Arrival - Istanbul (L/D)
Meet and greet by your tour guide and embark on a tour of Old Istanbul Sultan Ahmet area. Visit Hippodrome, the center of chariot races during ancient Roman & Greco period. Visit Blue Mosque, one of the largest religious complex and icon of Istanbul. Visit St. Sophia Church Museum, 2000 yrs old church turned mosque and current museum - an architectural marvel of all time.
After lunch, check in hotel. The rest of the day is free at leisure. Dinner and overnight in Istanbul.
Istanbul - Izmir - Kusadasi (B/L/D)
Take an early flight to Izmir, Turkey’s third largest city. Orientation tour of Izmir. After lunch, drive an hour towards the Aegean coastal town of Kusadasi. Proceed to Selcuk and embark on a walking tour of the marble city of ancient Ephesus, one of largest and most outstanding archeological site in existence. Visit the House of Virgin Mary, the final resting place of Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ. Check in hotel in Kusadasi for dinner and the night.
Kusadasi - Afrodisia - Pamukkale (B/L/D)
Visit a famous leather showroom where you have a chance to purchase some of Turkey’s finest leather products. Drive approximately 3 hours to Afrodisia. After lunch, visit the ruins of Afrodisia, dedicated to the Goddess of Love, Aphrodite. Continue to Pamukkale, one of the major attractions of Turkey. (Pamukkale is a thermal region with abundance springs. Most hotels have thermal pools facilities, please be advised to bring along your swim wear)
Pamukkale - Konya - Cappadocia (B/L/D)
Walking tour of ancient Roman city Hierapolis. Visit Cotton Castle (a region of spectacular cascading terraces of limestone deposits that look like snow from far). Depart for Konya, the famous old capital city of the Seljuk Turks. Visit the Mausoleum of Mevlana, a great philosopher, poet and the father of the Mevlevi Order (Whirling Dervishes). Lunch at Horozluhan, an ancient caravanserai restored restaurant with exotic setting and ambience. Continue to Cappadocia - “The Land of Beautiful Horses”, a region covered with volcanic lava that eroded over millions of years, sculpting it into one of the most beautiful landscapes in the world.
Arrive hotel in the evening for check in and dinner. After dinner, proceed to a cave restaurant for an exotic night of Belly dancing and folklore. Return to hotel for the night.
Recommended Optional Tour:
1.Sunrise Hot Air Balloon Tour over Cappadocia
Enjoy full day tour of Cappadocia. Visit Underground Cities (mysterious underground settlements which existed since Bronze Age). Visit Goreme Valley, a region created from erosion of volcanic rocks with the iconic “Fairy Chimney”. Visit Goreme Open Air Museum, a compound of rock cut churches since 6th century. Visit Uchisar (an old village) consisting small dwellings carved into huge rock. Cave houses visit (if time permits). Visit Avanos ceramic & pottery showroom, a chance to learn the making of handmade ceramic arts. Visit Turkish carpet showroom, a chance to witness the making of the famous Turkish carpets.
Cappadocia - Ankara - Istanbul (B/L/D)
Approximately 4 hours drive to Ankara, the capital of Turkey. Picture stop at Lake Tuz (or Salt Lake, the second largest lake of Turkey). After lunch, visit Ataturk Mausoleum. Proceed to the airport for your flight to Istanbul. After dinner, check in hotel for the night.
Visit the Topkapi Palace (Home of the Ottoman Sultans for nearly 400 years). Shopping time at the 500 years old Grand Bazaar. After lunch, enjoy a walking tour of old Pera, beginning with Istiklal Avenue in Taksim Square. Visit Aya Triada, Istanbul’s largest Eastern Orthodox Church. Continue to explore the 19th century Çiçek Pasajı. Descend French Street and afterward stop at the Church of Saint Antoine, Istanbul’s largest Catholic Church. Visit the Crimea Memorial Church, also known as Christ Church. Proceed to visit the Pera Palace Hotel, terminal hotel for the Orient Express (as featured in Agatha Christie’s novel). Hop onto the famous red vintage Tünel funicular (built in 1875) and experience a ride like the locals. End the day with dinner at Galata Tower. Return to hotel for the night.
Recommended Optional Tour:
1.Bosphorus River cruise.
2.Full day Istanbul explorer tour with Bosphorus River Cruise, Dolmabache Palace, Spice (Egyptian) Bazaar, Underground Water Cistern (Yerebatan) and shopping in local Shopping Mall
Istanbul - Departure (B)
Morning at leisure. Transfer to airport for onwards flight.