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Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul

Buenos Aires...
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Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul

We are going to Istanbul next september so I prepared this tentative Itinerary. I will appreciate all your comments.

Istanbul, september 2013


Arriving Ataturk airport at 09:00pm from Cappadocia.

Get cash from an ATM. You will find them at the Metro area.

Buy a Stanbulkart (5 or 10TL I found both prices) at the Metro and refill it at the Biletmatik with the TL, it goes for 2 persons.

Take the Metro to Aksaray (only direction), get off at Zeytinburnu station (6th one) and transfer to Tram T1. Get off at Aksaray stop. It works upto midnight. 6TL

Grand Ons Hotel




Tram1 to Sultanahmet.

Santa Sofia o Ayasofia o Hagia Sophia

Buy tickets on-line in oder to avoid lines. https://www.muze.gov.tr/buy_e_ticket.

Timetable 09:00hs to 19:00hs, you can buy them there upto 18hs (Mondays closed). 25TL


Palacio Topkapi o Topkapi Sarayi

Buy Tickets on-line. https://www.muze.gov.tr/buy_e_ticket

Timetable 09:00hs to 19:00hs, you can buy them there upto 18hs (Tuesday closed).

Museum 25TL + Harem 15TL


Walk to the Ferries Port: Eminonu (1,4km). You can take the Tram also.

Ferry to Anadolu Kavagi Company Sehir Hatlan


Timetable and map: lives at 10:35hs arrives at 12:10hs or 13:35hs arriving 15:10hs. The way back to Eminonu lives at 15:00hs arrives at 16:25hs or 17:00hs arriving 18:25hs


Price 25TL

Where the ferries companies are: turkeytravelplanner.com/go/…eminonu_dox.html

When you arriveAnadolu Kavagi you can walk 1,2km up to the Yoros Casttle, the way is going up. Or you can a taxi at the vila.


Tram to Taksim Square. Walk 1,6km to Dolmabahce Palace.

Dolmabahce Palace


Timetable: 09:00hs to 16:00hs. Mondays and Thrusdays closed.

You can buy the Tickets on-line but the oficial web page for that is not working now.

Selamlik (Administrative section) 30TL, Harem 20TL. If you buy both together 40TL

Go back to Taksim Square and walk along Istiklal ST. to Galata Tower (1,7km) or you can take the Tram to Karakoy and then take de Fonicular Tunel. Timetable 6-24hs, 1TL

Torre Galata o Galata Tower

Timetable: 09:00hs to 20:00hs. Sundays closed. 10TL. The oficial web page is not working so these are datas from the internet.

Walk or transportation to San Salvador de Chora (4,2km).

As a much less expensive transportation alternative, take a bus from Eminonu and get off the bus at Edirnekapi stop. Chora museum is 5 minutes walk from the bus stop. Any of the bus No.’s 31E, 37E, 38E or 36KE will do. The fare is 1.5 TL/person only

San Salvador de Chora


Tiemtable: 09:00hs to 19:00hs. Wednesdays closed. 15TL

Walk to the Eyup Teleferic (teleferik) (2,7km) or transport. Take it up to Pierre Loti Caffe or you can climd the hill through the cementery.

Back to the Hotel.


Grand Bazaar o Kapali Carsi


Timetable: 09:00hs to 19:00hs. Sundays closed.

Walk to Sultanahmet (800mts).

Mezquita Azul o Blue Mosque

Timetable: 9am-12.15pm, 2-4.30pm & 5.30-6.30pm Saturdays to Thursdays, 9-11.15am, 2.30-4.30pm & 5.30-6.30pm Fridays. Entrance free.


Cisternas Basilicas o Yerebatan Sarayi

Timetable: 09:00hs to 18:30hs. Tuesdays closed. 10TL.

Cross the Bosforo to KadiKoy by Ferry

Sehir Hatlari Ferries 1,75TL


Arasta Bazaar


Hippodromo and Obeliscus

Bazaar de especies o Egipcio or Spice Bazaar

Timetable: 08:00hs to 18:00hs Mondays to Saturdays. 09:00hs to 18:00hs Sundays.

