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Morning ballooning Cappadocia

Istanbul & Cappadocia

8-day tailor-made from £1,820 pp incl. flights

Summary

Short description

A country of almost unparalleled diversity, Turkey is the epitome of that overused phrase 'east-meets-west'

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In Brief

  • 4 Nights İstanbul
  • 3 Nights Uçhisar

About

Recommended for:
City | History & culture

Your adventure begins in Istanbul, Turkey's cultural epicentre, where you'll discover a myriad of historical buildings in the city that served as the capital of the Byzantine, Roman and Ottoman Empires. From Istanbul, the next stop is Cappadocia with its lunar-like landscapes and fascinating troglodyte dwellings.

Day by day itinerary

Day 1
UK > Istanbul

Depart the UK for your flight to Istanbul, Turkey's vibrant and fascinating capital. 

Stay: 10 Karakoy by Morgan, Istanbul (Superior) / Pera Palace, Istanbul (Deluxe)

Day 2
Istanbul - Old City

After breakfast at the Hotel. Depart the hotel with your personal guide who is also a lecturer on the history of the City. The morning visit Seraglio Point where you  stop at the site of the famous Hippodrome. Here you will see the obelisk of Theodosius dating back to the 4th Century. Walk to the Blue Mosque and learn about its dome, six minarets and an interior covered in blue Iznik tiles. You then visit Aya Sophia, the great church built by the Emperor Justinian. After an instructive tour you are then taken to the impressive Yerebatan Sarayi which is an “Underground Cistern” created by the Romans as a water source for both the Byzantine Emperors and later the Ottomans' Topkapi Palace. (Fans of the James Bond movie "From Russia with Love" will recall that Bond paddled across the cistern to spy on the Russian Embassy.) The underground chamber is supported by rows and rows of columns and has been totally restored to its original splendour. Then visit Topkapi Sarayi.  the palace of the Ottoman Sultans for over 300 years, wander through pavilions, courtyards and gardens, and the treasures from the collections of the Ottoman Sultans.

Stay: 10 Karakoy by Morgan, Istanbul (Superior) / Pera Palace, Istanbul (Deluxe)

Meals: B

Day 3
Istanbul - Spice Bazaar

In the morning visit the aromatic Spice Bazaar, its domed and vaulted shops selling spices and herbs, also known as Egyptian Bazaar as it was once endowed with the Cairo imports. Then proceed to the pier so as to embark the public boat. Sailing through the waterway separating the two continents “Asia and Europe”. View varying palace; Dolmabahce Palace, Ciragan Palace, Beylerbeyi Palace, Bosphorus and Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridges from the sea. Disembark on the European part of the city and take a walking tour of the Pera neighborhood of Istanbul.  Today, this chic part of Istanbul is home to many boutiques, cozy cafes and glittering nightclubs. Get a different perspective on the city and the Bosphorus from the nearly 200-foot-tall Galata Tower, built in the 14th century. 

Stay: 10 Karakoy by Morgan, Istanbul (Superior) / Pera Palace, Istanbul (Deluxe)

Meals: B

Day 4
Istanbul - Museums & Mosques

After Breakfast, drive to the impressive 5th century Theodosian Walls and the nearby Kariye Museum. Once the Church of St. Saviour in Chora and dating back to the reign of Constantine the Great in the 4th century. Once a mosque, it is now a museum famous for its superb mosaics depicting scenes from the life of Christ, which mainly date from the 1320’s. Continue your morning sightseeing with a visit to the grand Suleymaniye Mosque. Proceed to the Grand Bazaar was the commercial heart of the old city and its 4,000 shops are full of treasures – including carpets and kilims, silks, jewelry, ceramics, icons, and leather goods. Noon time cross the Bosphorus Bridge from European side of Istanbul to Asia and visit the Beylerbeyi Palace, built in the late 19th-century as a summer residence for the sultan. This elegant structure on the banks of the Bosphorus boasts graceful bathing pavilions and a gorgeous reception hall with its lovely fountain. Drive along the Bosphorus on the Anatolian part of the city, Anadolu Hisari, Çengelköy, famous for its cucumbers and persimmons, Kanlica, where people flock for yogurt from heaven. The Historical Kanlica Yogurt has been churning out this creamy ambrosia since 1893. You can get a 200-gram (small) serving; sprinkle some sugar atop each bite for a decadent treat. Return to your Hotel.

Stay: 10 Karakoy by Morgan, Istanbul (Superior) / Pera Palace, Istanbul (Deluxe)


Meals: B

Day 5
Istanbul to Cappadocia

Transfer to the Istanbul Airport for morning flight from Istanbul to Kayseri from where we drive to the land of wonders that is Cappadocia, whose name means “the land of beautiful horses”. The region’s unique landscape of multicolored pinnacles and lunar rock formations known as “Fairy Chimneys” is hollowed out with Byzantine churches, monasteries and entire subterranean “cave towns.

