Turkey is a nation straddling eastern Europe and western Asia with cultural connections to ancient Greek, Persian, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires. Cosmopolitan Istanbul, on the Bosphorus Strait, is home to the iconic Hagia Sophia, with its soaring dome and Christian mosaics, the massive 17th-century Blue Mosque and the circa-1460 Topkapı Palace, former home of sultans. Ankara is Turkey’s modern capital.
Istanbul is a major city in Turkey that straddles Europe and Asia across the Bosphorus Strait. Its Old City reflects cultural influences of the many empires that once ruled here. In the Sultanahmet district, the open-air, Roman-era Hippodrome was for centuries the site of chariot races, and Egyptian obelisks also remain. The iconic Byzantine Hagia Sophia features a soaring 6th-century dome and rare Christian mosaics.
3 Hours Before Flight Time
We’ll meet at 4 p.m. at our hotel in Luzern (Lucerne) for a “Welcome to Switzerland” meeting. Then we’ll take a meandering evening walk through Switzerland’s most charming lakeside town, and get acquainted with one another over dinner together.
Depart your hotel for a Full Day tour in Cappadocia. Visit Goreme Open Air Museum in Goreme Valley to see the early Christian churches decorated with unique frescos depicting various scenes from the Bible. Visit Pasabaglari (Monk’s Valley) to see the world famous fairy chimneys which have unique shape. Avanos, the famous pottery and craft centre since Hittite times. Enjoy hand-made ceramics, fashion design jewellery.
Early depart for domestic flight to Izmir (Kusadasi) via Istanbul. Your guide will meet you at the airport to transfer you to your hotel. Enjoy this lovely resort.
Departure to the centre of natural thermal spring waters with healing properties, Pamukkale. Due to the chemical properties in the water, pure white coloured travertine and stepped water terraces have been created on the mountain slope. It is for its resemblance to cotton piles that it is called ´Cotton Castle´ in Turkish. Visit the travertine and the ancient city of Hierapolis which has the biggest Necropolis with 1200 gravestones.
Today your tour will take you to the Ephesus ancient city; the greatest of all ancient sites in Anatolia. We will see the Celsius Library, the Temple of Hadrian, Marble Street and the great theatre with 24,000 seats where St. Paul preached. Enjoy lunch in a local restaurant. Transfer to airport for your evening flight to Istanbul. Overnight in Istanbul.
Full day tour starts with Hippodrome, the place of chariot races during the Roman period. Blue Mosque, a 17th century Ottoman Mosque with magnificent interior with blue tiles. Continue to St Sophia – the great Byzantine Basilica built in the 6 th century. Topkapi Palace, residence of Ottoman Sultans housing the richness of 700 years. Finally visit the Grand Bazaar, world famous shopping arcade with over 4,000 shops. Overnight in Istanbul.
Transfer to the airport.