turkey travel
Excellence of Greece and Turkey (21 day tour)

(Available from late April to the end of October (on every Saturday)

Program

- Saturday - Day 1 - Arrival in Athens
KALOS ORISATE ! Welcome to Greece. We will meet you at the airport and transfer you to your hotel. After a short briefing about your tour you will have the afternoon free to rest and explore Athens on your own.
Overnight in Athens.

- Sunday - Day 2 - Athens - (B)
After breakfast around 08:30 am we will meet you at the lobby of your hotel and take you on a guided tour of Athens. You will explore Temple of Olympian Zeus, Panathinaiko Stadium ( where the first Olympic Games took in 1896, After that will drive by the Prime’s Ministers residence, Ex Royal Palace, (guarded by colorful Evzones) Zappion (Conference and Exhibition Hall), National Garden, Hadrian’s Arc, St. Paul’s Church, Parliament, Tomb of the Unknown soldier, Schlieman’s House (Nomismatic Museum), Catholic Cathedral, Academy, University, National Library, Old Parliament, Constitution Square ,Russian Orthodox Church, ACROPOLIS, (the you will visit Propylaea, Temple of Athena Nike, Parthenon, Erechtheion and Museum of the Acropolis).
After the tour you will return to your hotel. then have a free afternoon in Athens.
Overnight stay.

- Monday - Day 3 - Athens to Olympia - (B/D)
Early afternoon after lunch we will depart from Athens and drive to Olympia.
on the way you will visit ;
Corinth Channel : is a canal that connects the Gulf of Corinth with the Saronic Gulf in the Aegean Sea. It cuts through the narrow Isthmus of Corinth and separates the Peloponnesian peninsula from the Greek mainland and therefore effectively making the former an island. The canal is 6.3 kilometers in length and was built between 1881 and 1893.
Epidaurus : was a small city in ancient Greece, at the Saronic Gulf. This territory was the sanctuary of the healing god Asklepios. Epidauria became the original travel destination for medical and health tourism
Nauplia : is a beautiful seaport town in the Peloponnese in Greece that has expanded up the hillsides near the north end of the Argolic Gulf.
Mycenae ; is an archaeological site in Greece, From the hill on which the palace was located one can see across the Argolida to the Saronic Gulf. Evening arrival in Olympia, Check in the hotel,
Overnight in Olympia.

- Tuesday - Day 4 - Olympia to Delphi - (B/D)
After breakfast we will start the day visiting ancient city of Olympia.
Archeological site with the Temple of Zeus, the Temple of Hera, the altar of the Olympic flame, the Stadium and the archaeological Museum,  then we will depart from Olympia and drive to Delphi, on the way we will stop at a traditional town of Arachova and enjoy our lunch,  Late afternoon arrival in Delphi, check into our hotel.
Overnight stay in Delphi. 

- Wednesday - Day 5 - Delphi to Athens - (B)
After breakfast we will start the day visiting and the ancient site of Delphi,
Delphi is both an archaeological site and a modern town in Greece on the south-western spur of Mount Parnassus in the valley of Phocis.
In Greek mythology, Delphi was the site of the Delphic oracle, the most important oracle in the classical Greek world, and a major site for the worship of the god Apollo after he slew the Python, a dragon who lived there and protected the navel of the Earth.
Apollo's sacred precinct in Delphi was a panhellenic sanctuary, where every four years, starting in 776 BC[4] athletes from all over the Greek world competed in the Pythian Games, one of the four panhellenic (or stephanitic) games, precursors of the Modern Olympics. The victors at Delphi were presented with a laurel crown (stephanos) which was ceremonially cut from a tree by a boy who re-enacted the slaying of the Python.
After visiting the ancient site of Delphi we will return to Athens where you will spend the night.

- Thursday - Day 6 - Athens to Santorini - (B)
In the morning you will be transfered to Athens Pireus Harbour and board the fast ferry to Santorini island.
Upon arrival we will check into our hotel and enjoy a nice dinner, then spend the night in Santorini.

