Aegean & Anatolian Turkey, Private Tour
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See impressive historical highlights in Istanbul and the geological wonderland in Cappadocia, discover the ruins of Ephesus, and relax on its mesmerising Mediterranean Coast, on this memorable ten-day tour of some of Turkey’s most impressive sights. Stroll the beautifully arranged streets of Istanbul and visit the fascinating Topkapi Palace, used by the Ottoman Sultans, admire the famous Blue Mosque, a unique piece of architecture built for Sultan Ahmet I, and catch a glimpse of the magnificent ancient Hippodrome. Then, indulge in history visiting important cities and landmarks, get closer to culture in picturesque Sirince, and catch sight of Antalya, praising its imposing mountains and relaxing beaches. Continue your adventure in Cappadocia, with the spectacular Goreme open-air museum, the lunar landscape, and the Uchisar rock castle, where you have the chance to enjoy a panoramic view of the valleys below.
Istanbul: Served as a capital city to the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires, this Euro-Asian city never fails to enthral with its beautiful buildings in the old city of Sultanahmet overlooking the Bosphorus strait which separates the city between Europe and Asia. You can find anything you might be looking for and more in beautiful Istanbul.
Ephesus: Discover the ruins of this once vast city, including the Temple of Artemis, the Roman baths, the Library of Celsus, and the House of the Virgin Mary.
Sirince: Stroll the paths of a picturesque whitewashed Anatolian village, which is home to a thriving wine production industry.
Pamukkale: Visit one of Turkey’s top attractions admiring its impressive white travertines formed by calcified minerals running down a hillside.
Antalya: Wander around the beautiful Mediterranean city of Antalya, admiring its imposing mountains, relaxing on the sunny beaches and exploring its many shopping malls.
Konya: Enjoy a stop in charming Konya, home of the Whirling Dervishes.
Cappadocia: The Ancient region in central Anatolia, situated on the rugged plateau north of the Taurus Mountains, in the centre of present-day Turkey boasts a lunar-landscape and early Christain churches carved out of volcanic rock.
- Fully escorted by English speaking tour guide on private basis
- Nine nights’ accommodation in indicated category hotels
- All meals as mentioned in programme
ENTRANCE FEES AND ACTIVITIES:
- All entrance fees and activities mentioned in the itinerary: old city in Istanbul, Topkapi Palace, Blue Mosque, Hippodrome, Grand Bazaar, Bosphorous Cruise, fully guided tour in Ephesus, Meryem Ana, Sirince, visit the vineyards in Sirince, visit the calcium terraces of Pamukkale, ancient city of Hierapolis, visit the old marina in Antalya, Clock Tower, Hadrian’s Gate, Broken Minaret and Hidirlik Tower in Kaleici, the Lower Duden Waterfalls, Mausoleum of Mevlana, Derinkuyu underground city, Uchisar Castle, Goreme Open Air Museum, Cavusin, Avanos, Pasabagi, Devrent Valley, a wine shop in Urgup for wine tasting
- Arrival airport transfers
- Local airport transfers as per itinerary
- Modern air-conditioned vehicles.
- All applicable government taxes and fees
- Meet & Greet on day 1.
- International and domestic flights, airport fees of any kind
- Meals, other than specified in itinerary
- Optional offered tours and events
- Everything not clearly mentioned in “Rates include”
- Day 3: Istanbul – Izmir flight is not included and our recommendation is not to book a flight prior to 16:00 hrs.
- St. Sophia Museum is closed on Mondays
- Topkapi Palace is closed on Tuesdays
- The Grand Bazaar is closed on Sundays
- Please note that local conditions prevalent at the time of travel may result in modifications to the tour contents without prior notice.
What do I need to bring?
Visitors should not wear sleeveless shirts, shorts, short skirts or skimpy clothing when visiting religious or official buildings in Turkey. Shoes should be removed before entering a mosque or private house. Sun protection, sun glasses, a hat and mosquito repellent can be very useful during your stay.
