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“An incredible experience”
Review of The Other Tour

The Other Tour
Ranked #42 of 413 Tours in Istanbul
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Attraction details
Owner description: The Other Tour offers unique one day cultural experiences in Istanbul. Our mission is to provide curious, open minded travelers with the opportunity to discover how Turkish people live and thrive in Istanbul. Away from typical tourist attractions, we dive deep into Istanbul (a city of over 16 million people) to immerse ourselves in the lives of local residents. During this guided adventure our Turkish neighbors open their hearts and homes to us, sharing with us their customs and traditions.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities
Oslo
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“An incredible experience”
Reviewed December 6, 2012

We spent a four-day weekend in Istanbul, and found The Other Tour by Googling for unusual experiences in Istanbul, and The Other Tour definitely fulfilled its promises. Without giving away too much, we were immersed in the local culture, and got to see parts of Istanbul that tourists rarely see, both rich and poor. Trevor was our guide, providing a wealth of knowledge as well as being a fountain of energy :) It is an experience for the curious traveller, who is looking to see beyond the regular attractions, and not just another sightseeing trip. Do read their websites, and judge for yourself if this is for you.

All in all, I highly recommend The Other Tour if you're openminded, looking for something unusual, and prepared for anything!

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
12 Thank Terje K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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New York City, New York
Level 4 Contributor
14 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“A tour that lives up to its name and then some...”
Reviewed December 5, 2012

We were in Istanbul for a 3-day holiday. We decide to go the traditional route on our first day and took the standard fare tours of Istanbul exploring what everybody else explores. We made the right decision to devote our 2nd day to "The Other Tour" giving us a chance to fully experience the other side of Istanbul.

From an amiable tour/fun machine guide in Trevor to a full exploration of various neighborhoods in Istanbul and also experiencing the thrill of victory playing "Okey", The Other Tour delivered on what its website calls "A platform where travel meets curiosity, courage and honesty."

A key ingredient to the successful experiences of the tour are your fellow travelers where the guide really leaves it up to you and your group's imagination how deep, playful and profound your experience can take. For that, I really like this tour.

Our experience was particularly "interesting" as we were blessed with the rainy, soaking wet day that made it more compelling for our group to make lemonades out of lemon.

Highly recommend this tour and I would like to say "Kudos" to Bulent and Trevor ( plus Mama, who made a delicious homemade feast for us) for this great idea and developing a different spin to traveling.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
14 Thank Mikkolazaro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago
Level 4 Contributor
14 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Great finish to Istanbul trip”
Reviewed December 2, 2012

I recently finished up my Istanbul trip by going on the tour with Trevor and, for part of the day, Fehti. Unfortunately for me, I could only go on the last day of my trip. I'd suggest going early if possible. In any case, it was a fantastic day, the highlight of my trip. Even though most of the tour participants canceled the day before and there were only 2 of us, we did the tour with some very minor adjustments. When I travel, although I like to see the sites, the most memorable parts of a trip are the experiences, and this trip had enough great experiences that they will be remembered for a long time.

Read the website and decide if The Other Tour is for you. The cost may seem a little steep, but for a 14 hour tour where everything is included, it's a great value.

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
7 Thank Cooperhs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Galway
Level 4 Contributor
23 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Experience Istanbul!”
Reviewed November 27, 2012

I love when I travel to a country, not just to look at it but more importantly to experience it, its people, its culture, what makes it tick. The 'Other Tour' does just that, it is an experience in so many senses and to so many senses. It is almost like visiting friends who live in that country, seeing, experiencing real life rather than just those tourist sites.

Initially I thought it was expensive but having experienced the day, I think it was great value. It is described as 14 hours long (9am to 11pm), but I did not get back to my hotel until almost 2am so allow for the tour being double the length of a normal tour and it suddenly seems even better value. I probably spent almost as much money another day, visiting sites, paying for those bland expensive audio guides that they have at so many centres, buying overpriced, uninspiring meals and not having near so much fun.

Thank you especially to the utterly mischievous but delightful rogue, Feithe for imparting his love of his city to us. Thanks also to Trevor who joined us and Feithe’s older brother Balant, both added to the enjoyment of the day. However the highlight of the day as many reviewers have noted was the amazing lunch served by Feithe’s Mum, what a meal it was. It was effectively my first meal in Turkey, I only arrived around midnight the night before and every meal afterwards was underwhelming compared with this wonderful feast.

I will say though that this tour is not for everyone. It may be that some people may not ‘get it’! I would imagine the dynamic of the group could be important, I was fortunate to join a great group of folks from very diverse backgrounds. Even better, since I was travelling on my own some of us met up the next evening for dinner and the tour continued!

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
9 Thank Galway_lass007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WashingtonDC
Level 6 Contributor
841 reviews
144 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 408 helpful votes
“amazing and memorable tour of "real" Istanbul”
Reviewed November 26, 2012

To be perfectly honest, I do not think I have much to add to the glowing reviews of The Other Tour that are already on TripAdvisor. My partner and I did The Other Tour on our first day in Istanbul in order to get an orientation and understanding of the city. Istanbul is a huge city, and most books on cover a few of the main touristy areas, so we were so glad that we did this to on the first day, because our knowledge of Istanbul and our surroundings grew so much by the end of the day.

On The Other Tour's website, it talks about how you should be "ready" to take an adventure like this, that's absolutely true. This is a very interactive tour where you really get to know the other people you're traveling with and truly become a cohesive unit at the end of the day. We were on an all-American tour, and apparently that was the first time that had happened. To be honest, I didn't exactly know what to expect because there is no itinerary on the website, and even when they asked if we wanted to know where we were going, the group decided not to know that we could be surprised as we went along. Now, I'm not looking to spoil the surprise and write the itinerary here, but to fill up the 15 hours that we were on The Other Tour , you sure have to do a lot!

Really, the main draw of going on The Other Tour for me was that it allowed me -- clearly a foreigner -- to experience Istanbul as people from Istanbul experience it. To be quite honest, a lot of the activities that we did on The Other Tour are things that I would love to do, but would normally be somewhat intimidated to do. Walking into a game parlor filled with old smoking Turkish men is not something that two white guys who don't speak Turkish can randomly do and then learn how to play the game. The Other Tour allows you insight and entrée into those kinds of worlds and experiences. One of the traditional things to do while in Istanbul is obviously to go to a Turkish Bath, but how do you know which one to pick out of the 100 choices and not get stuck with one that is bad or not authentic or too touristy or unfriendly? That's were I would say that The Other Tour is the most useful. Being authentic and opening doors is was the main draw of The Other Tour, and it lets you to truly experience Istanbul.

At the end of the day, after a week of touring Istanbul and doing other tours like Istanbul Eats (also 5-stars, but less full-throated than The Other Tour...) and cooking classes, The Other Tour was by far and away the best thing we did in Istanbul, and the best tourI have ever been on across the world, bar none. It is rather pricey at $260 a person, but what you get after a full day, you realize that that price is absolutely worth it.

There's a reason that The Other Tour is #1 on TripAdvisor, and it absolutely deserves to be there. Since we did The Other Tour on the first day, we were able to talk about Istanbul outside of just Hagia Sofia and the Blue Mosque, and The Other Tour was the reason. When we would mention the neighborhoods across Istanbul that we had been to and done activities in, you should've seen the look on the faces of those locals....! :)

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
14 Thank jg325
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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