Istanbul & Cappadocia Discovery

TURKEY : TOURS - EUROPE

TURKEY
Istanbul & Cappadocia Discovery

Greet dawn while gliding over sublime hills and valleys on a hot air balloon.

Embark on a culinary adventure in one of Istanbul’s most fashionable districts.

Tour the legendary Golden Horn with a private guide.

Explore labyrinthine, subterranean cities in Cappadocia.

Featuring a handpicked selection of premium accommodations.

EXTENSIONS TO CONSIDER
  • Traditional Hamam Experience (Turkish Bath) - Vehicle/Driver - Istanbul,

Meet your private driver for a transfer to Cemberlitas Hamami, a traditional Turkish bathhouse, where your admission is included along with a traditional body scrub and soap foam massage. A brilliant way to relax, and soothe the soul. A return transfer back to your hotel is provided.

  • 1/2 Day Street Food Tour (4.5 hrs.) - Vehicle/Guide/Driver - Istanbul,

Istanbul is foodie heaven where fabulous culinary experiences await around each corner. Explore the rich street food culture of this former capital of the Ottoman Empire on a half-day tour, accompanied by your private guide and driver. Taste original Turkish kunefe the way it should be – fresh from the traditional wood-fired ovens. Feast your taste buds on local favorites like kokoreç and döner kebab from the best local hole-in-the-wall restaurants frequented by the locals. Depending on availability, stop at a lokum (Turkish Delight) shop that has catered to generations of Istanbulites, and see how the popular sweet is made. Today you will get to experience over 15 different foods from carefully chosen local vendors. Your culinary adventure ends when you are transferred back to your hotel.

  • Ihlara Valley Hiking (with Lunch) - Vehicle/Guide/Driver - Cappadocia,

The stunning & lush Ihlara Valley boasts the deepest gorge in Asia Minor. Once the monk's instructed Christianity in cave churches – with most of the churches decorated inside with frescoes. The main difference between Ihlara and the other Cappadocian valleys is the Melendiz River which runs from the bottom of the valley in the village of Ihlara and paints the gorge beautiful shades of blue and green.

The total length of the valley is 14 km, and you have three options for hiking at Ihlara valley:

-3.5 km hike, starting at the main gate and walking until Belisirma Village.

-7 km hike, starting at the beginning of the valley and walking until Belisirma Village

-14 km hike, starting from the beginning of the valley and walking along the river until Selime Monastery.

 

Turkey
Istanbul & Cappadocia Discovery
ITINERARY

DAY 1

ISTANBUL

Airport (with Assistant) - Vehicle/Guide/Driver

Upon arrival in Istanbul, you will be greeted by an English-speaking guide waiting for you in front of the Gloria Jeans Cafe. Your representative will help you coordinate meetings with your private driver and accompany you to your accommodation.

DAY 2

ISTANBUL - Ancient History

1/2 Day Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque & Byzantine Hippodrome - Vehicle/Guide/Driver

Enjoy a half a day tour in Istanbul with your own English-speaking guide and private car. The tour includes visits to the Hagia Sophia, the Byzantine architecture; the Blue Mosque, famous for its architecture as for its blue tiles; the Byzantine Hippodrome, where chariot races were held.

DAY 3

ISTANBUL Cultural Immersion

Grand Bazaar, Suleymaniye Mosque, and Spice Market Tour (5-6 hrs.) - Vehicle/Driver/Guide

Experience Istanbul’s lively bazaars and explore one of the most celebrated mosques in the city on a privately guided tour. Start your day with a visit to the Grand Bazaar, one of the oldest covered markets in the world. Accompanied by your private guide, stroll through the vibrant lanes dotted with countless shops and expose your senses to this melting pot of colors, sounds, and scents. Watch the skillful local artisans and craftsmen work on their masterpieces and try out your bargaining skills. Continue to the Süleymaniye Mosque and enjoy a guided tour of this unmissable and majestic structure that has shaped the landscape of Istanbul for centuries. Walkthrough the vast, airy interiors and keep an eye out for some of the finest examples of calligraphy in the city. Head to the adjacent gardens for a chance to appreciate stunning vistas of the Golden Horn and Bosphorus. Next, make your way to the Spice Bazaar, also known as the Egyptian Market. Wander through this captivating marketplace with your guide and take in the myriad of sights, flavors, and aromas. Stop by numerous stalls selling fragrant herbs and decadent treats, or perhaps grab a cup of hot Çay and simply watch the local life go by.

