Begin your journey in the city of Istanbul, a city ruled over by the Greeks, Romans, Venetians and finally the Ottomans. The chequered history of the city has left its physical mark on the city, as has its physical location straddling two continents and as the final stop on the legendary Silk Road. The Byzantines left mosaics and frescoes in the churches and palaces, many of which still remain and the Ottomans left a series of magnificently decorated imperial mosques making a diverse and varying city skyline. Head out into the city with an expert guide who can divulge the cities secrets and teach you about its storied history. Explore landmarks including the iconic Blue Mosque, the Topkapi Palace, and Hagia Sophia. Enjoy some of the best cuisine that Turkey has to offer, everything from Italian classics to flavoursome mezes and freshly caught fish.
From Istanbul head down to the fairy-tale land of Cappadocia home to honeycombed hills and towering boulders. Here, you’ll stay in a remarkable and unique cave hotel. Explore the stunning Guvercinlik Valley by foot and find the secret evil eye tree. Get up early and discover a whole new perspective as you board a hot air balloon at sunrise and soar above this diverse and beautiful terrain. Few experiences can compare to watching the golden sunrise spilling over the spectacular landscape below you. Drift over fairy tale chimneys, orchards and vineyards all glowing under the early morning sun. Explore 10th to 12th century hewn Rock Cut Churches with a renowned art historian to enlighten you about medieval Byzantine art and history. See a pottery collection that dates back to the Neolithic times that are housed in a huge rock cave. Head out on horses into the red valley and explore this rugged land at your leisure before enjoying local wine upon your return to the ranch.
Explore Pasabag and Love Valley that house some of the world’s most intricate and unique rock formations. Learn the ancient tradition of weaving rugs with locals in Ortahisar, a spectacular town with a monumental castle that seems to erupt from the very ground. Meet with the Dervish at a Caravanserai on the silk road and experience dinner in a cave with a folkloric performance to keep you entertained. Drive to the Ihlara Valley, a 16km gorge cut into the volcanic rock that has been deposited during several eruptions of Mount Erciyes. Hike along this incredible gorge and river ending at the stunning town of Guzelyurt. Explore the many thousand-year-old rock-cut churches in the town, no two of which are the same. Guzelyurt also boasts a small and unique underground city beneath the town centre and several of the churches have been converted into mosques, a testament to Turkeys bilateral history.
Head towards the coast and explore the unique Kaunos Rock Tombs with an expert archaeological guide who will give you an insight into these 3,000-year-old ruins. Kaunos Rock Tombs are monumental and dominating, carved out of the rugged rockface with an ancient, fascinating history. Explore the ancient, abandoned city of Tlos a large historical site with a rich history. Despite Tlos’ beauty and ancient structures, it is off the beaten track and you can spend hours wandering this forgotten city without encountering another soul, although you may encounter some of the local goats and cows that graze among these living artefacts. Head to Kabak, a coastal haven cradled by craggy, pine-cloaked hills and bathed in golden sunshine. Hike through the rugged forest and reward yourself with a dip in the bright blue waters.
This itinerary is over 7 nights with the ideal time to go between June to September with accommodations at Museum Hotel Turkey, Sultan Cave Suites and Amanruya.