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From the historical grandeur and modern wonder of Istanbul, through to the ancient ruins of Ephesus and Troy and the beautiful turquoise coastline and beaches of Izmir, this tailor-made itinerary of Turkey makes for a truly unforgettable experience and a world of discovery.
Enjoy a rooftop itinerary of Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar for a different perspective on this iconic city setting
Visit the Gallipoli Battlefields and Cemeteries, memorialising the World War I soldiers who died in the important Battle of Gallipoli
See one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient world – the Temple of Artemis – as you explore the city of Ephesus
Discover more about Turkey’s rich culture, history, cuisine and wine with visits to the fascinating cities of Izmir and Urla
Dating back to the 10th century BC and once a flourishing hub for trade and commerce, stand in the ancient streets of Ephesus and see the ruins of this once great city. Whilst in the area, wonder at the famous Celsus Library known for its striking architecture and that it once held 12,000 scrolls containing a wealth of knowledge from the ancient world, and marvel at the Terrace Houses on the hill, showing the style of living of the upper levels of society at that time.
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Spend your first day in this captivating city on an all-day walking tour to discover the wonders of the Ottoman and Byzantine Empire through Istanbul’s most important sites – including The Hippodrome, Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern and The Spice Bazaar. Then, you’ll enjoy the ancient city from a different perspective during a rooftop tour of Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar – just like Daniel Craig in Skyfall – before traversing the Pera neighbourhood, home to the world’s oldest tower Galata, and the 236 metre-high observation terrace, Sapphire 360.
Take a private car transfer to Hotel Caeli, Gallipoli Peninsula. On the way, stop at the fascinating Gallipolli Battlefields and Cemeteries, memorialising the World War I soldiers who died in the important Battle of Gallipoli that took place between 1915 and 1916.
From your base in Gallipoli, a peninsula in eastern Turkey in between the Dardanelles and the Aegean Sea, head out with a guide for a full-day tour of some of the most iconic ancient sites in the country. Dating from 3200 BC, Troy is full of ancient evidence and finds that are still in almost perfect condition – look out for house foundations, city walls, a temple and theatre. Your second destination to discover is the ancient Mount Ida, saturated with legends and history, and an excellent place to get away from it all by hiking or mountain-biking, horse-riding, or simply relaxing in the midst of stunning natural beauty.
Take a private car transfer to Ida Blue Adatepe, Mount Ida.
Following your tour of Mount Ida, check-in for a night at Ida Blue Adatepe, a unique property on the mountain slope that serves incredible cuisine using produce grown in the fertile soil of the region.
Take a private car transfer to Swiss Hotel Grand Efes Izmir.
Next, discover the lively port of Izmir on Turkey’s spectacular western coastline. Visit the historic Clock Tower built in 1901 and explore the Kemeralti Bazaar (market), home to mosques, eateries, artisans’ workshops and Kızlaragası Han, a roadside inn which serves the city’s famous Turkish coffee. While based in Izmir, you can also get ready to discover the 4,000-year history of Ephesus, one of Turkey’s most important and well preserved ancient cities. It contains such grand public buildings as the impressive Library of Celsus, the theatre, the Temple of Hadrian and the sumptuous Temple of Artemis, considered one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World! The next day, take a guided tour of the nearby town of Urla, visiting the atelier where Cycladic boats are manufactured to learn about their 2,600-year history. Then, tour the Klazomenai Olive Oil Atelier, the oldest known olive oil press in the world, and Urla city centre, with historical mosques and Malgaca bazaar (old marketplace). After lunch, head to the Old Greek quarter where the famous Art Street is located, taking a special trip to the vineyards and wine production facility, owned by Urla Winery – stopping for a tasting, of course!
Take a private car transfer to Izmir airport for your flight to the UK.
Join an expert guide for a full day exploring Istanbul's most important and iconic sites. Visit The Hippodrome, Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia and Basilica Cistern, along with The Spice Bazaar, where you'll have the opportunity to purchase some locally produced goods to take home.
Begin this insightful tour with a walk on the Grand Bazaar’s rooftop - just like Daniel Craig in Skyfall - before descending to explore the Pera neighbourhood, where you'll visit the world's oldest tower, Galata. Stop for lunch on another rooftop, before climbing 236-metres up to visit the observation tower of Sapphire 360. Your tour will also spoil you with a taste of the country's past, as your esteemed guide takes you to a range of specially selected eateries, where you'll sample incredible cuisine and learn how the recipes came to be.
The Battle of Gallipoli which took place from April 1915 to January 1916 was important to history in more than one way. Thousands of soldiers were killed or wounded, and it inevitably changed the fate of World War One. Tour the historic battlefields alongside a guide as you listen to the many legends and mysteries.
After being picked up from your hotel by your guide, your first destination of the day is Troy. Dating from 3200 BC, this ancient city showcases the remnants of houses, city walls and temples, making for a fascinating tour. Next, you'll venture to the incredible Mount Ida, perfect for hiking and nature walks surrounded by natural beauty. Your final stop will be the Altar of Zeus, a stone structure with stairs on which offerings - such as sacrifices and votive offerings - are made for religious purposes. This historical tour of Turkey's monuments will reveal this dynamic destination is much more than just sun and sand!
Izmir Clock Tower is emblematic of Turkey, located in the historic Konak Square. The tower was built in 1901 and designed by Levantine French architect Raymond Charles Père, while the clock was a gift from the German Emperor Kaiser Wilhelm II to Sultan Abdulhamid II of the Ottoman Empire, as the symbol of their personal friendship. Next, pay a visit to the historical market of Kemeralti, one of the liveliest spots in the city. Spot artisans' workshops, mosques, coffeehouses, tea gardens and synagogues as you explore the colourful streets, with the chance to stop at Kizlaragasi Han, which serve the city's famous Turkish coffee boiled in the cup.
With a history dating back to the Neolithic Age, the ancient city of Ephesus holds approximately 4000 years of history. Explore to this incredible site as you desire, not forgetting that the Temple of Artemis - regarded as one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world - also resides here. Later in the day, visit the House of Virgin Mary, located on top of the Bulbul mountain hidden amongst the greenery.
Start your day in the colourful Port of Urla, where you'll visit the atelier where Cycladic boats are manufactured, before continuing to Klazomenai Olive Oil Atelier, the oldest known olive oil press in the world. Next, arrive in Urla's city center to explore the historical mosques and Malgaca bazaar. You'll have chance to sample locally produced food, before you venture to the Greek Quarter where the famous Art Street is located. From pretty cafes to local bakeries, this quintessential region has plenty to offer. The final stop of the day is a special trip to vineyards and wine production facility owned by Urla Winery, where of course, there'll be a chance to sample some delicious tipples!
The best months to visit the ancient sites, cities and coast of Turkey are April, May, September and October due to cooler temperatures and fewer crowds than summer.
8 NIGHTS FROM £3,940 per person
Price based upon economy flights from London, transfers, UK airport lounge passes and meals and excursions as specified.
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