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Treasures of Turkey Tour

Day 1 Istanbul
Upon arrival in Istanbul, you will be met by your personal VIP service representative to assist you throughout all the airport procedures and let you meet your private guide to transfer you to your hotel by your private vehicle. Time at the hotel for relax. In the afternoon transfer for your Private Bosphorus Cruise including snacks and drinks.
  A traditional excursion by boat along the waterway separating Europe and Asia. The shore is lined with old wooden villas, palaces of marble, fortresses, and small fishing villages. During the excursion you will pass the magnificent Dolmabahce Palace, and further along, the parks and imperial pavilions of Yildiz, Ciragan and Beylerbeyi Palaces. By the end of your cruise return to your hotel for overnight.

Our Suggestions:
- You may also dine onboard your private boat viewing the magnificent city of
  Istanbul by night with all the famous monuments lit up

Day 2 Istanbul
Begin your exploration of Turkey by discovering Istanbul with your private guide. Your first stop will be the Hippodrome; where chariot races were held and competitive athletic events took place during the Roman period. Then the unique monument in world architecture, Hagia Sophia; the great Byzantine Basilica built in the 6th century, following the Blue Mosque;
famous for its six graceful minarets adorn the elegant mosque, one of the city's most recognizable landmarks. More than 20,000 blue Iznik tiles highlight the superb interior. Today you will also visit to discover the opulence of the Ottoman sultans by visiting the Topkapi Palace and browse through fascinating open-air museums to experience the incredible transformation of power and religions which are deeply rooted in ancient Turkey. Later on you will be exploring the fascinating Grand Bazaar; labyrinth of streets and passages houses more than 4000 shops. Overnight at your hotel. (B L)

Our Suggestions:
- Dinner in a restaurant by the Bosphorus

Day 3 Istanbul
Today your first visit is the Chora Church; famous for its well-preserved wall-mosaics showing scenes from the Old and New Testament, then the Suleymaniye Mosque; the mosque of Suleyman the Magnificent was built between 1550 and 1557 by the famous architect Sinan whose wish was to surpass the builders of Hagia Sophia.
  Continue to visit Underground Cistern; built by Justinian in the 6th century is supported by 336 beautiful columns two of which are carved with the head of Medusa on the plinth. Enjoy your free time in Spice Bazaar also known as Spice Market where you will find variety of different spices all around the country. Overnight at your hotel. (B L)
Day 4 Cappadocia
Depart to Istanbul airport for the flight to Kayseri for the full day tour of Cappadocia; first meeting with the lunar landscape of Cappadocia: rock formations beyond belief in Devrent valley; walking in Zelve Open Air Museum: a journey in the past with its troglodyte houses; visit to Pasabag "fairy chimneys" where the voice of wind mixes with
the "songs of fairies". Continue to Avanos, center of terra cotta work of art since 3000 BC. and a demonstration in a traditional pottery workshop. Afternoon, visit the famous Goreme Open Air Museum and see the best examples of Byzantine art in Cappadocia in rock-cut churches with frescoes and paintings (10th to 13th century). Climb on top of the Uchisar Rock-Castle to have a panoramic view of the valleys of Cappadocia. Overnight at your hotel. (B L D)
Day 5 Cappadocia
Tour to Kaymakli Underground City, one of the most interesting underground settlements in Cappadocia. Soganli Valley, an Open Air Museum in a wild natural setting near a typical Cappadocian village with its different style Rock-Cut churches and frescoes. Villages in the valleys, surrounded by the "table top" mountains, are spectacular.
Visit to Sahinefendi- Sobessos, newly discovered (01 May 2002) mosaic houses & Archaeological excavation site. Continue with Keslik Monastery near Cemil that hides its frescoes behind a very thin smoke layer which we can only see by torchlight. The Medrese (Theological School) from Seljuk Turks in Taskinpasa is the witness of an early and rich Turkish settlement in the town. Our tour finishes with a visit to Mustafapasa (Sinasos), an old Greek town with its spectacular old Greek houses; very fine examples of late Greek settlements and architecture. Overnight at your hotel. (B L D)

Our Suggestions:
- You may consider an optional hot air balloon ride over the unusual landscape
  early in the morning
- Famous Whirling Dervishes Show in the evening
- Dinner in a restaurant outside your hotel to taste the local dishes and the
  famous wines of the region
- Test your culinary skills during a cooking lesson at a family-run country
- Experience Cappadocia culture first hand when you join a local family for
  lunch in their home (and even learn how to cook village bread and Turkish
  coffee with them)

