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The Best of Turkey

The best of

Turkey's Treasures: A 9-Day Luxury Journey Through Time and Beauty

Embark on a 9-day luxurious journey through Turkey, exploring its rich history, stunning landscapes, and culinary delights. From the ancient marvels of Istanbul to the natural wonders of Pamukkale, the enchanting city of Konya, and the architectural splendor of Dolmabahce Palace, this tour offers an unparalleled exploration of Turkey's treasures. Cap off your adventure with a sunset cruise on the Bosphorus, making for an unforgettable Turkish experience.

DAY 1: Arrival in Istanbul, Turkey

Upon your arrival in Istanbul, navigate through customs—remembering to have your visa ready with your passport—and make your way to the arrival hall. Here, you will be greeted by a driver holding a sign with the name "Shore", ready to escort you to your hotel in the heart of this vibrant city.

Istanbul stands as Turkey's cultural and financial epicenter, a bustling metropolis that elegantly stretches across the Bosphorus Strait, linking Asia and Europe both geographically and through its rich tapestry of cultures. Home to an estimated population of 12 to 19 million people, it ranks among the largest cities globally and in Europe. The city, renowned for its historical significance and stunning geography, is spread over seven hills and divided into eight distinct districts, including Sultanahmet, Galata, the New City, along the Bosphorus and Golden Horn, Princess Island, the Asian Side, and the Western Suburbs.

The Sultanahmet district lies at the heart of what was once known as "Constantinople" in the 19th century, the historic core of Old Istanbul. It is here that you will discover the city's most iconic landmarks, including the majestic Topkapi Palace, the awe-inspiring Haghia Sofya, the Blue Mosque, the ancient Hippodrome, the Basilica Cisterns, the Archeological Museum, the Great Palace Mosaic Museum, and the bustling Grand Bazaar. Each site offers a unique glimpse into the city's glorious past, making Istanbul a bridge between the ages, where history and modernity coalesce seamlessly.

Istanbul airport

Istanbul unfolded

DAY 2: Discover Istanbul on a city tour
Istanbul 5
Istanbul 2
Istanbul 1

Day 2 in Istanbul promises an immersive blend of sightseeing and culinary delights. After breakfast, join your guide in the hotel lobby to begin a day filled with exploration and taste.

Exploring Istanbul's Vibrant Streets Your journey starts with a leisurely stroll through Gezi Park and Taksim Square, breathing in the lively atmosphere of modern Istanbul. Venturing down Istiklal Street, the city's most renowned avenue, you'll take detours into Beyoğlu and Cihangir. These historic districts boast elegant architecture and a vibrant cultural scene, offering glimpses into Istanbul's cosmopolitan past.

Cultural Insights and Local Flavors

As you meander through these neighborhoods, pause to savor moments in local tea houses, where you'll get a firsthand experience of playing Backgammon and Okey, beloved games among Istanbulites. Your exploration will also lead you through areas celebrated for their antique shops, designer boutiques, and bustling marketplaces.

No visit to Istanbul is complete without indulging in its culinary offerings. Wander through fish markets and delicatessens, tasting the city's gastronomic wonders. Marvel at architectural gems like the Pera Palace Hotel, Pera Museum, and the iconic Galata Tower, and appreciate the religious diversity at Greek Orthodox, Catholic, and Armenian churches.

A Culinary Journey Through Istanbul

Discover the converted synagogue now serving as an art gallery and enjoy a traditional Turkish coffee tasting. Savor kofte, Turkey's beloved meatballs, and experience the unique flavors of mantı, Turkish dumplings served with yogurt or butter. Delight in the various forms of börek, a savory pastry that's a staple in Turkish cuisine. And for dessert, treat yourself to freshly made baklava, a sweet, nutty pastry that epitomizes Turkish confectionery.

Istanbul to Cappadocia

DAY 3: Istanbul to Kayseri flight

In the morning hours meet with Your driver for a transfer to Istanbul airport, where You'll take a flight to Kayseri, from where You'll head to Cappadocia.

On arrival in Cappadocia, a driver holding a name board will meet you as you enter the arrival hall and you will be transferred to your hotel.

Following short rest and lunch embark on a tour of Soganali Valley.

Cappadocia, a semi-arid region in central Turkey, is full of otherworldly natural sites, most notably the “fairy chimneys,” tall, cone-shaped rock formations clustered in Monks Valley and elsewhere.

Popular for exploration are Bronze Age homes carved into valley walls by troglodytes (cave dwellers) and later used as refuges by early Christians.

The 100m-deep Ihlara Canyon houses numerous rock-face churches.


Goreme national park is a UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE.

The Erosion shaped the incredible landscape of the Göreme valley, but thousands of years ago humans took a cue from Mother Nature and began carving an incredible chamber and tunnel complex into the soft rock. Beginning in the fourth century A.D., an urbanized—but underground—the cultural landscape was created here.

Ancient volcanic eruptions blanketed this region with thick ash, which solidified into a soft rock—called tuff—tens of meters thick.

Wind and water went to work on this plateau, leaving only its harder elements behind to form a fairy tale landscape of cones, pillars, pinnacles, mushrooms, and chimneys, which stretch as far as 130 feet (40 meters) into the sky.

