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Highligts: Istanbul, Izmir, Pamukkale, Pergamon, Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Ancient Ephesus, House of Virgin Mary, Church of Laodicea, St. John, Hierapolis, Pamukkale,Thyatira, Philadelphia, Sardis, Smyrna
Day 1 – Istanbul
Transfer from the airport to your hotel. Day at leisure. Overnight in Istanbul.
Day 2 – Istanbul
Full Day Old City Tour:
Pick up from your hotel to visit Topkapi Palace, with royal treasury and elegant four courts. After lunch, proceed to the Hagia Sophia, a great Byzantine architectural masterpiece, whose interior is resplendent with golden mosaics. Then admire the delicate design and Iznik tiles of the Blue Mosque. Explore the ancient Roman Hippodrome with Egyptian Obelisk and Serpentine Column. Finally, stop off at the dazzling Grand Bazaar with over 4000 shops. Drop off to hotel. Overnight in Istanbul.
Day 3 – Istanbul
Half Day Bosphorus Cruise Tour:
Pick up from your hotel to visit the bustling Spice Market – a colorful bazaar heaped with various sweets and spices. Stop into the beautifully tiled tiny Rustem Pasha Mosquebefore taking a relaxing Bosphorus boat cruise (by public ferry or Zoe Yacht) between the continents of Europe and Asia – gliding past Dolmabahce and Beylerbeyi Palaces, ornate wooden Ottoman mansions and mosques, Rumeli Fortress and the Bosphorus Bridge. Afternoon at your leisure. Drop off to hotel. Overnight in Istanbul.
Day 4 – Izmir-Pamukkale
Seven Churches at Ephesus & Laodicea:
Transfer from the hotel to Istanbul airport. Fly to Izmir. Visit the city of Ancient Ephesus, the most important of the Seven Churches of Asia Minor. See the great Library of Celsus, Agora, Odeon, Trajan Fountain, Domitianus Temple, Roman Latrines, Theater and Stadium in which St. Paul preached the gospel. Also visit the House of Virgin Mary, where she is said to have spent her final years and St. Johns Basilica, a Byzantine church marking his burial place. After lunch, drive to Eskihisar, site of the Church of Laodicea, to which St. John addressed his letter concerning the city’s waning faith. Overnight stay in Pamukkale.
Day 5 – Pamukkale-Pergamon
Seven Churches at Sardis, Philadelphia, Thyatira & Pamukkale:
Pick up to visit the ancient city ruins of Hierapolis, where St. Philip was martyred in 1AD. See the Necropolis, Avenue of Tombs and Thermal Baths. Enjoy a break at Pamukkalewith snow-white terraced cliff pools. Then we proceed to the ancient Philadelphia Church at Alasehir, the youngest of the Seven Churches of Revelation,visiting the remains of an early church and the city walls. After lunch, visit the site of Sardis – the capital of the ancient kingdom of Lydia. Walk the Royal Avenue and see the site of the Church of Sardisbuilt on the foundations of the Temple of Artemis. Finally at Akhisar we visit the Church of ancient Thyatira, another one of the 7 churches, set in an ancient commercial town with strong ties to Troy and Sardis. Drop off to hotel. Overnight in Pergamon
Day 6 – Pergamon-Istanbul
Pergamon – Smyrna – St. Polycarp:
Drive to Pergamon, site of one of the Seven Churches, where St. John wrote of Satans throne being sited. Visit the Church of Pergamon, the famous Red-Court and theAcropolis. After lunch, proceed to Smyrna (Izmir), whose early faithful were praised in a letter from St Paul. Finally visit the Church of St. Policarp and enjoy a short tour of Izmircity. Transfer to Izmir Airport. Flight to Istanbul. Transfer to hotel. Overnight in Istanbul.
Day 7 – Istanbul
Transfer to the airport. Flight to Home
– Hotel Accommodation
– Licensed Professional Tour Guide
– Entrance Fees according to above itinerary
– Daily Breakfast
– Arrival and deperture airport transfers (On the first and last day of the tour)
– Modern air-conditioned motor coach with a professional driver
– Gratuities to guide and driver
– Items of a personal nature
– Any items not specifically mentioned as included
– Meals that are not indicated on the itinerary.