How to Get to (In Istanbul)

1. What is the quickest way to see the city of Istanbul?

Sightseeing tours can be a quick and convenient way of seeing Istanbul. Big Bus Tours offer such relaxing discovery of Istanbul with its double decker buses.

Buy one ticket and hop on and hop off the bus, as you like. Tickets are valid for 24 (or 48) hours. There are two circular routes around the city – the red (the city tour) and the blue (Golden Horn tour). A complete circuit on the City Tour takes approximately 2 hours and a complete circuit of the Golden Horn Tour takes approximately 1 hour 15 minutes. The service gives you the flexibility to start the tour at any of the 9 stops for the Red Route and 6 stops for Blue Route at any time of the day.

For the red tour, buses depart from Sultanahmet every 30 minutes from 9.00am until 5.00pm. For the blue tour, buses depart from the Sultanahmet every 30 minutes from 9.15am until 4.45pm.

However, if you stay in one of our Galata hotels, you might like to get on the bus at either Taksim Square stop or at Hard Rock Café stop (opposite British Consulate)

For the details, please refer to

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2. How can I get to Sultanahmet on foot?

The historic centre of Istanbul (Sultanahmet) is just about 3km far away from your hotel. Simply walk down the hill off Tünel Square following Galip Dede Caddesi (and Yüksek Kaldırım Caddesi). Once you get down to the Karaköy Square, cross the Galata Bridge and turn left at the end. Then follow the coastline as far as the Ankara Caddesi. Once you get to the traffic lights, turn right to the Ankara Street. The street following the tramlines will take you right to the Ayasofya Museum, which is no. 1 tourist attraction in Istanbul. You should spare around 45 -60 minutes for the walk

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3. How can I get to Sultanahmet by public transportation?

Easiest way to Sultanahmet, the historic centre of Old Istanbul is by tram. The tram you'll use the most in Istanbul is T1 (Kabataş-Bağcılar ) tram. So, walk down the Galip Dede and Yüksek Kaldırım Caddesi to get to Karaköy tram station. (Another way to get down to Karaköy is by taking the underground funicular line- Tünel- connecting Şişhane to Karaköy with a trip of 1,5 minutes. The Tünel, that's also the start of Istiklal Street, is only 3 minutes of walk from your hotel. And it operates from about 06:00 until 22:00 is)

Once in Karaköy Square, take the tram to Bağcılar and get off at the fourth stop, Sultanahmet. However, if you wish to go to Grand Bazaar, Beyazıt-Kapalıçarşı stop is where you get off the tram. T1 trams run about every 10 or 15 minutes from 06:00 am until 00:00 (midnight).

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4. Could you tell me working hours of Topkapı Palace and Ayasofya Museum?

Topkapı Palace:

Closed on Tuesday.

Wednesday to Monday: 09:00-18:00  (mid April to September)

Wednesday to Monday: 09:00-16:00 (October to mid April)

(Please note that the Harem section of the Palace closes 16:30 April –October; 15:30 November-March.)

Ayasofya Museum:

Closed on Monday.

Tuesday to Sunday: 09:00-18:00  (mid April to September)

Tuesday to Sunday: 09:00-16:00 (October to mid April)

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