DAY 1: ISTANBUL – CAPPADOCIA
Arrival in Istanbul connection to your flight to Cappadocia. Welcome & assistance at the Cappadocia airport and transfer to your hotel for dinner and overnight.
Depart from the hotel to visit Red valley through Cavusin and explore the famous rock-cut churches and hike 2 km. Then visit Cavusin village. Old Cavusin was abandoned several decades ago due to avalanches. The current village of Cavusin is located on the road. Old Cavusin, with its rock-cut dwellings and stone houses, had several hermitages.
After lunch drive to the Pigeon Valley. In the afternoon visit Underground City, where early Christians lived in fear and faith. The houses in the village are constructed around the nearly one hundred tunnels of the underground city, which is one of the most interesting underground settlements in Cappadocia. The underground city was originally carved out as eight floors; however, four floors are available to visit. In wartime, about 5000 people can refuge in. The tunnels are still used today as storage areas, stables, and cellars.
Dinner and accommodation.
DAY 3: CAPPADOCIA – ISTANBUL
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for the flight to Istanbul. Arrival and transfer to the hotel. Overnight in Istanbul.
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 principal 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 the first time in the history.
After breakfast, visit Egyptian Bazaar (spice bazaar) and cruise along the 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 19th-century 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.
DAY 6: ISTANBUL – AIRPORT
At the appointed time will be transferred to Istanbul airport to board the return flight.
STARTING POINT: Istanbul, daily January to December
TRAVEL PLAN: 6 DAYS/ 5 nights
* 3 nights accommodation in Istanbul
* 2 nights accommodation in Cappadocia on half board basis
* Full day South Cappadocia tour with lunch
* Full day Istanbul city tour with lunch
* Half day Bosporus cruise
* Entrances to historical sites during guided excursions
* All transfers as per itinerary
* Daily breakfast
* Hotel taxes
* Flights Istanbul – Cappadocia and Cappadocia – Istanbul are not included