DAY 4

ISTANBUL Sail the Seas

1/2 Day Bosphorus Cruise (3 hrs.) - Vehicle/Guide/Private Boat

See Istanbul’s iconic landmarks from aboard a private boat cruise, accompanied by your knowledgeable guide. The journey between two continents as you make your way down the Bosphorus straight. Pass by old wooden mansions and posh marble palaces dotting Istanbul’s shoreline and look out for the majestic mosques of the Golden Horn with their ubiquitous minarets reaching up into the sky. Take in the views of the old Ottoman fortresses and sail past the city’s charming neighborhoods. A cruise down the Bosphorus allows you to experience this magnificent metropolis in a whole new way.

DAY 5

ISTANBUL TO CAPPADOCIA The Journey Continues…

Airport - Vehicle/Guide/Driver

Air - Istanbul - Cappadocia [Direct - 1 hr.] - Economy

Airport - Vehicle/Guide/Driver

Home Cooking Class (4 hrs.) - Vehicle/Driver/Guide

A private transfer will be provided from your hotel in Istanbul to the airport.

Board a flight in Istanbul with service to Cappadocia. The flight duration is approximately one hour.

A private vehicle with a driver and guide will provide a transfer between the airport and your hotel.

Get a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn the secrets of Turkish cuisine in a cooking class hosted at an authentic Cappadocian household. The class takes place at the home of the Duran family in the small village of Ayvali. Learn cooking techniques from ‘Mother Havva’ and prepare the recipes with your own hands with the help of her son, Mr. Tolga. In addition to learning how to prepare local dishes, you will also be making desserts and pastries. Once the food is ready, enjoy the meal you have just prepared in the quaint surrounds of the Duran family home. As a gift, your hosts will provide you with written recipes for all the dishes that you have made.

DAY 6

CAPPADOCIA A Bird’s Eye View

Shared Hot Air Ballooning with Private Transfers

Cappadocia Wonders (with Lunch, 7-8 hrs.) – Private

There is simply no better way to experience Cappadocia and its extraordinary landscapes than from aboard a hot air balloon. Early this morning, meet your private driver for a transfer to the launch site where you'll join fellow adventure seekers and get an opportunity to appreciate one of the most poetic sunrises of your lifetime. Energize on a light complimentary breakfast while your crew completes the necessary preparations before take-off. Once everyone is on board, your aircraft raises slowly into the morning sky and the magnificent vistas of Cappadocia immediately unfold in front of your eyes. Watch dozens of balloons harmoniously lift above the horizon in preparation for one of Nature’s greatest shows. As the sun beings its slow ascent, the warm rays light up your serene surroundings. Glide over the sublime hills and valleys of Cappadocia and get a true sense of the region’s fairy tale terrain. After about an hour in the air, your pilot beings the gentle descent and lands the balloon. Enjoy a glass of nonalcoholic champagne as keepsake certificates are distributed to all guests. Afterward, return to your hotel by private driver.

Spend your day getting to know the history and exploring the spectacular landscapes of Cappadocia, accompanied by your private driver and guide. Start by making your way to Ortahisar, a natural citadel carved in rocks. Be amazed at the town’s charming stone houses that line its narrow streets and visit the natural fortress that has become an important landmark of the region. Take in the splendid views of the famous fairy chimneys and the majestic Mount Erciyes in the background. Continue your day with a visit to one of Cappadocia’s subterranean cities, Kaymakli or Derinkuyu. Descend into the underground labyrinth and learn the fascinating story of 7th century Christians who established these dwellings in an attempt to flee persecution.  Next, transfer to Cavusin Valley for an opportunity to see the peculiar troglodyte settlements that stayed inhabited until the mid-20th century. Break for lunch before being driven to the Red Valley. Feel as if you have been transported to another planet as you marvel at the otherworldly terrain around you. Finish off the day with a visit to the Wine House and a better understanding of why Cappadocia is famous for its fertile vineyards. Upon the conclusion of the tour, you will be dropped off back at your hotel.  

