Your international Turkish Airlines nonstop flight will depart the USA airport this evening at 6:00 p.m. arriving in Istanbul the next day before noon.Upon arrival in Istanbul, you will meet your guide and check into your 5 star hotel. The afternoon will be free and there will be a welcome dinner in the evening;
Day 3: Istanbul.
Since we will be visiting Istanbul at the end of the tour,we will divide the activities and locations which are described on Day 13 and 14 of the itinerary, between the begining and end of the tour;
Day 4: Ankara.
There will be a scenic 6 hour drive on the freeway with 2 stops. While in Ankara, the capital of Turkey since 1923, we will visit the magnificent Museum of Anatolian Civilizations. This particular museum contains relics from Çatalhöyük, one of the earliest known human communities up through the Roman Classical Period. We will also pay a visit to the Mausoleum of Musafa Kemal Atatürk,the father of modern Turkey. This beautiful landmark is perched a top hill with a panoramic view of the city. Our stay in Ankara will be at 5 star Merit Altinel;
Days 5 - 6 - Cappadocia (One of the Natures Wonders of the World).
Early the next morning we will depart Ankara and turn our sights toward Cappadocia. We will stop frequently for rest breaks during the 4 h 30 min. drive to this region. While in Cappadocia we will enjoy the unique landscape of wind and the rain eroded volcanic rock formations. We will visit the amazing underground churches and cities carved into the rocks by early Christians. We will visit ancient handicrafts shops and enjoy a folk dance and belly-dancing performance while we wine and dine in an Underground Cabaret. We will have wonderful strolls and go off the ''tourist track'' visiting small villages and discovering the unknown. While in Cappadocia, we will enjoy an excellent lecture-demonstration on Turkish kilims and carpets. Our stay in Cappadocia will be at the 5 star Kapadokya Lodge;
Days 7 - 8: Konya, Antalya - Turkish Riviera.
Antalya is our destination for today.Along the way we will stop briefly in Konya to visit the Whirling Dervish Museum, a very holy place foor turkish muslims. There are exhibits of Dervish costumes, instruments, manuscripts and various ethnographic artifacts. Also we will stop frequently for rest breaks. We will have a beautiful drive through the Tauros Mountains and along the Turquoise Coast on our way to Antalya. Antalya is known as the Turkish Riviera, beautiful city that is snuggled between the Mediterranean Sea and the Tauros Mountains. During our stay in Antalya, we will visit the ruined cities of Aspendos and Perge with the Antalya Museum and tour the city. We will stay at the 5 star delux Porto Bello Hotel; all the rooms will have a beautiful view of the Mediterranean Sea and the mountains;
Day 9: Pamukkale, Aphrodisias, Hierapolis.
We will depart Antalya early and drive to Aphrodisias, the city of art dedicated to the Goddess Aphrodite. The marble theatre is beautiful and the stadium that seats over 35,000 is immense. After Aphrodisias we will continue north to Pamukkale, where we will visit the snow like travertines of calcium for which Pamukkale is famous. Pamukkale is one of the natural wonders of the world with strikingly beautiful mineral springs clinging to the hillsides that will amaze you. Another Greco-Roman City ''Hierapolis '' is visited here with an incredible necropolis (city of the dead) and see many sarcophagi. Our stay will be at the 5 star Colossae hotel, which has a hot-thermal mineral pool for our enjoyment;
Days 10-11: Izmir, Sardis, Ephesus.
Today we will drive to Sardis where money was first minted. We will see one of the world's oldest synagogues in Sardis, as well as see the excavations, the gymnasium, and the ArtemisTemple. We will then drive one hour to Izmir where we will stay at the 5 star Hotel. Izmir is the third largest city in Turkey and a major shiping port. It was built in the 4th century B.C. by the orders of Alexander the Great. It is one of the seven churches of Asia, which was mentioned in the Book of Revelations.
The next day we will drive to the incredible city of Ephesus and it's colossal Greek Theater. This particular theater is still used for performances today. The Marble Road, the Celsus Library, and the Temple of Diana are just a few of the things that we will be seeing. We wil also visit the House where Virgin Mary lived her final days. After the crucifixion of Jesus,St.John brought her to Ephesus;
Day 12: Çanakkale, Pergamon, Troy.
There will be a scenic six hour drive up the Agean Coast. We will stop in Pergamon to see the Asklepion, an ancient hospital complex. We will drive to Çanakkale, where we will visit the legendary city of Troy. We will have the opportunity to see a replica of the Trojan Horse. We will have a chance to see the site still in the process of excavation. While in Çanakkale, we will stay at 4 star hotel Akol, which is the best available overlooking the Dardanelles and the Gallipoli across the straits.
Days 13 - 14: Istanbul.
WE will have an early morning ferry trip to Gallipoli visiting WW1 battle sites and memorials. We will arrive in Istanbul after lunch. Among the many things we will do in Istanbul is to visit the Military Museum to enjoy a concert performed in traditional costumes by the world's first established military marching ensemble. We will also visit several of Turkey's most famous museums and mosques; Topkapi Palace, St. Sophia, The Blue Mosque, The mosque of Soliman the Magnificent, the Roman Underground Cistern. We will have a final dinner together with lots of live music and entertainment by a gypsy orchestra. Our tour will stay at the 5 star hotel. On the final day in Istanbul; we will have a morning Bosphorus cruise. The afternoon will be free, which will give you a chance to go out on your own and explore. Dinner will be on your own.
Please note: The order of events may vary with each tour due to the closure of various museums on certain days of the week.
Day 15: Depart for USA.
We will depart the hotel shortly after breakfast. We will have a morning flight, returning to USA in the afternoon of the same day.
This tour starts from your hotel, pier, place, airport at 08:30 and ends at 17:30 at the place that you would like to be dropped.
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