Discover the ruined temples, volcanic landscapes and historic traditions of western Turkey and Central Anatolia on a 7-day tour from Istanbul. Learn more about the father of modern day Turkey at Ankara, explore the legends of Troy, and much more.
What to Expect
Journey through the ancient empires of Anatolia in modern-day Turkey on a 7-day coach tour of some of the most historic sites from the Hellenic and Anatolian worlds. Learn more about modern day Turkey in the capital of Ankara, wander among the “Fairy Chimneys” and rock dwellings of Cappadocia, learn about the sufi Whirling Dervishes of Konya, go to the House of the Virgin Mary at Ephesus, and relive the legends of Paris and Helen in the ancient city of Troy.
Your adventure starts with an overnight bus transfer to Ankara.
Day 1: Ankara - Cappadocia
Upon arrival in Ankara, start your tour of the Anatolian Civilizations at the Museum and Mausoleum of Atatürk, father of modern day Turkey. Continue to Cappadocia via Salt Lake, the 2nd largest lake in Turkey. Enjoy dinner at your hotel, and overnight accommodation in Cappadocia.
Day 2: Cappadocia
Explore the dramatic tufa formations and rock-cut houses of Cappadocia, carved from volcanic rock more than 10 million years ago. Known to the Persians as “Katpatuka,” it’s a place of mystery and magic. Get magnificent views from its highest point at the citadel of Uchisar Castle. Then, see the ancient frescoes of Goreme Open Air Museum. Journey among the “Fairy Chimneys,” with their iconic mushroom-shaped pinnacles, stopping at the Underground City of Kaymaklı to see the remains of houses built around a network of about 100 tunnels. Continue into Paşabağ (Monks) Valley, and go to the village of Avanos, where ancient techniques of pottery are still practised. Return to your hotel for dinner and your overnight stay in Cappadocia.
Day 3: Konya - Pamukkale
Depart for Konya early in the morning and drive to the city of the Whirling Dervishes in Central Anatolia. Stop en route at the 13th-century Seldjoukian Sultanhan Caravanserai, part of the old Silk Road trade route. Continue to Konya to visit the mausoleum and theological school of Mevlana, the famous philosopher and poet of the Whirling Dervishes, an ancient sufi order of Mevlevilik. Transfer to Pamukkale for dinner at your hotel.
Day 4: Hierapolis - Aphrodisias - Kuşadası
Today, you will explore the ruins of the ancient city of Hierapolis, site of the largest necropolis of Anatolia. Go to the thermal baths of the Romans, and see the petrified calcium cliffs and stalactites of Pamukkale, known to locals at “Cotton Castles.” Drive to Aphrodisias to see a well-preserved Greco-Roman settlement to Aphrodite, Goddess of Love. Transfer to Kuşadası for dinner and your overnight stay.
Day 5: Ephesus
Explore the dramatic ruins of the Ionian city of Ephesus, Roman Capital of Asia Minor. Highlights of the extensive complex include the impressive amphitheater, the ruins of the Temple of Hadrian, and the extraordinary Library of Celsus, once able to store over 12,000 scrolls. Visit the House of the Virgin Mary, thought to be the site of her last dwelling. Return to Kuşadası for dinner and your overnight stay.
Day 6: Kuşadası - Pergamum - Aesculapium - Troy - Çanakkale
Today, you will transfer to the ancient city of Pergamum, once described by St. John as the site of “Satan’s Throne.” The ruins include a dramatic reconstruction of the Temple of Trajan overlooking the arid rocks of the Temnus mountains. Explore the remains of the Sanctuary of Aesculapium, the Greek god of healing. Continue to Troy to explore the legendary town of Homer’s “Iliad.” Marvel at the Athena Temple and the remains of the city walls, before driving to Çanakkale for dinner and your overnight stay.
Day 7: Çanakkale - Istanbul
After breakfast, cross the Dardanelles Strait by ferry, and transfer by bus to İstanbul, driving along the shores of the Marmara Sea before the end of your tour services.
- Transportation by bus
- Accommodation (on a single, double or triple basis)
Cancel up to 1 day in advance for a full refund
Know Before You Go
• Please note that the tour departs on Sundays only
• This tour requires at least 1 week's advance reservation
• Please note: When verifying your booking, your local supplier will advise you on alternative meeting points for hotels which are not accessible