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Byzantine & Ottoman Istanbul

Istanbul 5 nights Price from £1,995 per person
Departs: 01 Nov 2023
Departs: 01 Nov 2023

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Istanbul is one of the world’s most fascinating cities and has a colourful and complex history, spanning many centuries. Our five night holiday will introduce you to both the Byzantine and Ottoman periods; spanning 1,600 years from 330 AD until the early 20th Century. It was during the long period as capital of the vast and sprawling Ottoman Empire that Istanbul took on much of the appearance visitors today can still enjoy. During our visit, there will be a comprehensive programme of sightseeing as well as some free time to explore the Grand Bazaar.

What's included

...when you travel with Kirker

  • Return flights
  • Five nights accommodation with breakfast
  • Three dinners and one lunch
  • All sightseeing, entrance fees and gratuities
  • The services of the Kirker Tour Lecturer and a local guide.


  • Day 1 - Fly to Istanbul

    We fly to Istanbul and transfer to the 4 star Hotel Eresin Crown Sultanahmet where we stay for the duration of the tour.
  • Day 2 - Guided tour including the Topkapi Palace

    Today begins with a guided tour of the sprawling city of Istanbul, starting at the Hippodrome, the most important relic from the city’s Roman period and rebuilt by Constantine in 330 AD. Next we visit the Islamic Arts Museum where we see unrivalled collections of decorative arts from all periods of Turkish history displayed in the splendid setting of the Palace of Ibrahim Pasha. Our day ends at the Topkapi Palace, the Sultan’s residence and the nerve centre of the Ottoman Empire.
  • Day 3 - The Cistern, Hagia Sophia & the Grand Bazaar

    We begin our day at the ancient Serefiye Cistern, built by Roman Emperor Theodosius II. Next we visit the Hagia Sophia, considered one of the finest examples of Byzantine architecture. It became a mosque in 1453 and served as a model for all future Ottoman mosques. This afternoon, we will wander through Istanbul’s fabled Grand Bazaar, an ideal place to shop for souvenirs including textiles, food, ceramics and spices.
  • Day 4 - Dolmabahce Palace, the Bosphorus & the Sadberk Hanim Museum

    This morning we visit the vast Dolmabahce Palace which served as the centre for the Sultan’s extended domestic life. We then board a boat for a journey along the Bosphorus and finish with lunch at a local fish restaurant. Later we visit the Sadberk Hanim Museum with its superb collection of decorative arts before returning to the hotel.
  • Day 5 - Chora Church & Süleymaniye Mosque

    We start with a visit to the small but beautiful Church of St. Saviour in Chora which dates from 1077 and has some of the finest mosaics and frescoes in Istanbul. Then we make our way through the Ottoman districts of Balat and Fener to the spice market before ending our day at the magnificent Süleymaniye Mosque, one of the city’s landmarks.
  • Day 6 - Free time & flight to London

    This morning is free for independent exploration. We drive to Istanbul airport for the flight back to London.

Flight Details

Flights with British Airways:

March Departure:

Depart London Heathrow 09.25, arrive Istanbul 16.25
Depart Istanbul 17.35, arrive London Heathrow 19.45

November Departure:

Depart London Heathrow 09.25, arrive Istanbul 16.25
Depart Istanbul 17.20, arrive London Heathrow 18.25

Departure Dates and Prices

01 Nov 2023

Status Available

Price from£1995

Single Supp.£375

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Included Hotels


Eresin Crown
Istanbul, Turkey, Europe

This comfortable hotel is in an excellent location in the heart of the Sultanahmet district. It was built on the site of an Imperial palace and many of the original archaeological finds uncovered during the construction have been incorporated into the design and now form part of the hotel’s unique private museum. 

Andrew Allen.

Andrew Allen

Tour Leader

More Info

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To make an enquiry please speak to one of our experts on 020 7593 2288, or enquire online

Our expert reservations team regularly travel to a wide range of destinations to explore new cities, visit hotels and to research museums, galleries and restaurants so that we can offer the most up-to-date advice and recommendations.