- Friday - Day 7 - Santorini - (B/L/D)
After breakfast we will take you on a full day tour of Santorini. You will visit Acrotiri, goon a boat trip to the remaining volcano out in the center of the area, visit hot springs, view the ruins of Thirrassia, and wrap up the day watching the romantic sunset from Oia. After sunset, you will be taken back to your hotel. Overnight stay in Santorini.
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Santorini is one of those places in the world that will be permanently etched in your mind. Everywhere you turn you will find another photo opportunity. Essentially, the land is the remains of an enormous volcanic explosion, which destroyed the earliest settlements on what was formerly a single island. The aftermath of the explosion created what you see today, a caldera. All of the whitewashed, charming houses cling to the high cliffs of the rim, while the deep blue Aegean Sea wraps around the geological masterpiece, hundreds of feet below. Its spectacular physical beauty, along with a dynamic nightlife, have made the island one of the tourist hotspots for Europe.
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- Saturday - Day 8 - Santorini to Crete - (B/L/D)
After breakfast you will have a full free day to relax and explore Santorini on your own. Many take this opportunity to relax and tan on one of Santorini’s famous beaches, such as Red Beach, or return for some more sightseeing in Oia.
In the afternoon we will depart from Santorini on a 2 hour ferry ride down to Crete Island.   upon arrival we will check into our hotel and enjoy a nice dinner,  Overnight stay in Crete.

- Sunday - Day 9 - Crete to Rhodes - (B/D)
After breakfast we will take you on a half day tour to Knossos.
Knossos ( also known as the Knossos Palace is the largest Bronze Age archaeological site on Crete and probably the ceremonial and political center of the Minoan civilization and culture.
The city of Knossos remained important through the Classical and Roman periods, but its population shifted to the new town of Handaq (modern Heraklion) during the 9th century AD. By the 13th century, it was called Makryteikhos 'Long Wall'; the bishops of Gortyn continued to call themselves Bishops of Knossos until the 19th century.[1] Today, the name is used only for the archaeological site situated in the suburbs of Heraklion.
After exploring the sites, we will enjoy a nice lunch then drive to the Heraklion airport for a 45 minute flight to Rhodes Island.
Arrival in Rhodes, check into your hotel, Enjoy a nice dinner at a local restaurant,  Overnight stay in Rhodes.

- Monday - Day 10 - Rhodes - (B/L/D)
After breakfast you will have free day to relax, swim, sun bath and enjoy your time on Rhodes island.
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Located on south east of Greece Rhodes is a beautiful Island.
In ancient times, Rhodes was home to one of the Seven Wonders of the World - the Colossus of Rhodes. This giant bronze statue once stood in the harbour. It was completed in 280 BC but was destroyed in an earthquake in 224 BC. No trace of the statue remains today.
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- Tuesday - Day 11 - Rhodes to Patmos Island - (B/L/D)
After breakfast we will depart from Rhodes on a Island hopper ferry to Patmos Island
08:35 am Depart from Rhodes,  on the way ferry will have 5 minute stops at Kos, Kalimnos, Leros Islands,  you will get a good view of those small but beautiful Islands from the Catamaran.
Arrival in Patmos,  check into our hotel, Enjoy a nice lunch then have the afternoon free to relax, swim, enjoy and explore. 
Overnight stay in Patmos.

- Wednesday - Day 12 - Patmos - (B/L/D)
After breakfast we will take you on a half day tour,  you will visit the Monastery, the go on a panoramic tour of island,
Patmos' main communities are Chora (the capital city), and Skala, the only commercial port. Other settlements are Grikou and Kampos. The churches and communities on Patmos are of the Eastern Orthodox tradition. In 1999, the island's historic center Chora, along with the Monastery of Saint John the Theologian and the Cave of the Apocalypse, were declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. The monastery was founded by Saint Christodulos. Patmos is also home to the Patmian School, a notable Greek seminary.
Patmos is mentioned in the Christian scriptural Book of Revelation. The book's introduction states that its author, John, was exiled to Patmos, where he was given (and recorded) a vision from Jesus. Earliest Christian tradition identifies this writer as John the Apostle. As such, Patmos is a destination for Christian pilgrimage.
In the afternoon you will enjoy a nice time Grikos Bay beach,    Overnight stay in Patmos.

- Thursday - Day 13 - Patmos to Samos then to Kusadasi - (B)
After breakfast you will be transfered to Patmos Harbor and depart from Patmos on a 2 hour ferry ride to Samos Island, Upon arrival you will change the ferry and cross over the Kusadasi (Turkey), upon arrival you will be transfered to your hotel, after check in you will have a free day to relax and explore harbor town of Kusadasi. Overnight stay in Kusadasi.

