Classic Turkey - East Meets West at the Crossroads of History

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• Visit 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites
• Hike to the Giant Stone Heads on Mt. Nemrut
• Discover the Museum of Anatolian Civilization in Ankara
• Discover ancient Troy
• Sail on a gulet, a traditional Turkish yacht
• Visit the ancient classical city of Ephesus
• See the underground cities of Cappadocia
• Visit a family-owned olive oil factory

Fact File

• 21 land days
• Maximum 16 travelers
• Start & finish in Istanbul
• All meals included
• Includes 1 internal flight
• Activity Level: 2


Turkey, the fabled land that joins the familiar West with the mystery of the East, is a prime destination for the adventure traveler. The history and legend of Turkey presents an eclectic mix of new and ancient in the warmth of an open and welcoming culture.

Our adventure begins in Istanbul, the great city that links Europe to Asia across the Bosphorus. Istanbul was once the capital of the "civilized" world in the early days of Christendom and continues to be the heart of Turkey today. Encounter the ancient and the modern through active bazaars situated alongside grand monuments such as Topkapi Palace, the 1,500-year old Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque.

Heading west, we follow the Sea of Marmara and visit the World War I battle site of Gallipoli and its monuments. We stop in ancient Troy, tour a family-owned olive oil processing plant and hike around the local village. At Ephesus, we explore one of the best-preserved classical sites still in existence. We board a gulet, a traditional Turkish yacht, for three days of cruising on the Mediterranean. In Antalya, we take in the bustling activity of the ancient harbor and the narrow streets of the "old city".

Leaving the coast, we head to Cappadocia, where wind and water have sculpted the volcanic bedrock into bizarre formations. Here, ancient peoples built entire cities below ground. The deep canyons and lush fertile valleys are the perfect place for a unique balloon flight (an optional tour). We explore the natural and man-made phenomena that make Cappadocia a destination for history and archaeology buffs. Hike up Mt. Nemrut to see the giant heads mysteriously looking out to the surrounding valleys for 2 millennia.

In Ankara, we visit the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations, reputed to be one of the best museums in the world. Heading to the inner Black Sea region, we stop in Safranbolu, a unique and well-preserved Ottoman town. Our adventure concludes in Istanbul.

Further Reading

- Snapshots of Turkey
- Lots of Hot Air in Cappadocia

FROM: $6495 USD



Comfortable, well-located accommodations with private bathrooms. 3 nights on a traditional gulet (yacht) with private facilities.

Comfort notes

Some long drives.

Itinerary - detailed itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Istanbul
Day 2: Spice Market, Bosphorus Cruise
Day 3: Marmara Sea, Gallipoli, Troy
Day 4: Olive Oil Factory, Altar of Zeus, Temple of Athena
Day 5: Pergamum & Asclepion
Day 6: Ephesus
Day 7: Aphrodisias, Board Gulet Yacht
Day 8: Mediterranean Cruise - Caunos
Day 9: Mediterranean Cruise - Scenic Coastline
Day 10: Ruins of Xanthos, to Antayla
Day 11: Antalya Sightseeing
Day 12: To Cappadocia via Aspendos
Day 13: Cappadocia, Ballooning Option
Day 14: Cappadocia, Ihlara Gorge Hiking
Day 15: To Gaziantep via Tarsus
Day 16: Sunset at the Giant Stone Heads of Mt. Nemrut
Day 17: To Urfa, Birth Place of Abraham, Fly to Ankara
Day 18: Ankara, Museum of Anatolian Civilizations, to Safranbolu
Day 19: Safranbolu, to Istanbul
Day 20: Istanbul City Sights
Day 21: Depart Istanbul
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