Days
10
Price from
$1,850AUD

Delight in the many treasures of Turkey on this 10-day circuit journey that starts and finishes in Istanbul

Starting in Istanbul, we explore the incredible architectural wonders of this vibrant city before journeying on to Cappadocia; one of the world’s truly awesome landscapes. A myriad of deep, volcanic valleys, bizarre rock formations and fretted ravines have been sculptured over eons by wind and water. This surreal, otherworldly terrain is best explored on foot. We walk through the valleys and discover the distinctive, banded colours, ‘fairy chimneys’ and rock cones unique to each. A land that has been inhabited by man for thousands of years, we explore intricate cave dwellings, rock-cut churches, monasteries and elaborate underground cities. From Cappadocia, we head to the religious town of Konya, the white terraces of Pamukkale and the fabled Greco-Roman ruins of Ephesus, before continuing north and paying homage at the battlefields of Gallipoli.


Start
Istanbul, Turkey
Finish
Istanbul, Turkey
Country
Turkey
Style
Peregrine
Theme
Adventure
Code
PERE
Physical rating
Traveller’s rating
(56 reviews)
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 14

Why we love this trip

  • Walk in the heated thermal waters of Pamukkale. These cotton-coloured calcium pools cascade down the cliffs overlooking the town of Pamukkale and are said to have remarkable healing powers

  • Step back in time at Ephesus, where the Greco-Roman world still feels very much alive. This is one of the best preserved classical cities in all of Europe and yet to be completely excavated

  • Spend some time reflecting on battles fought and lives lost in Gallipoli. This peaceful place has seen many atrocities due to its significant role in WW1

  • Fly from Istanbul to Goreme on Day 2 and avoid a long day of driving

  • Visit the iconic 17th century Blue Mosque, with its unusual number of six minarets and striking collection of Iznik tiles

Is this trip right for you?

  • This trip involves a lot of walking, sometimes on rocky or slippery terrain such as the sites in Goreme. Please bring sturdy walking shoes. You also have the option to sit out many of the walks. if you don't feel up to them.

  • You'll be covering a lot of land during the trip, which means a couple of very long days of driving. Days 6 and 8 in particular involve a lot of time in the bus, but the drives are broken up with interesting stops along the way.  

  • Turkey can get hot in the summer months of July and August but this is normally a dry heat and is easier to cope with than humidity. Where possible, you'll be taken to sites in the early morning before it gets too hot.

  • Night time temperatures can be quite cool, particularly in April and October. Not all hotels will have heating so make sure to bring a few warm items with you. 

Itinerary


Welcome to Istanbul, Turkey! 

If you arrive at Istanbul's Ataturk International Airport (IST), you will be met and transferred to your starting hotel. If you arrive at Sabiha Gokcen Airport (SAW) airport please make your own way to the hotel (unless you have booked a transfer). After checking into your hotel, please look out for the Peregrine notice board in the hotel lobby, which has a list of suggestions for things to see and do in your free time.

Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm today. You can arrive at any time during the day as there are no activities planned until this important meeting.  We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.

Istanbul is one of the great cities of the world, with a history spanning thousands of years. It has been through several incarnations, firstly as Byzantium, then Constantinople and finally Istanbul. The city if full of crowded streets and busy locals. Perhaps you'd like to arrive a few days earlier to wander through the city, but we'll be returning to Istanbul at the end of the trip and you'll have the option of staying on your own then.
Accommodation
  • Q Inn Hotel or similar (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
This morning your guide will introduce you to the treasure-trove of Istanbul's Old Town. You'll visit the iconic 17th Century Blue Mosque with its unique set of six minarets and most striking feature of 20,000 isnik tiles. You'll also see the ancient Hippodrome, Obelisk of Theodosius, the Serpent Column and the German Fountain of Wilhelm II.

In the afternoon, drive to the airport for your flight to Cappadocia. After landing, drive into the heart of Cappadocia to Goreme where you'll be based for the next three nights.
Accommodation
  • Heybe Hotel, or Similar (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Early birds have the option of taking a hot air balloon over the otherworldly Cappadocian landscape. The scene at sunrise is sure to take your breath away. 
Please note this activity can only be booked locally. Please speak to your trip leader on Day 1 to organise this.

The first included activity for the day is a visit to the Goreme Open Air Museum, where you can see houses, churches and monasteries carved out of the cliff face. See stunning examples of Byzantine art in the Christian sanctuary and colourful frescoes from the 10th to the 12th centuries. 

In the afternoon, go to a carpet workshop to see how this beautiful handicraft is made and learn about its connection to the nomadic origins of the Turkish people.

Later, take a short walk through 'Love Valley', a strange lanscape of phallic rock formations.

