GUARANTEED DEPARTURES: Explore Turkey

Tour Code :PER052GDT
City :ANATOLIAN TOUR
Tour Name :Explore Turkey
Tour Dates :ARRIVE ISTANBUL ANY FRIDAY | BETWEEN MARCH 15 & NOVEMBER 30
Duration :7 Nights | 8 Days
Available Languages :EN

ISTANBUL (1 Nt) - CANAKKALE (1 Nt) - KUSADASI (2 Nts) - PAMUKKALE (1 Nt) - KONYA - CAPPADOCIA (2 Nts)

THIS TOUR IS OPERATED FROM MARCH 15 THROUGH NOVEMBER 30 (EXCEPT ANZAK WEEK APRIL 20 - 30)

Explore this land of wonders where the ancient history of Troy and Ephesus interweaves with modern European architecture and life of the big cities; where the natural wonders of the “Cotton Castle” of Pamukkale and troglodyte villages of Cappadocia strike the imagination by the variety of the forms.

Day 1 | FRIDAY | ISTANBUL | 1 Night

ARRIVAL

Arrival at Ataturk International airport.
Optional: meet and greet and be transferred to the hotel for overnight.
Transfer to the Hotel along the Sea of Marmara with orientation en-route (according to traffic, from 30 to 45 minutes…). The panorama of the seaside transfer road is really beautiful: drive along the Sea of Marmara, where hundreds of cargo ships anchor, waiting to sail through the straits of the Bosphorus. The shoreline is made up of a series of gardens and tea-houses.

Meal (s): No Meals
Hotel (s): MF* (see hotel class key below)

Day 2 | SATURDAY | ISTANBUL - GALLIPOLI - CANAKKALE | 1 Night

Have early breakfast at the hotel. Approx. at 06:30 AM pick-up from the hotel lobby and start a day drive to the West of Turkey along the northern shores of the Marmara Sea through the Turkish Thrace region. 
Brighton Beach, Anzak Cove, Ariburnu Cemetery, Anzak Commemoration Site, and Lone Pine Australian Memorial, Johnston’s Jolly, the Nek and Chunuk Bair New Zealand Memorial. Then, drive to the pier to take short 30 minutes ferry boat trip to cross the Dardanelles to Asian side and to Çanakkale.
The Dardanelle Straits were a strategic crossing point for the allied armies to cross from Europe to Asia Minor. Over a nine month campaign, more than half a million soldiers lost their lives in the fight to control this strait of water and nearby Gallipoli peninsula. 

Lunch will be provided at one of the local restaurants on the way.
Arrive in Canakkale and to hotel for dinner and overnight. 

Meal (s): Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner 
Hotel (s): MF* (see hotel class key below)

Day 3 | SUNDAY |CANAKKALE - KUSADASI | 2 Nights

LEGENDARY TROY, ANCIENT PERGAMUM WITH ACRIPOLIS

After breakfast at the hotel depart to visit the site of Troy, the legendary town in the Iliad of Homer. The first excavations were made by German archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann in 1871 revealing that Troy was not just a myth. See the excavations showing several layers of this civilization and the replica of the infamous Wooden Horse.  The Trojan horse, the Trojan War and Helen of Troy were all but a small part of the city’s history. 
Continue to Bergama, an ancient Pergamum, and the most favoured of the Seven Churches of Asia Minor. See the stunning Acropolis of the Hellenistic city that perched 1000 feet above the town. Remains include the Altar of Zeus, palaces, the Temples of Trajan and Dionysus and the world’s steepest amphitheatre. The Temple of Zeus was one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world. The German engineer, Carl Humann, brought the altar now known as the Altar of Pergamum to Berlin.

After lunch at the local restaurant, continue to Kusadasi.
Arriva at teh hotel for dinner and overnight

Meal (s): Buffet Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Hotel (s): MF* (see hotel class key below)

Day 4 | MONDAY | KUSADASI

EPHESUS OPEN AIR MUSEUM, TEMPLE OF ARTEMIS & HOUSE OF VIRGIN MARY

Breakfast at the hotel restaurant and depart for today’s visits and see the Ephesus Open Air Museum, which is considered one of the greatest outdoor museums of Turkey, in fact perhaps of the world. Ephesus is the only Greco-Roman site in the world that gives an idea of the grandeur of bygone centuries. Ephesus is another city of the Seven Churches of the Revelation and an ancient largest port with a population over 250.000. The city played major role in the development of architecture, religions, economic systems and arts. St. Paul lived here, and walked through the marble streets. Tour the ancient city with its legendary marble streets, the magnificent theatre, Hadrian’s temple and the library of Celsius.
After having lunch at one of the local restaurants
, continue to the House of Virgin Mary, now Chapel. It is the place where Mary may have spent her last days. Indeed, she may have come in the area together with Saint John, who spent several years in the area to spread Christianity. Mary preferred this remote place rather than living in crowded place.
Stop to see the remains of the once vast, rich marble Temple of Artemis (Artemision), one of the Seven Wonders of the World in ancient times. Artemis was the Greek goddess, the virginal huntress and twin of Apollo, who replaced the Titan Selene as Goddess of the Moon.
Return to the hotel for dinner and overnight.