Day 6 Konya
Follow the ancient Silk Road and cross the Central Anatolian Plateau to visit the 13th-century caravanserai (inn) at Agzikarahan. Continue to Konya, the ancient capital of the Secuk Kingdom, ancestors of a line of Turkish empires that included the Ottomans. After lunch visit the Mosque of Alaaddin Kaykoubat and the 13th-century Mevlana Memorial and
  Museum. Mevlana was a poet and founder of the Whirling Dervishes, a mystic order of Islam whose members whirl in an ecstatic dance. One of the most beautiful verses of Mevlana is; "Come, come again, whoever, whatever you may be, come. Heathen, fire worshipper, sinner of idolatry, come. Come if you have broken your vows a hundred times. Ours is not the portal of despair or misery, come". Overnight at your hotel. (B L D)
Day 7 Antalya
Drive across the rugged Taurus Mountains and to the ancient site of Aspendos; Aspendos Theater is the most undamaged theater, which came today from antic world. Architecture of the theater, which is established at the foot of a small hill, is Zenon, son of Thedoros of Aspendos. Its capacity is 15.000 persons. Its most important characteristic is its great acoustic.
  See a finest example of classical Roman Amphitheater. Continue to Perge; was an important city for Christians who had worshipped the mother goddess Artemis. St. Paul and Barnabas visited the city and wealthy benefactors like Magna Plancia had a number of important memorials built here. Overnight at your hotel. (B L D)
Day 8 Blue Cruise
Leaving the city of Antalya, drive over the Taurus Mountains and get to Gocek, a cozy seaside village on the Mediterranean. Board your Gulet Yacht and start enjoying thru turquoise colored waters of southwest Turkey. Dinner and overnight onboard your private Gulet. (B L D)
Day 9
Day 10
Day 11
Blue Cruise
The time spent on deck features visiting Fethiye-Oludeniz, Gemiler Island, ancient ruins of Caunos, swimming and snorkeling in the crystal clear seduced coves, observe caretta caretta marine turtles, see their nests on the turtle beach. You will feel most accommodated by the facilities of your Gulet and will taste delicious recipes of Mediterranean cuisine.
(B L D)
  Our Suggestions:
- Try catching a fish. You will never forget its taste on the barbeque
Day 12 Kusadasi
Disembark in Marmaris and continue to the ancient city of Ephesus by the scenic shores of Bafa Lake. Explore ancient Ephesus that lies at the foot of Mount Pion. Unmatched as an archaeological site, the sheer size and grandeur of the ruins make this the best preserved classical city in the eastern
  Mediterranean. Visit the site of the Temple of Diana, considered one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Continue to the theater, Library of Celsus, the Public Baths, Arcadian Way and the Marble Street. You have the opportunity to privately visit the breathtaking Terrace Houses. By the end of your touring, return to Kusadasi. Overnight at your hotel. (B L D)

Our Suggestions:
- Kusadasi is also known with specialties of Aegean kitchen including fishes of
  the region. You may consider dining in one of the local restaurant in Kusadasi
  for tasting their delicious foods

Day 13 Istanbul
After breakfast drive to Izmir, ancient Smyrna airport for your flight to Istanbul. Today's first stop will be at the 16th-century palace of the sultan's Grand Vizier, Ibrahim Pasa, which today houses the Turkish and Islamic Art Museum, containing what many consider to be the finest collection of Islamic artifacts in the world. The museum is well laid out and
contains more than 40,000 examples including ceramics, Koran cases, calligraphy, textiles, metalwork and illuminated manuscripts. Its antique carpet exhibit is renowned-the carpets, kilims and prayer rugs form one of the richest and oldest collections in the world. Then, you will visit the Rustem Pasa Mosque, built in 1561 by the imperial Architect, Sinan. The mosque was built for Rustem Pasa, son-in-law of and Grand Vizier to Suleyman I. The interior of the mosque is adorned by a magnificent blanket of Iznik tiles. Overnight in Istanbul. (B L)

Our Suggestions:
- Turkish Bath experience in a very famous The Cagaloglu Hamam, constructed
  in 1741, is the last hamam (bath) to be built during the Ottoman Empire

Day 14 Home
You will be met by your guide at your hotel and transferred to Istanbul International Airport. Your personal VIP representative will assist you throughout all the airport procedures for the flight home. (B)
  Meander Travel Advantages
- Avoid long lines with express visa acquisition and private VIP meet and greet on arrival and departure
- One xpert local guide travels with you throughout the program, understanding your interests from day one
- Enjoy the beautiful skyline of Istanbul on a private afternoon cruise on the Bosphorus
- Explore Istanbul's magnificent Hagia Sophia, sixth-century Underground Cistern, Blue Mosque and Topkapi Palace along with the Chora Church, Grand Bazaar and Spice Market
- Stay in two different Istanbul hotels for the opportunity to experience both the old and the new sides of the city
- Explore the tuff-filled landscapes of Cappadocia, with its underground villages
- Stay in a unique, boutique cave hotel, adorned with antiques from the Seljuk, Ottoman, Roman and Hittite eras
- View the stunning frescoes in the Dark Church at the Goreme Open Air Museum in Cappadocia
- In Cappadocia, visit the rock-carved churches at Goreme and the underground village of Kaymakli
- Pay a visit to the center of Sufism, Konya
- Listen to the great acoustics of Aspendos and the wealthy ancient city of Perge
- Enjoy your private cruise along the crystal clear waters of Aegean discovering all the uncharted bays and scenic beauties of the shoreline
- Discover ancient Ephesus, the best-preserved classical city in the eastern Mediterranean
- You will be impressed with a visit to the stunning Terrace Houses in Ephesus
- Enjoy your private cruise along the crystal clear waters of Aegean discovering all the uncharted bays and scenic beauties of the shoreline
- Peruse the extraordinary collections in the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Art
- We can shorten or extend the above itinerary according to your interest
- The above mentioned blue cruise itinerary can be modified by extending or shortening the days of cruising
- You may also sail to the Greek islands with or without visiting some of the Turkish coasts as well
- The blue cruise part of the itinerary may cover entire southern part of Turkey. The departure and arrival port may change to Marmaris, Gocek and Bodrum


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