Absolute Turkey

Classic, Istanbul to Istanbul

Image by G Adventures

Tour description provided by G Adventures

This comprehensive tour of Turkey combines history and beaches, man-made wonders and natural phenomena, as well as a vibrant and welcoming culture. Begin your trip roaming the palaces and mosques of Istanbul before journeying into the bizarre as you explore otherworldly Cappadocia. From the amazing white cliff waterfalls of Pamukkale to the bustling bazaars of Istanbul, our local Chief Experience Officers (CEOs) will show you the region’s hidden gems and make sure your trip burns brightly in your memory long after you've left this crossroads of Asia and Europe.

What’s included

  • Your G for Good Moment: Güneysinir Community Park , Güneysınır Your G for Good Moment: Çöp(m)adam Visit, Ayvalık Your Local Living Moment: Dinner with Local Family, Çavuşin Your Local Living Moment: Turkish Village Homestay, Güneysınır
  • Istanbul city walking tour
  • Visit to the Göreme Open Air Museum
  • Underground city exploration
  • Overnight boat trip (Mediterranean sea, weather permitting)
  • Ancient Hierapolis and Pamukkale entrance and guided walk
  • Ephesus entrance and visit
  • Ottoman mansion stay
  • Troy entrance and guided visit
  • Gallipoli battlefields entrance and guided visit
  • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities

Highlights

  • Discover historic cities and explore the ancient ruins of ephesus
  • Marvel at the extraordinary scenery of cappadocia
  • Enjoy dinner in a local family home
  • Relax on an overnight boat trip
  • Live like a local in a turkish village.

