Day 1: Izmir
Arrive in Izmir Airport or Kusadasi/Cesme ports and transfer to the hotel. Overnight Izmir (D).
Day 2: Izmir-Pergamum-Thyatira-Izmir
Drive to Pergamum (Pergamum Revelation 1:11, 2:12), to visit Asklepion, medical center of the classical time, and the Acropolis with the Altar of Zeus, mentioned as the “Throne of Satan” in the books of Revelations, the steepest theatre of the world, the Temple of Trajan and the library which matched the size of the one in Alexandria in Egypt with its 200.000 volumes of scrolls. Then continue on to Thyatira (Thyatira Revelation 1:11, 2:18-24 Acts 16:14), now called as Akhisar, to visit the remnants of a basilica and some archaeological fragments from the Roman period. Return to Izmir (Smyrna) to enjoy a panoramic ride with the Citadel of Lysimachus (Kadifekale) and Clock Tower. Overnight Izmir (B, D).
Day 3: Izmir-Smyrna-Ephesus-Izmir
Early departure to visit remains of Ephesus (Ephesus Revelation 1:11, 2:1-7 Acts 18:19-28:19), where the Apostle Paul preached to the Ephesians and lived for three years, with its marble streets lined with wonderful public buildings like the Baths of Scholastica, the Library of Celsus, the Temple of Hadrian and the Theatre, the House of Virgin Mary and the Basilica of Saint John. Drive back to Izmir to see the Church of St. Polycarpe, which is the oldest church in ancient Smyrna (Smyrna Revelation 2:8-11), and symbolized the community of the Seven Churches of the Apocalypse (The church is officially open from 15:00 to 17:00 daily except on Sundays but might still be closed from time to time and, accordingly, can be seen only from exterior). Overnight Izmir (B, D).
Day 4: Izmir-Sardes-Philadelphia-Pamukkale
In the morning drive to Sardes (Sardes Revelation 1:11, 3:1-4), ancient capital of the Lydians, to visit the Church of Sardes with the great Temple of Artemis, the restored Gymnasium and Synagogue along with the part of the Royal Persian Road from Susa to Sardis, built by Cyrus the Great. Continue to Alasehir where the ancient Philadelphia Church (Philadelphia Revelation 1:11, 3:7-13) was located, to see the remains of a Byzantine basilica, built of brick, with a high arch and some 11th century frescoes. Drive on to Pamukkale, white “Cotton Fortress”, where hot mineral water bursts from the earth and cascades over steep cliffs forming pools, channels and stalactites. Overnight Pamukkale (B, D).
Day 5: Pamukkale-Laodicea-Istanbul
Visit the healing city of Hierapolis (Col. 4:13) featuring the Martyrium of St. Philip the Apostle, where he was martyred during the persecutions ordered by Domitian. Thereafter continue to Laodicea (Laodicea Revelation 3:14-22), the city established by the Seleucid Antiochus II and named after his wife Laodicea. Late afternoon drive to Denizli Airport for the flight to Istanbul. On arrival transfer to the hotel. Overnight Istanbul (B, D).
Day 6: Istanbul
In the morning visit St. Sophia (Closed on Mondays during winter months), one of the great architectural marvels of the ancient world, constructed as a basilica in 536 AD by Emperor Justinian, turned into a mosque in 1453 and now into a museum, takes the breath away with the sheer size of its interior and its magnificent dome. Continue to Blue Mosque (Closed on Friday mornings and the last minute occasions beyond our control and therefore no responsibility is assumed), famous for its mosaics with some 20.000 blue Iznik tiles and its six minarets, built in the name of Sultan Ahmet in the 17th century, one of the best examples of classical Turkish art. Cross through the Hippodrome, the scene of Byzantine chariot races, athletic events, victory celebrations and political activities of the old city where one can also see the “Obelisk of Egypt”, “Serpent Column” from Delphi, the “German Fountain of Wilhelm II” and the “Colossus”. In the afternoon, tour the Chora Museum before proceeding to Grand Covered Bazaar (Closed on Sundays), which is the biggest “souk” in the world with nearly 4000 shops of antiques, jewelry, gold, carpets, ceramics and leatherwear. returning to the hotel (B, D).
Day 7: Istanbul
A morning tour to visit the aromatic Spice Bazaar from 1663 with its domed and vaulted shops selling spices and herbs along with a wide variety of commodities, also known as Egyptian Bazaar as it was once endowed with the Cairo imposts. Then proceed to the pier so as to embark the public boat. Sailing through the waterway separating the two continents - Asia and Europe - with a possibility to take pictures of the marble palaces, ancient wooden villas of Ottoman architecture besides modern residentials. During this trip Dolmabahce Palace, Ciragan Palace, Beylerbeyi Palace, Bosphorus and Fatih Sultan Mehmet Bridges will be visible from the sea. Disembark the boat and end of our services. At leisure in the afternoon (B, D).
Day 8: Istanbul-Next Destination
Transfer to the airport for the next destination (B).
Per Person Rates:
HOTELS TO BE ASSIGNED
Izmir: BW Plus Hotel Konak
*Hotels may be replaced with similar or upgraded ones in case of unavailability
* Complimentary pick up and drop off as designated on the itinerary
* Personal expenses
No payment is required at this time. Once we get your request we will send you the preliminary confirmation. If all appoved by you, we will then e-mail you a secure PayPal payment link