July 2016 / Emily F. (USA)

We had only one day to explore Istanbul on a recent trip to Turkey, but I feel like we were able to really experience a lot, and I credit that to the tour company that we booked under, Parasol Tours, and the absolutely wonderful guide they provided for us, Berrin Yavuz. Berrin took my husband and I on a private, walking tour to Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, the Hippodrome, the Blue Mosque, and the Spice Bazaar (at our request as we were less interested in the Grand Covered Bazaar). She was SO knowledgeable about each location and very passionate about sharing that knowledge with us. She had a great sense of humor and never made us feel like we were in a rush or that it was a bother if we needed to stop for a bit. In addition to the main locations mentioned above, she took us to a tile shop where we were able to see a ceramics demonstration using a manual pottery wheel and to a Turkish rug weaving shop where we visited an underground cistern to see a simulation of the Hippodrome in its glory days, watched a weaving demonstration, and had all sorts of beautiful rugs laid out to hear about the different materials and styles. Berrin even recommended local places for lunch and dinner for us, even though those were separate from the tour and dinner fell after the tour had already ended (she made sure we knew how to find the location before dropping us back off at our hotel). Both meals were absolutely delicious, and it was especially appreciated after being suckered into eating at a tourist restaurant the night before with much heftier prices and lower quality food. We were fortunate enough to travel all around Turkey through this company, and I cannot recommend them enough. The drivers and guides are ALWAYS on time, if not early, and they will make the places you visit really come alive for you.

https://www.tripadvisor.com.tr/ShowUserReviews-g293974-d294656-r392682806-Sultanahmet_District-Istanbul.html#

2018-01-03T21:50:20+00:00
We had only one day to explore Istanbul on a recent trip to Turkey, but I feel like we were able to really experience a lot, and I credit that to the tour company that we booked under, Parasol...