Free Tour in Istanbul

4.99 out of 5
(145 customer reviews)


Get your Free Tour in Istanbul and enjoy the best sightseeing tour in the city of two continents. Discover the history of the old city and appreciate great sights along with world-famous historical landmarks with entertaining and professional local tour guides.

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The Best Free Tour in Istanbul

Free Tour in Istanbul is a free walking tour of Istanbul’s old city center with a local expert tour guide every day at 10:30 am. This tour will give you a walk through the history as well as a look into the contemporary life in Istanbul.

  • Date/Hour

    Every day at 10:30am

  • Language


  • Duration

    2.5 hours approx. (not rushed but leisurely paced)

  • Price

    Free (you decide the price)

  • Meeting point

    Sultanahmet Square (next to the decorative pool)

  • Itinerary

    Sultanahmet Square, Hagia Sophia, The Blue Mosque, Hippodrome, Haseki Hurrem Bath, The Egyptian Obelisk, The Constantine Column, The Serpentine Column, German Fountain,Soğuk Çeşme Street, Caferağa Madrasa, Arasta Bazaar, The Little Hagia Sophia Mosque and much more …

  • End point

    Little Hagia Sophia

  • Wheelchair friendly tour


Free Walking Tour in Istanbul
Free Walking Tour in Istanbul

The Original Free Walking Tour in Istanbul

Free tour in Istanbul starts every day at 10:30 am next to the decorative pool which is between Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque at the Sultanahmet Square. Just look for our expert tour guides with red t-shirt and/or umbrella for free tours in the city! You can just show up at the meeting point if you prefer not to book ahead of time for free tours in Istanbul. Please come 15 minutes early if you have no reservation.

Free Walking Tour Istanbul starts from  Sultanahmet Square (next to the decorative pool) and ends in front of the  Little Hagia Sophia Mosque, overlooking the shores of the sea of Marmara.

During this tour, you will have the opportunity to explore the highlights and monuments of world city Istanbul and learn about the rich history and cultural heritage of Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman periods from our tour guide.

You will marvel at the impressive monumental structures of Istanbul such as Hagia Sophia,  the Blue Mosque,  the Egyptian Obelisk, the Serpentine Column,  the Constantine Column and  the German Fountain. Later, you will walk through the outer gardens of  the Topkapi Palace and marvel at this gorgeous palace as a symbol of the strength that the Ottoman Empire once had in the city.

While strolling through  Soğuk Çeşme Street with our local guide, you will also see and learn about the typical houses and locals and the old town architecture during the Ottoman era. At the end of this street, you will arrive at  Caferağa Madrasah, an art school where traditional Turkish crafts such as calligraphy, paper marbling, ceramics and tiles, and glass products are produced and sold. You will walk along the Hippodrome and enter the courtyards of  the Blue Mosque.

Enjoying lots of amazing stories and personal anecdotes told by your expert tour guide about the city, you will visit the  Arasta Bazaar, a famous market place that used to provide the Blue Mosque with large income during the Ottoman Empire. Finally, the last stop of this fun experience will be the  Little Hagia Sophia Mosque.

Free Walking Tour in Istanbul


  • Sultanahmet Square
  • Hagia Sophia
  • The Blue Mosque
  • Hippodrome
  • Haseki Hurrem Bath
  • The Egyptian Obelisk
  • The Constantine Column
  • The Serpentine Column
  • German Fountain
  • Soğuk Çeşme Street
  • Caferağa Madrasa
  • Arasta Bazaar
  • Grand Bazaar
  • The Little Hagia Sophia Mosque and much more …

Attention: Everything listed here will be seen from outside without entering the museums.

Best Free Tour in İstanbul

Where does the free tour in Istanbul start and end?

The tour starts from the Sultanahmet Square, next to the decorative pool. It ends in front of the Little Hagia Sophia Mosque.

How will I recognize the guide?

When you arrive at the meeting point, please look for our tour guides carrying a red umbrella.

Do I have to pre-book?

No. There is no need to pre-book for our free walking tours in Istanbul. Just come to the meeting point before the tour is due to begin. Yet, you are welcome to pre-book this Istanbul tour on our website. Recommendations; let us know in advance if you are coming with a big group (10+ people). If you are interested in personal tours and/or boat tours in the city, advance booking is required.

How long does the tour last?

Our free tour is approximately 2,5 hours.

Do you take any breaks on your free walking tours?

All of our Istanbul walking tours include a break during which you can rest and you will have the chance to use the washrooms and get a couple of drinks.

What is the price of this tour?

The tour is free. It does not cost anything. You are free to participate. At the end of the tour, you are free to tip your guide depending on your enjoyment of the service and budget.

What happens if the weather is bad?

Our tours in Istanbul run every day in all weather conditions, sun or rain. Please come prepared!

Are your tours suitable for children?

Our free walking tour of Istanbul are designed to be suitable for people of all ages and anyone.

Are your tours wheelchair-accessible?

Our free tour in İstanbul is wheelchair accessible. Bear in mind: We are always ready to arrange private tours geared towards the travelers’ needs and wishes!

Do you offer private Istanbul tours?

