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Turkey Minarets, Fairy Chimneys, And Ancient Gods

  • Highlights
This example itinerary combines three mind blowing worlds in one week with private tours in the magical city of Istanbul, visits & hiking in the fairy chimney valleys of Cappadocia  and Ephesus plus a couple of days to enjoy the mythical Aegean coast.

Customizable tour itinerary

This tour idea is fully customizable

This itinerary has been crafted by our Local Agency with one idea in mind: to inspire you. Every element can be adapted to your needs and your interests, from duration to accommodation and activities.

Day 1: Istanbul arrival

Arrival in Istanbul and transfer to your hotel in the old city. Overnight with breakfast. 

Visited:
Istanbul
Accommodation
Night at Lady Diana Hotel (Istanbul)

Day 2: Visit the old city of Istanbul 

Private walking tour : a short walk will take you first to the pearl of Byzance, Hagia Sofia, a 6th century masterpiece of Byzantine architecture, built as a Christian church, converted to a mosque in 1453and made into a museum in the middle of the 20th century.

Walk around the Hippodrome, the heart of Constantinople’s political and sporting life. See also the the Blue Mosque with its blue tiles,six minarets and a great cascade of domes. We will go down to the Basilica Cistern with its hundreds of columns.

After lunch, we’ll continue to the Topkapi Palace, the official and primary residence in the city of the Ottoman Sultans from 1465 to 1853, to admire its displays of Ottoman treasures and jewellery. You’ll also see the Sultans’ harem.

Accommodation
Night at Lady Diana Hotel (Istanbul)

Day 3: Istanbul in its splendor by walk and by boat

Private tour : A short drive along the Golden Horn will take us to the Kariye museum which has the city's most beautiful golden mosaics describing the life of Christ as well as some remarkable paintings especially the one of  the resurrection of Adam and Eve. We`ll then visit the renovated museum of Pammakaristos, where one can also see wonderful mosaics followed by a short walk through the neighbourhood of Fener.  We’ll stop by the Orthodox Patriarchate, the Greek Orthodox equivalent of the Vatican, and the St. George church.   

Short transfer to Sirkeci for lunch before a 1.5 hour cruise on the Bosphorous.

The Strait connects the Sea of Marmara to the Black Sea and separates Europe and Asia, making Istanbul one of the most beautiful cities in the world and the only one built astride two continents. You’ll admire from the water the Dolmabahce Plalace, the Beylerbeyi Palace, the Ciragan Palace and the Rumeli Fortress, ancient wooden villas and bridges.

After the cruise, visit the Spice Bazaar built between 1597 and 1664 with its colourful spice stalls and a little known Ottoman jewel, the Rustem Pasha Mosque, covered with blue Iznik tiles, both inside and out.

Visited:
Istanbul
Accommodation
Night at Lady Diana Hotel (Istanbul)

Day 4: Shopping day at the Grand Bazaar

Free day to roam at your leisure and explore the Grand Bazaar.

Visited:
Istanbul
Accommodation
Night at Lady Diana Hotel (Istanbul)

Day 5: Cappadocia’s unique landscapes

Morning flight to Cappadocia. Upon arrival transfer to your cave hotel.Rest of the day at leisure to discover the premises.

Visited:
Göreme Gulludere Kizilçukur Cappadocia (Roman province)
Accommodation
Night at Kalekonak Hotel (Cappadocia (Roman province))

Day 6: Witness the intense monastic life of the Byzantine 

Private Tour: We’ll head off by car to the underground city  of  Derinkuyu, 8 floors deep. Then we continue to the Open Air Museum of Göreme, where a big number of rock churches, monasteries and a refectory allow you to bring alive in your imagination how the Byzantine clergy lived at that time.  Your guide will help you understand the meaning of the well preserved frescoes that you will see in the churches.

From there, we’ll go to the amazing Pasabag Fairy Chimney valley which is probably one of the best places to understand the unique geological phenomenon of this incredible region. You’ll see fairy chimneys with multiple “hats” and how hermits lived in them.

We'll pass through the Devrent valley, yet another amazing fairy chimney valley, on our way to the village of Ürgüp with its traditional old houses.

Visited:
Göreme Pasabag Urgub Avanos

Day 7: Go deep into the underground city

Guided walk: the churches and landscapes of Gulludere and Kizilçukur. Our vehicle will drop us off at our tour staring point in the valley of Zindanonu with its church and pigeon homes.
We will trek down the valley of Gulludere (Rose Valley) and we will visit some cave churches.

We will pass over a splendid view point to reach the valley of Kizilçukur (Red Valley), whose colours and tufa formations are fascinating. About 3 hours of walking (can be shortened or lengthened).  Short drive back to your hotel.

Visited:
Derinkuyu Vallée d’Ihlara Belisirma Avanos

Day 8: Izmir – Kusadasi (Ephesus)

Private transfer  to the airport and flight to Izmir . Upon arrival, private transfer to your hotel in Kusadasi, the "Bird island”.

Enjoy the next 4 nights half-board at La Vista hotel, the pearl of the Aegean, or similar.

Visited:
Istanbul
Accommodation
Night at La Vista Hotel (Kusadasi)

Day 9: Ephesus

Private tour to Ephesus, the city dedicated to Artemis. Visit the ruins from the period of St. Paul, the Odeon, the Monumental fountain, Temples, the Library, the Great Theatre and the Double Church. You can also visit St. John’s Basilica and his Tomb and the Shrine of Virgin Mary, where she spent the last years of her life as well as the visit old greek village of Sirince. 

Visited:
Ephesus Sirince

Day 10: Kusadasi

Leisure on the seaside, facing the greek islands.  Spend the day as you please - be it exploring culture and history or enjoying some last rays of sunshine before heading home.

Visited:
Kusadasi
Accommodation
Night at La Vista Hotel (Kusadasi)

Day 11: Kusadasi - Final Day!

Leisure on the seaside, facing the greek islands.  Enjoy your final day of the holidays as you see fit!

Visited:
Kusadasi
Accommodation
Night at La Vista Hotel (Kusadasi)

Day 12: Transfer to Izmir, Departure

Transfer to Izmir Airport for your onward flight.

Visited:
Kusadasi Izmir

Istanbul Hagia Sophia Göreme Gulludere Kizilçukur Cappadocia (Roman province) Pasabag Urgub Avanos Derinkuyu Vallée d’Ihlara Belisirma Ephesus Sirince Kusadasi Izmir

Price details

This tour idea is fully customizable

The price reflects this specific itinerary and is designed to give you an idea of the budget required for this destination. Throughout the trip-planning process, our local agency will tailor your itinerary around your budget.

Approx. $1,640 / 12 days
Excluding international flights
2 people 4 people 6 people
Price per person $1,910 $1,660 $1,570

Included in price:

  • 7 nights’ accommodation with breakfast
  • 4 nights' accommodation half-board
  • All private airport transfers
  • 4 full day private tours, guide, transport, lunch and entrance fees included
  • A Bosphorus cruise
  • A half-day hiking tour

Not included in price:

  • International or domestic flights
  • Lunches except during the full day tours
  • Drinks and personal expenses.

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