CENTRAL TURKEY TOUR
Tour Name: Central Turkey Tour
Duration: 7 Days, 6 Nights
Transportation: Domestic Flights*
Visited Places: Istanbul, Cappadocia
Day 1 (Half day Bosporus Cruise)
Picking up about from your hotel (free pickup from hotels in the Sultanahmet/Taksim area) the tour starts with Rustem Pasha Mosque constructed by Architect Sinan and decorated with the best examples of Turkish tiles. Rustem Pasha was the Grand Vizier of Sultan Suleiman and was married to his daughter. Later, you will walk through the Hasircilar Street leading to Spice Market (Egyptian Bazaar). This area is one of the most crowded sites of Eminonu since there are many shops selling cheese, olives, eggs, meat products, dried fruits and peddlers everywhere. You can have a short stop on your way to drink a glass of “Tursu Suyu – Pickle Juice”. There is Kurukahveci Mehmet Efendi, the famous Turkish coffee store at the end of the street. This is an excellent place to but Turkish coffee in the city. Spice Market (Egyptian Bazaar) is one of the most colorful sites in the city. Once the Bazaar was the last stop of the Silk Road from where the staff carried on camels from India and Far East was delivered to Europe with ships. Today, it is still very popular among the local whom want to buy spices, delight, cheese and dried fruits. There are also shops selling souvenirs and gold. When you come out of the Spice Market, you will see Yeni Cami (so called The New Mosque or the actual name Valide Sultan Mosque) constructed in 1665. There are bird seeders in front of Mosque and the people sitting on the marble stairs viewing the Golden Horn bridge. Later, you will embark the boat for Bosporus Tour. This a large, safe and comfortable public boat with open and covered areas convenient for any weather conditions. There is also a bathroom in the boat. You may buy snacks and drinks in the boat too. The tour taking about 2 hours and you will see Ciragan Palace, Beylerbeyi Palace, Bosporus Bridges, Maiden’s Tower and fabulous Ottoman Yalis (sea-side Mansions) during your tour. Your guide will be with you on the yacht to give you information about the places you see on the tour. The boat tour takes about 1.5 hours. The tour ends with free time in Eminonu from where you may either visit Spice Market again for shopping or have a walk over the Golden Horn Bridge. The guide is going to recommend you the best way to get your hotel.
Day 2 (Istanbul full day tour, flight to Cappadocia)
We will pick you up from your hotel at around 08:30 and to day begins with a visit to the amazing Topkapi Palace – home to the Ottoman Sultans for almost 400 years. Today, the palace houses amazing artifacts from the Ottoman period as well as many religious pieces and the famous Harem. The next stop is the Sultanahmet Mosque, also known as the Blue Mosque – built in the 16th century, this working mosque gets its names from the intricate blue Iznik tiles which adorn the inside. On to the Roman Hippodrome – this Byzantine scene was home to Constantinople's sporting and political life. Today we can see many monuments including a 3500 year old Egyptian Obelisk.
Our next destination is a local restaurant for lunch. After lunch, we continue with our walking tour by visiting the famous Aya Sofia (Hagia Sophia) museum – this architectural wonder was built in 360 A.D. and was used as a house of worship by different religions until finally being converted to a museum in 1935. The Basilica Cistern is our next stop – also known as the Sunken Water Palace, the Cistern has 336 marble columns and was built in 532 A.D. We continue on to the Tomb of Sultan Mahmud and the ancient Ottoman cemetery, the Cemberlitas – known as the Banded Column and finally onto the Grand Bazaar. The Grand Bazaar – the ultimate Old World shopping center with some 4000 shops After the tour, we will transfer you to hotel and than airport for the late Kayseri flight. Our representative will be waiting you at Kayseri Airport and you will come to Goreme in 1 hour.
You will stay in a cave hotel in Goreme
Day 3 (Cappadocia full day tour)
After your breakfast at the hotel, we will join a full day Cappadocia tour starting with Rose Valley Hike. Then take a shorter walk in Pasabag (Monks Valley). We will have lunch in Goreme. Kaymakli Underground City will be your second Unesco World Heritage Site in Turkey after historical parts of Istanbul and it dates back to Hittite times and penetrates five layers deep in the soil. Optional whirling dervishes ceremony can be viewed in the evening. Overnight in Goreme.
