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Gurtour Presentation

Intro: Welcome to Istanbul
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Yalova Gallipoli Istanbul Edirne Bursa Çanakkale Troy / Assos Iznik Safranbolu Ankara Kütahya Pergamum Izmir Ephesus Pamukkale / Hierapolis Denizli Selçuk Bodrum Sultanhani Cappadocia Region Konya Antalya Side Myra Fethiye Marmaris Tarsus Adana Hatay / Antioch Gaziantep Sanliurfa Mardin Diyarbakir Midyat Cizre Van Erzurum Kars Rize Trabzon
Tour Code Tour Informations
GRT-151 TROY & ANZACS   (Long Day) Daily Departure   
GRT-251 5 DAYS ANZAC TOUR     (4 Nights 5 Days)    
GRT-252 10 DAYS ANZAC TOUR   (9 Nights 10 Days)    
GRT-253 15 DAYS TOUR   (14 Nights 15 Days)    
GRT-302 BIBLICAL AND BYZANTIUM   (9 Nights 10 Days)    
GRT-410 THE MAGNIFICENT OTTOMAN TOUR   (11 Nights 12 Days)    
GRT-503 WONDERS OF TURKEY      (13 Nights 14 Days)    
GRT-551 GRAND TURKEY   (23 Nights / 24 Days )    
GRT-552 HALF GRAND WITH CRUISE   (18 Nights / 19 Days )    
9 tours found.       Pages :   1


18 Nights / 19 Days

Arrive in Istanbul at Ataturk International Airport, the only city in the world that spans two continents. We will be met with a friendly "merhaba" (hello) from our English speaking guide and driver who escort us to our hotel for check-in. After a few hours of relaxing in your room we will meet in the hotel lobby and depart for a delicious Turkish meal at a nearby local restaurant. Turkish cuisine is rated as one of the three most sophisticated and refined cuisines in the world along with French and Chinese cuisines.

Morning departure by motor coach with our guide for a drive over the Galata Bridge which spans the Golden Horn that divides Old Istanbul from Pera (new Istanbul). Our drive through Pera will lead us to the Dolmabahce Palace on the banks of the Bosphorus where we will start our touring. The palace was the last residence of the Ottoman Sultans and is believed to be one of the most expensive and ostentatious palaces in the world. After the palace we will proceed to the Kabatas Port and board our private boat for a cruise on the Bosphorus past old Ottoman palaces and well preserved castles. After we dock on the Golden Horn, we will have a large lunch at the Daruzziyafe (Darüzziyafe was bullt by world-famous architect Mimar Sinan between 1550-1555 upon the order of Süleyman the Magnificent for the 100 th year celebration of the conquering of İstanbul, as a public soup kitchen with in the dependencies of Süleymaniye Mosque and was usd as a banquetting room until the latest years of the Ottomon which features Ottoman cuisine. After lunch we will tour the Church of St. Savior in Chora to see its amazing mosaics and frescoes from the late 13th century. We will stop for coffee and a snack at the Pierre Lotti Cafe to take in the inspirational view of the city that inspired Lotti, a famous French author (1850-1923) to write poems about Istanbul.

Morning tour of the area around our hotel (Sultanahmet). This tour will include both Ottoman and Byzantine relics. Our first stop will be at the Roman Hippodrome area to see the famous Egyptian Obelisk and the Serpentine Column (Delphi Tripod). We will go inside the Blue Mosque, a great masterpiece of Turkish architecture with the interior walls decorated by brilliant blue tiles. We will proceed to the nearby 6th century Byzantine cathedral, Hagia Sophia, one of the most architecturally important buildings in the world. After lunch in the Konyali Restaurant on the grounds of the Topkapi Palace, we will visit the palace that was the residence of the Sultans, the harem, and the museum to see many of the extravagant objects with which the Sultans surrounded themselves and the holly relics (legendary baton of Prophet Moses, sword and beard of Pophet Muhammed in Treasure Section). From the palace we will proceed to the nearby underground Cistern Yerebatan Sarnici dating from the 6th century. This evening we will drive to Bebek for a group dinner at the Urcan Restaurant, a famous fish restaurant located on the Bosphorus.