Day 1,2 Istanbul:
- Superior Hotel Category = Dosso Dossi Old Town Hotel or similar 4*
Day 3,4 Kusadasi:
- Superior Hotel Category = Charisma Deluxe Hotel or similar 5*
Day 5 Pamukkale:
- Superior Hotel Category = Spa Hotel Colossae Thermal or similar 5*
Day 6,7 Antalya:
- Superior Hotel Category = Best Western Khan Hotel or similar 4*
Day 8,9 Cappadocia:
- Superior Hotel Category = Maze of Cappadocia Hotel or similar 4*
- Once ordered, this tour cannot be cancelled or refund or amended at any circumstances.
Day 1 : ARRIVAL ISTANBUL
Arrive at Istanbul airport where a representative will meet and greet you before you are transferred to your hotel for check-in. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure, relaxing in the hotel or exploring the surroundings on your own.
Overnight in Istanbul.
Day 2 : ISTANBUL
Indulge in a delicious breakfast at the hotel and prepare for an early meeting with your guide. Today, the tour begins with a visit to Topkapi Palace, which was used by the Ottoman Sultans from the 15th to 19th centuries. Here you will see the impressive collection of priceless jewels, crystal, silver and porcelain, robes worn by the sultan, and relics of the prophet Mohammed. Stop for a tasty lunch and then see the Blue Mosque, a unique piece of architecture with its six minarets built for Sultan Ahmet I, featuring 20,000 beautiful blue Iznik tiles. Afterwards, enjoy a visit to the ancient Hippodrome where you will see the Obelisk of Theodosius, Snake Pillar and the German Fountain of Wilhelm II. At the end of the tour, we will have time to wander around the Grand Bazaar. After the tour, transfer back to your hotel. You can end your day in Istanbul with an optional 1001 Nights Dinner Show (not included).
Overnight in Istanbul. Lunch included.
Day 3 : ISTANBUL – KUSADASI (575 KM – 1 HR FLIGHT + 1 HR TRANSFER EACH END)
After a tasty breakfast, enjoy an relaxing Bosphorus Cruise. From the boat, admire the array of beautiful sites, including the Spice Bazaar (Egyptian Bazaar), old city walls, Topkapi Palace and many other impressive landmarks. After this traditional excursion by boat along the waterway separating Europe and Asia, indulge in a delicious lunch at a local restaurant and head towards the Istanbul Ataturk airport to catch your flight to Izmir. On arrival, enjoy a comfortable transfer to your hotel in Kusadasi for check-in and, if time permits luxuriate in a relaxing Turkish bath. Your flight to Izmir and the Turkish bath are not included.
Overnight in Kusadasi. Lunch included.
Day 4 : KUSADASI – EPHESUS – KUSADASI (40 km –30 mins)
Enjoy your breakfast at the hotel and depart for a fully guided tour of Ephesus, one of the best preserved ancient sites in the world. This once thriving metropolis gives a real feel of how the city once looked, as you walk down marble-paved streets and admire the remains of the Celsus Library, Hadrian’s Temple and the amphitheatre. We then move on to Meryem Ana or House of the Virgin Mary which is in a hilltop location a short distance from Ephesus. According to the stories, Mary spent her last years here and it has been sanctified by the Roman Catholic Church. Indulge in a delicious lunch and then visit a carpet weaving centre to watch the ancient practice of carpet-weaving. Afterwards, explore Sirince, a pretty village which sits high up in the hills behind Selcuk and was once inhabited by Anatolian Greeks. The narrow, cobbled streets are packed with stalls selling local products such as homemade jams, souvenirs, wine, and textiles. Famous for its fruit wines, we will visit the vineyards and learn how to make fruit wine with the local winemakers. Before returning to Kusadasi, the final stop is at a leather production centre where you will have the opportunity to get good factory rates.
Overnight in Kusadasi. Lunch included.