Day 4 (Cappadocia full day tour)
On your fourth day, you may have an optional hot air balloon flight with sunrise. After the breakfast, you will join a full day Cappadocia tour. The Explore and Hike Tour visits southern Cappadocia and starts at 09:30 by pick-up at your hotel. After our guide's introduction to Cappadocia at the Goreme panoramic view point, we drive about 1 hour and visit Guzelyurt, where Gregory of Nazianzus lived in. A historically large Greek population existed in the area until the 1924 population exchange, when they were replaced with the Turks from Thessaloniki and Kavala. Our next stop will be Guzelyurt underground city which shows clear signs of later reuse with tandir ovens cut into the ground for cooking, but its most famous feature is its squat toilet, isolated along a narrow corridor and the only such convenience so far identified in the underground cities.
After departing Guzelyurt, we will drive further south to the magnificent verdant Ihlara Valley. We walk alongside the Melindiz River for about 1 hour which winds its way through the Ihlara gorge, stopping for lunch in a restaurant on the river in the village of Belisirma. After lunch, we continue to the Selime Monastery, the largest rock-cut monastery in Cappadocia with large cave cathedral and breathtaking views over the area. We will then drive back to your hotel.
Day 5 (Cappadocia half day tour, flight to Istanbul)
On your last day in Cappadocia, we will visit the undiscovered parts of the region. Your Cappadocia Undiscovered tour begins with a pick-up at your hotel around 09:45 and a drive toMustafapasa, the former Greek Village Sinasos with spectacular architecture. We will walk around the village, learning about the population exchange from 1924, the wealthy merchants and locals who once thrived in this town.
We then drive to Sobessos Excavation Site. This site is currently being excavated and we will see the Roman bath, tombs, temple and beautiful mosaics already unearthed.
After this we will drive to Soganli Valley, one of the most secluded and tranquil valleys in Cappadocia. We begin our hike along one side of the valley, visiting many cave churches and we return along the other side of the valley to the quaint village. You will also have your lunch in this lovely valley.
After having lunch, the tour concludes in Derinkuyu Underground City. Used to be known as Melagobia, Derinkuyu was one of the biggest settlements in Cappadocia and its 8 level underground city is the deepest of the region today. We will explore the caves of this interesting city and talk about the way of life here. We will then drive back to your hotel. In the evening, we will transfer you to Kayseri Airport and you will fly to Istanbul. Our driver will be waiting you in Istanbul Airport to transfer you to your hotel. Overnight in Istanbul
Day 6 (Half day Istanbul Tour)
We will pick you up at about 08:30 am for the tour. The first stop is Suleymaniye Mosque, constructed by Architect Sinan by the order of Sultan Suleyman The Magnificient. This is the largest mosque complex of the city used as the Imperial Mosque and offer a gorgeous view over the Golden Horn. After the mosque, we will stop by Pierre Loti Hill named after the French Poet who gave the spot his name.
There you will find a beatiful scenery of the city and peaceful location for taking a Turkish Tea.The next visit is to one of the oldest and most important churches in the city - The Church of Chora - representing fascinating wall paintings which tell the life of Christ in an historical order. Even though the building itself being small, the meaning was great for Byzantines as being founded at the borders of the city and welcoming the visitors. Today the environment is restored and this is a good place to spend time with local artisans and wooden houses. Driving along the city walls, the tour will end about 12.00 noon with drop off to the hotels. The tour is not operated on Wednesdays as Chora Church is closed.
You will have free afternoon Istanbul for last-minute visits and optional shoppings. Overnight in Istanbul.
Day 7 (Flight back to home)
After your breakfast we will transfer you to Istanbul airport for flying back home.
*The rate of the itinerary may vary due to the flight ticket rates if the reservation is made in a very short notice to the actual travel dates.
The rate of Central Turkey tour is 1050 Euro including;
Istanbul Yusufpasa Konagi Hotel or similar (Standard Room, 3 Nights) with breakfast,
Cappadocia Kelebek Hotel (Junior Suite Room, 3 Nights) with breakfast,
Professional guiding and all entrance fees in the tours, lunches in full day tours,
2 domestic flights (Istanbul - Kayseri and Kayseri - Istanbul) and airport transfers
Accommodation costs are based on per person on double room. Single Supplement cost is 200 Euro.
This tour can be expanded with Nemrut Excursion or Gulet Cruise between Olympos and Fethiye.
Please send us an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) for booking and further information