Turkey’s Ancient History & Coast
- Duration8 Nights
- StylePrivate Tour
- When to GoYear Round
- Price GuideFrom $3,868 Per Person
At a Glance
- Private transfer to hotel
- Private guided tour of Istanbul including Hagia Sophia
- Guided cultural tour of the Grand Bazaar and Spice Bazaar
- Two-hour cruise along the Bosporus
- Flight to Cappadocia & private transfer to hotel
- Private tour of Cappadocia region with lunch
- Sunrise hot-air balloon ride
- Tour of Ortahisar, a citadel carved into the rock
- Flight to Izmir with afternoon at your leisure
- Private transfer Bodrum hotel
- Tour of the ancient Roman city of Ephesus
- Relax on Bodrum's beaches
Meet Our Expert
- 8 nights in 4 or 5-star accommodation
- Daily breakfast at all hotels
- Private arrival and departure airport transfer
- All mentioned airport transfers and road transport on a private basis in Air Conditioned minivans
- All mentioned tours and sightseeing on a private basis with private driver and English-speaking local guides
- Entrance fees for any mentioned sightseeing, permits, local taxes, etc
- All mentioned regional flights in economy class, inclusive minimum 20kg per person checked baggage
- 24/7 support from our dedicated staff
- Flexible, personalized itinerary based on your interests
What's not Included
- International flights from your country of origin
- Tips or gratuities to guides, drivers, hotel staff
- Any meals, tours, or activities other than those specifically mentioned in itinerary
- Incidental local expenses - souvenirs, laundry, taxis, etc
- Travel visas. Your consultant will advise of any required visas and how to obtain them.
- Travel insurance - we strongly recommend you purchase travel insurance as soon as you have booked your trip.
Day by Day Itinerary
- DAY 1
Arrival into Istanbul
Welcome to Istanbul! Upon arrival, our private driver will meet you at the airport for transfer to your hotel in the city. There will be two full days of touring here so you might want to take it easy, relax and get settled into your accommodation. Or stretch your legs by getting a preview, perhaps heading to Pierre Loti Hill. The hill hosts the famous Pierre Loti café, a great place for tea and a juicy kebab enjoyed with a picturesque view of the Golden Horn. It’s also been featured in many Turkish films as a popular meeting point for lovers.
- DAY 2
Private Guided Tour of Istanbul
Your driver-guide will pick you up for a full day tour starting at Topkapi Palace, once home to the Ottoman Sultans. Learn about its fascinating history before continuing to Hagia Sophia, the center of artistic, political, and religious life during Byzantine times. Then journey to the underground Basilica Cistern, an extraordinary feat of Byzantine engineering, once used to deliver drinking water. You’ll visit the Blue Mosque, stepping in to view its opulent interior before traveling to the Hippodrome where Byzantine lovers of chariot racing came to indulge their passion, concluding at Chora Church and its on-site museum.
- DAY 3
Private Guided Cultural Tour and Two-Hour Cruise
Another exciting day awaits, beginning with a visit to one of the world’s oldest covered markets, the Grand Bazaar, filled with aromas, sights, and sounds that delight all the senses. Watch skilled local artisans at work and bargain for enticing items before continuing to Süleymaniye Mosque for a guided tour of the vast interior. You’ll take in spectacular views of the Bosporus Strait and Golden Horn from the adjacent gardens and then head to the Spice Bazaar with its many fragrant stalls. Afterwards, a private boat cruise will bring you along the Bosporus to view many of the city’s highlights from the water.
- DAY 4
Flight to Cappadocia, private afternoon tour
This morning private transfer brings you back to the airport for the one-hour direct flight to Cappadocia. After getting settled in, your private driver/guide will meet you for a tour of this remarkable region. Discover magical Devrent Valley and Pasabag Valley, a geological wonder known for its earth pillars that sit within a vineyard. Enjoy lunch in Avanos and then explore the breathtaking Goreme Open Air Museum, a UNESCO-listed site with churches containing beautiful frescos and Byzantine art carved into the rock. Next, visit Uchisar Castle, a centuries-old citadel perched atop a rock spur providing panoramic views of Cappadocia, concluding at Pidgeon Valley.
- DAY 5
Cappadocia: Hot-Air Balloon Ride & Afternoon Tour
Enjoy a bird’s-eye view of Cappadocia from a hot-air balloon early this morning. Your private driver will bring you to the launch site where you’ll enjoy a light breakfast as the balloon is prepared for takeoff. Just as the sun begins to rise, head up into the sky soaring over the incredible Cappadocia terrain, spending an hour enjoying it from above. Afterwards, learn about the region’s history from your knowledgeable guide, starting with a visit to Ortahisar, a citadel carved into the rock. Discover an underground city, unusual troglodyte settlements, the Red Valley, and more, with the Wine House your last stop.
- DAY 6
Flight to Izmir, afternoon at leisure
Catch your flight to Izmir on the Aegean coast this morning. Formerly the ancient city of Smyrna, it has a rich history with plenty of interesting sites to explore. After taking a private transfer to your hotel, enjoy the afternoon at leisure. You may want to head to the city’s spiritual heart, Konak Square, the busiest part of the city with a beautiful clock tower in the middle. On one side you’ll find the Kemaralti Bazaar, while the waterfront is on the other. If you’re looking for gifts or souvenirs, you might head to Konak Pier which was converted into an upscale shopping complex.
Swissotel IzmirRead More
- DAY 7
Transfer to Bodrum with a Tour of Ephesus
Today you’ll transfer to Bodrum with your private driver/guide, stopping to tour ancient Ephesus along the way. One of the most important cities of the Roman Empire, you’ll be guided through the fascinating archaeological site getting an excellent glimpse into life more than 2,000 years ago. Marvel at the centuries-old buildings, a theater where Apostle Paul once spoke, Roman baths, and the Celsus Library with its pillared façade. Look down at the marble-paved streets and you can even see the groves of chariot wheels. After your tour, you will continue to your hotel in Bodrum, with the rest of the day enjoyed at your leisure.
- DAY 8
Bodrum: Day of Leisure
Enjoy your final day as you wish, perhaps relaxing on the beach that stretches between Bodrum castle and Halikarnas. It includes free sunbeds and water that’s clean and calm, ideal for swimming. There are restaurants that provide beach service too. Or discover the city’s many historic sites like the impressive medieval castle, a fine example of a gothic-style stronghold where you can wander through the twisting passageways designed to make it difficult for invaders to overtake. It also hosts a museum dedicated to underwater finds, including reconstructed shipwrecks, Mycenean vases and copper ingots, ancient Egyptian seals, Roman amphorae, and much more.
- DAY 9
After eight exciting nights discovering Turkey, it’s time to head back to where it all began. Your private driver will meet you at your hotel for the drive to the airport where you’ll catch a flight back to Istanbul. You can choose to extend your trip and spend more time here, travel elsewhere or begin your trip back home. Our travel experts are always happy to help make your plans come to fruition, otherwise, we wish you a safe journey and look forward to seeing you on another unforgettable adventure in the future.
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