The rocky wonderland is honeycombed with a network of human-created caves; living quarters, places of worship, stables, and storehouses were all dug into the soft stone. In fact, tunnel complexes Göreme was inhabited as early as the Hittite era, circa 1800 to 1200 B.C. and later sat uncomfortably on the boundary between rival empires; first the Greeks and Persians and later the Byzantine Greeks and a host of rivals. This precarious political position meant that residents needed hiding places—and found them by tunneling into the rock itself.

The site became a religious refuge during the early days of Christianity. By the fourth century Christians fleeing Rome’s persecution had arrived in some numbers and established monastic communities here. The monks excavated extensive dwellings and monasteries and created Byzantine frescoed paintings in cave chapels beginning in the seventh century, which endure in well-preserved isolation to this day.

Göreme is rich with history, but not all of Cappadocia’s troglodyte dwellings are museums. Some still serve as homes and others as hotels, which offer a truly unique hospitality experience.

Your home for the next 3 nights is a boutique cave hotel (TBA).

Some accommodations are in caves and some are traditional arched rooms of cut stone, as well as several pleasant stone terraces with sweeping views of the Cappadocian countryside and the town of Ürgüp.


Experience Cappadocia from the sky - Hot Air Balloon flight experience

DAY 4: Hot air balloon experience & Devrent valley
Hot Air Balloon Cappadocia

Day 4 begins with an exhilarating early morning adventure, as you wake up around 4:00 AM for a transfer to the launch site of your hot air balloon flight. As you ascend into the sky, you'll join the ranks of those who have witnessed the world's most breathtaking landscapes from above, alongside the Serengeti and Bagan. Floating gently above Cappadocia, you may witness the spectacular sight of the sunrise illuminating the unique geological formations below. After this unforgettable experience, you'll return to your hotel for breakfast and some well-deserved rest.


The day's exploration continues with a visit to the Devrent valley, marveling at its whimsical rock formations. A walk through the Zelve Open Air Museum offers a glimpse into the past, with its troglodyte houses and churches carved into the rocks, painting a vivid picture of historical daily life. The journey then leads to Paşabağ, known for its remarkable "fairy chimneys" with three caps, where the natural sounds of the wind create a magical atmosphere, as if whispering the tales of ancient fairies.


For lunch, indulge in authentic local cuisine at the Mustafapasa old Greek House, nestled within a historic Greek village, known for its exquisite dishes and inviting ambiance. The afternoon offers a visit to an authentic home in Mustafapasa, providing insight into the region's cultural heritage.


Next, your journey takes you to Avanos, a town celebrated for its terra cotta artistry dating back to 3000 BC. Here, a pottery workshop demonstration reveals the meticulous craft of pottery making, a tradition that has flourished in this area for millennia.


The day culminates with a visit to the Göreme Open Air Museum, where you'll witness the pinnacle of Byzantine art in Cappadocia. Explore rock-cut churches adorned with frescoes and paintings from the 10th to the 13th century, including the illustrious Dark Church. Conclude your day with views of Doves Valley and Uchisar Castle, capturing the essence of Cappadocia's enchanting landscape and rich history.

Wonders of Cappadocia

DAY 5: Explore the wonders of Cappadocia on a full-day tour

On Day 5, prepare for the "Wonders of Cappadocia" tour, a day filled with exploration and discovery, led by your knowledgeable guide. 


Journey to the Earth's Depths

Your adventure begins with a descent into the heart of Cappadocia through the underground cities of Kaymakli or Derinkuyu, both recognized as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. These ancient subterranean cities, carved from the soft volcanic rock, reveal the ingenuity of their creators, offering a glimpse into the past where entire communities lived and thrived beneath the earth's surface.


Ihlara Canyon: A Natural Marvel

The tour continues to the enchanting Ihlara Canyon, a verdant oasis in the Anatolian steppes. As you walk along the Melendiz River towards Belisırma village, the ancient Peristrema, you'll find yourself in the "Valley of the Sky." This breathtaking canyon is not only a natural wonder but also a historical treasure trove, dotted with rock-cut churches adorned with vibrant biblical frescoes that have withstood the test of time.


Culinary Delights by the River

Enjoy a well-deserved lunch in Belisirma, where a simple yet charming local restaurant by the river offers delightful dishes, allowing you to savor the flavors of Cappadocia amidst its serene landscape.


Guzelyurt Village: A Glimpse into Village Life

The day's exploration concludes in Guzelyurt Village, also known as old Karbala. Here, you'll immerse yourself in the local village life that dates back to 8500 BC. Visit the Cami Church and witness the enduring traditions and cultural heritage of this historic village.


As the day winds down, you'll return to your oasis, Esbelli Evi, carrying with you the memories of Cappadocia's wonders, from the depths of its underground cities to the natural beauty and historical richness of its canyons and villages.

Derinkuyu 2
Ihlara Canyon
Belisirma village

Discover Konya

DAY 6: Anatolia - Konya
Konya 2

Day 6 transports you to the soul-stirring city of Konya, nestled at an altitude of 1016 meters in the heart of the vast Anatolian steppe. Renowned for its profound historical and spiritual significance, Konya captivates visitors from around the globe.