Today is free to explore on your own. Sultanahmet (Old Istanbul) is the site on which the city was founded in 666 BC by the King of Megara, a Greek city-state just northeast of Athens. Pera (New Istanbul) is across the Galata Bridge settled by Europeans in the19th century. Taxis and trams are plentiful.

After breakfast we will depart for Ataturk International Airport for our hour flight to Ankara. We will be met by our guide and proceed by motor coach to Cappadocia located 160 miles southeast of Ankara. Proceed to our Hotel for check-in and a group dinner at the hotel. The area was named after the Cappadocians who settled there in 700 BC and is characterized by salt deposits and red sandstone into which generations of inhabitants excavated their dwellings many stories underground.

After breakfast we will descend 8 stories beneath the surface of the earth to explore the underground city where approximately 15,000 early Christians, fleeing persecution, lived for months at a time undetected. The city was sub-divided into separate sections for better defensive purposes with comfortable living rooms, wine cellars, meeting halls, and churches. After lunch in a local restaurant, we will visit with a local family, living in a typical Cappadocian house, for an afternoon coffee or tea break. Group dinner tonight in a local restaurant.

After breakfast we will explore the oldest settlements of the region, Goreme. The chimney-like rock foundations that spread through Cappadocia's rugged natural landscape are as impressive as man's construction within the stone. We will tour Byzantine churches of Goreme carved into the cliffs and caves with colorful frescoes dating from the 7th century. Originally there was a church for every day of the year. After lunch we will visit an area famous for colorful Kilims (carpets) made by local weavers that echo the earth tones of the region. We will also explore this intriguing region with a visit to the hidden, monastic valley of Pasabagi, which has a large number of carved rock houses and churches. Stroll through the red valley of Dervent and a photo stop at the ancient natural citadel of Uchisar. Group dinner tonight in a local restaurant.

This morning will be free. You can sleep-in, rent a bike, take a walk, or take a balloon trip across Cappadocia. After lunch continue to explore Cappadocia's beauty in the local village of Soganli and early rock carved churches. Tonight we will have an early group dinner in a local restaurant before we proceed to a special performance at 20.45 to see the mystic Whirling Dervishes in a rock carved lounge. The Whirling Dervishes chant poetry as they whirl in rhythmic motion to incessant music, all of which, according to the faithful, create a euphoria that induces a feeling of soaring, of ecstasy, and of mystical flight.

Early morning motor coach departure for Konya, Turkey’s oldest city and capital of the Anatolian Seljuk Empire. On the way we will stop at Sultanhani Caravanserai where you can contrast the accommodations for a 13th century traveler with your own. After lunch in a local restaurant, we will continue to Antalya and check into our hotel at the old harbour in the city center. Enjoy a welcoming group dinner tonight at the hotel.

After breakfast, drive to Aspendos, an ancient city founded by the Greeks in 1000 BC. It was during the Roman period that Aspendos became the most prosperous, but like Ephesus, the city quickly declined as the harbor silted in. We will look at the acropolis and one of the most complete and well preserved theaters in the world. It has a complete two story stage house, intact tiered seating, perfect acoustics, and a surrounding colonnade on the upper level. We will return to our hotel late morning, and you will have the rest of the day to explore this lovely walled harbor city. May we suggest the excellent and very important Archeological Museum and Emperor Hadrian's Gate. Evening is free.

After breakfast we proceed to Finike to catch our gulet for the Blue Voyage in the Aegean Sea. For the next three days we will sail along the southern coast of Turkey on our private sailboat. The gulets are constructed of mahogany and pine interior, a teak deck, and a hull of oak. We will have all our meals on the boat taken either on the outside or inside salon all prepared by our own chef. Cocktails and drinks are extra. Each cabin will have its own private bathroom and is fully air-conditioned. During the cruise we will stop on Kleopatra Island and visit a beautiful Butterfly Valley. Each evening we will pull into port taking advantage of activities that are available.

Afternoon we reach Gocek and proceed to Pamukkale, group dinner at hotel.

