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Turkey: Splendors of the Ottoman

Merhaba and welcome to Turkey!

Join us for this luxurious 8-day/7-night adventure through magnificent Istanbul, historic Ephesus, sun-kissed Kuşadası, and the uniquely splendid landscape of Cappadocia.

Spanning the villages of Cappadocia to the majesty of Istanbul, we have teamed up with friends at Hereke Travel (experts in custom Turkey tours) to bring you a magical tour of Turkey.

Check dates and availability
Trip Dates Availability Price Payment
May 13-20th, 2022 $5999 USD
Reserve this trip with a $500 deposit, or pay in full. The balance of your tour is due in full 60 days before departure.

Day 1: Welcome to Turkey!

Day 1: Welcome to Turkey! Our journey begins with meeting in the center of the world, Istanbul.

Today you’ll arrive in Istanbul. Fly into the recently renovated airport and complete immigration, baggage, and customs procedures. On exiting the arrival hall, you’ll meet a Damesly/Hereke representative bearing a placard with your name. We’ll transfer you by private vehicle to the Seven Hills Hotel for an overnight stay. We’ll freshen up and get oriented with a taste of the evening culture of this buzzing metropolis and our first mouthfuls of Turkish cuisine. 

Meals: D

Day 2: Istanbul-Denizli

After a glorious breakfast overlooking magnificent Hagia Sofia, we’ll check out of our hotel, fly to Denizli, and transfer to Pamukkale.

Today is all about water! From the warm healing beauty of Cleopatra’s pool to the sparkling white travertine cascades of Pamukkale to the enchanting beach resort town of Kuşadası on the Aegean coast. Coastal temperatures hover around a pleasant 75°F ( 24°C) during this time of year. Kuşadası is known for its fine white sand, seafront marina, and fine hotels and restaurants that line the promenade. 

Stroll or swim, your choice. We’ll stay overnight at the beautiful Eliada Hotel in the heart of Kuşadası and enjoy a fresh, local seafood-based dinner at Mood Bistro and Restaurant.

Meals: B, L, D

Day 3: Kusadasi-Ephesus - Cappadocia

Today, we will be touching history in the ancient streets of Ephesus, a view into city lifestyle 2,000 years ago.  We’ll visit the final home of the most important woman in Christianity AND Islam – the Virgin Mary, also known as Meryam Ana — as she is beloved here. Our flight to Cappadocia will give us a first look at the spectacular central Anatolian landscape we are about to explore.  We’ll check into the elegant Design Hotel where we’ll stay for the next three nights.

Meals: B, L, D

Day 4-6: Cappadocia

Our 3-day program in Cappadocia will be flexible.

We’ll take a flight in a hot air balloon over Cappadocia at dawn one of the mornings – balloon flights are dependent on safe weather conditions. While we’re here, we’ll have options for horse-riding and ceramic art play with a talented woman potter. We’ll explore the unique landscape of bizarre eroded stone clothed in numberless wildflowers.

The valleys are rich in gardens and orchards that have sustained human life and culture for thousands of years and left fascinating traces for us to follow in Soğanlı Valley or the ancient Hittite city of Hattusas.

We’ll meet local people sharing the food and art that brings them joy – including a cooking class and gastro-picnic under the stars.

If you desire, we’ll also schedule you for a visit to a Hamam (communal bathhouse) for the traditional women’s bathing ritual that not only delivers glowing skin but also the ancient wisdom that all bodies are beautiful (additional expense). 

On the final day, we’ll fly back to Istanbul and check into the opulent White House hotel. 

Meals: B, L, D

 

Day 7: Istanbul

From nature to the heart of civilization, we’ll experience the unique energy and drama of this most cosmopolitan of cities. We’ll explore the magnificent historical sites in the Sultanahmet District, including the world-famous Hagia Sofia, the Blue Mosque, and Grand Bazaar from a new perspective and unlock some hidden gems along the way. We’ll wrap up our time in Turkey with an unforgettable few hours on a sunset cruise through the Bosphorus strait before dinner.

Meals: B, L, D

Day 8: Istanbul

A final opulent Turkish breakfast before we check out of the White House hotel. Damesly/Hereke representatives will assist with your transfer to the airport or other onwards travel.   Güle güle! — Go smiling!

Meals: B

View full itinerary

Cost includes:

  • Private transportation
  • Dedicated turkish travel guide
  • Most meals
  • Internal flights in country
  • Shared accommodation
  • All entrance fees to attractions
  • Hot air balloon ride in Cappadocia

Does not include:

  • Flight
  • Visa
  • Travel insurance

What to pack:

Additional Info:

Where will we stay?

Istanbul:

First night at gorgeous Seven Hills hotel in the heart of Sultanahmet. This long-established classic hotel is famous for its super-comfortable beds and wonderful restaurant balcony overlooking Hagia Sofia 

On our return to Istanbul we’ll stay in the White House – also perfectly located in Sultanahmet for on-foot adventures – and styled with a baroque ‘Ottoman modern’ luxury decor fit for a traveling princess.

 

Kuşadası

Eliada Hotel is a sweet boutique hotel with an outstanding reputation for warm hospitality and excellent food in a pretty garden setting.

 

Göreme

Design Hotel is centered on a beautifully renovated traditional cave house, located on the edge of Göreme with wonderful views into the valley and across to the balloon flight area. Balconies and lavender gardens make a perfect setting for relaxing. 

Can I have a private room?

Sure! Upgrade to a single room costs $697 for this tour.

What's the climate like?

In May we can expect warm mild days (61-68 F) and cooler evenings. A little rain is possible, but generally low humidity and plenty of sunshine.

What should I wear?

Basically you can wear what you like – Turkish society has a huge range of dress styles and all are acceptable. Turkish women wear the headscarf or not as a matter of personal choice. If you wear clothes that are tight or revealing you can expect a few admiring glances but no hassle. The only strong dress code is for visiting a mosque (cami) where it’s essential that your hair, legs and at least shoulders are covered. Major sites will offer a cover, it’s a good idea to bring your own light scarf.

Will there be wifi?

Our hotels all offer free Wifi in rooms and most public areas. Most hotels and cafes offer free wifi, and it may also be available in some transfer vehicles.  Internet cafes are rare and not recommended.

Electricity and plugs

For Turkey there are two associated plug types, types C and F. Plug type C is the plug which has two round pins and plug type F is the plug which has two round pins with two earth clips on the side – “European style”. Turkey operates on a 230V supply voltage and 50Hz.

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