11 days/ 10 nights
Day 01 Saturday Welcome to Istanbul
a city very much immortalized in art, history and literature, Istanbul today is a sprawling metropolis combining the ancient and the contemporary.
On arrival in Istanbul, and after custom formalities, our representative will meet and assist you with the transfer to the hotel. Today, acquaint yourself with cosmopolitan Istanbul at your leisure.
Day 02 Sunday Istanbul
Today you will explore some of Istanbul’s many treasures that bridge the past and present beginning with the ancient Hippodrome, where chariot races and athletic events took place during the Roman Period. Next, visit Istanbul’s most famous treasure – the Blue Mosque, named for the beautiful Iznik tiles which give the mosque its interior color, and the museum of St. Sophia. Later, you’ll visit the famous Museum of Topkapi Palace to visit the dazzling displays of the treasures of the Ottoman Sultans. Lunch nearby. End your tour with a stroll through one of the oldest and largest covered market places in the world – the Grand Bazaar. B, L
Day 03, Monday Istanbul
Early morning departure for 19th c. Dolmabahce Palace, the second palace of the Ottoman Sultans with its magnificent and grandiose interior of crystal chandeliers, the one adorning the grand hall weighing in at four tons.
We, then continue up the Bosphorus to board a ferry for the cruise on the Bosphorus. You will enjoy crossing from continent to continent traveling down the Bosphorus, which is lined with old Ottoman seaside mansions, marble palaces and small fishing villages. Return to the hotel. Evening is at leisure. (B)
Day 04 Tuesday Istanbul – Ankara – Cappadocia (172 miles – 276 km.)
Following an early breakfast, board the coach for the drive to Ankara, the capital of Turkey. Today, visit the Anatolian Civilizations Museum, filled with priceless collections from the prehistoric era, and the Mausoleum of Ataturk, the founder of Modern Turkey. After lunch in Ankara, drive to the fairy tale region of Cappadocia. Dinner and overnight in Cappadocia. B, L, D
Day 05 Wednesday Cappadocia (75 miles – 120 km.)
Your full day tour will includes a visit to the famous Goreme Open Air Museum and see the best examples of Byzantine art in Cappadocia in rock-cut churches with frescoes and paintings (10th to 13th century). Climb on top of the Uchisar Rock-Castle to have a panoramic view of the valleys of Cappadocia; and then to Zelve Open Air Museum: a journey in the past with its troglodyte houses; visit to Pasabag “fairy chimneys” where the voice of wind mixes with the “songs of fairies”.
After lunch, tour to Kaymaklı or Derinkuyu Underground City, one of the most interesting underground settlements in Cappadocia. Dinner and overnight in Cappadocia. B, L, D
Day 06 Thursday Cappadocia – Konya – Antalya (324 miles – 518 km.)
Today, travel through the Turkish countryside to Central Anatolia, where we arrive in one of Turkey’s oldest cities – Konya, the capital of the Seljuk Empire, but known throughout the world as the home of the Whirling Dervishes. Here, you will visit the shrine of Mevlana, the great mystic, who inspired the rituals of the “Whirling Dervishes”.
Lunch en-route as you drive pass, the Taurus Mountains, to Antalya, the capital of the Turquoise coach on the Mediterranean Sea. Dinner and overnight in Antalya. B, L, D
Day 07 Friday Antalya (62 miles – 100km.)
Today, visit the Pamphylian Cities of Perge, Aspendos and Side with their impressive ruins and well preserved theatres in the fertile plains of the Antalya. You will visit the ruins of the Great Theater, the Stadium and the huge Hellenistic and Roman Gates of Perge; then drive to Aspendos to see the best preserved Roman theatre. On the way to Aspendos visit the Manavgat Waterfalls. Dinner is at the hotel in Antalya. B, L, D
Day 08 Saturday Antalya – Pamukkale (238 miles – 380 km.)
Buffet breakfast. This morning, you will depart by coach for Pamukkale passing over the Bey Mountains. Lunch en-route to Pamukkale, which is known for its spa, where pure white travertine form “Frozen Waterfalls”. Dinner and overnight in Pamukkale. B, L, D
Day 09 Sunday Pamukkale – Kusadasi (212 miles – 340 km.)
This morning visit the ruins of the magnificent Temple of Apollo, the theater, the Necropolis and the great baths of Hierapolis. After lunch, depart for Aphrodisias, the city dedicated to the goddess of love.
Visit the Temple of Aphrodite, theatre, baths, agora and its well preserved stadium. Continue to Kusadasi for dinner and overnight. B, L, D
Day 10 Monday Kusadasi
Travel to Ephesus, the city dedicated to Artemis, the best preserved ancient city of Asia Minor. Visit the ruins from the period of St. Paul, Odeon, Monumental Fountains, and Temples, the Library of Celsus, the Great Theatre, the Double Church and the magnificent amphitheater.
In the afternoon visit the Basilica of St. John and his Tomb, the Temple of Diana and the Shrine of Virgin Mary, where she spent the last years of her life. Dinner and overnight in Kusadasi. B, L, D
Day 11 Tuesday Kusadasi
After breakfast, transfer to the airport.
B – Breakfast
L – Lunch
D – Dinner
- Hotel accommodations in your choice of hotels, based on double occupancy
- 3 nights in Istanbul; 2 nights in Cappadocia; 2 nights in Antalya; 1 night in Pamukkale; 2 nights in Kusadasi;
- 10 buffet breakfasts, 9lunches and 7 dinners
- Ground transportation by air-conditioned vehicles
- Sightseeing as indicated in itinerary
- Services of an English speaking guide throughout the tour
- Regular ferry on the Bosphorus tour in Istanbul
- All entrance fees to sights and museums
- Hotel taxes, service charges and baggage handling.
- Lunches and dinner no mentioned
- Drinks at meals
- Gratuities to guide and driver
- Personal expenses
- Flight from Kusadasi