11096 B Lee Highway
Fairfax, VA 22030
Phone: 800 576 1784
ESCORTED VACATION – Guaranteed departures English only escorted coach tour with max. 34 participants. Scheduled departures - 8-day/7-night tour visiting visiting Istanbul, Gallipoli, Dardanelles, Canakkale, Troy, Pergamum, Izmir, Ephesus, Pamukkale & Bodrum. Includes accommodation at superior first class & deluxe hotels with breakfast daily, 3 dinners, 1 lunch, arrival & departure transfers, touring by modern air-conditioned motor coach, and guided sightseeing as indicated in the itinerary.
You will be transferred to your hotel in Istanbul upon arrival. (Your arrival transfer is included only if you arrive on the actual day the tour commences. For customers arriving earlier an individual transfer can be organized at an additional cost.) The rest of the day is at leisure until you meet your tour director for a welcome briefing.
Today, enjoy a full-day tour of Istanbul including a visit to Topkapi Palace, residence of the Ottoman Sultans between 1453 and 1852 (excluding harem). Visit the Hippodrome which was once the center of life where chariot racing and other public events took place. Tour the Blue Mosque built between 1609 and 1616, and famous for its blue ceramic tiles. Next, see St. Sophia, a church built in the 6th century and converted to a mosque by the Ottomans. It is now a museum and one of the world’s greatest architectural wonders. Your last stop will be the famous Grand Bazaar, the world’s largest and oldest covered market with over 60 streets. In the evening, consider joining an optional dinner with belly dancing entertainment. (B)
In the morning, depart for Gallipoli, the site of many battles during WWII. Visit Anzac Cove, the Lone Pine Cemetery, and Chunuk Bair. Then cross the Dardanelles to Canakkale. (B,D)
Visit Troy with its famous wooden horse, best known for being the setting of the Trojan War. Enjoy lunch with locals in a traditional village. Then continue to Pergamum and visit the ancient medical center Asklepion. Arrive in Izmir in the evening. (B,L,D)
Today, tour the ruins of Ephesus, an important cultural center of the ancient world, and explore the 2,000-year old marble streets, a theater, the Library of Celsius, a gymnasium, and Hadrian's Temple. Take a short drive to see the Virgin Mary's stone cottage. Continue to a regional rug production center to have firsthand experience of this unique art form. In the evening consider having an optional dinner at a local restaurant. (B)
Drive through lush valleys to Pamukkale which means "Cotton Castle", describing the white lime cascades formed by hot mineral springs. Visit the ruins of the Roman health spa of Hierapolis. Enjoy a swim in your hotel's thermal pool. (B,D)
After a morning at leisure, depart for Bodrum to visit the Castle of St. Peter and the renowned Underwater Museum. (B)
After breakfast, make your own way to the Bodrum airport or pier. We suggest taking a ferry to Kos and continue your vacation in the Greek Islands. (B)