Fabled Turkey

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  • Group Tour
  • Starting Price: $5,904
  • Length: 10 days
  • Operator: Travcoa
  • 866-591-0260
    Destinations: Middle East, Turkey
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Tour Description

Discover the remarkable history, culture and art of Turkey beyond a few brief port excursions on this fascinating 10-day Cruise Extension. Explore deep into Istanbul, one of the world’s most influential cities through history, in the company of a private guides. Explore the famous palaces, mosques, and lively markets before enjoying a memorable private cruise on the waters of the legendary Bosphorus. Fly to the historic and religions centers of Gaziantep and Antakya for private touring of important sites before exploring the magical rock churches and dwellings of Cappadocia, the legendary steppes of Anatolia and the modern capital of Ankara. Accommodations include the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Istanbul, the Liwan Hotel in Antakya and the Museum Hotel in Cappadocia.

  • Touring the magnificent and mystical sights that create the Istanbul skyline
  • The Grotto of St. Peter in “Biblical Antioch”
  • Visiting the picturesque medieval Bakras Castle and enjoying morning coffee with the locals
  • Exploring the fascinating caves and underground cities in Cappadocia
  • The vast archeological collections at the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations

Itinerary

DAY 1

Arrive Istanbul, Turkey

Welcome to Turkey. You are met on arrival in Istanbul, and then taken to your hotel in this incredible 13th century city.

Ritz Carlton Hotel, Istanbul

DAY 2

Full Day Istanbul Sightseeing

Spend today exploring the landmarks of this city that was Constantinople. Visit fabulous Topkapi Palace, made the center of the Ottoman Empire in 1453 AD, when the Ottoman Turks conquered it. Tour the Basilica of Saint Sophia, built by Justinian the Great during the 6th century - it is a massive structure with a gigantic 93-foot diameter dome. It is now a museum displaying Byzantine art and architecture. A highlight of your tour is a visit to one of the most famed masterpieces of Ottoman religious architecture, the Blue Mosque. Named for its impressive Turquoise colored tiles, this Muslim complex is unique, being one of only two mosques in the world with six minarets. Your sightseeing also includes visits to the once-palace Museum of Turkish Arts and the Military Museum of Istanbul, with its vast collection of weaponry.(B)

Ritz Carlton Hotel, Istanbul

DAY 3

Istanbul Sightseeing Markets

Today, explore the Spice Market with its enchanting profusions of aromatic spices imported from around the world. Next, board a boat for a private cruise on the waters of the Bosphorus. From your cruise boat, you can admire the historical mansions, palaces and skyline of the city - adorned with domes and minarets of numerous edifices. You dock on the northern shore to visit Lady Sadberk’s Family Home, now a private museum with a unique collection of historical-archeological items from Asia Minor.

This afternoon wander through the Grand Bazaar with its incredible collections of jewelry, antiques and Oriental rug shops.(B)

Ritz Carlton Hotel, Istanbul

DAY 4

Istanbul to Gaziantep

Today fly to Gaziantep, in the land of Upper Mesopotamia. You are met upon arrival, and taken to your hotel. (B)

Dedeman Hotel, Gaziantep

DAY 5

Gaziantep Antakya

This morning tour the Archaeological Museum of Gaziantep to see its extensive collection of ancient Roman mosaics. Next, depart on your drive to Antakya, “Biblical Antioch.”

After lunch, visit the Grotto of St. Peter, the cave where the Apostles gathered to name themselves as “Christians,” meaning “Followers of Christ.”

Continue your afternoon touring by driving up Mount Silpius, to overlook Antioch from its Medieval Fortress. (B)

Liwan Hotel, Antakya

DAY 6

Antakya to Adana

This morning visit the Archaeological Museum of Antioch, and then depart for Adana, the fourth largest city of Turkey. En route stop at Bakras Castle, one of the most photographed medieval castles in the Middle East. Resting atop a hill, Bakras Castle overlooks a traditional Turkish village where you can enjoy a morning coffee with the locals. Drive over the Amon Mountains, through the fertile valleys surrounding Dortyol, to reach Tarsus, the hometown of St. Paul.

After lunch, visit the Well of St. Paul, believed to be the site of the ancient home of the great saint. Next, visit the Sabanci Mosque of Adana, the other of the two mosques in the world with six minarets.(B)

Hilton Hotel, Adana

DAY 7

Adana to Cappadocia

This morning depart for Cappadocia, driving over the scenic Taurus Mountains through the passage known in the Bible as Cilician Gates. En route stop to tour Gumusluk Monastery, where from the Middle Ages to the 15th century devout Christians learned to become monks. View the monastery’s collection of Byzantine Art frescoes. Continue to the Kaymakli Underground City, to see the troglodytic combination of caves carved under the ground to protect the inhabitants from the Arabic invasions of 7th century.

Arrive in Cappadocia by late afternoon.(B)

Museum Hotel, Cappadocia

DAY 8

Full Day Cappadocia Sightseeing

Cappadocia was one of the earliest centers of Christian Monastic life and was home to hundreds of teaching churches through the 16th century. Today tour the Goreme Monastic Center to view some of the best-preserved Byzantine rock churches, all decorated with 12th century frescoes. See the Pasabag, vertical rock formations that had been hermit dwellings. Visit a weaving school where the local women have been making rugs for centuries, to observe and learn their weaving techniques and process, and to see completed samples of this authentic Turkish folk art. End your day of sightseeing by viewing the valleys and the famous hilltop rock fortress at Uchisar, which resembles a castle embroidered with cave dwellings.

Tonight, enjoy an enchanting presentation of Whirling Dervishes, the mystic philosophers of the 13th century.(B)

Museum Hotel, Cappadocia

DAY 9

Cappadocia to Hattusa Ankara

Today depart Cappadocia for a fascinating drive through the steppes of Anatolia, before arriving at Bogazkoy in time for a lunch break.

Continue your drive, arriving early this afternoon in Hattusa, Capital of Hittite Civilization. Sharing the title of supreme power with Egyptians through second millennia BC, the Hittites created a superior culture, enveloping the cultures they had conquered. See evidence of this in the archaeological displays you view at the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations of Ankara. Tour through the ancient capital of Hattusa, and then Yazilikaya, an open-air sanctuary displaying reliefs of Gods and Goddesses of the Hittite pantheon.

Drive on to Ankara for an overnight stay.(B)

Hilton Hotel, Ankara

DAY 10

Depart Ankara

Ankara, now the Capital of Modern Turkey, started as a settlement in the third millennia BC. This morning visit the fascinating Museum of Anatolian Civilizations, to discover the archeological findings that belong to the Hittites, Urartians, Phrygians and other early civilizations.

This afternoon you will be taken to the airport for your flight home or onward to your next destination.(B)

Departures

Pricing Information

December 31, 2011

From $5,904.00 per person double occupancy.

From $1,405.00 single room supplement.

Journey Includes

  • Accommodations as indicated in the itinerary
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary
  • All transfers and fully guided daily sightseeing provided by private deluxe A/C vehicles
  • Local English speaking guide for sightseeing in each city
  • Entrance fees per final scheduled itinerary
  • Airport porterage, where available (2 bags per person)
  • Local taxes
  • TravcoAssist (Medical Travel Assistance Plan)

All prices are in US dollars and do not include international airfare, unless otherwise noted.

Prices displayed are based on the lowest season base price and assume double occupancy. Prices are shown in U.S. dollars and may or may not include administrative fees, taxes, meals, airfare (where applicable) and Single Supplements. Cancellation penalties, blackout dates and other restrictions may apply.

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Tour Notes