DAY 7

CAPPADOCIA TO ISTANBUL Until Next Time…

Airport - Vehicle/Guide/Driver

Air - Cappadocia - Istanbul [Direct - 1 hr.] – Economy

A private vehicle with a driver and guide will provide a transfer between the airport and your hotel.

Board a flight in Cappadocia with service to Istanbul. The flight duration is approximately one hour.

ACCOMMODATIONS
  • Istanbul • Tomtom Suites

Comfortable accommodations in a historic setting await at the Tomtom Suites in Istanbul. The hotel is located close to Istiklal Street in one of the trendiest areas of the city. Tomtom Suites is housed in an authentic Istanbul building whose posture reflects the social history of Pera from the 1850s to the recent. Throughout its history, the building was home to French nuns and some well-known Levantine families. Now it is ready to host its new guests with its unique service policy and a new design, pairing modern comfort with historical background. Tomtom features 20 elegant suites, a terrace offering panoramic views of the old town, and nostalgic ambiance.

Classic Suite

The Classic Suites feature a king-size bed. They are suitable for double accommodation. The Carrera marble bathrooms are furnished with under-floor heating, Jacuzzi, and a separate shower. The windows can be open to the silent courtyard view.

Restaurant Amenities:

Chef Restaurant Nicole

Contemporary Mediterranean cuisine is served on a chic terrace with a magnificent view of the Old Town, Prince Islands, and beyond.

Recreation Amenities

Library

The library located on the ground floor of Tomtom Suites has a collection that will please those who wish to grasp the mysteries of Istanbul. The books about the city's historical and cultural legacy, tourist attractions, as well as a variety of books on Turkish traditional arts await the book lovers in a calm and relaxing environment. With the addition of computer access, a comprehensive DVD archive, and a fine selection of classical music and jazz, this delightful library may be the starting point of your journey.

  • Cappadocia • Gamirasu Cave

Gamirasu Cave Hotel provides some of the most distinctive and stylish accommodations in Cappadocia. Located in Avali Village near the town of Urgup, the hotel serves as an excellent base for exploring the otherworldly wonders of this mysterious and beautiful region of Turkey. All 35 meticulously designed rooms are housed in troglodyte caves, fully taking advantage of Cappadocia’s fascinating landscape. The hotel itself is a restored thousand-year-old Byzantine monastic retreat, offering modern conveniences without distracting from the spiritual character of the area. At Gamirasu Cave Hotel you are bound to experience the finest in Turkish hospitality in a most unique setting.

Standard Room

These comfortable Standard Rooms are carved in a cave or built using traditional volcanic cut stones. The rooms feature arched ceilings characteristic of traditional Cappadocia houses, wooden furniture, and embroidered bedspreads. Averaging at 269 sq. ft. and furnished with king or twin-sized bedding, the Standard Room can accommodate two guests. The private bathroom comes equipped with a shower or a Jacuzzi tub. The amenities include Wi-Fi access, LCD TV, telephone, hairdryer, minibar, kettle, and safe box.

Restaurant Amenities:

Dining

In the hotel kitchen, organically produced food is used. The chef presents the typical Cappadocian style of dinner with six Turkish dishes. Breakfast is presented as an open buffet style where you can find homemade jams, locally dried apricots, pure village honey, and cream straight from the owner’s cow. Dinner is served as six dishes. The first serving is the soup of the day. One hot and one cold appetizer follow as a starter. The salad comes with the main course and the serving ends with dessert. The hotel menu is different every day of the month, enriched with vegetarian varieties.

 

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