8. From Istanbul: Best of Turkey 8 Days, 7 Nights Guided Tour
Day 1: Arrival in Istanbul
Be picked up from the arrivals terminal at Istanbul or Sabiha Gokcen Airport. Be transferred to your accommodation and enjoy some time to relax in the city after your journey.
Day 2: Full-Day Istanbul Tour (Breakfast)
Start with pickup from your accommodation and discover the highlights of Istanbul on a guided tour. Visit the Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, and Hippodrome, where chariot races and the Byzantine riots took place. Visit the Grand Bazaar for some shopping and bargain hunting. Be returned to your hotel at the end of the day and spend a second night in Istanbul.
Day 3: Istanbul to Cappadocia by flight – Cappadocia Tour (Breakfast – Dinner)
Begin the third day with an early-morning pickup and transfer to Istanbul airport for your flight to the Cappadocia region. Upon arrival in Cappadocia, your tour guide will meet you at the airport. Start by visiting the Three Sisters Fairy Chimneys in Urgup which are the iconic symbol for the region. Descend into the Kaymakli underground city, which is one of the largest and the deepest of its kind in the region. After the tour, be transferred to your hotel for the night.
Day 4: Full-Day Cappadocia Tour (Breakfast – Dinner)
Discover the lunar-like landscape of Cappadocia with spectacular rock formations in the Devrent Valley. Enjoy lunch in Avanos, a center of terracotta artwork since 3000 BC. Watch a demonstration in a traditional pottery workshop. In the afternoon, visit the Goreme Open Air Museum and Uchisar Rock Castle to get a panoramic view of the valleys of Cappadocia. After the tour, be returned to your hotel.
Day 5: Cappadocia – Konya – Pamukkale (Breakfast – Dinner)
Begin the journey to Pamukkale early in the morning. On the way, visit the Seljukian masterpiece of Sultanhan Caravanserai, built in the 13th century. Arrive in Konya and visit the Mausoleum of Mevlana, the world-famous mystic. Continue the journey to Pamukkale and enjoy an overnight stay in a Thermal Hotel. Enjoy a swim in the hotel's rejuvenating thermal pools.
Day 6: Pamukkale – Kusadasi (Breakfast – Dinner)
In the morning, visit the ancient Greek city of Hierapolis known for its Theater, Apollo Temple, and magnificent Necropolis. Travel onwards to Kusadasi for an overnight stay.
Day 7: Kusadasi – Ephesus – Istanbul by flight (Breakfast)
Depart from Kusadasi and visit the Artemis Temple which is one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Continue to the famous Grand Theater of Ephesus. After Ephesus, visit the Catholic shrine of the House of the Virgin Mary. Located on the Aladag Mountains 5 miles from Ephesus, it is said that the Virgin Mary lived here for the remainder of her life after Christ's Ascension into heaven. Then drive to Izmir airport for your flight back to Istanbul. Upon your return to Istanbul, meet a representative of the local partner and be transferred to your hotel for the night.
Day 8: Departure from Istanbul (Breakfast)
After breakfast, check out from your hotel and enjoy a private transfer to Istanbul airport for your flight back home to complete the 8-day excursion.