- Friday - Day 14 - Kusadasi - (B/L/D)
We will visit Turkey's most impressive Roman and Biblical sites today, in what promises to be one of your most memorable days in Turkey.
*Ephesus is the best-preserved classical cities from ancient times, and was inhabited by Greeks, Macedonians, Romans and Turks. St. Paul lived here circa 60 AD, when it was at its most populated at 250,000.  During your visit, you’ll walk its stony boulevards, stand in the grand theatre, marvel at the beauty of the Celsus Library, the agora, as well as the baths, giving you the unique chance to get up-close-and-personal with history by literally being able to walk into it.
*The Temple of Artemis is situated in serene countryside celebrates the Greek goddess Artemis, the virginal huntress and twin of Apollo, who supplanted the Titan Selene as goddess of the Moon.  This temple, known as Artemision in Greek times, was the largest of its kind at the world.
*The House of The Virgin Mary, (Turkish: Meryemana Evi), high on a hill overlooking the town of Selcuk, is where it is believed that St. Mary came to live with St. John the Baptist in the later years of her life.  Masses are held here on Sundays.
Overnight in Kusadasi

- Saturday - Day 15 - Kusadasi to Pamukkale - (B/L/D)
After breakfast, we will depart from Kusadasi to Pamukkale; upon arrival we will continue on the guided tour of Pamukkale and Hierapolis. Our drive will take us through a rich agricultural area, teeming with cotton fields and fruit orchards.
* Pamukkale ("cotton castle" in Turkish) is the result of limestone formations created over thousands of years. Warm, calcium-rich mineral water from nearby thermal hot springs flowed over these cliffs and, as these waters cooled, they deposited the calcium that we see today.
* Hierapolis is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was founded as an ancient healing care center in 190 BC, taking advantage of the mineral waters. It was one of the most important intellectual, artistic, religious and commercial centers of the Roman Empire. Over time, the city hosted large numbers of both Jewish and Christian residents.
After the tour we will take you back to your hotel.
Overnight in Pamukkale

- Sunday - Day 16 - Pamukkale to Cappadocia - (B/L)
After breakfast we will depart from Pamukkale and drive to Cappadocia, on the way we will stop and visit the Mevlana Museum in Konya.
*The Mevlana Museum is an Islamic holy site as it is the former whirling dervishes' lodge.
In the afternoon, we will provide a transfer to Cappadocia. After arrival you will check into your hotel and have a free day to relax and explore Cappadocia.
Overnight in URGUP - Cappadocia

- Monday - Day 17 - Cappadocia - (B/L)
As we have a lengthy drive to our first destination, we'll be starting out quite early this morning. Today, we'll stroll through an amazing subterranean city where ancient Christians once hid from Arab invaders; we'll then wander through the Ihlara Gorge and spend time in a classic Anatolian village.
* Underground City of Derinkuyu--You'll gradually make your way down into the depths of the earth of this ancient settlement that has 18-20 floors which boast depths as long as 40 meters. (Don't worry, we'll only go down to the 8th floor!) Youll marvel at the fact that Derinkuyu is just one of 36 Cappadocian underground cities, which archaeologists date back to the time of the Hittites around 4,000 years ago.
* Ihlara Gorge is an oasis in the middle of the Anatolian plain. We'll explore the canyon and take in the beautiful green scenery as we stroll casually alongside the river. Here, you'll see ancient monasteries complete with pigeon holes carved into the cliffs by the monks; the pigeons acted as messengers to communicate with neighboring monks!
* Traditional Anatolian village -- You'll see head-scarved women in the fields (where they work from sun up until sundown) and the mustachioed, vest-wearing men hard-at-work playing cards or tavla (backgammon) in the kahvehane (coffee shop). You'll get time to stroll in a village such as this and see the average Turkish villager at work...or play.
Overnight in URGUP - Cappadocia

- Tuesday - Day 18 - Cappadocia to Istanbul - (B/L)
Today will be devoted to exploring more of Cappadocia's unforgettable sites.
(If you have purchased the optional hot-air ballooning tour, please note that you'll need to rise very early in the morning to go to the balloon-launch site. After the trip has concluded, we'll come back to the hotel for breakfast and have a rest before setting out in later in the morning to see the rest of the sites listed below.)
Sites you'll see today:
* Goreme Open-Air Museum - A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Goreme is an ancient town carved right out of the rock (tufa); you'll explore Byzantine-era churches, chapels and monasteries which house wonderfully-preserved 11th- and 12th-century cave frescoes.
* Fairy Chimneys--This strange geological phenomenon was created over millions of years, and were formed during regional volcanic eruptions. Reaching at times 40 meters in height, they are conical in shape and have a whimsical "hat" top to them.
* Devrent Valley--This valley is known as "the pink valley" because of the color of its soil. This is a lovely place to wander about and really take in the magical rock formations indicative to Cappadocia, including the Fairy Chimneys.
* Uchisar Castle, also known as Uchisar Fortress, is actually a formation of two gigantic rocks surrounded by smaller ones that together, form a natural fortress with towers. These formations were inhabited during both the Byzantine and Ottoman periods.
We'll also visit local crafts people and learn the special art of making dolls and traditional pottery.
After the tour we will provide a transfer to Nevsehir Airport and put you on a 1-hour flight back to Istanbul.
After arrival, we will take you on to your hotel. Overnight in Istanbul

