turkey travel
Eastern Turkey and Black Sea Region ( 13 day tour)

(Available from late April to the end of October (available on demand) - starts and ends in Istanbul, ( does not include any hotel stays or tours of Istanbul )

Program

Day – 1- Istanbul to Trabzon - (B)
In the morning we will meet you at your Istanbul hotel, provide a transfer to Istanbul domestic airport and put you on a 1 hour 30 minute flight to Trabzon. Upon arrival you will be met by your tour guide and then you will visit to Sumela Monastery, Ataturk Mansion, Hagiasophia Museum
(Little about Sumela Monastery
It sits high up on the cliffs of mouth Mela, southeast of Trabzon. It was founded in the 4 th century by 2 Greek monks, Barnabas and Sophronius, who were guided to the site by an icon of a "black" image of the Virgn, allegedly painted by St. Luke. After their deaths, sumela became a place of pilgrimage. It was decorated with frescoes, and its treasures included priceless manuscripts and silver plates. The monastery was built several times -the ruins seen by today's visitors date largely 19 th century. In the Ottoman era, sumela enjoyed the protection of the sultans, but it was abandoned and badly damage during the War of independence. In recent years, extensive restoration has been carried out)

(Little about Trabzon
The earliest evidence of civilization in Trabzon dates from 7000 BC. Establishes as a Greek colony ( with Amasra and Sinop) the town benefited from its position on the bussy trade route between black sea and the Mediterranean. It grew quickly and was focal point for the Pontic kings. At the begriming of the 13 th century, the Comnene dynasty established a Byzantine with its capital at Trabzon. During the Comnnene era, the city gained a reputation as a beautiful, sophisticated cultural center. The Genoese and the Venetians came here to trade as Trabzon was the terminus of a northern branch of the Silk Route. In 1461 Trabzon fell under Ottoman rule. Overnight stay in Trabzon)
 
Day 2 - Trabzon to Ayder - (B/D) 
After breakfast we will depart from Uzungol and drive to Ayder, on the way we will visit Tea and kiwi plantations, drive through firtina valley and visit Camlihemsin and Goksu Falls, then we will arrive in Ayder and check into our wooden hotel, and spend the night, Overnight stay in Ayder.

Day 3 - Ayder to Kars - (B/D) 
After breakfast we will depart from Parhal and drive to Kars, after arrival we will check into our hotel, then in the afternoon we will visit the Medival city of Ani
Ani  is a ruined and uninhabited medieval Armenian city-site situated in the Turkish province of Kars, beside the border with Armenia. It was once the capital of a medieval Armenian kingdom that covered much of present day Armenia and eastern Turkey. 
A line of walls that encircled the entire city defended Ani. The most powerful defences were along the northern side of the city, the only part of the site not protected by rivers or ravines.
Overnight in Kars.

Day 4 - Kars to Dogubeyazit - (B/D) 
After breakfast we will depart from Kars to drive to Dogubeyazit, 
Dogubeyazit is Turkey's most eastern district, the border crossing to Iran. The town of Dogubeyazit is a settlement with a long history. After arrival we will check in the hotel, Overnight stay in Dogubeyazit
Overnight in Dogubeyazit.

Day 5 - Dogubeyazit to Van - (B/D) 
After breakfast we will start the day exploring and visiting the Ishak Pasa Sarayi
The Ishak Pasha palace is an Ottoman-period palace whose construction was started in 1685 by Colak Abdi Pasha, the bey of Beyazit province. According to the inscription on its door, the Harem Section of the palace was completed by his grandson Ishak 
The Palace is more of a complex than a palace; it is the second administrative campus after the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul and the most famous of the palaces built in recent decades.
The palace is built on a hill at the side of a mountain, It was the last large monumental structure in the Ottoman Empire from the "Lale Devri" period. It is one of the most distinguished and magnificent examples of the 18th century Ottoman architecture and is very valuable in terms of art history. 
The Ishak Pasha Palace is a rare example of the historical Turkish palaces.
After our visit we will be on our way to Van, on the way we will stop at Muradiye falls, and places where you will get a good view of Mt. Ararat, Arrival in Van, check in the hotel,
Overnight in Van.

Day 6 - Van - (B/D)
Today we will go on a full day tour exploring Hosap Village and Akdamar island in Lake Van
Hosap Castle : is a large medieval castle in the village of Hosap, according to a local tradition, the hands of the architect who built this formidable stronghold were cut off so that he could not build another.
Akdamar Island is the second by size of four islands in Lake Van in the south of Eastern Anatolia Region, Turkey, situated about 3 km from the shoreline. At the western end of the island a hard, grey, limestone cliff rises 80 m above the lake's level. The island declines to the east to a level site where a spring provides ample water. It is home to a tenth century Armenian church, known as the Cathedral Church of the Holy Cross (915-921), and was the seat of an Armenian Catholics from 1116 to 1895.
Overnight in Van.

Day  7 - Van to Ankara- (B/D)

After breakfast, we will provide a transfer to Van Airport and put you on a 2 hour flight back to Ankara. Arriving in Ankara will be welcome to airport and transfer to your hotel. Overnight stay in Ankara.

