Starting the day at 09:00, we will begin our private city tour of Istanbul. First, we will explore Topkapi Palace, the great palace of Ottoman sultans from the 15th to the 19th centuries. In addition to stunning architecture and monuments, the palace complex houses an exquisite collection of crystal, silver, Chinese porcelain, historic robes, the famous jewels of the Imperial Treasury, and the Holy Mantle.
After admiring the remarkable Hagia Sophia, originally dating back to the 4th Century A.D., we will explore the Sultanahmet Imperial Mosque. Standing opposite the Hagia Sophia, this impressive mosque was built in the 16th century by the architect Mehmet, and is known as the Blue Mosque because of its magnificent interior decoration of blue Iznik tiles.
Once outside the Blue Mosque we will proceed to walk through the Hippodrome. Once the scene of chariot races, this beautiful open area is home to three historic monuments: the Obelisk of Theodosius, the Bronze Serpentine Column and the Column of Constantine.
After a lunch break we will head to the Egyptian Bazaar, an exciting and atmospheric experience. This bustling market is filled with the enticing aromas of cinnamon, caraway, saffron, mint, thyme and every other herb and spice. After the day tour you will have the opportunity to experience a relaxing and inspiring Bosphorus Cruise. Enjoy magnificent views of the Bosphorus by sunset, whilst cruising through the passage that connects Asia to Europe. The rest of the evening is yours to enjoy in Istanbul as you choose. Overnight at your hotel in Istanbul.
Enjoy a free day in Istanbul to do what you like, until your domestic afternoon flight to Izmir. Upon arrival, we will transfer you from the airport and check you in to your hotel in Kusadasi, where you will spend the night.
This day begins at 09:00. Today you experience one of the best-preserved ancient ruins in the world. Once the commercial centre of the ancient world, with wealth and patronage to support a splendid architectural programme, Ephesus was dedicated to the goddess Artemis. Her enormous temple, once considered one of the seven wonders of the Ancient World and rebuilt several times, dates in its latest form from the third century B.C.
The tour of the ruins also includes a theatre, gymnasium, agora and baths, as well as the Library of Celsus. After the day tour, you have free time and the opportunity of a relaxing evening and an overnight stay in Kusadasi.
Today at 09:30, we will depart for our tour of Pamukkale. Take in this remarkable place, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Admire the stunning hot springs and limestone travertines, and the ancient city of Hierapolis. Then, visit the Domitian Gate, Colonnaded Gate and Cathedral, and the red waters of Karahayit.
After lunch we visit Pamukkale Museum to learn more about the history of this fascinating place, and then visit the actual travertines of Pamukkale. After our time here, we will take you back to Kusadasi for an overnight stay.
After breakfast we will start our private Cappadocia tour. This includes visits to the Goreme Open Air Museum, Dervent Valley, and Pasabag Valley.After lunch, we will make a shopping tour in which you will be shown some of the ancient arts of Turkey, including carpet weaving, leather manufacturing and jewellery.
As this will be a guided tour, you will avoid being hassled, which will let you enjoy the shopping experience whilst gaining the knowledge of the ancient craftsmen.
After our day tour, enjoy another free evening and overnight stay in a Cave Hotel.
Note: Before the tour there is an option to go hot air ballooning) The Balloon begins its ascent at sunrise and the ride lasts for approximately 45 minutes floating through valleys, between fairy chimneys and caves. The balloon will rise approximately 1000 feet, letting you take in the extraordinary views Cappadocia has to offer. Upon landing, champagne will be served to toast our arrival.
After breakfast we will head to one of the most interesting sites of Cappadocia: Kaymakli Underground City. Here the Christians hid from the armies of Rome and the raids of hostile tribes in these self-sufficient cities. They contain halls for stocks of crops, barns, rooms, kitchens and ventilation channels. The second part of our Cappadocia Tour will include Uchisar Castle, Avcilar, and Pidgeon Valley.
After the tour we will rest at the hotel and have a free afternoon until our transfer to the airport for a flight back to Istanbul. Upon your arrival we will transfer you from the airport and check you into your central hotel. Enjoy the mystical atmosphere of Istanbul at night as you stay here overnight once more.
Today begins with a more relaxed pace and a later start.. At 10:30 we commence a very different city tour of Istanbul, giving you a new point of view on this amazing place.
We will visit the Taksim District, the heart of the night and intellectual life of Istanbul. It is a bustling center of activity and boasts outdoor pedestrian shopping malls, bars, restaurants, cafes and cinemas,famously an area at the center of the Turkish Film Industry.
Enjoy more free time at night and another overnight stay in Istanbul.