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Absolute Turkey
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This comprehensive tour of Turkey combines history and beaches, man-made wonders and natural phenomena, as well as a vibrant and welcoming culture. Begin your trip roaming the palaces and mosques of Istanbul before journeying into the bizarre as you explore otherworldly Cappadocia. From the amazing white cliff waterfalls of Pamukkale to the bustling bazaars of Istanbul, our local CEOs will show you the regions hidden gems and make sure your trip burns brightly in your memory long after you've left this crossroads of Asia and Europe.

  • Duration: 15 Days
  • Guaranteed Departure: Yes
  • For lovers of:
  • Physical rating: Light
  • Accommodation standard:   Budget%
  • Traveller Tour Rating: 80.0%  
  • Your Guide: English speaking
  • Supplier Tour ID: ETAT/126859
  • Starts: Istanbul, Turkey
  • Finishes: Istanbul, Turkey
You will Visit
  • Istanbul

Itinerary

01

Day 1: Istanbul

Arrive at any time.
There are no activities planned until our evening welcome meeting. After the meeting, opt to join your CEO and fellow travellers for dinner.

Get the most out of your time in Istanbul by pre-booking one of the following full-day activities to experience before your tour starts: Istanbul Backstreets Walk or Dolmabahçe Palace Visit and Bosporus Cruise. If you do, we recommend booking accommodation for an extra night pre-tour.

And don't worry if you can't decide now. These activities are available for pre-booking any time before your tour starts, while any of the optional activities listed can be booked independently upon arrival in Istanbul.

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Day 2: Istanbul/Bolu

Enjoy an orientation walk around Istanbul before moving on to the city of Bolu.

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Day 3: Bolu/Göreme

Drive to the Cappadocia region. Enjoy a home-cooked dinner with a local family.
Transfer to the town of Göreme, the base for exploring Cappadocia. With 2.5 days free to explore, there will be plenty of time to tour the area by bike, visit neighbouring villages, trek regional valleys or try a hot air balloon ride.

During one of the evenings, travel to a nearby village and enjoy dinner with a local family.

04

Day 4: Göreme

Enjoy an included visit to the Göreme Open Air Museum before free time to explore this unique region. Opt to see it from above on a hot air balloon ride or enjoy a spell-binding Whirling Dervishes ceremony.
Outdoor enthusiast? Hire a bike to get around on two wheels or join your CEO on an optional trekking tour through one of the beautiful valleys of the region.

If you want to go further afield, take a local bus to explore nearby villages.

05

Day 5: Göreme

Enjoy an included visit to the Göreme Open Air Museum before free time to explore this unique region. Opt to see it from above on a hot air balloon ride or enjoy a spell-binding Whirling Dervishes ceremony.
Outdoor enthusiast? Hire a bike to get around on two wheels or join your CEO on an optional trekking tour through one of the beautiful valleys of the region.

If you want to go further afield, take a local bus to explore nearby villages.

06

Day 6: Göreme/Güneysınır

Explore one of the many underground cities in the region. Visit Konya before spending the night in a local Turkish village. Visit a community park and cooperative, a project supported by G Adventures. Experience a homestay as the guest of a local family.
Depart Göreme and head to an underground city to explore. Have a quick lunch before journeying to the region of Konya.

Travel about 1 hour to a local village for a cozy homestay. On the way, visit Catalhoyuk, a uniquely well-preserved Neolithic site.

Upon arrival in the village, learn about local life and visit a community park and cooperative supported and developed by G Adventures before enjoying a home-cooked dinner tonight.

07

Day 7: Güneysınır/Antalya

Wander the lovely seaside town of Antalya.
Arrive at Antalya around lunchtime.

With a free afternoon, wander the charming cobbled hillside streets of the district of Kaleici, a great place to stop and have a drink with amazing views of the marina below. For a break from the hustle and bustle, head for the greenery and teashops at one of Antalya's beautiful parks or catch some sun at a nearby beach.

08

Day 8: Antalya/Kekova

Enjoy a freshly prepared dinner before sleeping aboard a boat under the stars on the Mediterranean Sea.
Drive to the beautiful coastal village of Demre for lunch. After, board our boat for an unforgettable night on the Mediterranean Sea.

The boat trip includes sailing around Kekova Island, with plenty of time to enjoy the sunshine and scenery.

Later, walk to Simena Castle to enjoy the views and archaeological ruins. Then opt to go for a swim in the crystal clear waters or just relax on deck.

09

Day 9: Kekova/Kaş

Opt for a morning swim and some relaxation before travelling on to Kaş.
Wake up on board and enjoy breakfast in the fresh morning air. Opt for a swim before returning to Demre, and continuing on to the coastal town of Kaş.

10

Day 10: Kaş/Selçuk

Guided walk of Pamukkale and the ancient city of Hierapolis en route to Selçuk.
Leave the beautiful sea behind and head to Pamukkale, passing through fruit orchards on the way.

Visit the famous white cliffs of Pamukkale and the ancient site of Hierapolis before continuing on to Selçuk.

11

Day 11: Selçuk

Visit ancient Ephesus. Optional visits to St John's Basilica and the Mosque of Isa Bey as well as the nearby picturesque village of Şirince.
Visit the ruins of the ancient Roman town of Ephesus.

After, head to town and enjoy some free time to explore. Opt to walk to the remains of St John's Basilica, visit the Mosque of Isa Bey or wander the streets of this vibrant Turkish town. Or catch a local “dolmus” bus to the picturesque village of Şirince (8 km) to sample some local wine or shop for crafts. For dedicated sunseekers, the beach at Pamucaki is also within reach.