Day 8 - Ankara to Cappadocia - (B/L)
Early in the morning we will start the day visiting the Museum of Anatolian Civilization, Mausoleum of Ataturk, then we will be on our way to Amasya, on the way we will visit Hattusas, 
Anatolian Civilization Museum : is in two Ottoman buildings located near Ankara Castle, in the historical Atpazari district of Ankara. One of the buildings is Mahmut Pasa Bedesteni and the other is Kursunlu Han (inn, caravanserai).
The exhibits of gold, silver, glass, marble and bronze works date back as far as the second half of the first millennium BC. The coin collections, with examples ranging from the first minted money to modern times, represent the museum's rare cultural treasures.
Mauseleum of Ataturk : Anitkabir is the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the leader of the Turkish War of Independence and the founder and first president of the Republic of Turkey. Evening time transfer to Cappadocia then check in your hotel

Day 9 - Cappadocia - (B/L)

Today will be spent walking through an underground city where ancient people once fled for their lives escaping the Arab invaders, wandering through Ihlara Gorge and spending time in an Anatolian village. As we will need to drive for awhile in order to reach our first destination, we will be starting out quite early this morning.
Sites you'll see today
*Underground City of Derinkuyu--You will gradually stroll your way down into the depths of the earth in this ancient underground city that has 18-20 floors as deep as 40 meters below the ground. Don't worry, you will only go down to the 8th floor. Cappadocia has around 36 underground cities. Archeologists date these back to the time of the Hittites which lived 4000 years ago.
*Ihlara Gorge will seem like an oasis in the middle of the Anatolian plain. Delve into the gorge and see the beautiful greenery as you follow the river. Around you will see ancient monasteries complete with pigeon holes cut into the cliffs by the monks. They used these pigeons as messengers to communicate with their monk friends!
*Traditional Anatolian villages--The head-scarved women out at work in the fields from sun up until sun-down, and the mustached, vest-wearing men hard at work playing cards in the coffee shops. You will get time to stroll in such a village and see the average Turkish villager at work...or play. Overnight in URGUP - Cappadocia -

Day 10 - Cappadocia - (B/L)
This day will be spent exploring the amazing sites of Cappadocia. (For those who have bought optional hot air ballooning tour of Cappadocia ) Very, very early in the morning we will wake up to take a hot air balloon ride over the area. After this we will come back to the hotel for breakfast and a rest before setting out in late morning to see the rest of the sites.
Sites you'll see today
*The World Heritage Site of Goreme Open-Air Museum --This is a cluster of rock cut Byzantine churches, chapels and monasteries which include some wonderful 11th and 12th century frescoes on the cave walls.
*Fairy Chimneys--These geological phenomenon have been shaped over millions of years. They were formed during volcanic eruptions in the region. Reaching at times 40 meters in height, they are conical in shape and have a "hat" top to them.
*Devrent Valley--This valley is know as "the pink valley" because of the color of it's soil. This is a lovely place to wander around and look at the magical rock formations indicative to Cappadocia, including the Fairy Chimneys.
*Uchisar Castle--Also called a fortress, this is actually a formation of two gigantic rocks surrounded by smaller rocks that together form a natural fortress with towers. These formations were inhabited during both the Byzantine and Ottoman times.
*We will also get the chance to visit local craftspeople and learn how they make dolls and create traditional pottery.
Overnight stay in Cappadocia.

Day 11 - (B/L/D) - Cappadocia to Nemrut
After breakfast we will depart from Cappadocia, drive further east to Nemrut, after couple stops at unique places then we will have our lunch at a traditional restaurant, then on the way we will stop to and taste world’s number one Maras ice cream, by early evening we will arrive in Kahta where we will spend the night. Overnight stay in Adiyaman.

Day 12 - (B/L/D) - Nemrut to Urfa
Very early in the morning we will start our day climbing up to the Nemrut Mountain, after parking our vehicle then we will hike up to the Nemrut Mountain, as the sun appears through
Ancient Statues and Heads of the Kings and Gods. We will have free time to explore this extra ordinary sites and take pictures.
We will drive down to Kahta and sites we will visit
Ruin of Arsemia, Cendere Bridge, Royal Tomb of Karakus :
Then we will depart from Adiyaman to Urfa and visit Ataturk Dam, after arrival we will visit Abrahams Cave and the Pools with holly fish swimming in it. After lunch time we will have free time to relax or explore. Urfa’s Oriental Grand Bazaar. Overnight stay in Urfa.

Day 13 - (B) Urfa to Istanbul
After breakfast we will provide a transfer to Urfa airport ans put you on a 1 hour 30 minute flight back to Istanbul. After arrival we will transfer to your hotel and after check in, we can always give you a lift to Grand Bazaar so you can do your last minute shopping. Overnight stay in Istanbul.

Prices are starting from $2185.00 per person in a double, contact us to get a price quote for your dates

Price includes
:
* All transportation in comfortable vehicles
* Centrally located charming hotels
* Meals mentioned on the itinerary (with B/L/D codes)
* Professional, English-speaking guides
* Entrance fees to sites
* Domestic flight tickets from Istanbul to Trabzon
* Domestic flight tickets from Van to Ankara
* Domestic flight tickets from Urfa to Istanbul
* All service charges and local taxes

Excludes
:
* Drinks with meals

* Hot Air Balloon tour in Cappadocia


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