DAY 01 ARRIVAL IN ISTANBULTue, 21-09-2021
Welcome to Turkey! Arrival in Istanbul and meeting at the airport just outside the arrival’s gate with a sign bearing your name then transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Istanbul.
DAY 02 ISTANBUL FULL DAYWed, 22-09-2021
Visits: Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace, Hippodrome, Grand Bazaar. Breakfast at the hotel. After you meet with your guide at the lobby, you will begin your tour of the Sultanahmet district, the heart of old Istanbul, at Hagia Sophia. Built by the Emperor Justinian in the early 6th century AD and designed by Anthemius of Tralles and Isodore of Miletus, the church is one of the marvels of world architecture. Converted into a mosque in 1453, it is now a museum. Its massive dome still dominates the skyline of old Istanbul. Next we visit the Blue Mosque which takes its name from the exquisite tiles adorning its interior. The Hippodrome, the stadium of ancient Byzantium, held 100,000 spectators and featured objects from all corners of the empire. The Grand Bazaar was the commercial heart of the old city and its 4,000 shops are full of treasures including carpets and kilims, silks, jewelry, ceramics, icons, and leather goods. Wandering through the Grand Bazaar, indulge in some shopping, Ottoman style. In the afternoon we continue our tour at Topkapi Palace, which, from the 15th to the 19th century, was the principal residence of the Ottoman Sultans. We will visit the fabulous Imperial Treasury and the Baghdad Kiosk. Topkapi Palace is now a museum and has unrivalled collections of jewelry, including the Spoonmaker’s Diamond, the 3rd largest in the world. It also possesses numerous Ottoman court costumes and ceramics, notably including one of the world’s finest collections of Chinese celadon ceramics, many of which were gifts from other rulers. Interestingly, some of the ceramics have a special glaze that was said to change color in the presence of poison. We also visit the Imperial Armory, displaying centuries of Ottoman weaponry. But perhaps the loveliest feature of Topkapi Palace are its courtyards with their ancient trees; it is easy to imagine the sultan strolling here far from the cares of state and empire. Overnight in Istanbul. - Evening -
OPTIONAL TOUR: BOSPHORUS DINNER & CRUISE
Cruise the Bosphorus and experience Istanbul by night on this evening tour that includes incredible panorama while sightseeing from your boat, a delicious Turkish meal, and an evening show filled with cultural highlights. Turkish music, belly dancing, folk dancing along with a DJ performance will entertain you throughout this magical nighttime experience.
DAY 03 ISTANBUL FULL DAYThu, 23-09-2021
We start our tour with a panoramic drive along the old city walls dating back to the 5th century and renowned as one of the greatest examples of a fortification system ever build to defend a city. Next; a short drive to Chora Museum, a small church that was decorated with the most beautiful biblical mosaic panels and frescoes in the 14th century. After visiting the Chora we will be heading towards a 17th century mall called ‘the Egyptian Spice Bazaar’ which still functions as a spice and dried foods market with mystical smells and aromas, spreading around from hundreds of shops selling spices, fruits, vegetables, nuts, flowers, fish… Free time will be allocated for shopping in this bazaar. Lunch in a local restaurant. We end the day up with a relaxing Bosphorus Cruise, through the waterway separating the two continents, Asia and Europe, with its picturesque views of marble palaces, 15th century castles and ancient wooden mansions of the Ottoman architecture. Overnight in Istanbul.
DAY 04 ISTANBUL - GALLIPOLI - ÇANAKKALEFri, 24-09-2021
After an early breakfast, we will begin our scenic drive down to Gallipoli, historically famous for being the site of many battles during WW1. Then we will visit Anzac Cove, Ceremonial Ground for Dawn Service, Lone Pine and some shelters and tunnels before we cross the second strategic waterway, the Dardanelles, and land in Asia and proceed to our hotel in Canakkale for the night. Dinner and overnight.
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
DAY 05 ÇANAKKALE - TROY - PERGAMON - KUŞADASISat, 25-09-2021
We drive to Troy, referred to in Homer’s “Iliad” and “Odyssey”, Troy has in fact nine cities superimposed one upon another. Troy Vl pertains to the famous Trojan War of Homer where the legendary heroes included Agamemnon, Achilles, Ulysses and Nestor on the Greek side; and, Priam, Hector and Paris on the Trojan side. Continuing on our journey we will stop by the hauntingly beautiful Pergamon. Among the impressive structures of this city, dating from 3rd BC, we will see the Altar of Zeus, Temples of Dionysus and Trajan and the 200,000 volume library which was surpassed only by that found in Alexandria at the time. Leaving Pergamon behind us we settle at our hotel. Dinner and overnight.
