kadikoy is the place for everything.

Mugla, Turkey
Level Contributor
581 posts
192 reviews
3. Re: 3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

But 3 and a haif days - its an ambistious list. Even Americans dont move that fast

Mugla, Turkey
Level Contributor
581 posts
192 reviews
4. Re: 3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

no disrespect but you obviously dont realize how big this city is. you will need 6 weeks not days to complete your list

Mugla, Turkey
Level Contributor
581 posts
192 reviews
5. Re: 3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

The places you have listed are not located close together. They are spread across a city that has some +20 million residents

Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
39,620 posts
638 reviews
6. Re: 3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

It's busy but you can visit these in that time frame.

Irvine, California
Level Contributor
248 posts
21 reviews
7. Re: 3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

hayesy2015,

You said that the places on the list are not located close to each other.

What places do you suggest for Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and half Thursday?

For each day, I prefer to visit places that are close to each other to use the time more wisely.

Mugla, Turkey
Level Contributor
581 posts
192 reviews
8. Re: 3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

Most museums are closed on Monday. But the main problem is that the sites/palaces/museums are not grouped together. You need two days for Topkapi/Ayasophia/Sultanhamet. The rest - the best of luck. Ive been to the city 49 times and not seen everything.

Irvine, California
Level Contributor
248 posts
21 reviews
9. Re: 3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

I am planning to visit Ayasophia, Basilica cistern, Hippodrome, and the blue mosque on Monday. I hope they are open on Mondays

Istanbul, Turkey
Destination Expert
for Istanbul
Level Contributor
4,163 posts
1 review
10. Re: 3 and half days in Istanbul to visit these sites

Hi,

All can be done in 3 days. Here're tips:

- #1-7 are in old town and in walking distance. Topkapı and Haghia Sophia may have queues. Start your first day early at Topkapı (2h). Than walk to H.Sophia and check queues. If queue is long, dont wait and visit Cistern (2 mn. walk) and Blue mosque. Check queue again at H.S., visit or skip.

When you're done, walk to Çemberlitaş following tram line and enter Grand Bazaar. Ask for Beyazıt exit and visit Suleymaniye mosque. If you still have time, turn back to Grand Bazaar and walk to Spice bazaar using Mercan exit.

Museum card may help to skip queues (read on forum)

- 2nd day start early with H.Sophia if you were not able to visit first day. Take tram from Sultanahmet to Kabataş and visit Dolmabahçe. You may walk to Ortaköy via Beşiktaş (45 min.) or you can take a bus to Ortaköy. Enjoy cafes and take bosphorus tour from Ortaköy. In return, take any bus to Kabataş and tram to Karaköy. When you're done, take historical Tünel (tunnel) tram from Karaköy to Tünel square. Walk downhill 5 min. to visit Galata tower. In return walk downhill to Karaköy again and use tram to go back your hotel.

- 3rd day start with Chora Church. Than visit Balat area. In afternoon, take any bus to eminonu and take Uskudar ferry for Maidens tower.

A.

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