1 - Istanbul
clearing customs you will be met by your guide. There will be
a short drive to hotel where there will be some time to rest
and settle in. Meet your group companions at a welcome drink while your tour
manager is giving short instruction about the tour and the
2 - Istanbul (B) (L) (D)
the classical highlights of Istanbul: Visit
the Roman Hippodrome area with the famous Egyptian Obelisk and
Continue to the Blue Mosque, great
masterpiece of Turkish Architecture; see the beautiful blue
tiles decorating the interior walls of the building.
Proceed to Haghia Sophia the Byzantine Miracle built in 6th Century as
the largest Cathedral of the world now a museum. Built by Constantine the Great and
reconstructed by Justinian in the 6th century. You will also visit
the Topkapi palace once built as the residence for the Sultans in 15th
Century, now a splendid museum where you can see treasury
including the spoonmaker's diamond. Next visit
is the Basilica
Cistern, a wonderfully eerie underground chambers of 336
columns built by Justinian in AD 537. Our last stop is the
Grand Covered Bazaar. You are free to explore the
labyrinth tunnels of the Grand Bazaar. One could visit
Istanbul for the shopping alone. The Grand Bazaar, in the old
city is the logical place to start. This labyrinth of streets
and passages houses more than 4,000 shops. The names
recall the days when each trade had its own quarter: the
goldsmiths' street, the carpet sellers' street, and the street
of the skullcap makers. Still the commercial center of the old
city, the bazaar is the original shopping mall with something
to suit every taste and pocket. Turn
back to hotel. Dinner overnight.
3- Istanbul - Cappadocia (B) (L) (D)
from Istanbul to Kayseri at 7 a.m. Transfer to Cappadocia.
day Cappadocia visit, including Goreme Open Air Museum,
the pottery making town. Explore
one of the oldest settlements of the region - Goreme. The
chimney-like, rock formations that spread throughout
Cappadocia's rugged landscape are as fantastic as man's
accomplishments within its stone. Visit the Byzantine churches
of Goreme carved into the cliffs and caves with colorful
frescoes dating to the 7th century. Originally, there was a
church for every day of the year. Learn how the colorful
kilims (carpets) that echo the earth tones of the region are
made during a demonstration by local weavers and a photo stop
at the ancient natural citadel of Uchisar. We
visit the Valley of Fairy
Chimneys, Village of Cavusin , Zelve Open-Air Museum and Urgup and Rose Valley to see the sunset.
Turn back to hotel and dinner overnight.
4- Cappadocia (B) (L) (D)
will visit the underground city of Kaymakli, built in
the 7th century by the early Christians of the region to
escape from the invading Roman armies.
in the footsteps of early Christians during a morning visit of
the underground city. Descend 8 stories beneath the
surface of the earth to the underground city with its wine
cellars, classrooms and tombs where early Christians, fleeing
persecution, lived for months at a time undetected. Approximately 15,000 people used to live in this underground
city. The city was sub-divided into separate sections for
better defense purposes. Each section could be isolated from
each other by closing the mill stone shaped round rock gates
with a diameter of 1.5m. The passages between these sections
are about 30kms long. The corridors are very narrow. But the
living rooms, meeting halls, churches and other facilities are
very comfortable. The storage rooms were capable of storing
enough food for the residents for many months. The airshafts
and water wells were adequate for 15,000 people, living all
together for a very long time. We will also Ihlara Canyon,in the
Valley of Ihlara which is arrived at by diverging from the
Aksaray-Nevsehir road, there are 36 churches each one of which
is more interesting than the other. When one descends the
steps and reaches the valley at the end of the road, the
Churches of Agacalti, Sumbullu, Kokar and Yilanli can be seen
in the Open Air Museum of Ihlara. The other churches of
importance such as those of Egritas, Purenliseki, Karagedik,
Kirkdamalti, Bahattin Samanligi and Ala Kilise are also
situated in this valley. We will visit also Selime Village, Selcuk
Caravanserai and turn to hotel. Dinner and overnight.
5- Kayseri – Kahramanmaras – Mt. Nemrut (B) (L) (D)
breakfast depart to
On the way visit the Kayseri. Selcuk Castle, Hunat
and depart to Kahta
on the way. Arrival at afternoon around 17:00 pm. Check in the
hotel. Drive to see sunset top of the Nemrut
back to hotel. Dinner and overnight.
6- Mt. Nemrut – Kahta - Urfa (B) (L) (D)
up at 04:30 am. Depart to see the sunrise at top of the Nemrut
Mountain. Visit the historical monuments and see for the
first time the artificial tumulus as it is flanked by terraces
on which rest the colossal statues of Apollo, Zeus, Heracles,
Tyche and Antiochus. Time has inflicted heavy damage on the
sculptures - their torsos sit with their beautifully carved
heads at their feet. Turn back to hotel.
Have a breakfast. After breakfast check out from the hotel.
Sightseeing Roman Bridge, Black Bird , Arsemia and Old Castle
of Kahta. Depart to Urfa. Check in the hotel. Dinner
7- Urfa - Harran (B) (L) (D)
breakfast visit the Balikli
Gol (Fishes Lake).
Lunch in Urfa.
Depart to Harran
known more now for its unusual beehive dwellings than as the
place where Abraham actually spent several years of his life.
Included among the archaeological are those of the largest
ancient Islamic university, city walls dating from the eighth
century, four gates and a citadel.) and visit the Cave
of Prophet Abraham (Today
the cave is a pilgrimage site and flocks of pigeons do not
seem to disturb the elderly men praying around the entrance.).
Turn back to hotel. Dinner overnight.
8- Gaziantep – Zeugma (B) (L) (D)
breakfast depart to Gaziantep. On the way visit the Zeugma
(There is a mound which was turned into a citadel and
mosaics from the Roman period, which are well worth seeing.) Check in the hotel. Dinner overnight.
9- Antakya (B) (L) (D)
breakfast depart to Antakya.
Driving via Taurus Mountain. Lunch on the way. Check in the
hotel in Antakya.
10- Antakya – Adana – Istanbul (B) (L) (D)
breakfast check out the hotel. Visit the Antakya Museum (Best
Mosaic Museum in the World). Antakya,
the biblical city of Antioch, lies on the Asi River
(Orontes) on a fertile plain surrounded by grand mountains.
Once the capital of the Seleucid kings, it was notorious for
its wealth and luxury. In Roman times, the city continued to
thrive with commerce and culture. It featured prominently in
early Christianity and St. Barnabas, St. Paul and St. Peter
all visited the city.Depart to Adana. Transfer to
airport. Flight to Istanbul. Transfer to hotel. Dinner
11- Istanbul (B)
day in Istanbul. Dinner overnight.
12- Istanbul (B)
to airport. End of the tour.