Patrimoine historique byzantin - Privé: Discover some of the lesser known gems of Istanbul in this 4 hour tour. You’ll learn all about the Byzantine heritage of this great city, visiting the Church of the Holy Saviour in Chora with its exquisite frescoes and mosaics, the impressive underground Basilica Cistern and the magnificent Theodosian Walls. A knowledgeable guide will provide you with plenty of fascinating background to the history and culture of this great city.
The Church of the Holy Saviour in Chora is considered to be one of the most beautiful surviving examples of Byzantine religious architecture in Istanbul. This 5th century jewel of Byzantine architecture is situated just outside the historic centre and was converted into a mosque after the Ottoman conquest before becoming a museum in 1948. Do not miss the mind-blowingly colourful frescoes and mosaics that cover the interior of the building.
Next stop is the Basilica Cistern, the largest and most impressive of the several hundred ancient cisterns that lie beneath the city. The cistern, located 150m southwest of Hagia Sophia on the historical peninsula of Sarayburnu, was built in the 6th century during the reign of Byzantine Emperor Justinian in order to ensure a supply of fresh drinking water.
Our final visit is to the magnificent Theodosian Walls. This series of extensively restored stone walls have surrounded and protected the city of Constantinople ever since its foundation as the new capital of the Byzantine Empire by Constantine the Great. They were the last great fortification system of antiquity, and one of the most complex and elaborate defensive systems ever built.
Meeting/pick-up point: Pick-up at the hotel.
Duration: Four hours.
Start/opening time: At 8am - 8.30am.