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Hippodrome, Istanbul

#131 of 1,360 in Things to do in Istanbul
Landmark · Tourist Spot
Explore the remnants of the original Hippodrome, a circus that was the sporting and social center of Constantinople. Named after the Greek words meaning "horse path," the area used to host horse and chariot racing, and is thought to have had a seating capacity of 100,000. It was also used to host elaborate celebrations for circumcision ceremonies of the sons of Sultan Ahmed III. The actual track now sits below the present square, which features preserved monuments such as the middle barrier of the race course, two obelisks, and the Serpentine Column. The area includes an octogonal domed fountain that was constructed by the German governor to commemorate Emperor Wilhelm's visit to the city in 1891. Explore the square, visit the nearby museums, and learn more about the history of the track. Note that the square is centrally located to the city's other attractions, making it easily accessible on foot. Plan to visit Hippodrome and other customer-reviewed, writer-recommended Istanbul attractions using our Istanbul trip planner.
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  • You can be in the hippodrome and not know it. It is an open space where the hippodrome was. Have a guide paint a picture then close your eyes and imagine the history and the chariot races. There are.....  more »
  • The plus side of the pandemic is that you can really enjoy the beauty of the historical cities without the vast quantity of tourist that are normally around. So today I had enough time to enjoy the...  more »

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