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
DAY 06 KUŞADASI - EPHESUS - HOUSE OF VIRGIN MARRY - KUŞADASISun, 26-09-2021
Following an early breakfast we will proceed and arrive at the ancient city of Ephesus. Ephesus was undoubtedly one of the most important cultural centers of the ancient world. Impressive structures, we will see, include the Library of Celcius, Temple of Hadrian, Theater and Odeon. We will also stop by at the Temple of Artemis which was one of the Seven Wonders of the antiquity. Close by is the House of the Virgin Mary where she is believed to have spent her last years. On August 18, 1961, Pope John XXll proclaimed the House of Virgin Mary at Ephesus to be sacred. Pope Benedict XVI paid a visit and led a Mass at the church in December 2006. You will have a chance to take some of Holy Water from the Sacred Spring.
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
DAY 07 KUŞADASI - APHRODISIAS - HIERAPOLIS - PAMUKKALEMon, 27-09-2021
Leaving our hotel early after breakfast, we will journey to Pamukkale but on the way we include the tour of Aphrodisias. This city was famous throughout the ancient world for her temple of Aphrodite and enjoyed great prosperity during the Roman period. Some of the highlights will include the Stadium, the Baths of Hadrian, the Odeon and the Theater. We continue on to Pamukkale where the thermal water flows from natural pools in white terraces. The ancient city of Hierapolis was named after Hiera, wife of the founder of Pergamon. Highlights include calcified terraces, the Roman Baths, the Temple of Apollo, the Nymphaeum and the famous Necropolis. Dinner and overnight in Pamukkale.
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
DAY 08 PAMUKKALE - KONYA - CAPPADOCIATue, 28-09-2021
Following an early breakfast we will drive through a beautiful pastoral landscape, over the Taurus mountains viewing the rural life of Turkey. Lunch en route before arriving in Konya. Konya was the capital of the Seljhuk Empire in the 12th and the 13th centuries therefore it is decorated with many fine examples of Turkish & Islamic art and architecture and was also the hometown of Mevlana the founder of ‘Sufi’ wisdom and his Whirling Dervishes. After visiting the Mevlana Museum, we will continue driving to Cappadocia via Sultanhani where we will visit a magnificent example of a 13th century Seljhuk inn built for accommodating the caravans. Dinner and overnight in Cappadocia.
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
DAY 09 CAPPADOCIA NORTH TOURWed, 29-09-2021
Goreme Open Air Museum, Zelve Valley, Devrent Valley, Cavusin Village, Avanos Goreme Open Air Museum: Resembles a vast monastic complex composed of scores of refectory monasteries placed side-by-side, each with its own fantastic church. It is obviously the first sight to be visited by any traveler in Cappadocia, standing as it does in the very center of the region with easy access from all directions. It contains the finest of the rock-cut churches, with beautiful frescoes (wall paintings) whose colors still retain all their original freshness. Zelve Valley: Fairy chimneys with multiple stems and caps can be found here. A chapel dedicated to St. Simeon and a hermit’s shelter built into such fairy chimney with three heads. Devrent Valley: Devrent is 1 km from Zelve Valley. The ruins at Devrent are spread over three valleys which also house several pointed fairy chimneys with large stems. Cavusin Village: One of the oldest settlements in the area. The churct of st. John Baptist offers a panoramic view of the village. This church and its paintings date back to the 5th century, making the oldest church in the region. Avanos: A center terra cotta work of art since 3000 BC. The clay which comes from the Red River passing through the town, gives life both land and local economy. Overnight in Cappadocia. - Evening -
OPTIONAL TOUR: TURKISH NIGHT SHOW & DINNER. Tonight is a special evening. You will be collected from your accommodation for a night of entertainment, food and good fun! You get the experience of a “Turkish night” of traditional Turkish dancing, from the Whirling Dervishes to belly dancing to seeing a Turkish wedding. The night is fully catered for and good fun not to be missed.
