• AARP Members Save an additional $100 per person

    AARP Members Save an additional $100 per person

  • Additional Savings for Past Travelers

    Additional Savings for Past Travelers

Wonders of Turkey (Winter Season)

12 Days from $975 per person

Style: Value | Pace: Active

East meets West in this Turkish extravaganza exploring the Byzantine and Ottoman past of Istanbul with its colorful street markets and beautiful Blue Mosque. You'll also visit the underground city of Sarhatli, Pamukkale's cotton fortresses and the ruins of Ephesus.

This page shows Winter Season departures and itinerary; click here to see the main season version of this tour!

Print Itinerary

Overview

East meets West in this Turkish extravaganza exploring the Byzantine and Ottoman past of Istanbul with its colorful street markets and beautiful Blue Mosque. You'll also visit the underground city of Sarhatli, Pamukkale's cotton fortresses and the ruins of Ephesus.

This page shows Winter Season departures and itinerary; click here to see the main season version of this tour!

  1. Board your overnight flight to Europe (not included).

  2. Welcome to Istanbul. On arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Relax after your journey. In the evening attend a trip briefing with your Travel Director and meet your fellow travelers.

    hotel:Ramada Plaza City Center
  3. Enjoy a full-day sightseeing tour including a visit to see parts of the Topkapi Palace Museum, residence of the Ottoman Sultans between 1453-1852. Visit the Hippodrome, once the center of life where chariot racing and other public events took place. Visit the Blue Mosque built between 1609 and 1616, and the world's largest and oldest covered market with over 60 streets. Consider joining a delicious Turkish optional dinner where local cuisine is served along with traditional belly dancing entertainment.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
  4. This morning enjoy free time in the city or consider an Optional Experience Bosphorus cruise and visit the Hagia Sophia. This excursion enjoys views of the strait that separates Asia and Europe and a visit to the church built in the Byzantine capital during the 6th century and converted into a mosque by the Ottomans. Today it houses a museum and is known as one of the world's greatest architectural wonders. Early this afternoon, depart for the capital city of Ankara for an overnight stay.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Dinner
    hotel:Holiday Inn
  5. Visit the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations, a history caravanserai holding artifacts dating back 7,500 years including the most extensive and valuable collection of Hittite artifacts in the world. Visit the Mausoleum of Ataturk, the father of modern Turkey. Perhaps take an Optional Experience this evening to see a Whirling Dervish performance with dinner.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
    hotel:Avrasya
  6. This morning travel to Pasabagi and the Red Valley and later stop at a regional rug production center. This afternoon you may wish to take an Optional Experience to Göreme and Avanos. Göreme, a historical region of Turkey located among unique rock formations, was first settled back in the Roman period. Many rock churches can still be seen today, as Christianity was then the prevailing religion in that region. Afterwards continue to the town of Avanos renowned for its high quality earthenware. This evening dinner will be served at your hotel.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Dinner
  7. This morning visit the underground city of Sarhatli, one of the many underground settlements built for protection and religious reasons. Drive to Konya and visit the famous mausoleum of the Sufi philosopher Mevlana. This was also the dervish lodge of the Mevlevi order, better known as the Whirling Dervishes. Later check into your hotel in Konya and enjoy dinner.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Dinner
    hotel:Hilton Garden Inn
  8. After breakfast leave Konya and travel to see the unique cotton fortress of Pamukkale with its white lime cascades formed by mineral springs. You will also get to see the ruins of the ancient Roman health spa of Hierapolis. This evening enjoy a relaxing dinner at your hotel.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Dinner
    hotel:Richmond Thermal
  9. Today travel to Selҫuk and tour the famous ruins of Ephesus, an important cultural center of the ancient world and UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore 2,000-year-old marble streets, view a magnificent theater, see the Library of Celsus, a gymnasium and finally Hadrian's Temple. Then take a short drive from Ephesus to visit St. Mary's stone cottage, where it is believed Virgin Mary spent her last years accompanied by St. John. Arrive later in Izmir.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
    hotel:Hilton Alsansak
  10. Visit the ancient Medical Center Asclepion in Pergamon and continue to Troy with its famous wooden horse. This town is best known for being the setting of the Trojan War as well as a place where many cities are built on top of each other. Continue to Çanakkale for the night with dinner served at your hotel.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Dinner
    hotel:Buyuk Truva
  11. In the morning depart for Gallipoli, the site of many WWI battles. Visit poignant Anzac Cove, Lone Pine Cemetery and Chunuk Bair before returning to Istanbul. Enjoy a last night in Istanbul with your travel companions.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
    hotel:Ramada Plaza City Center
  12. This morning, bid a fond farewell to this wonderful city as your memorable vacation comes to an end. Transfers are available to the airport. Conditions apply.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

  • Important Visa Information

    Visas are required for this trip. Please speak to your Travel Specialist at time of booking to assess your specific requirements. Visas cannot be issued upon entry to the country.

Print Itinerary
  • Definite Departure
Depart Date Return Date Price Discount Availability Price
13 Nov 18 24 Nov 18 $975pp Request Quote Book Now
27 Nov 18 8 Dec 18 checkmark $1,225pp Request Quote Book Now
11 Dec 18 22 Dec 18 $975pp Request Quote Book Now
25 Dec 18 5 Jan 19 checkmark $1,075pp Request Quote Book Now
8 Jan 19 19 Jan 19 $975pp Request Quote Book Now
22 Jan 19 2 Feb 19 $975pp Request Quote Book Now
5 Feb 19 16 Feb 19 $975pp Request Quote Book Now
19 Feb 19 2 Mar 19 $975pp Request Quote Book Now
5 Mar 19 16 Mar 19 $1,075pp Request Quote Book Now
19 Mar 19 30 Mar 19 $1,075pp Request Quote Book Now

Price is per person and is based on two people sharing a twin bedded room. Single rooms are available at a supplement.