After breakfast we will explore the ancient Hierapolis and Pamukkale (cotton-castle) which is famous with its unique white travertine. After lunch proceed by motor coach to Kusadasi, a beautiful coastal resort area on the Aegean Sea. We will check into our resort hotel upon arrival and you will have the rest of the afternoon free to explore Kusadasi or the nearby town of Selcuk. Group dinner tonight in the hotel.

After breakfast we will have a full day tour of Ephesus, one of the most important cities during both the Greek and Roman periods and definitely one of the highlights of every trip to Turkey. We will first visit the house of the Virgin Mary, who was taken to Ephesus by John after Christ was crucified. Katherine Emmerich (1774-1824), a German nun, gave a precise description and location of a house at Ephesus based on her vision before she died. Such a house was found in 1891 next to a monastery and restored shortly afterwards. It is now revered as the home where the Virgin lived and died. We will also visit St. John's Basilica under which the saint was buried. We will tour Ephesus by walking the streets of the most complete city of antiquity filled with wonders that include the Library of Celsus, the Temple of Hadrian, well preserved public toilets, a Roman steam bath, and the same theater in which Paul preached and Roman dramas were performed. Evening, group dinner at hotel.

Depart after breakfast by motor coach, driving north along the coast of the Aegean Sea (Homer called it the wine-dark sea) to Izmir (ancient Smyrna), birthplace of Homer. Proceed to ancient Pergamum, home to the famous physician, Galen. Stroll through the remains of the Asclepion, one of the foremost medical centers of ancient times. After lunch we will drive up to the acropolis and view some of the most spectacular Hellenistic ruins in Turkey. Drive to Assos, a small town on the coast for check-in at our hotel for overnight. Group dinner at the hotel.

We drive to the city of Troy for an early morning tour of this ancient site of the war between the Trojans and the Greeks, the subject of Homer’s Iliad. We will walk around the perimeter of the ruins of the city and see that it is actually nine cities, one built upon the ruins of the other. This created a huge mound which was a major clue for Heinrich Schliemann in 1870 when he discovered the site. While the ruins are not spectacular, the spiritual experience is well worth the visit. One has only to imagine the Greek army camped out on the surrounding "plains of Troy" to see the dead body of Hector, prince of Troy, being dragged behind the chariot of Achilles as a symbol of the coming Greek victory. Upon leaving, the spell is broken by a bit of 20th century kitsch. You are greeted by a large and hollow wooden horse into which you can climb, stick your head through a window, and have your photo taken. After lunch, we will cross the Dardanells and visit the battle field of WW1 - Gallipoli. Proceed to Istanbul. Upon arrival, transfer to our hotel for overnight. Evening is free.

The morning and early afternoon are free for self exploration. Late afternoon we drive across the Bosphorus Bridge, to Uskudar, a suburb on the Asia side of the city to visit the world famous artist, Hikmet Barutcugil. He will give a demonstration and talk about his ancient painting technique, called Ebru. We will later drive to the port to catch our boat to Leander's Tower in the Marmara Sea for a farewell dinner at Kizkulesi Restaurant. Leander's Tower marks the entrance into the Bosphorus and was originally built as a defensive watch tower by the Greeks. It was reconstructed as a lighthouse in the 12th century.

Transfer to Ataturk International Airport for final departure to home...

Remark :
Absolutely everything is included; all visits, meals (except for last day dinner in Istanbul to give you more freedom on your last night), hotels, domestic flight and transportation

Tour Includes :
  • Hotels: 3, 4 and star hotels in each area.
  • Sightseeing: Included per itinerary.
  • Guiding: Professional, English speaking.
  • Transportation: Air-conditioned, Mercedes bus.
  • Meals: Delicious Turkish meals per itinerary
  • One way economy class flight ticket to Ankara
  • Service tax

    Tour Excludes :
  • Personal expenses: Extras at hotel or meals
  • Tipping: Tips for guide and drivers
  • Insurance: All types

  •  Day 1: Welcome to Istanbul
    Day 1: Welcome to Istanbul
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