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Since the dawn of time Turkey has been the bridge between East and West, a point where European and Asian cultures have clashed or combined.  It was the centre of the Byzantine Empire, and later, of the great Islamic Ottoman Empire.  The legacy of Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman and other civilisations has made Turkey a vast open air museum with amphitheatres, baths, colonnaded streets, rock-dwellings, forts, castles, tombs and temples dotted all over the country.

TopkapiThe oldest crossroads in the world,
Istanbul spans not only the Bosphorus but two continents.  Today it is a bustling and exhilarating city, a colourful blend of cultures, where ancient mosques and minarets jostle with the modern office buildings, the frantic trading of the enormous Grand Bazaar contrasts with the new, calm, air-conditioned shopping complexes and where the Blue MosqueMosque dominates the skyline in the time honoured fashion.  Visit Topkapi Palace which houses the famous jewels of the imperial Treasury and boasts the extravagance of luxuriously restored harems.   From the balcony, there is a breathtaking view over the Bosphorus and Golden Horn.  Take a boat trip up the beautiful Bosphorus river commencing in Europe then crossing into Asia.  Along the way you will see old wooden villas, Ottoman palaces, castles and quaint fishing villages.

Whether you are an art and history buff, an archaeology or nature lover, enjoy browsing through markets or going diving, the different regions of Turkey offer endless possibilities.  Surrounded by four different seas, Turkey is also a beach paradise with over 8000 km of sunny coastline.

AntalyaThis is where the mountains meet the sea, is a lively holiday destination suitable for all the family.  The AntalyaTaurus Mountains rise above the coastline providing a glorious backdrop to the miles of sandy beaches.  It is an attractive city with sandy palm-lined boulevards, a magnificent marina, fine restaurants and lively nightlife.  Its history dates back to the 2nd century and in Kaleici, the old citadel, there are the traditional narrow streets and wooden houses.

A typical 7 night / 8 day escorted tour of Turkey could include:

7 night / 8 day
Day 1   Arrive in Istanbul, take the rest of the day at leisure.  Overnight in Istanbul.

Day 2   Take a full day tour of Istanbul, include; the Blue Mosque, famous for its blue tiles and unique six minarets; the Hippodrome, where chariot races used to take place often to settle the Emperor's fate; St. Sophia Church filled with fine mosaics and topped by a magnificent dome; Topkapi Palace, once the residence of the Ottoman sultans and famous for its Imperial Chinese porcelain collections and finally, the Grand Bazaar, a shoppers paradise.  Overnight in Istanbul.

Day 3   Take an early morning flight to Ankara.  Visit the Anatolian Civilisations Museum before continuing to Cappadocia.  In the afternoon visit the natural citadel of Uçhisar.  Overnight in Cappadocia.

Day 4   Today visit the Valleys of Göreme, explore the unusual troglodyte dwelling, remains of early churches some decorated with frescoes, and rooms hollowed out of volcanic ash.  Drive through the lovely Zelve Valley and discover the underground city of Kaymakli before continuing to Ortahisar and Avanos.  Overnight in Cappadocia.   

Day 5   Take an early morning drive to Konya where, during a period of cultural, political and religious growth, the mystic Mevlana Celaleddin Rumi founded a Sufi order known in the west of the 'Whirling Dervishes' and visit the striking green tiled Mausoleum of Meylana.  After lunch travel to Pamukkale famous for its unusual and beautiful landscape consisting of white washed calcified rocks.  Overnight in Pamukkale.

Day 6   Visit the ancient city of Hierapolis, established by King Eumenes II and visited by people wishing to use the thermal springs known for their curing properties.  After lunch continue to Kusadasi.  Overnight in Kusadasi.

Day 7   In the morning visit the house of Virgin Mary then continue to the Ionian city of Ephesus, the Roman capital of Asia Minor, followed by the Basilica of St. John.  After lunch in Selçuk drive to Izmir airport for the flight back to Istanbul.  Overnight in Istanbul.

Day 8   Depart Istanbul.

Prices on request

When to go

Turkey's climate is characterised by extremes, with temperatures varying greatly from season to season in the country's different regions. The Mediterranean and Aegean coasts of Turkey have very dry, hot summers, and the mild, though wet, winters occur between October and April. Istanbul and Cappadocia can experience very cold winters, with light snow. In high summer, usually between July and September, average temperatures range from 23°C - 28°C. Eastern Turkey experiences bitterly cold winters, and roads and mountain passes are likely to be closed due to ice or snow. It can rain at any time of the year but the highest rainfall is expected between November to January.

Additional Information

Time Difference Local Currency Local Language Average Flying Time
GMT/UTC + 2 DST applies Turkish Lira Turkish 4 hours