What I planned for Saturday and Sunday is under revision. It depends on what we did before Saturday. Grand Bazaar has to be on Saturday because it closes on Sundays.

I accept Tips, recommendations and so on.

Thank you


Edited: 19 August 2013, 23:44
Brisbane, Australia
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1. Re: Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul

Sounds busy! We did Istanbul in 7 days (with 7yo & 11yo children) and that was mainly the old city. I would not suggest your itinerary if you are travelling with children.

Buenos Aires...
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2. Re: Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul

Thanks God no children in this Trip, just my wife and me.

May be it s busy, but we would like to see all what we can. Do you think that is possible?



Edited: 20 August 2013, 02:24
Thessaloniki, Greece
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3. Re: Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul

Thursday,it would be really difficult to visit in a hurry Hagia Sophia and Topkapi until 13:00 in order to catch the ferry.Split these 2 in different days if possible.


Buenos Aires...
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4. Re: Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul


Ok, good idea. We can visit Topkapi Palace on Thursday and Hagia Sophia on Saturday. Blue Mosque in one of those 2 days.

Any other idea?.

Thank you

Houston, Texas
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5. Re: Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul

Let me add that your trips to both Bazaars, the Spice and Grand, should be done as they open or close to closing and squeezed in any day other than a weekend where crowds of visitors and locals, cruise ship passengers, etc. can put your patience to task. I've also experienced many vendors at the Grand Bazaar at day's end, are much more eager to be more accommodating in their bartering as they are looking for a profit before closing.

I would also suggest you rearrange your visit to Taksim to include the evening hours. It is more fun in the evening as people watching, music streaming from alleyways, street munching and meyhane hopping are more lively and entertaining.

Please don't worry about following an itineray to the "T". This is such a spontaneous city and your senses will drive you to your next discovery; many not even planned!

Have fun.


Mount Dora, Florida
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6. Re: Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul

Hi Gustavo, This is a very ambitious schedule, and if you want to follow it you will have to discipline yourself to not lingering at any of the places you are visiting. This is not the way I enjoy traveling, but I appreciate that you wish to see as many things as possible in a short amount of time.

I think Thursday's schedule is impossible. You simply cannot visit Topkapi, Aya Sofya and take the full Bosphorus Cruise in one day. You will need to move the cruise to another day. Maybe you could do it on Friday if you saved Istiklal Street and Taksim for the evening.

I try to avoid the Grand Bazaar and the Spice Bazaar on the week-ends because they are exceptionally crowded, so if you can move your schedule around a bit it might improve your experience.

I notice that you often indicate that you are going to walk rather than use the tram. While walking is certainly the best way to enjoy the streets of Istanbul, if time is a factor, the tram is much faster than walking. The walk from Sultanahmet to Eminonu would take at least 30 minutes compared to five minutes on the tram. To the degree that you can save these odd minutes here and there it will help your schedule.

If you can slip into the Cisterns when you visit Aya Sofya that would be the most convenient thing to do. They are located right next to Aya Sofya so you would not have to repeat these steps again in order to visit it. I would plan about 30 minutes, so if the line is not long, I would squeeze it in while I am in the area.

Buenos Aires...
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7. Re: Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul

I konw that our itinerary is very ambitius, but it is not so easy to go to Turky from Argentina.

We like to walk a lot and obviusly if we find a place we ll spend more time there. We ll have to move the visits on the way.

Thank you for your advices, I will try to re-plan the itinerary. Let me think how.........

If you have more suggestions, they are wellcome!


Edited: 21 August 2013, 20:33
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8. Re: Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul

consider taking the 1.5 hour bosphorous cruise in lieu of full day. Also consider doing hippodrome, blue mosque arasta bazaar together - very natural flow to that.

Buenos Aires...
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9. Re: Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul


Thank you, I will.


10. Re: Itinerary: 3 days and a half in Istanbul

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