08 DAYS BIBLICAL TURKEY TOUR : ISTANBUL - CANAKKALE - KUSADASI - IZMIR - PAMUKKALE - KONYA - CAPPADOCIA - ANKARA - ISTANBUL
DAY 1 HOME – ISTANBUL – CANAKKALE
Upon arrival meeting with your tour director at Istanbul Airport and commence with sightseeing, covering the following: Istanbul City Walls, it boasts several impressive castles a fortification. Massive walls of ancient Constantinople, built by the Emperor Theodosius II over 1500 years ago, are in many places still standing. Next, visit Blue Mosque (Sultan Ahmet Mosque), a 16th century’s religious center and the only mosque in Istanbul with 6 minarets. Hippodrome square where horse carriage and gladiator fights took place during the Byzantian Empire. It is decorated today with an Egyptian Column, Serpentane Column. Next, visit St. Sophia Museum, a unique combination of Christianity and Islam religion in the same holding place. Next, Topkapi Palace – a museum palace with a wide collection of Porcelains, Treasuries, religious collect peace. It is the first Great Imperial Palace of Ottoman Dynasty. Next, depart to visit Emirgan Tulip Garden, largest Tulip park in Istanbul. (Durin April Only). Depart to Canakkale via Gallipoli Peninsula, today Gallipoli are protected landscapes covered in pine forest, it is a place where the first war of the world held. We will witness the peninsula while we are crossing the Asia side of Turkey. We will stop for photo break at Troy Hollywood Wooden Horse in pier city center. Once we reach there we will be greeted by the huge replica of a wooden Trojan horse, it is a vivid reminder of the ancient Trojan war. Overnight in Canakkale.
DAY 2 CANAKKALE - IZMIR
After breakfast visit Troy ancient City & Troy Wooden Horse, you will see remaining structures of the famous Troy city and you will witness the battlefield area of Hector & Achileous. Next, enjoy the scenery of Aegean Sea and Islands. Aegean have safe harbors and bays. In ancient times, navigation through the sea was easier than travelling across the rough terrain of the Greek mainland. Photo stop at Lezbos Island (Midilli Island), this is the 3th biggest Greek Island. In the ancient world, the Island was an important cultural center. Next, proceed to visit Pergamum (Rev 2:12-17) described as having the throne of Satan (the Zeus altar?), is praised for its martyrdom and perseverance but those who hold false teachings are criticized. Related sites Red basilica or another name Pergamum Basilica. Next, depart to visit another seven-church sight in Turkey, Thyatira (Rev 2:18-29) Thyatira is praised for its increasing faith and service, but criticized for its tolerance of Jezebel, an immoral woman who calls herself a prophetess. Related sites 4th-6th cent. Public buildings. Dinner and overnight in Izmir
DAY 3 IZMIR – KUSADASI - IZMIR
After breakfast visit Smyrna (Izmir) (REV 2:8-11) Smyrna's message speaks of false Jews and impending persecution but encourages perseverance which will be rewarded. Related sites St. Polycarp Church. Next, visit Leather Outlet Center for shopping. Next, we set off for Selcuk and explore Ephesus ancient city (Rev 2:1-7), Ephesus receives praise for its perseverance, but criticism for forsaking its "first love. Related sites Basilica of St John, Ephesus. Next, we will also visit the Basilica of St. John and a mosque, part constructed with stone from the Temple of Artemis. Next, visit House of Virgin Mary, it is located on Ephesus, the shrine of Virgin Mary enjoys a marvelous atmosphere hidden in the green. It is the place where mary may have spent her last days. Indeed, she may have come in the area together with Saint John, who spent several years in the area to spread Christianity. Visit The Temple of Artemis, it is known as one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world. It has been built in the areas of in the areas of Ephesus on a flat area which has over the centruies turned into a swamp. Drive back to Izmir for dinner and overnight.