Upon arrival to Kayseri, drive to the surrealistic region of Cappadocia (approx. 60 minutes). Visit the Devrent Valley where various types of fairy chimneys are abundant. We will walk through this amazing valley. Thereafter visit Pasabagi (Monk's Valley) with multiple stems and caps, peculiar to this area. After visiting Pasabagi, drive to Avanos which is known for the pottery, a craft dating back to the Hittite period. The red clay which is worked by local craftsmen comes from the residue in the Kizilirmak river, the longest river of Turkey. Further to the time for lunch proceed to Goreme Open Air Museum (Dark Church is excluded; entrance requires additional admission fee) to visit the churches, chapels and monasteries carved into the fairy chimneys from the 10th to the 13th centuries with frescos painted on the walls. Next to the Uchisar Rock-Castle; has the numerous hollowed-out containers, rock tombs, and a large water cistern all welcome you as silent witnesses to history and human life giving you a panoramic view of the valleys of Cappadocia. Thereafter time to take photos in the neighboring valleys before going back to the hotel.

Stay: Hezen Cave Hotel (Superior) / Argos in Cappadocia, Üçhisar, Cappadocia (Deluxe)

Meals: B

Days 6-7
Cappadocia

Breakfast at the Hotel. Visit to Rose Valley, one of the most beautiful trekking valleys in Cappadocia, and explore the famous rock- cut churches by hiking through the valley. Rest in Cavusin, an old Greek village, known for its Christian houses and churches. After having time for lunch visit Ortahisar Castle, similar to Uchisar Castle in style, where storage caves can also be observed. In the afternoon visit Kaymakli Underground City where early christians lived in fear and faith. On the way back visit to panoramic Pigeon Valley where pigeons contributed to the lives of locals with their manure to fertilize the wineyards. You may also like to taste Cappadocia wine in a local winery. Check in to the Hotel where you will feel at home in unique area.

Breakfast at the Hotel. Drive to Mustafapasa, famous for its beautiful architecture, Mustafapasa was one of the largest Greek towns in Cappadocia until the 1924 population exchange between Turkey and Greece. Your guide will give information on one of the biggest population exchanges in the world which caused approximately 2 million people to leave their homes. In Mustafapasa, we will see Greek mansions and churches as well as the Medrese seminary, an Islamic high school. The next stop is the Keslik Monastery, with one of the rare iconoclastic examples of Cappadocian frescoes. We will view these exceptional wall paintings and discuss the iconoclastic period (726-843 AD), in which such wall paintings were forbidden by the Byzantine Emperors. After which we will drive to Sahinefendi, to the Sobesos Excavation site. Archeologists have recently (in last 10 years) begun excavations of this area and continue to find many important artifacts. At this archeological site we can see Roman baths, tombs, basilica and mosaics. From Sahinefendi, we continue to Soganli Valley. Soganli was once the third largest monastic center in the area and boasts many cave churches and a beautiful

Stay: Hezen Cave Hotel (Superior) / Argos in Cappadocia, Üçhisar, Cappadocia (Deluxe)

Meals: B

Day 8
Cappadocia to UK

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Meals: B

Map

Pricing

Any element of this itinerary can be adjusted to suit your needs. Just contact us to find out more.

8-day tailor-made from £1,820 pp incl. flights

Superior

Low Season

from £1,820 pp. incl. flights

High Season

from £2,205 pp. incl. flights

Includes

  • Complimentary UK airport departure lounge access
  • Return flights from UK to Istanbul and returning from Kayseri (via Istanbul)
  • Private arrival transfer
  • 4 nights accommodation in Istanbul on a BB basis
  • Private Guided Istanbul Old City tour
  • Optional 30 minute Turkish Hamman experience including steam bath, peeling and soap massage
  • Full day Guided tour of Istanbul's Mosques, museums and markets
  • Optional shop, cook and feast like a local experience
  • Departure transfer to Istanbul airport
  • Istanbul to Kayseri flight
  • Arrival transfer in Kayseri and transfer to Cappadocia
  • 3 nights accommodation in Cappadocia on a BB basis
  • Private guided tour of Cappadocia including Devrent Valley, Pasabagi and the Ichisar Rock-Castle
  • Optional Whirling Dervish performance
  • Full Day guided tour to the Rose Valley, Cavusin, Ortahisar Castle and the Kaymakli underground city
  • Full Day guided tour to Mustafapasa, Keslik Monastery, Sahinefendi and Sognali Valley
  • Optional Cappadocia Cooking class
  • Departure transfer to Kayseri airport
  • Kayseri to Istanbul flight

Terms & Conditions

Prices are per person based on two people sharing a twin/double room; prices are subject to availability and possible change; normal booking conditions apply.

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