I am visiting Istanbul from 14th - 20th April. I want to visit the Topkapi palace. When I went 6-7 years ago, there was a long waiting line and we paid a local tourist guide to help us skip the line.

When I check online, I see these kind of skip-the-line tours for 28 or 22 euros. https://www.getyourguide.com/istanbul-l56/istanbul-topkapi-palace-guided-tour-and-skip-the-line-t192789/

However, here on the official website, the price is only around 285 liras (18 euro). https://www.millisaraylar.gov.tr/en/visiting-information

Was wondering if it's better to book online or not? Are there still local guides that help you skip the lines? Are they any cheaper? (we are only 2 people)

Are the lines still long in this season?

  • I don't know about Istanbul, but this is common in much of Europe: agents will have various more expensive tickets providing a more convenient service, or else you go queue at the ticket office. It depends on how you feel about queuing. But companies may vary in what they provide, and it will also depend how busy it is whether it's worthwhile (which will depend on the date but also the day and time). Checking Trip Advisor or reviews of the individual companies is a good idea for more specific advice.
    – Stuart F
    Apr 11, 2022 at 14:25

2 Answers 2


I went to Topkapi Palace recently and while I can’t say for sure that it’s impossible, I definitely couldn’t find anywhere online selling tickets for the regular entry price.

Not only were all the websites considerably more expensive, some of them seemed to require customers to meet a representative at a specific time to get their tickets.

To avoid queueing for long, your best bet is probably to get there early and go on a weekday. I was there at 10:15 on a Wednesday and the line for tickets was less than 5 minutes.


The queues are not long this season. Even if you go at peak times on a weekend you won't be queuing for more than five minutes. If you go early or late the queue is much shorter than this.

To answer you question in full, there probably is no reasonable queue skip options and it's completely unnecessary at this point in time anyway.

  • 1
    we had to wait around 40 mins today :)
    – x89
    Apr 15, 2022 at 20:14
  • But what time was that? Did you go at the same time as big coach tours? Apr 17, 2022 at 5:23

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