- Wednesday - Day 19 - Istanbul - (B/L)

Sites you’ll see today:
* Blue Mosque/Sultanahmet Mosque (Camii) built during the reign of Sultan Ahmet I during 1609-1616. It is the only mosque in Turkey with six minarets. Due to its magnificent hand-dyed blue, green and white Iznik tiles it has been named the "Blue Mosque" by Europeans. The central dome is 43 m in height and is 33.4 m in diameter; it also boasts 260 windows.
* Hagia Sophia/Aya Sofya is a truly awe-inspiring, 1,400-year-old Byzantine cathedral which houses mosaics, relics and iron work. Hagia Sophia was, for nearly a thousand years, the largest enclosed space in the world, and still seen as one of the world's most important architectural monuments. It is one of Turkey's most popular attractions, drawn by the sheer spectacle of its size, architecture, mosaics and art. Built during the reign of Byzantine Emperor Justinian in the 6th century AD.
* Hippodrome: the backdrop of chariot races and the center of Byzantine civic life. Of the ornaments which once decorated it, only three remain: The Obelisk of Theodosius, the bronze Serpentine Column, and the Column of Constantine.
The Obelisk is in the Egyptian style and was erected in 1547 BC and stood 60m tall. The German Fountain is also within the hippodrome area, constructed in Germany to mark German Emperor Wilhelm II's second visit to Istanbul; it was imported and officially opened on January 1 1901. The fountain's three domes are decorated with gold mosaics.
* Topkapi Palace was the imperial residence and administrative heart of the massive Ottoman Empire, beginnng with Fatih Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror, in 1453, until 1856. It was converted to a museum in 1924. Parts of the palace such as the Harem, Baghdad Pavilion, Revan Pavilion, Sofa Pavilion, and the Audience Chamber distinguish themselves with their architectural assets. The museum also has collections from the Imperial Treasury, as well as Chinese porcelain, weapons, calligraphy, etc. The Treasury also houses the Topkapi Dagger, the 86-carat "Spoon Maker's Diamond", and the jewel-encrusted bones of St. John the Baptist.
* Grand Bazaar: this is one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world, with more than 58 streets and over 4,000 shops attracting between 250,000 and half-a-million visitors every day!
The Bazaar's construction began in 1455 and opened in 1461, and is still renowned today for its jewelry, ceramics, spices, textiles, and of course, carpet shops. Many of these shops are grouped together according to the wares being sold.

After the Grand Bazaar, we will take an enlightening walking tour down to the water front near Eminonu. You'll see hundreds of interesting shops lined up cozily side-by-side. Of course, there will be time for for a break at a typical Turkish cafe before indulging our taste buds in the Egyptian Spice Bazaar, tasting lokum (Turkish Delight) and other sweets.
After the tour, return to the hotel.
Overnight in Istanbul

- Thursday - Day 20 - Istanbul - (B)
After breakfast, around 8:30 AM, we will meet you at your hotel and take you to the following places:
* The Spice Bazaar/Egyptian Bazaar (Misir Carsisi) transports you back to the Silk Road days with its mystical aromas of various spices. Here, you'll also find other shops selling fruits, vegetables, teas, flowers, fish, and Turkish Delight (lokum).
* Bosphorus Cruise takes you though the waterway separating the two continents, Europe and Asia; along its shores, you can take photographs of marble palaces and antique wooden Ottoman-era villas that sit beside luxurious modern residences.Y
ou will also see Dolmabahce Palace, Beylerbeyi Palace, and Ortakoy Mosque from the Sea.
Overnight in Istanbul.

- Friday - Day 21 - Istanbul to Home - (B)

Gule, Gule! It is time to head for home. We will transfer you to the airport and wish you well, asking that you keep Turkey in your heart. We truly hope that our paths will cross again.

Program ends

$3.375.00 per person in a double, contact us to get a price quote for your dates

Price includes
* All of the hotels ( Each of them individually chosen )
* All of the land transfers with comfortable vehicles
* All of the meal mentioned in the itinerary ( B-breakfast, L-lunch & D-dinner )
* Professional English speaking tour guides
* Domestic flight tickets from Athens to Santorini
* Domestic flight tickets from Crete to Rhodes
* Ferry tickets from Santorini to Crete
* Ferry tickets from Rhodes to Patmos
* Ferry tickets from Patmos to Athens
* Admissions to all of the ancient sites that are mentioned on the tour
* All of the TAX and service charges

Excludes
* International flight tickets to Athens and flight tickets from Istanbul to your next destination
* Drinks with meals
* Hot-air-balloon ride in Cappadocia (15% discount if booked with this tour)

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