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Hippodrome (Sultanahmet Meydani)
Hippodrome (Sultanahmet Meydani)

Hippodrome (Sultanahmet Meydani)

Free admission
Binbirdirek, Sultan Ahmet Parkı No:2

The Basics

The current Hippodrome traces the course of the ancient race track, though the actual remains are still underground. The square contains the Obelisk of Theodosius, a pink, Egyptian-made granite column that was brought to Istanbul in the fourth century and is one of the oldest monuments in the city. Also here are a spiralled obelisk that came from the temple of Apollo, the Walled Obelisk, and the German Fountain, a gift from Kaiser Wilhelm in the early 20th century.

Some small-group and private tours combine a visit to the Hippodrome with other sights in Sultanahmet, including the Blue Mosque, the Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, and the Basilica Cistern.

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Full Day: Classic Istanbul Tour Including Blue Mosque, Hippodrome, Hagia Sophia and Topkapi Palace
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out
Full Day: Classic Istanbul Tour Including Blue Mosque, Hippodrome, Hagia Sophia and Topkapi Palace
star-4.5
$65.00 per adult
Traveler Favorite
The best!
Such a wonderful day spent with Sulchek. My friend and I were the only ones on the tour so it became a private tour! Learned so much about the history of what is now Istanbul! Definitely a must when visiting the city.
RolandMio_F, Nov 2021

Things to Know Before You Go

  • The Hippodrome is a must-visit for history buffs.

  • Wear comfortable shoes to stroll around the Hippodrome.

  • The Hippodrome is flat and handicap accessible.

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How to Get There

The Hippodrome is in Istanbul’s bustling Sultanahmet neighborhood, between the Blue Mosque and the Hagia Sophia and close to Topkapi Palace. It is minutes away from the Sultanahmet tram stop and is also easily accessible by taxi. Parking is limited in the area, so driving is not recommended.

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Trip ideas


When to Get There

The Sultanahmet area and the Hippodrome can get very busy, so it’s best to arrive early in the day or after the main sights have closed. Weekends and sunny days during the peak season are the busiest. The Hippodrome is now a public square, so it is open every day, all day.

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Archaeology at the Hippodrome

Much of the historical Hippodrome is still underground. It’s possible to see part of the original level of the racecourse at the base of the ancient obelisks that dot the square. Some of the Hippodrome’s original statues and seats have been uncovered over the years, and are now housed in the Istanbul Archaeology Museums.

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