DAY 4 IZMIR – SARDIS – PHILADELPHIA – LAODICEA – PAMUKKALE HIERAPOLIS
After breakfast departure to visit Sardis (Rev 3:1-6) the church of Sardis is described as dead and it must wake up. However, there are some who have not "soiled their clothes." Related Sites Sardis Synagogue, Temple of Artemis, Byzantine Church. Next, visit Philadelphia (Rev 3:7-13) Philadelphia is praised for having little strength but still persevering. Those who falsely claim to be Jews, but are actually of the "synagogue of Satan," will be judged. Related site is Byzantine Basilica. Next, visit Laodicea (Rev 3:14-20) the church of Laodicea is sharply criticized for being lukewarm. Its wealth hides its spiritual poverty. Related sites are Stadium, Sarcophagi. Next, we depart for Pamukkale (Cotton Castle), visit the extensive ruins of Hierapolis & Necropolis - known for its thermal baths and health centre. Thereafter, see “Cotton Castle” or Pamukkale’s magical and unique terraces & castles created by deposits of white limestone from thermal springs. Before check in our hotel we will stop at Textile factory outlet center for you the enjoy the shopping. Overnight and dinner in Pamukkale
DAY 5 PAMUKKALE – KONYA – CAPPADOCIA
Today, travel to Konya. Photo Stop a 700 year old ancient caravanserai (a ‘hotel’ for ancient traders and travelers on silk road). Visit Kuyucak Lavander Farm (During Jully only) it is largest lavander farm in Turkey. Next, depart to visit Pisidian Antioch (also called Antioch of Pisidia) was a major Roman colony that was visited by St. Paul on his first missionary journey. Pisidian Antioach marked an important turning point in Paul’s ministry, as the city became the first to have a fully Gentile Christian community. Proceed to dinner and overnight in Cappadocia.
DAY 6 CAPPADOCIA
Optional Hot air ballooning over the charming landscape during sun rise is optional this morning time. We will visit The Goreme Open-Air Museum resembles a vast monastic complex composed of scores of refectory monasteries placed side-by-side, each with its own fantastic church. It is obviously the first sight to be visited by any traveler in Cappadocia. It contains the finest of the rock-cut churches, with beautiful frescoes (wall paintings) whose colors still retain all their original freshness. It also presents unique examples of rock hewn architecture and fresco technique. The Goreme Open Air Museum has been a member of UNESCO World Heritage List since 1984 and was one of the first two UNESCO sites in Turkey. Next, get the rare chance to experience the beauty and work of Turkey’s handmade crafts through a turkish carpet weaving course. Following this, a visit to the Pigeon Valley. Photo stops will be made at Uchisar “castle” village, a fantasy-land of strange and wonderful works of man and nature. If time permits, visit one of the local cave house. Then, proceed to Avanos Pottery Village, set on the banks of the Kizilirmak (Red River). Finally, a chance to view turkish semi precious turkish turquoise ( the name given by Marco Polo which means color of Turks). Next, be enchanted by the Underground City, once a place of refuge for 15000 Christians. Witness the ancient bedrooms, church, meeting hall and food storage rooms in this eight-storey city connected by 30km of corridors and passageways. Dinner and overnight in Cappadocia
DAY 7 CAPPADOCIA – ANKARA – ISTANBUL
This morning, drive pass picturesque Salt Lake and arrive into Ankara – capital of Turkey.Our Ankara sightseeing highlights include the magnificent Ataturk Mausoleum and Museum, the final resting place of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, who was regarded as the father of modern Turkey. The mausoleum features a mix of different architectural styles from various Anatolian civilizations museum. Dinner and overnight in Istanbul
DAY 8 ISTANBUL – HOME
After breakfast proceed Bosphorous Cruise trip, Here, you will be able to soak in the sights and sounds of Turkey’s Asia and Europe sector as you cruise through this water channel that is the very beat of life in Istanbul. Witness the magnificent architecture of the buildings along the river and the interesting activities of our local people. We will get very chance of taking photo of Rumeli Castle and Anatolia Castle build by the conquerer of Istanbu in 1453. Next, visit 500-year-old Grand Bazaar, a maze of over 4,000 stalls and shops selling leather goods, jeweler, handicrafts, ceramics, Turkish coffee and other local products. Transfer to the airport for your flight back home, bringing back wonderful memories and superb souvenirs from your Turkish vacation