Discover Turkey in peace when the Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cistern and Topkapi Palace open privately just for you, and view the masterpieces and riches that still remain in its ancient cities.
Luxury Small Group Journeys 2013
Save $1,000 on the single supplement on the Sep 8 and 29 departures.
Avoid long lines with express visa acquisition and private VIP meet and greet on arrival in Turkey
Explore the Basilica Cistern, Hagia Sophia and Topkapi Palace in peace and quiet when they open exclusively for your visit
Peruse the extraordinary collection in the Archaeological Museum during a private visit
Experience Cappadocian culture firsthand when you join a local family for lunch in their home
View the stunning frescoes in the Dark Church at the Göreme Open Air Museum in Cappadocia
Admire Istanbul's skyline from a private boat during a cruise on the Bosphorus
Arrive in Istanbul, former capital of the Byzantine and Ottoman empires, where you are met and driven to your hotel. This evening, join your Tour Director and fellow guests for welcome cocktails and light hors d’oeuvres.Ciragan Palace Kempinski
Begin with a private visit to the sixth-century Basilica Cistern. then a private visit to the timeless Hagia Sophia, one of the greatest surviving examples of Byzantine architecture. Continue to the site of the Hippodrome, a colossal stadium that once hosted horse races, gladiator fights, inaugurations and triumphal parades. Next, privately explore the Archaeological Museum. Travel to the ancient periphery to view the impressive City Walls. The Chora Church is found just inside and is known for its rich Byzantine interior wall decorations. Stroll through the Pera District, the modern-day heart of Istanbul and later, embark on a private cruise along the Bosphorus. Your day culminates with a welcome dinner in a local restaurant.Ciragan Palace Kempinski | Meals: B L D
Discover Topkapi Palace when it opens exclusively for you. It was from here that the Turks ruled most of the Mediterranean and Western Orient. Board an afternoon flight to Kayseri, an area more popularly known as Cappadocia. This unique landscape consists of soft volcanic rock (called tuff) sculpted into astonishing shapes by wind and erosion. Explore the mysterious rock-carved churches at the Göreme Open Air Museum.The Museum Hotel | Meals: B L D
You may take an optional hot air balloon ride over the tuff-filled landscape. Explore the ancient subterranean village at Kaymakli and join a local family for lunch in their home. Afterward, visit the potters of Avanos, who use clay from the banks of the Kizilirmak (Red River) and ancient techniques.The Museum Hotel | Meals: B L
This morning, fly to Izmir, a city with the charm of an Aegean settlement, and see the restored Agora, the market of ancient Smyrna. Then stroll through Kemeralti bazaar.Swissôtel Grand Efes | Meals: B L D
Explore the remains of the great Ionian city of Ephesus, with access to the breathtaking Terrace Houses (provided excavation work is not taking place). Unmatched as an archaeological site, the sheer size and grandeur of the ruins make this the best-preserved classical city in the eastern Mediterranean. After lunch, visit the rug weavers association at Camlik village to learn about this fine Turkish art passed down from generation to generation.Swissôtel Grand Efes | Meals: B L
Stop at the Ionian temple of Euromos. Continue to Bodrum’s fascinating Museum of Underwater Archaeology, housed in a former castle and containing many artifacts salvaged from area shipwrecks.The Marmara Bodrum | Meals: B L D
Fly to Istanbul and explore the 19th-century Dolmabahçe Palace, the largest and finest example of Ottoman Baroque architecture in the city. Join your guide on a visit to the Archaeological Museum complex; the Alexander Sarcophagus is its most important artifact. Despite its name, it does not belong to Alexander the Great, but rather, it is thought to be that of Abdalonymus, the king of Sidon.Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at Sultanahmet | Meals: B L
Frank Lloyd Wright considered Sinan the “master builder of all time.” Explore the remnants of the “age of Sinan” in Istanbul’s mosques and bazaars, including Suleymaniye Mosque (subject to completion of restoration works). Visit Sinan’s wonderful Rustem Paşa Mosque, known for its outstanding Iznik tiles. Continue to the Spice Bazaar and wander the 3,500-stall Grand Bazaar, a monument to the “Rise of Istanbul,” the great master plan of the Turks for the rejuvenation and reanimation of an old imperial capital. Tonight, gather for a farewell dinner.Four Seasons Hotel Istanbul at Sultanahmet | Meals: B L D
Board your homebound flight.Meals: B
Prices are in USD, per person, based on double occupancy.
|Jun. 02, 2013 - Jun. 11, 2013||$8,795||--||Call for Availability|
|Sep. 08, 2013 - Sep. 17, 2013||$8,795||--||Available|
|Sep. 29, 2013 - Oct. 08, 2013||$8,795||--||Available|
|Oct. 20, 2013 - Oct. 29, 2013||$8,795||--||Call for Availability|
Take This Journey Private: This itinerary is available as an independent journey led by local guides. Contact A&K for details.