Itinerary

Day 1 Istanbul There are no activities planned until our evening welcome meeting. After the meeting, opt to join your CEO and fellow travellers for dinner. Get the most out of your time in Istanbul by pre-booking one of the following full-day activities to experience before your tour starts: Istanbul Backstreets Walk or Dolmabahçe Palace Visit and Bosporus Cruise. If you do, we recommend booking accommodation for an extra night pre-tour. And don’t worry if you can’t decide now. These activities are available for pre-booking any time before your tour starts, while any of the optional activities listed can be booked independently upon arrival in Istanbul. Included Activities: Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting
Day 2 Istanbul/Bolu (1B) Enjoy an orientation walk around Istanbul before moving on to the city of Bolu. Included Activities: Istanbul Orientation Walk Transport: Private Vehicle (6.00 hour(s))
Day 3 Bolu/Cappadocia (1B, 1D) Transfer to the town of Göreme, the base for exploring Cappadocia. With 2.5 days free to explore, there will be plenty of time to tour the area by bike, visit neighbouring villages, trek regional valleys or try a hot air balloon ride. During one of the evenings, travel to a nearby village and enjoy dinner with a local family. Additional Notes: The local dinner may take place on any night in Göreme based on the family's availability. Included Activities: Dinner with Local Family Transport: Private Vehicle (5.00 hour(s))
Days 4-5 Cappadocia Outdoor enthusiast? Hire a bike to get around on two wheels or join your CEO on an optional trekking tour through one of the beautiful valleys of the region. If you want to go further afield, take a local bus to explore nearby villages. Additional Notes: Want to do more with your tour? Pre-booking is available for Cappadocia Balloon Ride and Whirling Dervishes. Any of the optional activities listed on this day can also be booked upon arrival. If you pre-booked the Cappadocia hot air balloon ride, you will be flying today (weather permitting). Included Activities: Göreme Open Air Museum Guided Tour
Day 6 Cappadocia/Konya (1B, 1D) Depart Göreme and head to an underground city to explore. Have a quick lunch before journeying to the region of Konya. Travel about 1 hour to a local village for a cozy homestay. On the way, visit Catalhoyuk, a uniquely well-preserved Neolithic site. Upon arrival in the village, learn about local life and visit a community park and cooperative supported and developed by G Adventures before enjoying a home-cooked dinner tonight. Included Activities: Underground City Visit Güneysinir Community Park Catalhoyuk Visit Turkish Village Homestay Transport: Private Vehicle (0.50 hour(s)) Private Vehicle (3.50 hour(s))
Day 7 Konya/Antalya (1B) Arrive at Antalya around lunchtime. With a free afternoon, wander the charming cobbled hillside streets of the district of Kaleici, a great place to stop and have a drink with amazing views of the marina below. For a break from the hustle and bustle, head for the greenery and teashops at one of Antalya's beautiful parks or catch some sun at a nearby beach. Transport: Private Vehicle (5.00 hour(s))
Day 8 Antalya/Kekova (1B, 1D) Drive to the beautiful coastal village of Demre for lunch. After, board our boat for an unforgettable night on the Mediterranean Sea. The boat trip includes sailing around Kekova Island, with plenty of time to enjoy the sunshine and scenery. Later, walk to Simena Castle to enjoy the views and archaeological ruins. Then opt to go for a swim in the crystal clear waters or just relax on deck. Additional Notes: The evening may be very cold— please come prepared with appropriate shoes and clothing. We will provide bedding but it is recommended that you bring a personal sleep sheet to place inside. Included Activities: Overnight Boat Trip Simena Castle Visit Transport: Private Vehicle (3.00 hour(s))
Day 9 Kekova/Kaş (1B) Wake up on board and enjoy breakfast in the fresh morning air. Opt for a swim before returning to Demre, and continuing on to the coastal town of Kaş. Transport: Private Vehicle (0.75 hour(s))
Day 10 Kaş/Selçuk (1B) Leave the beautiful sea behind and head to Pamukkale, passing through fruit orchards on the way. Visit the famous white cliffs of Pamukkale and the ancient site of Hierapolis before continuing on to Selçuk. Included Activities: Hierapolis and Pamukkale Visit Transport: Private Vehicle (5.00 hour(s)) Private Vehicle (3.00 hour(s))
Day 11 Selçuk (1B) Visit the ruins of the ancient Roman town of Ephesus. After, head to town and enjoy some free time to explore. Opt to walk to the remains of St John's Basilica, visit the Mosque of Isa Bey or wander the streets of this vibrant Turkish town. Or catch a local “dolmus” bus to the picturesque village of Şirince (8 km) to sample some local wine or shop for crafts. For dedicated sunseekers, the beach at Pamucaki is also within reach. Included Activities: Ephesus Visit
Day 12 Selçuk/Ayvalık (1B) Ayvalik’s blend of Ottoman architecture, cobblestoned streets, and attractive harbour make this stop a highlight. The beach of Sarimsakli is a quick bus ride away and the harbour in town offers short cruises. After exploring, head down to one of the waterside restaurants for a sunset drink or meal. Then enjoy the hospitality and beautiful views from the family-run pension in a restored Ottoman mansion. Included Activities: Çöp(m)adam Visit Ottoman Mansion Stay Transport: Private Vehicle (2.50 hour(s))
Day 13 Ayvalık/Çanakkale (1B) Enjoy a visit to the world-famous city of Troy. After exploring the site, continue to the harbour town of Çanakkale, a busy port with a thriving student population. Included Activities: Troy Visit Transport: Private Vehicle (2.50 hour(s)) Private Vehicle (0.75 hour(s), 32km)
Day 14 Çanakkale/Istanbul (1B) Make an early morning visit to Gallipoli, where thousands gave their lives during WWI in the battle of the same name. Take in the sights and learn the sombre story. Continue on to İstanbul for the opportunity to finish up your sightseeing or get in some last minute shopping. Included Activities: Gallipoli Battlefields Guided Tour Transport: Once in the Gallipoli peninsula, transfer by bus to the Gallipoli battlefields (20 mins). Ferry (0.50 hour(s)) Private Vehicle (4.50 hour(s))
Day 15 Istanbul (1B) Your tour might be finished, but the adventure’s far from over. Pre-book one of the following activities to experience after your tour ends: Dolmabahçe Palace Visit and Bosporus Cruise or Istanbul Backstreets Walk. If you do, we recommend booking accommodation for an extra night in Istanbul. And don’t worry if you can’t decide now. These activities are available for pre-booking any time before your tour starts, or they can be booked upon arrival in Istanbul.
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