Shared Rooming: Room Share is available on this trip.

Airport transfers: Complimentary transfers will be provided for guests who have provided their flight details and are staying in an Istanbul hotel.

Important Visa Information: Visas may be required for this trip. Please speak with your Travel Agent when making your reservation to assess your specific requirements.

AARP Members are entitled to an exclusive Member Benefit Discount on all Grand European Travel vacations. Plus receive a free travel gift! Call Toll Free: 1-866-847-3858 for details.

Print Itinerary

  • Breakfast Daily Breakfast Daily
  • Expertly Selected Hotels Expertly Selected Hotels
  • Hotel Tips Hotel Tips
  • Personal Flight Options Personal Flight Options
  • Professional Travel Director Professional Travel Director
  • Sightseeing with Local Experts Sightseeing with Local Experts
  • WIFI on Coach and in Hotels WIFI on Coach and in Hotels

Meal Summary

 10 Buffet breakfasts, 5 Three course dinners

Sightseeing Highlights

  • Sightseeing includes the Topkapi Palace, the Blue Mosque and the Grand Bazaar
  • Visit the Museum of Anatolian Civilization and Ataturk's Mausoleum
  • Visit Pasabagi and the Red Valley and marvel at the underground city of Sarhatli
  • Visit the Mevlana Museum, home of the Whirling Dervishes
  • See the Cotton Castle springs and the ruins of the Roman health spa of Hierapolis
  • Visit the Great Theater, Library of Celsus, Gymnasium, Temple of Hadrian and House of the Virgin Mary
  • Visit the Asclepion Medical Center
  • Visit the ruins of the ancient city and see the Wooden Horse
  • See Anzac Cove, Lone Pine and Chunnuk Bair Cemeteries

 

Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

  • Important Visa Information

    Visas are required for this trip. Please speak to your Travel Specialist at time of booking to assess your specific requirements. Visas cannot be issued upon entry to the country.

Print Itinerary

Reviews

Trip not yet reviewed
Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

  • Important Visa Information

    Visas are required for this trip. Please speak to your Travel Specialist at time of booking to assess your specific requirements. Visas cannot be issued upon entry to the country.

Print Itinerary
  • U.S. citizens traveling to Turkey must have a current passport valid for six months beyond the conclusion of their trip. You can find information on how to apply for a passport here, and how to renew a passport here. A visa is required for U.S. citizens entering Turkey.

  • The currency in Turkey is the Lira (₺). While it’s a good idea to bring some money with you when you travel, you can use your debit card or credit card to pay in most places and will usually find a better exchange rate in your destination.  The most convenient way to obtain cash is to use your ATM card at local banks in Turkey. We recommend you also bring a valid credit card for purchases while you are traveling.  It is important that you inform your financial institutions of your travel plans before you leave home so they don’t flag your purchases as potentially fraudulent charges.

  • One of the most enjoyable parts of traveling is sampling the local cuisine. Mediterranean food is simple, delicious, and centered on a variety of fresh seafood, produce, cheeses and baked goods. Turkish specialties to try include Meze (a selection of starters), kebabs, in particular the Shish kebabs (pieces of meat such as lamb threaded on a skewer and grilled) and Doner kebab (lamb and beef roasted on a vertical spit which is then thinly sliced).  For dessert, try baklava, various milk puddings and of course Turkish delight. The national drink is Raki (an aniseed liqueur), which is commonly served throughout the meal either neat or with water. Turkish coffee is strong and served black.

  • We suggest bringing a variety of lightweight clothing items that can be layered to save space in your suitcase and give you more options for how to dress. Keep in mind that your shoulders and knees should be covered while visiting religious sites. For more helpful information please refer to our Packing Tips & Packing List.

  • Tipping at restaurants is less common than in the U.S. When dining out, it’s appropriate to leave 5-10 percent gratuity for good service.

    At the end of your guided vacation, it’s customary to offer your motor coach driver and Travel Director a gratuity.  We recommend €3.00 per person/per day for your driver and €5.00 per person/per day for your Travel Director.  Recommended gratuity for a Local Host and Local Specialist is 1-2 euros per person, paid at the conclusion of each guided visit.  A convenient option is to prepay your tips before your departure.

  • Baggage on our trips is restricted to one large suitcase per person with dimensions not exceeding 30x19x10 inches and a maximum weight of 50 pounds. You are also permitted one piece of hand luggage, which should be small enough to fit under your coach seat or on the small overhead shelf compartment. Please note that luggage with an adjustable handle and wheels will not fit in the overhead compartment of the coach. Hotel porterage is included in your vacation.

  • You will need to be comfortable on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours in various weather conditions.  All of our vacations involve walking, often on cobblestone and uneven surfaces in historic city centers.  In order to get the most out of your vacation you need to be able to comfortably walk 1-3 miles unassisted in one day, be in good condition and be able to keep pace with the group. 

    If you need any medications, it is important that you bring enough to last you the whole trip and keep them in your carry-on bag while you travel.

  • We highly recommend our optional Travel Protection Plan, which allows you to cancel for any reason up to 48 hours before departure. The plan also includes trip interruption, baggage loss or delay, and medical and emergency assistance. Click here for a summary of coverage details, terms and conditions. 

Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

  • Important Visa Information

    Visas are required for this trip. Please speak to your Travel Specialist at time of booking to assess your specific requirements. Visas cannot be issued upon entry to the country.

Sign up for Special Offers

Receive the latest news, announcements, special offers, and more on Grand European Travel vacations! Simply fill in the form below and submit to be added to our mailing list.