Day 01: Istanbul
Arrive in Istanbul and transfer to the hotel. Overnight.
Day 02: Istanbul
A full day walking tour with Blue Mosque (Closed on Friday mornings and the last minute occasions beyond our control and therefore no responsibility is assumed), famous for its mosaics with some 20.000 blue Iznik tiles and its six minarets, built in the name of Sultan Ahmet in the 17th century, one of the best examples of classical Turkish art. Cross through the Hippodrome, the scene of Byzantine chariot races, athletic events, victory celebrations and political activities of the old city where one can also see the “Obelisk of Egypt”, “Serpent Column” from Delphi, the “German Fountain of Wilhelm II” and the “Colossus”. St. Sophia (Closed on Mondays during winter months. If still closed on the tour date, it will be replaced with Yerebatan Underground Cistern), one of the great architectural marvels of the ancient world, constructed as a basilica in 536 AD by Emperor Justinian, turned into a mosque in 1453 and now into a museum, takes the breath away with the sheer size of its interior and its magnificent dome. In the afternoon tour with Topkapi Palace – Harem section is excluded – (Closed on Tuesdays); built in 1468 on one of the seven hills of Istanbul by Mehmet the Conqueror, the seat of the Ottoman sultans for 400 years and a huge complex serving as a museum today facing superb views of the Sea of Marmara, the Bosphorus and the Golden Horn. The palace houses the treasures of the Sultans including the extravagant Treasury with its magnificent jewels, and the priceless Chinese porcelain, one of the best collections in the world, weapons, calligraphy section, and more. Thereafter proceed to Grand Covered Bazaar (Closed on Sundays), which is the biggest “souk” in the world with nearly 4000 shops of antiques, jewelry, gold, carpets, ceramics and leatherwear (B, L).
Day 03: Istanbul
A full day tour to visit the aromatic Spice Bazaar from 1663 with its domed and vaulted shops selling spices and herbs along with a wide variety of commodities, also known as Egyptian Bazaar as it was once endowed with the Cairo imposts. Then proceed to the pier so as to embark the public boat. Sailing through the waterway separating the two continents – Asia and Europe – with a possibility to take pictures of the marble palaces, ancient wooden villas of Ottoman architecture besides modern residentials. During this trip Dolmabahce Palace, Ciragan Palace, Beylerbeyi Palace, Bosphorus and Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridges as well as Rumelian Fortress, historical armament built by the Conqueror in 1452 to control and protect Bosphorus, will be visible from the sea. Leaving the boat and getting into the coach for the afternoon at leisure (B)
Day 04: Istanbul-Cappadocia
Transfer to the airport. Fly to Cappadocia. On arrival meet at the airport and visit to Devrent Valley where various types of fairy chimneys are abundant. We will walk through this amazing valley. Thereafter visit Pasabagi (Monk’s Valley) with multiple stems and caps, peculiar to this area. After visiting Pasabagi, drive to Avanos which is known for the pottery, a craft dating back to the Hittite period. The red clay which is worked by local craftsmen comes from the residue in the Kizilirmak River, the longest river of Turkey. Further to the time for lunch proceed to Goreme Open Air Museum (Dark Church is excluded; entrance requires additional admission fee) to visit the churches, chapels and monasteries carved into the fairy chimneys from the 10th to the 13th centuries with frescos painted on the walls. Thereafter time to take photos in the neighbouring valleys before going back to the hotel (B, L)
Day 05: Cappadocia
Optional balloon tour. Meet at the hotel lobby in the morning and visit to Rose Valley, one of the most beautiful trekking valleys in Cappadocia, and explore the famous rock- cut churches by hiking through the valley. Rest in Cavusin, an old Greek village, known for its Christian houses and churches. After having time for lunch visit Ortahisar Castle, similar to Uchisar Castle in style, where storage caves can also be observed. In the afternoon visit Kaymakli (or Ozkonak) Underground City where early Christians lived in fear and faith. On the way back visit to panoramic Pigeon Valley where pigeons contributed to the lives of locals with their manure to fertilize the vineyards. You may also like to taste Cappadocia wine in a local winery. Overnight in Cappadocia (B, L).
Day 06: Cappadocia-Izmir-Kusadasi
After breakfast transfer to the airport in Kayseri or Nevsehir. Fly to Izmir. On arrival drive on to Selcuk to visit Ephesus Antique City (Hillside Houses are excluded), one of the most popular ancient sites of Turkey with many acres of carefully excavated ruins and then stop by Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world. Proceed to Ephesus Archaeological Museum. The last visit will be to the House of Virgin Mary where she is supposed to spend her last years together with St. John. Transfer to the hotel in Kusadasi (B, L).
Day 07: Kusadasi-Pamukkale-Istanbul
Depart from Kusadasi and arrive in Aphrodisias, the city of Aphrodite which was famous for its sculptors; visit the Museum, the Temple of Aphrodite, the Theatre, the Stadium, the Agora, the Hadrian Baths, the Odeon, and the Bishop’s Palace. Continue to Pamukkale “Cotton Castle“, the ancient Hierapolis famous for healing thermal/mineral baths and beautiful petrified waterfalls. Visit to the historical site including the magnificently preserved Necropolis, the Main Street and Gates, the Thermal Baths, the Apollo Temple with the Devil’s Hole and the masterpiece Theatre. Transfer to the airport. Fly to Istanbul. On arrival transfer to the hotel in Istanbul and overnight (B)
Day 08: Istanbul
Transfer to the airport for the next destination or you may like to extend your stay in Turkey (B).
|Departure Dates||Per Person in US Dollar|
|*The designated rate pertains to GROUP tours. Please inquire for the PRIVATE rates
**Single Room Supplement: $340
|Ramada Istanbul Taksim
Cappadocia Cave Suites
Efe Boutique Hotel
Ramada Istanbul Taksim
Our Rates Include:
* Arrival and departure airport/port transfers on the first and last days of the tours regardless the flight times.
Additional fees may apply for the other locations
* English speaking government licensed guides throughout the tour
Additional fees apply for the other languages that can be served on only private basis
* Private air-conditioned vehicles the size of which depends on the number of the participants, unless specified as walking tours
* Accommodation at the hotels with private facilities on the designated board, meals as indicated on the itinerary by the code letters (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
* Admission fees
* Lunches where indicated
* Local taxes and service charges
Our Rates Exclude:
* Personal expenses
* Customary tips to the guides and drivers
* Anything that is not designated as included* These tours are guaranteed without any minimum person requirement on the designated dates