12

Day 12: Selçuk/Ayvalık

Spend the night in a converted Ottoman mansion. Visit the G-supported handicraft workshop during an orientation walk of Ayvalik, before enjoying free time in the surrounding area or opting for a boat trip or visit to the beach.
Ayvalik's blend of Ottoman architecture, cobblestoned streets, and attractive harbour make this stop a highlight. The beach of Sarimsakli is a quick bus ride away and the harbour in town offers short cruises.

After exploring, head down to one of the waterside restaurants for a sunset drink or meal. Then enjoy the hospitality and beautiful views from the family-run pension in a restored Ottoman mansion.

13

Day 13: Ayvalık/Çanakkale

Visit the ancient city of Troy en route to Çanakkale.
Enjoy a visit to the world-famous city of Troy. After exploring the site, continue to the harbour town of Çanakkale, a busy port with a thriving student population.

14

Day 14: Çanakkale/Istanbul

Guided tour of Gallipoli, including ANZAC Cove, the war cemeteries, and Lone Pine.
Make an early morning visit to Gallipoli, where thousands gave their lives during WWI in the battle of the same name. Take in the sights and learn the sombre story.

Continue on to İstanbul for the opportunity to finish up your sightseeing or get in some last minute shopping.

15

Day 15: Istanbul

Depart at any time.
Your tour might be finished, but the adventure's far from over. Pre-book one of the following activities to experience after your tour ends: Dolmabahçe Palace Visit and Bosporus Cruise or Istanbul Backstreets Walk. If you do, we recommend booking accommodation for an extra night in Istanbul.

And don't worry if you can't decide now. These activities are available for pre-booking any time before your tour starts, or they can be booked upon arrival in Istanbul.

Inclusions:
    Activities
    • G Adventures for Good: Güneysinir Community Park , Güneysınır G Adventures for Good: Çöp(m)adam Visit, Ayvalık Local Living: Dinner with Local Family, Çavuşin Local Living: Turkish Village Homestay, Güneysınır
    • Istanbul city walking tour
    • Visit to the Göreme Open Air Museum
    • Underground city exploration
    • Overnight boat trip (Mediterranean sea, weather permitting)
    • Ancient Hierapolis and Pamukkale entrance and guided walk
    • Ephesus entrance and visit
    • Ottoman mansion stay
    • Troy entrance and guided visit
    • Gallipoli battlefields entrance and guided visit
    • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
    Accommodation
    • Hotels (12 nts), simple village homestay (1 nt), boat (1 nt, multi-share, hotel stay if inclement weather)
    • 14 breakfasts, 3 dinners
    Transport
    • Private air-con van, boat, walking
    Group Leader
    • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout
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Tour Highlights:
  • Discover historic cities and explore the ancient ruins of Ephesus
  • Marvel at the extraordinary scenery of Cappadocia
  • Enjoy dinner in a local family home
  • Relax on an overnight boat trip
  • Live like a local in a Turkish village.


Reviews (14)
Janet S. Posted on: 

Generally a great tour, lots of variety and I saw most of the things on my "must see" list.

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Kelly J. Posted on: 

Awesome. What an amazing trip. I've been back for about a month now and I look back at the pictures and can't believe what a great trip I had. Worth every penny!

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Ippolito A. Posted on: 

It was a pleasure to embrace the cultural diversity that is Turkey.

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Keith L. Posted on: 

The tour was an adventure, a learning experience, and above all a vacation.

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Regina M. Posted on: 

This is a great trip for an introduction to this multifaceted, ancient and fascinating country.

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Samuel L. Posted on: 

I had a great time in Turkey. I've been to many countries in South East Asia and wanted something different for a change and boy am I glad I did! Our tour guide brought us to all the historical sites I had my heart set on seeing and even surprised us with a few treats in the form of tea and dinner with locals in their homes. It gave us a chance to see the more natural side of Turkish culture as a break from the more common tourist attractions. I found those experiences all the more satisfying and memorable.

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Nuala O. Posted on: 

I went to Turkey to learn about the Ottoman Empire, which I did, and I also learned much more. I didn't realize that Turkey was so ancient. This made it so much more interesting.

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Judith M. Posted on: 

It was a great tour. An amazing way to get to know Turkey. I never realized how rich with history the area was or how friendly the people were.

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Peter David R. Posted on: 

An amazing trip to a wonderful country. Turkey has such a long and interesting history filled with a rich culture. Our guide, Bayram, was very knowledgeable and brought each site we visited to life with his stories and genuine enthusiasm.

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Katherine Louise B. Posted on: 

Great to have a guide who knew so much and was so passionate about the country.

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Sima T. Posted on: 

In 2 weeks we learnt so much about the history and character of Turkey from all the amazing sites we saw. Thanks to our guide Derya who was enthusiastic, knowledgeable and fun. Our driver was excellent. We had a great mix of people and a lot of laughs! The food was great and shopping was fun too!

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Emma B. Posted on: 

Loved the tour. Fantastic country, great group of fellow travelers from diverse areas, amazing sites, friendly people and a great guide.

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Angela R. Posted on: 

An excellent introduction to the culture & cuisine of Turkey - a wonderful holiday.

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Laura E. Posted on: 

This tour was an awesome experience. From first meeting our guide until we said goodbye, our days were filled with unique experiences. The history, culture and food were all highlights.

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