Konya: A Spiritual and Historical Journey

Konya's fame stretches far beyond Turkey's borders, largely due to the mystic poet Rumi's shrine and the Neolithic site of Catal Huyuk, dating back to 7500 BC. This ancient settlement showcases early human sophistication in town planning and religious art, marking it as one of humanity's oldest communities.


The city's rich tapestry of history includes its evolution through various civilizations. Once called Kuwana by the Hittites around 4000 years ago, Konya flourished under Roman, Byzantine, and Seljuk rule. The Seljuk era, particularly the 12th and 13th centuries, marked Konya's golden age, transforming it into a capital of architectural beauty and cultural depth.


Rumi: The Heart of Konya

Rumi, born in 1207 in present-day Afghanistan, settled in Konya, where he became a pivotal figure in Sufism. His teachings on love as a pathway to spiritual enlightenment have touched hearts worldwide, earning him the affectionate title of Mevlana or 'Our Master' in Turkey. Rumi's legacy continues to draw seekers of wisdom to Konya, making it a hub of spiritual growth and interfaith harmony.


The Whirling Dervishes

Konya is also the birthplace of the Whirling Dervishes' mesmerizing ritual dance. Created by Rumi 700 years ago, this practice symbolizes a mystical journey towards divine love, with dancers spinning in meditative trance to connect with the divine. This unique form of worship underscores Konya's enduring spiritual significance.


As you explore Konya, you'll not only traverse the physical landscapes of this storied city but also embark on a profound journey through the annals of human civilization and the depths of spiritual inquiry. Konya promises an enriching day of discovery, where history, culture, and spirituality intertwine to offer a glimpse into the soul of Anatolia.

Magical Pamukkale 

DAY 7: From Konya to Pamukkale to Istanbul

Day 7 unfolds with an enchanting journey towards Pamukkale, departing at 9:00 am. Known for its stunning natural wonders, Pamukkale, or "Cotton Castle" in Turkish, is a spectacle of mineral-rich thermal waters cascading down white travertine terraces, creating a breathtakingly beautiful natural phenomenon. Adjacent to Pamukkale lies Hierapolis, an ancient spa city established in the 2nd century B.C. by the Romans, offering a glimpse into the past with its remarkably preserved theatre, extensive necropolis, and the famed Antique Pool, where submerged Roman columns tell tales of ancient earthquakes.


As a recognized UNESCO World Heritage site, Pamukkale and Hierapolis promise a day of exploration and discovery, showcasing the natural beauty and historical depth of western Turkey. This full-day drive and tour culminate with a drop-off at the airport for your onward flight to Istanbul.


Upon your arrival in Istanbul, a seamless transition awaits as a driver, ready with a name board, escorts you back to your hotel in the city. The evening offers a relaxing conclusion to your day, with dinner served at one of the hotel’s esteemed restaurants, allowing you to reflect on the day's adventures in comfort and style.

Pamukkale 1

Gems of Istanbul

DAY 8: Discover the treasures of Istanbul
Istanbul 9
Basilica Cistern
Istanbul 7
Istanbul 8
Istanbul Camii mosque

Day 8 immerses you in the rich tapestry of Istanbul's history and beauty, beginning with a visit to the awe-inspiring Basilica Cistern. Constructed in the 6th century, this ancient marvel spans over two acres and is supported by 336 towering columns, creating an atmosphere of historical mystique beneath the city streets.


Your exploration continues with a leisurely stroll through Sultanahmet, the heart of historic Istanbul, where you'll pause for a delightful snack. The journey then leads you to the vibrant Spice Market, brimming with colors, aromas, and the bustling energy of local trade.


The highlight of the day is a visit to the Dolmabahce Palace, an Ottoman architectural gem from the 19th century. Known for its extravagant beauty, the palace stands as a testament to the grandeur of the late Ottoman Empire, being the last residence of the Ottoman Sultans.


After a day filled with discovery, return to your hotel to relax and rejuvenate. The adventure continues at 6:30 pm when a driver escorts you to the pier for a private boat tour along the Bosphorus. As you glide past magnificent villas and embrace the scenic views, enjoy a picnic dinner complemented by sparkling wine. Meanwhile, Julia savors a glass of exquisite Turkish wine, sharing in the joy of the moment. Watch the sun set over Istanbul, a city that gracefully spans two continents, offering a perfect end to an unforgettable day.

Goodbye Turkey

DAY 9: Departure from Istanbul

Day 9 marks the conclusion of your captivating journey through Turkey. As your Turkish adventure draws to a close, a private driver will meet you according to your flight schedule to ensure a seamless and comfortable transfer to the Istanbul airport. This final leg of your journey allows you to reflect on the unforgettable experiences and memories you've gathered, from the ancient depths of the Basilica Cistern to the sunset over the Bosphorus. As you depart, carry with you the rich tapestry of sights, sounds, and flavors that define Turkey, until your next adventure beckons. Safe travels!


Want to know more about the tour or You want to travel to Turkey with us?

- Reach out to our Travel Specialist. 

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