Turkey Touchdown : A half-day trip to Istanbul

Tripoto
5th Jul 2014
Photo of by Nairit Sur
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The Tour Istanbul service operated by Turkish Airlines is an awesome opportunity to catch a quick glimpse of the amazing city of Istanbul for free. This service is applicable for all Turkish Airlines international transit passengers who have a stop over of 6 hours or more. You need a transit visa to get out of the Airport. Please check the requirements for your corresponding country. If Turkey does not allow visa on arrival for your country, you can always get an e-visa beforehand online. Once you clear your visa requirements from passport control, come to the Turkish Airlines office just beside the Starbucks in the Airport. You may need to ask people around for directions to Starbucks.

Show your boarding pass to the officials at the Turkish Airlines office there and they will note down your name for the next available tour. (check the timings). There will be an English speaking guide and a nice tourist bus to take you around the city. The tour includes at least one free meal in some restaurant.

It takes weeks to enjoy the true flavour of the fantastic city of Istanbul but you can get a feel of the city in this day tour. The eerie beauty of the Basilica Cistern, the amalgamation of different cultures in the Sultanahmet Square, the gorgeous Hagia Sophia, the vast expanse of the Blue Mosque, the grandeur of the huge Topkapi Palace and Meuseum and a stunning view of Asia from Europe over the blue waters of the Bosphorus waterway ... this is a trip worth taking. The best part of this free guided tour is that the entry fees to the museums are waived and no queue. Just make sure that the "Tour Istanbul" tag is always stuck to your tshirt.