Meal (s): Buffet Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5 | TUESDAY | KUSADASI | PAMUKKALE | 1 Night

ANCIENT HIERAPOLIS & TRAVERTINE

After breakfast at the hotel depart for Pamukkale, also known as the “Cotton Castle”, because of the limestone hot springs calcium-laden waters which cascade from one white-edged terrace pool to the next.

Have lunch at one of the local restaurants
Visit the ruins of ancient Hierapolis, a place with amazing hot mineral springs and spas, where Paul introduces Christianity to the local population. Visit the ruins of one of the largest Roman cities in Asia Minor. See the amphitheatre, the city gates, and the columned streets, in an area of over one mile. Arrive at the hotel for dinner and overnight

Meal (s): Buffet Breakfast, Lunch Dinner
Hotel(s): MF* (see hotel class key below)

Day 6 | WEDNESDAY |PAMUKKALE | KONYA | CAPPADOCIA | 2 Nights

DRIVE TO KONYA | MEVLANA MAUSOLEUM, SULTANHANI CARAVANSERAI | DRIVE TO CAPPADOCIA

Early morning breakfast at the hotel and start your day trip to Cappadocia along the ancient Silk Road that brings you first to Konya, once known as Iconium, and historically and religiously significant on several counts: it was one of the missionary destinations of St. Paul and the home and resting place of Rumi (Mevlana), the Sufi saint and the prolific spiritual teacher who founded the Whirling Dervishes.
While in Konya, have lunch at one of the local restaurants and then, visit the Tomb & Museum of Mevlana. Also known as the Green Mausoleum or Green Dome it is an original tekke or lodge of the Mevlevi Whirling Dervishes, a mystical Sufi Muslim group. It contains the tomb and shrine of the 13th-century Mevlana, or Rumi, which remains a place of pilgrimage.
Continue to Cappadocia and en route, visit the 13th century Seljuk Caravanserai Sultanhani, one of the largest in Turkey, an ancient fortified way station, where caravans found safety during night.
Arrive at the hotel for dinner and overnight.

Meal (s): Buffet Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Hotel (s): MF* (see hotel class key below)

Day 7 | THURSDAY | CAPPADOCIA

DERVENT VALLEY, PASABAG FAIRY CHIMNEYS, GOREME OPEN AIR MUSEUM, UCHISAR CASTLE, VILLAGE OF AVANOS

After breakfast at the hotel start your day tour of Cappadocia and first see Devrent Valley, which is also known as Imaginary Valley and also as Pink Valley does not have cave churches like the other valleys of Cappadocia. There are no Roman castles or Roman tombs in Devrent Valley, either. Actually it was never inhabited. So what makes it so famous?  The lunar landscape! 
Then, Pasabag “fairy chimneys” with twin and even triples rock caps. This style is unique even for Cappadocia and these “fairy chimneys” are named mushroom shaped fairy chimneys.
Lunch will be provided at one of the Turkish local restaurants.
Next, visit Göreme “open air museum”, a nicely packaged instant version of what the whole area has to offer with its bizarre and charming churches and chapels carved into stone. It also holds the region's best collection of painted cave churches. Medieval orthodox Christian monks (1000 - 1200 AD) carved the caves from the soft volcanic stone and decorated them with elaborate Byzantine frescoes.
Complete the tour day visiting the artisans and carpet factory in the traditional rock carved village of Avanos. This village is famous for its’ red pottery and traditional Turkish carpets. In one of the most famous potteries guests will first see a demonstration from the professionals before they will have a chance to make their own ‘Symbol of art’ – let that artist free inside you! 
At the carpet factory guests will be introduced to the fascinating process of the weaving of the famous Turkish carpets and then, enjoy unforgettable show of the demonstration of the most beautiful sample. Return to the hotel for dinner and overnight

Meal (s): Buffet Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8 | FRIDAY | CAPPADOCIA | DEPARTURE

