8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS
Istanbul - Ankara - Hattushash - Cappadocia - Konya - Pammukale - Kusadasi - Ephesus - Bergama - Gyure - Troy – Istanbul
Arrival to Istanbul. Transfer. Accommodation at the hotel. Free time. Upon request of guests an additional excursion can be organized.
Istanbul city tour in the morning.
Byzantium . Constantinople. Istanbul ..... Great. Diverse . Mysterious city with a thousand year’s history, the center of three civilizations. The modern metropolis, distinctive feature of which, as in old days, is tolerance . Sultanahmet - Old City – Istanbul’s district , where are situated all the main historical attractions : Hippodrome , Topkapi Palace, Blue Mosque , underground water reservoirs Basilica Cistern. Modern Hippodrome is located on a place of Roman hippodrome, where was taking place the gladiator’s and chariot races. At the Ottoman period this area was the center of holding of magnificent wedding rituals, court ceremonies and fairs.
Basilica Cistern - one of the extant underground water reservoirs of Byzantine period, which was build in times of Emperor Justinian I. During construction of the water reservoir have been used hundreds of Colon from destroyed pagan temples. Cistern was built as a storage of fresh water for case of a long siege of the city. Even today there is a fresh water in this Cistern.
Blue Mosque - Sultan Ahmed Mosque - one of the symbols of Istanbul. Unofficial name blue mosque has got from blue color of tiles, applied in the interiors.
Almost for four centuries Topkapi Palace was the official residence of the Ottoman sultans. 24 Sultans of Ottoman dynasty were ruling a great empire from here. Here they were born, were living and died. Grandiose plans and intrigues were building here. In the palace museum exhibition you can see very rich collection of the Ottoman treasures: weapons and jewelry, costumes and porcelain, rare examples of calligraphy and religious relics.
Moving to Ankara by comfortable bus will take about 4 hours. After accommodation in the hotel and dinner guests will have an opportunity to see evening Ankara, capital of Turkey, take a walk at one of the largest parks of modern Turkey, Youth Park.
Excursion day begins with a visit of Ankara fortress .The name of the city came from this fortress. From the observation deck of fortress there is an excellent panoramic view.
At the main historical museum of Turkey - Anatolian Civilizations Museum – you can find the exhibits, confirming rights of Anatolia to be called a cradle of great civilizations . The exposition of museum not only gives a complete picture of different eras of Anatolian history, but also encourages for deep learning of the past . Ankara is inseparably associated with the name of the first president of the Turkish Republic, the greatest historical figure, a legendary person - Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.
At the Ataturk Mausoleum, which is open for visit around the clock, you can see a strict and solemn ceremony of changing of the guard.
After short move to the capital of the Hittite kingdom, city Hattushash, you will continue learning Anatolian Civilizations history. Hattushash included to the UNESCO World Heritage List. Here you can not only see the ruins of huge cult complex: the Great Temple, the Lion Gate, the tunnel and open-air temple with the rock paintings Yazylkay, but also you can enjoy the cleanest mountain air.
Next step of our traveling is Cappadocia. Due to unusual soil and climatic conditions, unique and having no analogues in world landscape was formed here. Creations of Nature for centuries were supplemented by creations of human hands. Over centuries, in Cappadocia, people have built underground structures, which turned into a whole city with time.
After accommodation at the hotel and dinner, guests can visit Caravanserai of XIII century and enjoy the "dance" of turning dervishes.
Morning may starts with a balloon flight. By the break of day, hundreds of air-balloons rise into the sky over Cappadocia. A bird's-eye you can see a stunning view of endless plateau, towering above the ground with bizarre rocks, canyons and valleys.
The monastic complex of Goreme and the underground city of Kaymakli can amaze even the most demanding and discerning travelers. First chapels and monastic cells, carved into the soft tufa , appeared in Goreme at IX century . Kaymakli is one of the largest known today underground city in the world. It’s unknown how many levels exists in this underground city. For now 4 levels are available for visit. Supposedly, several thousand of people could live in this city. In the small Avanos village, there is an opportunity to visit the pottery and also try to make pot on the potter's wheel.
Next point of the travel after Cappadocia is Konya .
Konya is the center of Sufi culture, shelter of monks, poets and philosophers. The monastery was founded by a great scientist, poet and philosopher Rumi, popularly known as Mevlyanom. He has a great role at the East poetry, as well as role of Pushkin in Russian literature.
After long road to Pammukale you will have an opportunity to enjoy swimming in the hotel’s pool with thermal water.
Pamukkale - "Cotton Castle" – looks like a fairytale castle. City looks like this because of the white lime tufa - travertine, which is the main breed of the area. During thousands of years water was making of travertine an unique, quaint and incomparable with nothing cascades and terraces.
Optionally, you can visit a world famous Cleopatra's pool.
Hierapolis - " The sacred City " – that was the name of Pamukkale in the days of Pergamon kingdom. This ancient city was destroyed by an earthquake, but even by surviving fragments of buildings you can see a former glory of city. After moving to Selcuk city, you will find yourself in a different historical era - era of Christianity origin. Not that far from Selcuk there is a place, associated in Christianity with last days of Virgin Mary's earth life - the Virgin's house. From the Koresos mountain, where is the Virgin's house is situated you can see panorama of Aegean Sea and ancient Ephesus ruins.
After accommodation at the hotel in Kusadasi and dinner you can walk along the Aegean Sea coast and breathe sea air.
Ephesus – is an ancient city on the Aegean Sea known as place of one of the Seven Wonders of the World - Temple of Artemis. In our days Ephesus is a huge archaeological open-air museum.
As a continuation of the journey through the antiquity, you will visit Pergamum – known earlier as Pergamon city - the capital of Pergamum kingdom, the birthplace of parchment. In Pergamum existed the second largest library in the ancient world, and also here was large altar of Zeus. Visit to Acropolis will enhance your impressions. Magnificent ruins of ancient buildings: remains of the Zeus altar, Athena Temple, Temple of Emperor Trajan, perfectly preserved theater - all these will give an unforgettable impression.
Overnight at the hotel in Gyure will surprise guests with a thermal pool. After impressive walking tours a thermal spring will quickly take away tiredness and recuperate.
Gyure located at the foot of Mount Ida, the same Ida , which is often mentioned in Homer's Iliad . Part of the road to the legendary Troy passes the slope of Ida.
Troy is a city with a great history and a tragic fate. The city, which in antiquity, was famous by unsurpassed beauty and wealth. Its ruins are keeping a lot of great mysteries of love, strength, courage and beauty. Helen of Troy and Odysseus, Achilles and Hector have been at these places.
While returning to Istanbul through the Dardanelles Strait you will see beautiful views, it gives an opportunity to take another look at that part of Turkey, which is usually called Anatolia, which keeps so many secrets, which attracts and invites for new journey.