Culture Tours

Asian Discovery – Istanbul (full day)

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Pick up from your hotel or your cruise ship. Visit the exotic Egyptian Spice Market on the Golden Horn, then cross the bridge over the Bosphorus to Camlica Hill for a magnificent view of Istanbul. We visit Beylerbeyi Palace, which was the summer residence of the Ottoman Sultans and Kuzguncuk; one of the most beautiful of the old neighborhoods in Asian Istanbul, with its quaint wooden houses. You can see tailors, shoemakers, small farms etc. Drive through Uskudar town and take a short boat ride to the Maiden’s Tower on an island in the Bosphorus. We then follow the coast to Kadikoy, which was known as Chalcedon in ancient times. Here are very colorful flower shops, antique dealers, delicatessens, and herb and spice sellers. You may visit some old Armenian or Greek Orthodox churches such as the Holy Trinity Church and the fashionable district of Moda, with its pedestrian zone. You will see a mix of old and new where old Ottoman houses and modern architecture stand side by side. We may also take a walk near the Bosphorus and stop in a teahouse, visit the historical Moda wharf and an underground holy spring dedicated to St. Catherine, visit the beautiful bays of Kalamis and Fenerbahce. You will have wonderful views of the Princess Islands and Bosphorus. We will also stop at the historic Haydarpasa Train Station and return to the European side by ferry. Drop off to the hotel or cruise ship port.

Tour photos

Things to know

    • Beylerbeyi Palace is closed on Mondays & Thursdays
    • Maiden's Tower is closed on Mondays
    • Closed museums will be replaced with a substitute

Do & Don't in Istanbul

  • +Try “kokorec” - a very much appreciated Turkish dish (google it before trying)
  • +Get pampered with a scrub and a foam massage in a traditional Turkish Bath
  • +Enjoy a sunday brunch along Bosphorus
  • -Do not be shy with locals
  • -Do not trust the taxi drivers, check the meter as you are getting on
  • -Don't drive in local traffic

Prices

Period 1 Pax 2 Pax 3 Pax 4 Pax 5 Pax 6 Pax
01.01.2016 31.12.2016 € 345 € 187 € 149 € 129 € 119 € 109
             

Tour Includes:

Pick-up & drop-off from/to your hotel or cruise ship

Entrance fees as per itinerary

Air-conditioned vehicle

Professional English speaking tour guide, fully licensed under the Tourism Ministry

Testimonials

  • When we mentioned to longtime friends we were visiting Istanbul they told us our enjoyment would be increased substantially if we hired Trici as our guide.They told us the truth.When we contacted Trici she told us that she emphasized the art of Istanbul and we said we approved.She also told us the truth.What neither friends nor Trici told us was that she is a worldclass artist who devotes her art to capturing the obvious and the offbeat sides of that mysterious city.And that’s the truth.

    Ian D. Lanoff 

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    I have never been to Istanbul, but I do have extremely vivid, colorful and imaginative images of Istanbul in my mind through the stunning art that Ms. Venola has drawn and the imaginative prose she has written during the years that she has lived there. She is a wonderful ambassador for your city.I can only say that I wish I -could- have the opportunity to have her lead me on a tour of Istanbul: I know it would be magical, thrilling, awe-inspiring. Truly a never-to-be-forgotten experience!

    Charles Richard Lester

    Los Angeles

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    I can think of no better tour guide when visiting Istanbul than Trici Venola. Her passion for the city is only exceeded by her knowledge of it's history. The fact that she is an artist and an avid urban sketcher makes her insights that much more astute.

    Her warmth, compassion and humor make her a wonderful guide and  teacher. Trici knows Istanbul -- its nooks and crannies as well as its majestic sites-- better than most natives, much better!! I recommend her highly.

    Peter Hristoff

    Fine Artist and BFA Faculty, School of Visual Arts, NY, NY

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    From "commando santas" rappelling down buildings around the city, to colorful mannikins, to workshops and alleys and a million cats, Trici Venola has an insiders awareness of a wonderful assortment of "off the tourist trail" discoveries to share.

    Ken Brown  NYC.

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    Spending a day with Trici is like your best Indiana Jones fantasy come true! You duck behind a coke machine in a hole in the wall food store and there you have it, the OTHER cistern (that no one ever sees!) A guide will real passion and joy. The best knowledge I have found so far on Byzantium, Turkey and Istanbul. Not only that she is great fun!

    John D S Kelly NYC

     

  • Oriental Istanbul is a wonderful company. They are welcoming, helpful, knowledgeable and very accommodating. I would recommend them without hesitation! - Artemis Mourat / 2013, Teacher

    Wonderful and unforgettable experience, loved every moment! Will definitely return to Istanbul! hoping to see you all again! - Itsumi Suganuma / 2012, Student

     

    If you are a dancer at heart that appreciates beauty, history and colorful culture this is the perfect trip to embark on.  With knowledgeable and kind hosts that will take care of you and welcome you to their home town you will be delighted by what they have planned for you.  A beautiful trip to bring a friend along and to make new ones!  I would return in a heartbeat. - Bozenka / 2013, Teacher

    I always have a great time with Oriental Istanbul tours as guest teacher, knowing my students will be hosted very well in stunning parts of Turkey and its makes my work so easy and pleasureful.. One of the best and warmest  organizers I ever worked internationally. Strongly Recommended! - Ozgen / 2011, 2012, 2013 Teacher

    THE perfect tour: very rare & unique - detailed instruction by Ozgen, real roman by Reyhan + local festival in Edirne. How can be better than that! Really appreciate the flexibility about stay & activities. All people in the tour are nice, friendly and helpful - pleasurable all the time. Most of all Burcu and Yoko did such a great job organizing & leading us - easy going yet professional, they know tourism and dancing well. Plus, Ozgen is the great instructor as well as our travel buddy - fun & positive energy, multi tasking (waiter, guide, entertainer etc.. ;) ) Can't wait for the next year! - Akiko Tanikawa / 2012 & 2013, Student


  • I would like to thank you again Gursan, you truly made this a trip of a life time and opened so many doors. Take care my friend.
    David Tallentire

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