Get a good taste of Istanbul and Cairo with full day sightseeing visiting the most important sites of both cities. Visit the Acropolis and its museum and the rest of important sites with the option of some tours out of Athens.
DAY 1: ISTANBUL
Arrival in Istanbul, meeting and assistance and then transfer to your selected hotel in Istanbul . Balance of the day at leisure.
After breakfast full day visit to Istanbul. We begin our tour from the Sultanahmet district, the heart of old Istanbul at Agia Sophia. Built by Emperor Justinian in the 6th century AD this church is one of the marvels of world architecture. Its massive dome dominates the skyline of old Istanbul. It is famed for its mosaics, including glittering portraits of emperors and empresses (closed on Mondays).
Next we visit the Blue Mosque, which owes its name to the exquisite tiles adorning its interior. Dating from the 17th century, it is the only imperial Mosque with six minarets. The Hippodrome, the stadium of ancient Byzantium, held 100.000 spectators and featured objects from all corners of the empire.
The Grand Bazaar was the commercial heart of the old city and its 4.000 shops are full of treasures – including carpets and kilims, silks, jewellery, ceramics, icons and leather goods (Closed on Sundays).
Lunch in a local restaurant and continuation of our tour. Our afternoon will begin at Topkapi Palace which, from the 15th to 19th century, was the principle residence of the Ottoman Sultans (closed on Tuesdays).
Little Agia Sophia Mosque is known as one of the oldest standing churches in Istanbul dating back to 6th century. It is an early domed-basilica architectural plan of famous Agia Sophia which was applied here for the first time in the history.
Half day cruise through Bosporus, the majestic strait that runs through Istanbul, linking Europe and Asia. From our cruise boat, we view the dramatic sights lining the Bosporus wooded shores: mosques, a bridge that for a time was the world’s longest and Rumeli Hisari, a massive fortress built by Mehmet the Conqueror in just three months as he prepared to take Istanbul. Also noteworthy on this tour are the 19thcentury mansions of the Ottoman elite and the Sultans’ fanciful gingerbread palaces and hunting lodges Disembarkation at the European part of Turkey and transfer to your hotel.
Early departure for the intercontinental bridge of Bosporus, to continue to the Camlica hill at the Asiatic part of Turkey which affords panoramic views of Istanbul, Marmara Sea, Princes’ Islands and magnificent Istanbul. Then visit the Beylerbeyi Palace on the shore of the Bosphorus, one of the most elegant of the late Ottoman palaces and boasts six sumptuously furnished reception halls. and a typical fish village along the coast of Bosporus with time at leisure for shopping.
DAY 5: ISTANBUL – CAIRO
At the indicated time, transfer to the airport for your flight to Cairo. Arrival meeting, assistance & transfer to your hotel in Cairo . Balance of the day at leisure.
Full day Cairo sightseeing, starts with the Egyptian Museum, where we can see the treasure of Tut Ankh Amoun and other Old Egyptian treasures. Visit the local bazaar and some free time for your sopping.
Lunch in a local restaurant and we continue to Giza where the three Pyramids of Keops, Kephren and Mikyreenos are located. Visit to the Sphinx and Valley of the Temple.
DAY 7: CAIRO – MEMPHIS – SAKKARA
Half day tour to Memphis, the first capital of the ancient Egypt with the famous statue of the Ramsees II. We continue to Sakkara considered to be the Necropolis of Memphis where there is the step Pydamid.
Morning free in Cairo to explore the city with the so many contradictions, do your shopping and bargain at the local markets and shops.
In the evening we will take you to a small cruise in the Nile river with dinner and a traditional show.
DAY 9: CAIRO – ATHENS
At the indicated time, transfer to the airport for your flight back to Athens. Arrival and transfer to your selected hotel in Athens. Balance of the day at leisure.
This tour gives you an opportunity to observe the striking contrasts that make Athens such a fascinating city. Our expert guides will take you to see the Panathenaic Stadium where the first Olympic Games of modern times were held in 1896 (short stop).
Continue and pass by the Prime Minister’s residence (ex Royal Palace) guarded by the Euzones in their colorful uniform, the Temple of Olympian Zeus, the Hadrian’s Arch, the Parliament and the memorial to the Unknown Soldier, the Academy, the University, theNational Library, the Constitution Square (Syntagma). On the Acropolis visit the Architectural Masterpieces of the Golden Age of Athens: The Propylaea, the Temple of Athena Nike, the Erechtheion and finally “the harmony between material and spirit”, the monument that “puts order in the mind”, the Parthenon.
Tour will end by visiting the Acropolis and the new Acropolis Museum, “State of the art” in museum construction and very rich in content.
Afternoon free to visit Plaka (The old Athens city) with lots of souvenir shops, restaurants and taverns.
Full day excursion to the Archaeological sites of Mycenae and Epidaurus with a short stop at Corinth Canal and visit to Nauplion, the first capital of Greece.
Leave by the coastal road along the Saronic Gulf to the Corinth Canal, which connects the Aegean Sea with the Ionian Sea, (short stop).
Drive to Mycenae, the Homeric city of Atreides, the city “rich in gold” of the ancient poets. Visit the Lion’s Gate, the Cyclopean Walls, and the Royal Tombs e.t.c.
Depart, through the fertile plain of Argolis, for Nauplion, the picturesque town nestling at the foot of a cliff crowned by the mighty ramparts of the Palamidi Fortress (short photo stop), leave for Epidaurus, to visit the Theatre (4th century B.C.) famous for its astonishing acoustics.
Lunch en route and return to Athens by the National road connecting Epidaurus with Corinth. Arrival in Athens in the evening.
Free day in Athens to stroll around the city and know better the sites and the people. Good opportunity to visit one of the famous museums like the National Archaeological museum or the Benaki Museum.
Use metro not only for your transportation but also visit the different stations to admire pieces of ancient and modern art. Not the miss the visit to Plaka (The old Athens city) with lots of souvenir shops, restaurants and taverns.
DAY 13: ATHENS – AIRPORT
At the indicated time according to your departure flight, you will be transferred to the airport.
STARTING POINT: Istanbul, daily January to December
TRAVEL PLAN: 13 DAYS/ 12nights
* 4 nights accommodation in Istanbul
* 4 nights accommodation in Cairo
* 4 nights accommodation in Athens
* Full day Istanbul sightseeing tour with lunch
* Half day Bosporus Cruise
* Half day 2 continents tour
* Full day Cairo sightseeing tour with lunch
* Half day Memphis – Sakkara tour
* Nile evening cruise with dinner and traditional show
* Half day Athens sightseeing tour
* Full day bus tour to Mycenae and Epidaurus with lunch
* Entrance fees to the sites during guided sightseeing
* All transfers as mentioned
* Daily breakfast
* Hotel taxes
* Air tickets Istanbul – Cairo – Athens not included