RED VALLEY, VILLAGE OD CAVUSIN, PIGEON VALLEY, UNDERGROUND CITY, ORTAHISAR CITADEL

Breakfast at the hotel, check-out procedure and depart for the day tour and the first visit will be to the Red Valley where we will explore the famous rock-cut churches and hike 5 km through the Gulludere Valley. Then, visit a small village of Cavusin. Old Cavusin, with its rock-cut dwellings and stone houses, had several hermitages. The two most important buildings in Cavusin are the Great Basilica dedicated to St. John the Baptist and the Great Pigeon House commemorating a visit of the famous Cappadocian Emperor Nicephorus Phocas. 
Next stop is Pigeon Valley, one of the most amazing places ever been seen; the rock formations, combined with awe inspiring views. The Pigeon Valley in Cappadocia consists of plenty of pigeon houses. Travellers come to this place to see a wide variety of architectural structures such as chimneys craved in the rocks. The chimneys consist of caves which were used as hiding places for Christians who escaped from the Romans.

Lunch will be provided at one of the local Turkish restaurants 
After the lunch, visit the Underground City of Kaymakl the widest underground city of Cappadocia region; it was carved out underneath a rock hill. The first three floors were probably carved out by Hittites about 2000 B.C. In the early ADs the first Christians used the Underground Cities fleeing the persecution of the Romans.
On the way back enjoy a breath-taking view from the top of the natural citadel of Ortahisar, a silent witnesses to history and human life giving you a panoramic view of the valleys of Cappadocia. 
After the tour, transfer to Kayseri (ASR) airport for a flight to Istanbul … 

It is time to say good bye to your guide and driver and after arriving in Istanbul either make your own arrangements or choose extension of our services (i.e. hotel booking, transfer, extension tour packages, etc.)

Meal (s): Buffet Breakfast, Lunch 

INCLUDES

- Transportation in fully air-conditioned, non-smoking vehicle through the itinerary
- Professional English-speaking tour guide throughout
- Entrance fees to the museums featured on this itinerary
- 7 nights of accommodation at the featured hotels or similar with buffet breakfast daily
- 7 lunches during the tours
- 6 dinners at the hotels outside of Istanbul
- One Way Transfer to domestic flight Kayseri - Istanbul

EXCLUDES

- Any personal expenses
- Meals unless specified above and any kind of drinks except for tea/coffee/juice during breakfast at the hotels
- Transfers on the first and last days of the trip
- Tips & gratuities
- Optional activities cost
- Airfare Kayseri - Istanbul

NOTES

Airport Transfers
Pera-Kaktüs Travel pleased to offer complimentary airport transfers at any time either on the first or last day of the holiday or on other days in conjunction with pre- and post-trip accommodation booked through Pera-Kaktüs Travel.
Note that flight times must be provided to Pera-Kaktüs Travel no fewer than 21 days before flight departure.

Air 
All featured domestic flights are indicative; the airline and flight number can change on the time of the actual booking but the flight times will be similar or very close to those featured on the itinerary.  

Disclaimer
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- This is a scheduled mini group
- Group might consist of maxumum up to 16 people
- Group might include the people of different nationalities, cultures, ages and interests
- The regular tour is of a good value, but may not be the best choice for those who have special interests and/or concerns about keeping up with, or being held back by, a group.
- Touring is paced to allow the average traveler reasonable time to enjoy each site

*Hotel Class Key
- ST = Superior Tourist (3*), MF = Moderate First Class (classic boutique, ranked as 4*), FC = First Class (4*), SF= Superior First Class (5* classic or boutique ranked as 5*), MD = Moderate Deluxe (5* Deluxe), and D = Deluxe (5* Boutique or Luxury)

- Hotels are subject to change 
- Twin-share option is not available for trips unless you travel with your own partner or travel companion 
- Star ratings are used to symbolize the overall quality, level of service, food standard and range of facilities available in any given property. They may differ from international standards but the outlines in our "Terms & Conditions" section (clause 13) will give a general understanding of what can typically be expected within each category: (THESE RATINGS ARE FOR GUIDANCE PURPOSES ONLY AND ARE NOT A GUARANTEE OR WARRANTY OF ANY KIND BY PERA AIR AND TOURISM).

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Kakts Tourism Travel Agency - Pera Air and Tourism
Cumhuriyet Mah. Nakiye Elgn Sok. No: 22 Osmanbey Apt. D.1 ili 34380 Istanbul / Turkey
Phone : 0 212 241 05 66 (pbx) Fax : 0 212 241 72 88
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