Day 5 : KUSADASI – PAMUKKALE (200 Km – 3 Hrs)
After a tasty breakfast, we depart to Pamukkale. On arrival, check into the hotel and relax while enjoying a luscious lunch. Afterwards, visit the spellbinding calcium terraces of Pamukkale and walk around this natural phenomenon which has been formed by calcium deposits in the water trickling down the hillside and solidifying into white travertines. Then, wander around the charming ancient city of Hierapolis which sits above the travertines. The beautiful city was popular among the Romans for the healing powers of its natural spring water. If you feel adventurous, enjoy one of the optional activities available here. You can choose between paragliding and a memorable hot-air balloon ride.
Overnight in Pamukkale. Lunch included.
Day 6 : PAMUKKALE – ANTALYA (245 Km – 3.5 Hrs)
Start your day with a delicious breakfast at the hotel, before departing for Antalya, on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast. Enjoy a coffee break en route and arrive in Antalya early in the afternoon. Check into your hotel and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure, relaxing at the hotel or exploring the surroundings on your own.
Overnight in Antalya.
Day 7 : ANTALYA
Enjoy a tasty breakfast and continue your adventure driving to Antalya’s old quarter, known as Kaleici. Visit the delightful old marina, Clock Tower, Hadrian’s Gate, Broken Minaret and Hidirlik Tower. Kaleici was once the sprawling modern Roman town, then later inhabited by the Byzantines, Seljuks and finally the Ottomans. Hadrian’s Gate is a triumphal arch built in the name of the Roman Emperor Hadrian. The Broken Minaret of the Korkut Mosque was built originally as a Roman temple in the second century AD and Hidirlik Tower is a landmark tower of tawny stone. After a delightful lunch, the tour moves on to the Lower Duden Waterfalls, which is where all the streams from the Taurus Mountains find their way into the Mediterranean Sea by pouring over Antalya’s cliffs in a spectacular display. Enjoy the rest of day at leisure.
Overnight in Antalya. Lunch included.
Day 8 : ANTALYA – KONYA –CAPPADOCIA (545 Km – 7 Hrs)
Begin your day with a rich breakfast at the hotel. Then, at the indicated time, we depart for beautiful Konya. On arrival, we stop at a restaurant for a tasty lunch and then we visit the imposing green-tiled Mausoleum of Mevlana, the mystic founder of the Sufi sect (Whirling Dervishes). After the Konya Mevlana tour, we continue to Cappadocia arriving in the evening and checking into the hotel.
Overnight in Cappadocia. Lunch included.
Day 9 : CAPPADOCIA
A new day brings more surprises, right after a lovely breakfast at your hotel. Drive to Derinkuyu underground city, one of the best preserved and deepest underground cities in Cappadocia, reaching 55 metres below ground and having eight levels open to visitors. We then visit Uchisar Castle, the highest point of Cappadocia for a panoramic view of the valleys below. After Uchisar, we visit Goreme Open Air Museum where early Christian churches carved out of the rock are decorated with beautiful religious frescoes dating from the 10th century. Next stop is Cavusin, which is an abandoned village with old cave Greek houses. Then, we enjoy a relaxing lunch stop at Avanos and continue with a visit to a pottery workshop, to see how the local ceramics are made. Afterwards, we move on to Pasabagi where you can see rock formations in the shape of three-headed fairy chimneys and visit a workshop to see Cappadocian handwoven carpets and kilims. Next stop is Devrent Valley, also called Imagination Valley, where you can see natural rock formations looking like animals. Then, we go to a wine shop in Urgup for a memorable tasting session. Our last stop is the Three Beauties, three beautiful fairy chimneys, famous for being the symbol of Cappadocia. This tour will end in the evening when you are returned to your hotel.
Overnight in Cappadocia. Lunch included.
Day 10 : DEPART CAPPADOCIA
Enjoy a tasty breakfast before checking out from the hotel and heading towards the local airport to continue with your travel arrangements.