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Come On A Journey Of Faith

12 Days / 11 Nights (Tour Code: TUR-17)
Come On A Journey Of Faith

Day 1: Istanbul

Istanbul Upon arrival in Istanbul Airport you will have to purchase your entry visa, then you are assisted with your baggage and transferred to the hotel. Meet the other members of the group at a welcome dinner.

Day 2: Istanbul

Istanbul First you will visit the Blue Mosque, the 17th century Ottoman Mosque famous for its magnificent interior decorated with blue tiles, then to the Hippodrome, where chariot races took place during the Roman Times - continue to the Byzantine St. Sophia and marvel at this masterpiece of Byzantine architecture. After lunch continue to the Topkapi Palace with its dazzling display of the treasures of the Ottoman sultans. The days final stop is the Grand Bazaar where you can bargain in your choice of over 4,000 shops.

Day 3: Istanbul

Istanbul Enjoy a morning cruise on the Bosphorus, the winding strait that separates Europe and Asia, connecting the Black Sea with the Marmara Sea. Enjoy the sight of old wooden mansions, Ottoman Palaces and ancient fortresses. After lunch in a fish restaurant on the European side cross over the Bosphorus bridge and arrive in Asia. Visit the Camlica Hill where you can admire the magnificent panorama of Istanbul. Drive to the Beylerbeyi Palace, which was used as a summer palace of the Sultans.

Day 4: Istanbul - Troy

Troy - Canakkale After breakfast depart for legendary Troy, made famous by Homer in the Iliad. Visit the nine cities built on top of each other and the enormous reconstruction of the famous Wooden Horse. Continue to Canakkale for dinner and overnight.

Day 5: Troy - Canakkale

Pergamon - Thyatira - Izmir Driving south through the rich olive fields along the Aegean coast to Bergama, the ancient Pergamum, impressive site of an ancient kingdom, see the Acropolis, the Temple of Athena and the famous library, before viewing the ruins of Asklepion - in which the largest building was later on used as a church dedicated to St. John the Apostle. After lunch continue to Thyatira, site of one the seven churches. Visit the ruins of the Temple of Apollo, a colonnaded road, and ruins of a large church. Continue to Izmir for dinner and overnight.

Day 6: Canakkale

Sardis - Philadelphia - Izmir Sardis - For the first time in history, King Croesus of Sardis minted pure gold and silver coins, which were guaranteed by the state. Visit the temple, the Byzantine Church, the Roman-era synagogue and the gymnasium. After lunch continue to Philadelphia, which with Smyrna, were the only two churches among the Seven, that did not receive St. John the Baptists disapproval. Visit the Byzantine basilica with some outstanding 11-th. Century frescoes. Return to Izmir for dinner and overnight.

Day 7: Canakkale - Bergama

Ephesus - Kusadasi Worship at the Chapel of the Virgin Mary.

After breakfast visit the ancient agora of Izmir, where one of the Seven Churches, the church of Polycarp was located. Continue to Ephesus, one of the worlds finest archaeological sights. Visit the Arcadian Way, the splendid facade of the Library of Celsus, the Amphitheater where St. Paul preached to the Ephesians that "gods made by human hands are not gods at all". Visit the church of the Virgin Mary where the Third Ecumenical Council was held in 431 AD. After lunch visit the Basilica of St. John and then the House of the Virgin Mary spectacularly situated above the ruins. One tradition maintains that St. John brought the Virgin Mary to Ephesus, and that she spent the rest of her life in the house on the hilltop. The home is now visited by thousands of pilgrims each year, and Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II both celebrated mass here. Dinner and overnight in Kusadasi.

Day 8: Bergama - Izmir

Aphrodisias - Pamukkale Visit the city of Aphrodite, with its near perfect stadium, theater and temple. After lunch continue to Pamukkale (Cotton Castle) - an apt description of the natural phenomenon of fantastic white limestone terraces. Visit the ruins of the ancient city and the necropolis, and the great baths of Hierapolis. Dinner and overnight in Pamukkale.

Day 9: Izmir

Konya - Cappadocia Early morning departure to Cappadocia via Konya. St. Paul and St. Barnabas both preached in Konya, to day the city is known for its Seljuk mosques and monuments, and the monastery of the great mystic Mevlana, head of the Whirling Dervishes. After lunch continue to Cappadocia for dinner and overnight.

Day 10: Izmir - Manisa

Cappadocia Your full day tour of Cappadocia begins with a visit to the natural citadel of Uchisar, the Goreme Valley - an open-air museum with its cave-churches hewn out of rock. Visit the monastic valley of Zelve - the Valley of Fairy Chimneys and the caves of the ancient village of Avanos. After lunch visit Kaymakli - an underground city carved in the soft volcanic rock by early Christians. Dinner and overnight in Cappadocia.

Day 11: Manisa - Izmir

Cappadocia - Ankara - Istanbul Depart for Ankara, the capital of modern Turkey. After lunch visit the world-famous Museum of Anatolian Civilizations filled with the priceless collection of the pre-historic era. Then drive to the Mausoleum of Ataturk, founder of the Turkish Republic. In the afternoon transfer to the airport for the short flight to Istanbul. Arrive in Istanbul and transfer to the hotel for a farewell dinner and overnight.

Day 12: Izmir

Depart for home.

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