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Destinations

Classic Turkey and Greek Islands

Greece, Turkey, Athens, Santorini, Mykonos, Cappadocia, Istanbul

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This tour combines ancient Athens and visits to Greece's beautiful Aegean islands with some of Turkey's most impressive and important highlights. Among others, you'll see the extensive Roman ruins at Ephesus, Pamukkale's calcium travertines, underground cities and surreal landscapes in Cappadocia and the bustling city of Istanbul.

We start in Athens with plenty of time to visit the famous ancient sites like the Acropolis and Parthenon, before heading out to the picturesque island of Santorini for plenty of sun, sea and sand. We island hop to Mykonos and Samos for more beach time before arriving at Kusadasi in Turkey. We'll visit the nearby roman ruins at Ephesus before heading inland to enjoy the rejuvenating thermal waters and limestone Travertines at Pamukkale and Heirapolis. We continue east to spend time in the fairytale landscape that is Cappadocia and venture underground to explore the fascinating underground cities. From here we head back to Istanbul, via the capital Ankara, and spent our final days visiting the famous sites like Topkapi Palace, the Blue Mosque, and the Aya Sofya.

Arrival location:

TR Athens, Santorini, Mykonos, Cappadocia, Istanbul

Departure Location:

TR Athens, Santorini, Mykonos, Cappadocia, Istanbul

Included in your experience:

  • All accommodation as stated in the itinerary
  • All transport in AC minibus/coach in Turkey and Athens
  • Greek island ferry crossings as per itinerary
  • Port-hotel transfers on Greek islands
  • 24-hour airport arrival transfer service from Eleftherios Venizelos Airport in Athens (ATH)
  • 24-hour airport departure transfer service in Istanbul (to either Istanbul - Attaturk (IST) or Sabiha Gokcen (SAW) airports)
  • Entrance fees to sites visited in Turkey
  • Services of a Greek tour leader from Athens to Samos
  • Services of a professional Turkish tour guide from Kusadasi to Istanbul
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary (12 breakfasts, 5 dinners)

Not included in your experience:

  • International Flights (available on request)
  • Visa fees
  • Travel Insurance (compulsory, available on request)
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary
  • Entrance fees in Athens (allow approx. EUR 17 for the Acropolis and Acropolis Museum)
  • Drinks, snacks, and other personal expenses (e.g. laundry)
  • Guide & driver tips
  • Port or border fees
  • Optional tours
  • Any other items not mentioned above

    None Available for this package
DAY 1 Arrive in Athens, transfer to hotel
We'll greet you on your arrival at Athens airport and transfer you to your hotel. The rest of the day is free for you to settle in and start exploring this ancient city before you meet up with your tour leader and fellow travelling companions this evening. Extra nights in the Athens hotel are available before the tour starts if you'd like to spend more time here.
OVERNIGHT
Athens - 4-star hotel
EXTRAS
Single Room Supplement, Extra night - pre-tour

DAY 2 Athens, half day Acropolis tour
We include a half day tour this morning to visit the ancient Acropolis which sits on top of a rocky hill overlooking the city, providing great views. You'll see the temple of Olympian Zeus and Hadrian's Arch, which formed a symbolic entrance to the city. You'll also tour the Temple of Nike, the most famous of Greek relics, the Parthenon, and see the original home of the marble sculptures removed by Lord Elgin that are now held in the British Museum in London.. At the Acropolis you'll also visit the impressive museum, the towering entrance of Propylaea and the Temple of the Athene Nike. You'll also stop at the Panathenaikon (Kallimarmaro) Stadium and learn about the first Olympic Games of the modern era which were held here in 1896. The rest of the day is free for you to explore Athens yourselves; whether you'd like to concentrate on more history, see the modern centre or find a cafe in a square to relax is up to you.
OVERNIGHT
Athens - 4-star hotel
MEALS
Breakfast

DAY 3 Ferry from Athens to Santorini, free time
We'll leave Athens this morning and take to the sea for the fast ferry crossing to the volcanic island of Santorini (approx. 5 hours). The present shape of the island was formed after a huge volcanic eruption around 3600 years ago at the time of the height of the Minoan civilisation. Subsequent caldera collapses have left a large central lagoon with high cliffs surrounding it on three sides. The land then slopes down to some lovely beaches, formed of different coloured sand and pebbles, including the Black Beach White Beach and Red Beach. The weather here is consistently good through the summer months and you can spend your free time here relaxing on the beaches or perhaps exploring the picturesque capital, Fira.
OVERNIGHT
Santorini – 4 star hotel
MEALS
Breakfast

DAY 4 Santorini, free time & optional tours
Your day is free to spend on Santorini today. You could relax on the beach, or take an optional boat trip into the volcanic lagoon to see the surrounding crater walls. You can also visit the active volcano, take a relaxing and therapeutic mud bath, and swim in the warm waters.
OVERNIGHT
Santorini – 4 star hotel
MEALS
Breakfast