Yes. We offer private tours in English and Spanish languages. Please contact us for further information and details.

How do I find the group photo from my tour?

You can find your photos of your walking tours from our social media accounts.

Additional info: Our Istanbul walking tour is free of charge. We offer expert tour guides for our guests who wish to see the city on foot. In this way, they will explore the history of Istanbul and leave their footprints while feeling home thanks to our hospitality and care. Do not hesitate to leave your reviews regarding free Istanbul free tours.

What is the concept of Free Tour in Istanbul?

The Free Tour concept has been around for some time, but it is a fairly new method of exploring cities than the conventional tour model, with a far longer history. Most younger travelers today would probably be aware of free tours, as they have become extremely common and still present in major destinations especially in recent years.

Misconceptions about Free Tours

“Free” is an obvious appeal to budget-conscious travelers, but it is also a term that may trigger an alarm; especially in connection with anything that is typically very costly and constitutes a significant component of a specific industry, such as guided tours. Yet free does not mean that free tours are worthless. On the contrary, it is a philosophy that really does offer something enjoyable, worthwhile and satisfying for all kinds of travelers comparing to conventional paid tours.

How does it work?

One of the concerns regarding free tours is “How can tours be free?” ”. The tours are ‘free,’ as there is no fixed price, no defined charge to pay for the tour, irrespective of the tour experience itself. You are free to ‘tip’ your guide after the tour depending on your satisfaction.

This may be a “strange” notion, but there are many explanations why this kind of tour has become a successful and common way to explore towns and cities. Since the guides get no other money to lead such tours (from any particular company or agency), they must earn their tip. The income of the guides is always fluctuating from tour to tour and so they are eager to deliver a high-quality experience, which leaves much less space for complacency than if they were paid for a tour with a fixed amount. For the idea to work, the tour itself must be fantastic.

Tipping: Something to Think about on a Free Tour

Moreover, at the end of your tour, tipping your guide implies that you have the control. Though not mandatory, you determine what the tour’s worth is, or, what you can afford. You determine the price-performance ratio. So there is no risk of being ripped off or feeling that you have not got your money’s worth.

Advice for tips: If you decide to tip, be sure to bring your maximum tip budget to a smaller denomination. This way you can give your guide the right amount they are entitled to, determined by you (after the tour), without worrying about the tip being too little or offering a larger bill to ask the change back.

Behind the Free Tour

Tour guides weigh the risk factor because they count on tour participants to give them a tip, even if they do not have to do so. Fortunately, the growing popularity of free tours and the growing number of free tours providers worldwide is a proof that this “unconventional” style of tours work. People see the value in the concept, appreciate the unique experience it offers, realise they receive high quality tour experiences and tip their guides accordingly while saving much on their own.

Tour guides providing free tours are, in the great majority of cases, freelance tour guides. They are young people as free tours encourage them to operate freely and the guides keep their tips rather than getting charged a fee to gain an appropriate income for their efforts. These independent freelance guides often add their own style to their tours to give you a true local experience, show you their town and make your best trip.

The guide normally enhances the experiment instead of depending solely on a structured ‘tour’ or ‘script.’ This makes the experience of a place, history and culture more real, enthusiastic and rewarding. Some Free Tours in a particular city are arranged and managed by local guide collectives.

Alternatively, others are facilitated by free travel organizations that actively promote or assist independent local guides. This takes place in exchange for a fairly low advertisement charge through successful promotional services through a multitude of platforms and alliances, thus maintaining the consistent quality of guides and tours provided by them.

Why Free Tours Work

The whole idea of free tour is for the tourist and the local guide a win-win situation. Having authentic city tours open to all, irrespective of budget, are fun way to explore cities, while saving a lot of money and monitoring everything you spend on a city tour, apart from helping dedicated local guides and businesses.



145 reviews for Free Tour in Istanbul

  1. 5 out of 5


    Great free tour and boat tour in English with Pilar! Easy and engaging explanations and the best recommendations. Thank you Pinar!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Tahra & Ismaël

    Very good *****
    Pinar was our guide for the Old Town tour as well as the trip to the Asian side. She was absolutely great. The given information was a good summary of Istanbul’s history. We loved her energy, anecdotes, daily tips and… humor 😄! If it’s your first time to Istanbul, we strongly recommand you to book this tour. Thank you Pinar for this experience and your thoughtfullness.

  3. 5 out of 5


    Highly recommended! Best way to have a quick viene of Istanbul and know the history behind the city..Thank to the guide Pinar, best tips and best jokes ever!!!

  4. 5 out of 5


    Pinar was awesome! Guiding us through the Old Town, sharing useful tips and tricks with funny remarks (and best jokes :D). Her energy when talking and presenting was contagious. She also remembered all of us and where we are from in under 2 hours. Really impressive. Went to a restaurant she recommended with a special deal, the food was great. We went for another tour with her on a boat. Props to Pinar!

  5. 5 out of 5


    We did this tour with Pinar which was amazing and very funny. We also did the lunch and the boat tour, we loved every minute and we visited everywhere she recommended the next day. Just 1 point which is we’re not here for religion or political rift stories. Other than that I would give it 5 stars.

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