Head back to your hotel where we highly recommend taking an optional Turkish bath to unwind after a long day. 
Accommodation
  • Heybe Hotel, or Similar (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Hot air balloon Goreme - EUR165
Included Activities
  • Goreme - Open Air Museum
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Enjoy a relaxing breakfast and then go for a walk to the most beautiful valley in Cappadocia, Kizilcukur (Red Valley).  Here you'll see fascinating rock formations such as cones, peaks and fairy chimneys, as well as manmade cave chapels from early Christian times. 

In the afternoon, drive to the moon-like landscape of Pasabaglari Valley. You'll see a chapel dedicated to St. Simeon and a hermit's shelter built into a three-headed fairy chimney. You'll be doing a fair bit if walking today, and the path may be slippery, so make sure you bring appropriate walking shoes.

Later, discover the local handicraft of pottery before returning to Goreme for the night. You may have the opportunity to attend a folk dance performance or witness an original Whirling Dervish performance.


Accommodation
  • Heybe Hotel, or Similar (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Today you'll drive to the incredible underground city of Derinkuyu. See dwellings that span seven levels beneath the ground.

From here you'll continue to Asikli Hoyuk, which is located in an area covered by the volcanic tuff from central Cappadocia.

Continue on a two-hour drive to Konya. This ancient city was important in Roman times, and was the capital of the Seljuk Empire between the 12th and 13th centuries. It is also where the mystic sufi practice of 'whirling' originates.

Notes: Konya is a very religious town so remember to dress conservatively to avoid unwanted attention. 
Accommodation
  • Şemsi Tebrizi or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Goreme - Derinkuyu Underground City
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Drive for about five and a half hours to Pamukkale or 'Cotton Castle.' This magical natural phenomenon is made of terraced hotsprings and pools. As the water cascades down the mountain, dazzling cream-coloured stalactites form giving the appearance of cotton or snow. These pools are said to have healing properties for a person's circulation and digestion.

You'll then make your way to the nearby ruins of Hierapolis, an important Roman bath centre. Explore the extensive ruins of Hierapolis which include a theatre, temple, holy area, monumental fountain, bath, basilica and necropolis. Spend the night in a hotel in Pamukkale.

Accommodation
  • Melrose Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Pamukkale - Hierapolis & Travertines National Park
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Get up early for a 3.5 hour drive to Selcuk. From here, drive to Ephesus, one of the best-preserved classical cities and a great example of Roman architecture. The visit to Ephesus is often the highlight of the trip for many travellers. Tour around the amphitheatre, walk the marble streets once walked by Cleopatra and Mark Antony, and marvel at the gymnasium, baths and wonderfully restored Library of Celsus. 

Return to Selcuk and go on an oriantation walk around the town. It lies at the base of the ancient Aysoluk Hill fortress. Perhaps make an optional visit to the last home of the Virgin Mary. Legend has it that she came to this beautiful spot with St. John to live out her final days. There's also St. John's Basilica and the newly constructed Ephesus Archaeological museum.
Accommodation
  • Akay Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Selcuk - Ephesus archaeological site
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Today you'll make your way to the city of Canakkale, but along the way, you'll stop at the site of ancient Troy. For many years people believed that the city was merely a fable. Archaeological digs have proved that the area was settled by major civilisations, but historians are still at odds as to whether Troy really existed. Here you'll see the remnants of ancient city walls and a replica of the famous wooden horse.

Arrive at Çanakkale later in the day and have some free time to wander the waterfront town.
Accommodation
  • Grand Anzac Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Troy Visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Cross the strait which separates the Asian and European sides of Turkey known as the Dardanelles. This area played an important role for Australians and New Zealanders during the First World War. You'll visit the beach and cemeteries of Anzac Cove, then head up the hill toward the poignant memorials of Lone Pine and Chunuk Bair. Look down upon the rough and barren hills and gullies that became the graveyard for so many thousands of young men from both sides. Tour the former battlefields and find remnants of trenches used by the Turkish soldiers.

Drive back to where your adventure began, Istanbul (four hours). You'll arrive in the late afternoon or early evening and have the remainder of the evening free. Perhaps spend a final night with the group and indulge in a Turkish feast in town.
Accommodation
  • Q Inn Hotel or similar (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Your trip comes to an end after breakfast. There are no other activities planned for the day and you can leave the accommodation at any time. For those who want to stay on in Istanbul to further explore the city, we are happy to help in booking accommodation (subject to availability).
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

9 breakfasts

Transport

Plane, Private vehicle

Accommodation

Comfortable hotel (9 nights)

Included Activities

  • Goreme - Open Air Museum
  • Goreme - Derinkuyu Underground City
  • Pamukkale - Hierapolis & Travertines National Park
  • Selcuk - Ephesus archaeological site
  • Troy Visit

Reviews

Our Turkey Revealed trips score an average of 4.79 out of 5 based on 56 reviews in the last year.

Turkey Revealed, September 2015

Ros Alexander

Turkey Revealed, October 2015

Brodwyn Blyth

Dates & availability

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Important notes

A single supplement is available on this trip, please refer to your booking agent for further information.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.