Venture across Turkey, a treasure trove of marvelous landscapes and architectural wonders. In Istanbul, at the crossroads of Asia and Europe, boat along the Bosphorus, then fly to moon-like Cappadocia famed for rock formations named Fairy Chimneys and ten-story deep underground cities carved from volcanic tufa. Tour the museum of Konya and shop flavorful spices at Istanbul's bustling Spice Bazaar. From celebrated Hagia Sophia and the stunningly decorated Blue Mosque to the mesmerizing spins of whirling dervishes, this adventure takes in the best of Turkey's rich cultural heritage.
Marvel at Hagia Sofia, a 4th-century church turned mosque, and the gorgeously tiled Blue Mosque
Witness the lunar-like Cappadocia region, one of the world's most surreal and striking landscapes
Attend a private ceremonial dance of whirling dervishes in the holy city of Konya
Arrive any time today and meet an MT Sobek representative at Istanbul airport for a transfer to the hotel. Spend the rest of the day exploring the city on your own or simply relaxing before the welcome dinner this evening.
Start the day by discovering the highlights of the ancient Hippodrome, including the Egyptian Obelisk and the Serpentine Column. Visit the spectacular Hagia Sophia, a former mosque that today houses a museum. After lunch at a local restaurant, walk through the vibrant streets of the old town to catch a public boat along the Bosphorus for a 1.5-hour scenic cruise. Back on land, wander through the 17th-century Spice Bazaar and its colorful stalls filled with spices, herbal teas, and saffron. Return to the hotel on foot or by public tram.
Today visit the 17th-century Blue Mosque, famed for the beautiful blue tiles decorating its interior walls and for its six minarets. Continue with the Topkapi Palace, former residence of the Ottoman sultans for about 400 years. See the Harem section, a palace inside the Topkapi, to hear about the history of eunuchs and concubines. After lunch at a nearby restaurant, explore the buzzy streets of the Grand Bazaar, a 15th-century covered market with 90 alleyways. Roam around for unique souvenirs and walk back to the hotel. Enjoy dinner on your own.
Take a morning flight to Kayseri in Cappadocia and take the 1-hour transfer to one of the world's most spectacular and surreal areas. Explore this moon-like landscape with bizarre natural formations, such as pyramid-shaped rocks. Check into the hotel, have a traditional lunch, and then head out to visit one of the underground cities carved from volcanic tufa to a depth of eight to ten stories. Drive to a clutch of valleys for panoramic views, have a brief walk in the Love Valley and - at an additional cost - a hot air balloon ride.
Start the day by visiting the majestic Goreme Valley and its open-air museum that features rock-hewn sanctuaries with remarkably preserved frescoes. Stop by one of the clay pottery workshops to see how pottery is produced using ancient methods. After lunch at a local restaurant, walk up to Uchisar Castle with its dazzling panoramic view of the Cappadocia region, and walk around the incredible area of pointed rock formations known as the Fairy Chimneys. This evening, enjoy dinner on your own.
Take a morning drive to Konya, with a stop on the way at the 13th-century Seljuk Caravanserai - once the largest rest stop in Anatolia for the Silk Road caravans. In the holy city of Konya, have lunch at a local restaurant and then visit the Shrine of Mevlana Celaleddin Rumi, famous poet, and the Karatay Madrasa Museum with its magnificent collection of brilliantly colored glazed tiles. Tonight, attend a private ceremonial performance of whirling dervishes, a spiritual dance that has been practiced since the 13th century.
Start the morning with a short walk through the city and visit the Konya Ethnography Museum with its collection of handicrafts from Konya and its surroundings. Tour the Archaeological Museum, which houses a variety of finds like Chalcolithic terracotta jars, Hittite hieroglyphs, and a grape-shaped Assyrian oil lamp. Walk through the bazaar, have lunch, and then transfer to Konya airport in the early afternoon to fly back to Istanbul. Meet an MTS representative upon arrival, and transfer to the hotel for the last overnight in Istanbul.
This morning after breakfast, take the transfer from the hotel to Istanbul airport for your homebound flight.
MT Sobek has been creating immersive cultural adventures for 50 years and we've been exploring Turkey for decades!
Our local expert guides, whom we have worked with for over 20 years, will help you get to the heart of Turkey, revealing insider knowledge and going deeper in just 8 days.
This trip features a private ceremonial performance of whirling dervishes and visits UNESCO-listed wonders in Cappadocia and Istanbul.
Our expert guides and trip leaders are truly the key to our trips' success. Many are locals who live in-country year-round; others have made it their second home—all are passionate, enthusiastic and endlessly knowledgeable. Meet a few of the guides that might be on your trip.
Guided city walks, bazaar strolls, museum visits, scenic drives, boat trips, and taking in a private ceremonial performance of whirling dervishes.
A luxury city retreat in Istanbul as the bookend, a stylish hideaway housed in restored ancient dwellings in Cappadocia, and a well-appointed upscale hotel in Konya.
Summers are hot and dry, with temperatures generally around or above 86°F in the day.
Arrive any time on Day 1 and meet an MT Sobek representative at Istanbul airport for a transfer to the hotel.
As of December 2017, the U.S. State Department has issued a travel advisory Level 3 for Turkey, advising that travelers avoid certain areas. This trip does not travel through or near any of those areas.
Islam is the largest religion in Turkey. Turkey is also a secular country, and there is freedom of religion. The Turkish Government recognizes three minority religious communities: Greek Orthodox Christians, Armenian Apostolic Christians and Jews.
Turkey's cuisine is vibrant, colorful and flavorful! There is an abundance of healthy and delicious options in Turkey, including soups, stews, assorted kebabs, mountains of bread, kofte (meatballs), pide (Turkish pizza), olives, tomatoes, cucumbers, salads, lentils, rice, yogurt soups, and more.
Although the water is considered safe, most people don't drink tap water in Turkey. We will provide clean, safe-to-drink water to our guests each day.
No. However, due to many hours of walking on cobblestone and uneven, natural paths, it is highly recommended that you wear comfortable walking shoes - not sandals.
Make any of our trips a custom adventure or start from scratch. Take two itineraries and match them up to create a unique third. Add extras and extensions and more...if you can imagine it, we can make it happen!
"Great experience every time with some of the most knowledgeable guides in their fields. We always come home with wonderful memories of the people we meet and things we see."
MT Sobek Guest
"I've taken six MT Sobek trips and they have all exceeded my expectations. The staff, the food, the logistics and the communications have always been exceptional. Thank you for being my "go to" adventure travel company!"
MT Sobek Guest