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
DAY 10 CAPPADOCIA SOUTH TOURThu, 30-09-2021
Kaymakli Underground City, Pigeon Valley, Uchisar Rock Castle, Esentepe Panorama, Rose Valley Kaymakli Underground City: Built under the hill known as the Citadel of Kaymakli and was opened to visitors in 1964. The people of Kaymakli (Enegup in Greek) village have constructed their houses around nearly one hundred tunnels of the underground city. The inhabitants of the region still use the most convenient places in the tunnels as cellars, storage areas and stables, which they access through their courtyards. The Kaymakli Underground City has low, narrow and sloping passages. While the underground city consists of 8 floors below ground, only 4 of them are open to the public today, in which the spaces are organized around ventilation shafts. Pigeon Valley: A moderate walk in a green valley with many different rock formations and hundreds of pigeon houses carved into fairy-chimneys. Uchisar Rock Castle: Uchisar is the name of the town and the fortress in the town. This 60mt. (200ft) high fortress was not built but carved out of a natural hill dominating the area with a breathtaking view of all the surrounding Cappadocian formations. Esentepe Panorama: this is the best panoramic viewpoint of Goreme. Rose Valley: It has beautiful rock formations with some great hidden rock-carved churches. The most interesting part of this area is the countless tracks connecting the small villages and towns through vineyards and gardens like a spider net. Overnight in Cappadocia. - Early Morning -
OPTIONAL TOUR: CAPPADOCIA HOT AIR BALLOON FLIGHT
This morning you can enjoy an early morning tour of Cappadocia from the comforts of a hot air balloon high in the sky. This is one of the most popular activities in Cappadocia so it would be great to consider it as the views are amazing. This tour comes at an extra cost.
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
DAY 11 CAPPADOCIA - ANKARA - ISTANBULFri, 01-10-2021
Today with an early start to the day you may join to an optional Hot Air Balloon ride which is by far the best way to savor the fantastic views of the landscape of Cappadocia. Then drive to Ankara; the modern capital city of Turkey. Visit the Mausoleum of Atatürk (1881-1938) the founding father of the Turkish Republic which is at the same time a museum of Turkish Independence War and Revolution. After lunch visit one of the most impressive archaeological museums of the world: The Museum of Ancient Anatolian Civilizations with its unprecedented collections of Hittites, Assyrians, Urartians, Lydians as well as rich exhibitions of prehistoric artifacts. End of the tour transfer to airport to take Istanbul flight. On arrival, pick up by our agents and transfer you to hotel for overnight stay in Istanbul.
DAY 12 DEPARTURE FROM ISTANBULSat, 02-10-2021
We will meet at your hotel lobby and transfer you to Istanbul Airport. Please continue to international terminal for your homebound flight. Our team says so long and looks forward to be your host again until next time on your travel pleasure for other destinations. Gule Gule.
INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
Flight from Ankara to Istanbul
4 nights stay in Istanbul
1 night stay in Çanakkale
2 nights stay in Kuşadası
1 night stay in Pamukkale
3 nights stay in Cappadocia
Meals according to the itinerary: 11 Breakfasts, 8 Lunches, 7 Dinners
Transfers airport - hotel - airport.
Luxury transportation during the trip.
Services of experienced local guides.
Tickets and visits according to the itinerary.
24 hour telephone assistance service.
NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE
No unspecified service.
Tips for guide and driver.
|Date||Type||Dep. From||Arr. To||Company||The Price|
|Mon 20-09-2021||Flight||New York (JFK)||Istanbul (IST)||N/A||Excludes|
|Fri, 01-10-2021||Flight||Ankara (ESB)||Istanbul (IST)||N/A||Includes|
|Sat 02-10-2021||Flight||Istanbul (IST)||New York (JFK)||N/A||Excludes|
|Istanbul||Cat. (A)||Hotel||Nippon Hotel Taksim||First Class|
|Çanakkale||Cat. (A)||Hotel||Büyük Truva Oteli||First Class|
|Kuşadası||Cat. (A)||Hotel||Marina Hotel & Suites||First Class|
|Pamukkale||Cat. (A)||Hotel||Lycus River Thermal Hotel||First Class|
|Cappadocia||Cat. (A)||Hotel||Ortahisar Cave Hotel||First Class|
|Istanbul||Cat. (B)||Hotel||Crowne Plaza Hotel||Luxury Class|
|Çanakkale||Cat. (B)||Hotel||Parion Hotel||Luxury Class|
|Kuşadası||Cat. (B)||Hotel||Korumar Deluxe Hotel||Luxury Class|
|Pamukkale||Cat. (B)||Hotel||Adempira Termal & Spa Hotel||Luxury Class|
|Cappadocia||Cat. (B)||Hotel||Utopia Cave Cappadocia||Luxury Class|
This is the list of the hotels most frequently used in this circuit. Only reflected for indicative purposes, and may be the passenger staying in similar or alternative establishments.