DAY 5 Ferry from Santorini to Mykonos
You head to sea again today and take the ferry from Santorini to Mykonos (approx. 3 hours), another of the Cyclades group of Greek islands. Mykonos is one of the most popular Greek islands, and for good reason. Mythology suggests that the island was formed by the bodies of petrified giants, killed by Hercules. Today it is a cosmopolitan island that attracts tourists from Greece and around Europe who come to enjoy the great weather, historic towns and whitewashed and colourful buildings, busy shopping streets, great cafes and restaurants, and a thriving night-time clubbing scene. Known as the 'Island of the Winds', Mykonos also is a great place for watersports with some excellent windsurfing and surfing beaches. Also popular are sailing trips and diving or snorkelling. Your time is free here to take advantage of whatever aspects of the islands attractions most suit you. Your tour leader will assist with any arrangements you may like to make.
OVERNIGHT
Mykonos – 4 star hotel

DAY 6 Mykonos, free day & local options
Your day is free to relax or explore Mykonos today, again with the assistance of your tour leader. You could chill on the beach or visit some of the small villages on the island which can feel like a large open-air museum. Worth seeing are the rows of windmills built above Chora by the Venetians in the 16th century; 'Little Venice' - the most picturesque and colourful quarter of the capital Chora; the Neolithic site at Ftelia in the north of the island; several interesting museums and churches, and of course the famous beaches. Late this evening we transfer to the ferry port to catch the overnight ferry to Samos (approx. 5-7 hours).
OVERNIGHT
Ferry - reclining seats
MEALS
Breakfast

DAY 7 Samos to Kusadasi
You arrive in the Greek island of Samos early this morning. Samos is the southernmost island of the Aegean and sits just off the Turkish coast. Later in the day we will transfer you via ferry to Kusadasi on the Turkish coast. Depending on the ferry schedules, you'll have time to explore the towns of Samos or Kusadasi during the day. You'll be welcomed in Turkey by our team there and meet your professional Turkish tour guide who will accompany you for the rest of the trip.
OVERNIGHT
Kusadasi – 4 star hotel
MEALS
Dinner

DAY 8 Kusadasi, Ephesus Roman ruins tour
After breakfast we drive to the Roman site of Ephesus. The city at one time housed 250,000 people and is regarded as one of the best preserved ancient cities in the Mediterranean. We visit the Temple of Artemis, and explore the ancient marble streets of this ruined Roman city. This afternoon we visit the fruit wine growing village of Sirince and learn about the history of carpet weaving in Turkey.
OVERNIGHT
Kusadasi – 4 star hotel
MEALS
Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 9 Drive to Pamukkale and Hierapolis
You can see a display of locally handcrafted leather goods this morning before we travel east to Pamukkale, site of the famous white calcium terraces known as Travertines. Pamukkale translates as ‘cotton castles’ and the naturally occurring geology here has created cloud like formations unlike anywhere else. We then head to the adjacent ancient city of Hierapolis where you can enjoy a dip in the hot thermal pools lodged amongst ancient columns left by the Romans who used the pools for their therapeutic powers.
OVERNIGHT
Pamukkale - 5 star hotel
MEALS
Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 10 Drive the Silk Road to Konya
Travel back in time today as we follow the ancient Silk Road towards Konya. We learn more about the history of this important trade route with a stop at the Sultanhani Caravanserai before arriving in Konya where we include a visit to the Mevlana museum – the former home of the original Mevlevi Whirling Dervishes.
OVERNIGHT
Cappadocia - 4 star hotel
MEALS
Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 11 Cappadocia, full day tour
Today we set out to explore the beautiful and surreal landscape of Cappadocia. Unlike anywhere else on earth, this bizarre setting creates a fairytale view full of improbable rock formations and underground villages. Often described as the jewel of Turkey we have a full tour here to explore the Goreme Valley Open Air Museum, the fairy chimneys, and we'll also explore an underground city full of subterranean churches, living areas, schools and shops used by Christians to avoid persecution over a thousand years ago.
OVERNIGHT
Cappadocia - 4 star hotel
MEALS
Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 12 Cappadocia, drive to Ankara before returning to Istanbul
We leave early this morning for the drive to Ankara, Turkey’s modern day capital city. We visit Anitkabir – mausoleum of the famed Mustafa Kemal Ataturk before returning to Istanbul by road. This is a long day's drive, and we can arrange an upgrade to an internal flight from Kayseri in Cappadocia if you prefer (please ask for current times & prices).
OVERNIGHT
Istanbul – 4 star hotel
MEALS
Breakfast

DAY 13 Istanbul, Old City tour
Today's tour of the old city of Istanbul provides an introduction to the history and some of the most important sites in this fascinating city. Straddling two continents Istanbul (or Constantinople as it was previously known) played an integral role in the development of both the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires. We'll visit the 17th century Blue Mosque, the Aya Sofya museum and explore the former residence of the Ottoman Sultans at Topkapi Palace before ending at the famous Hippodrome.
OVERNIGHT
Istanbul – 4 star hotel
MEALS
Breakfast

DAY 14 Istanbul, departure transfer to the airport
Your time is free today for some last minute sightseeing and shopping in Istanbul before we transfer you to the airport for your flight home. Optional tours are available locally to see more of Istanbul, and we can also add extra nights in the Istanbul hotel if you'd like to spend more time exploring the city.
OVERNIGHT
N/A
MEALS
Breakfast
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Added by
Douglas K.
Via
Encounters Travel

Destinations

Classic Turkey and Greek Islands

Greece, Turkey, Athens, Santorini, Mykonos, Cappadocia, Istanbul

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