11 Nights - 12 Days FOOTSTEPS OF ST PAUL ITINERARY for PILGRIMAGE TURKEY

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11 Nights - 12 Days FOOTSTEPS OF ST PAUL ITINERARY for PILGRIMAGE TURKEY

Istanbul - Canakkale - Kusadasi - Pamukkale – Cappadocia – Istanbul

DESCRIPTION OF THE FOOTSTEPS OF ST PAUL PILGRIMAGE TURKEY TOUR:

Discover the Pilgrimage Footsteps of St. Paul Of Turkey on this 12-day tour which starts in City of Civilizations Istanbul and visit the Thyatira; visit one of the Seven Churches of Revelation, Acrapolis of Pergamon, and the Red Basilica (Seven Churches of the Apocalypse), Smyrna, Sardis,  SHRINE OF THE VIRGIN MARY (House of Virgin Mary Church), temple of Artemis, Unesco Heritage Anient City of Ephesus, and Ephesus Archeological Museum, Ancient Philedelphia, St. Philip’s Octagon,  Roman thermal city of Hierapolis, Ancient Laodicea, on the Seven Churches of the Revelation, Antioch in Pysidia, (Yalvac),  Church of St. Paul in Konya, the museum of 13th Century Philosopher Melvana Celaleddin-I Rumi, Deryamanli Church (Virgin Mary Church), Goreme Open Air Museum Underground City of New Saratli, Selime Monastery, Ihlara Valley (Canyon), in Cappadocia, The Church of Hagia Eirene (“Divine Peace”), Topkapi Palace, The Hagia Sofia Cathedral, Constantinople, The Hippodrome, the Egyptian Obelisk, The Serpentine Column and The Walled Obelisk, the German Fountain of Wilhelm II, Blue Mosque in Istanbul.

 

 Day 1 -           Istanbul                                                                                                       (MOB)

Arrive to Istanbul International Airport, (ETA: ….)  After customs and immigration, meet your Tour Guide, next transfer to your hotel for Check in and Overnight.

Day 2 -            ISTANBUL => Domestic Flight to CAPPADOCIA                                     (B & D)

*After Breakfast at your hotel Our full day tour includes sightseeing outstanding Byzantine and Ottoman edifices and monuments which takes place in the ancient city centre. Our journey begins with the heartland of the archaic Constantinople, The Hippodrome dating back to early 3rd century AD, which functioned as the recreational and ceremonial hub of the city as well as hosting the chariot races. We will be taking a closer look at the picturesque antiquities such as the Egyptian Obelisk, The Serpentine Column and The Walled Obelisk, which once adorned the arena, and the German Fountain of Wilhelm II symbolizing the alliance and amity between the German and the Ottoman Empire in the late 19th century. Next, we step into the Sultanahmet Mosque, also known as the Blue Mosque for its adagial tiles mainly in blue and turquoise. Besides seeing the striking decorative elements, it is worth hearing the rumours about its six minarets and the construction phase of the mosque. Our next spot is the unequivocally one of the most renowned landmarks of Istanbul, The Hagia Sofia. Having been destructed twice by two insurrections in the capital of the Empire, The Hagia Sofia found another chance to resurrect in 532 AD. Justinian I commissioned two virtuosos, Isidorus of Miletos and Anthemius of Tralles, in an attempt to rebuild the revered church. The outcome of their work along with the admirable mosaics and resplendent dome was so awe-inspiring that people believed the new Hagia Sofia was by “divine intervention”. This stately edifice was converted into a mosque following the conquest of Constantinople by Mehmet II, the victorious Ottoman Sultan. Although it has been used as a mosque for centuries -except a break from 1934 to 2020-, the opulent mosaics and Christian relics can still be seen except the praying hours. After Lunch break at Sultanahmet area, in the afternoon Our next point in the itinerary is the Topkapı Palace which was both the administrative centre of the Ottoman Empire and the residence of the Sultan until the second half of the 19th century. Consisting of four large courtyards and numerous premises, the palace both reflects the sense of art of the Ottomans in different eras and accommodates various mini museums in which objects used by Ottomans Sultans, Islamic relics and prominent pieces like The Dagger of Topkapı (Topkapı Hançeri) and Spoonmaker’s diamond (Kaşıkçı Elması) will be feast for the eyes.

*After this in the first courtyard of Topkapı Palace there is The Church of Hagia Eirene (“Divine Peace”) is a Byzantine church located within in the first courtyard of Topkapı Palace. After Hagia Eirene built by Constantine burned down, it was rebuilt by Justinian in the 6th century and extensively rebuilt by the Iconoclast emperor Constantine V in the 8th century, when its apse was decorated by a simple mosaic cross. After functioning as an arsenal or armory for centuries in the Ottoman era, it became the first museum of the Ottoman Empire in the 19th century. Hagia Eirene, which was also known as the “Old Church”, served as the cathedral of Constantinople until the inauguration of Hagia Sophia in 360. In the first courtyard of Topkapı Palace, Hagia Irene, a church known to have been built even before  Hagia Sophia, is located. The church was partly damaged by the earthquake in the midts of the 8th century and repaired. After the conquest of the City by Mehmet II, unlike most of the chruches in the City, it was never converted into a mosque. Instead, was used as an arsenal of the Topkapı place. Later in the 19 th century when the lapsed warfare materials were discovered, the church was commenced to be used as a museum of antqiue warfare. After the day trip transfer to the Airport Domestic Terminal for your flight to Nevsehir (NAV Airport) (ETA: IST/NAV By TK2008 at 18:55-20:15). Upon Arrival Transfer to your hotel in Cappadocia. Upon Arrival to hotel after Check in process, dinner will be served at hotel. In the evening enjoy Welcome Drinks and introduction lecture wil be given about your trip at hotel. Dinner and Overnight will be at hotel in Cappadocia.

DAY 3-           CAPPADOCIA                                                                                                         (B & D)

After Breakfast at hotel. Then continue to visit & explore Ihlara Valley (Canyon), Near Mount Hasan (one of the three volcanoes of Cappadocia) is a canyon with a depth of approximately 100 m.and was formed by the Melendiz River thousands of years ago. It is believed that the valley housed more than fourthousand dwellings and a hundred churches. It is estimated that arround eighty thousand people once lived here. You can see these churches along our Ihlara Valley hiking route. The churches in the Valley can be divided into two groups; The Ihlara group including the Agacalti, Purenli Seki, Kokar, Egritas and Yilanli Churches that reflect Oriental influences, nad the Belisirma group, comprising Sumbullu Church and others with Byzantine characteristics. The churches of the Ihlara group display scenes dissimilar to the scenes depicted in other Cappadocian churches. In fact, they are reminiscent of the early churches of Syria and the Coptic churches of Egypt. The texts in Ihlara group churches are unusually long. In this group special emphasis was laid upon Satan and women as the source of evil.

After Lunch break in the afternoon continue to visit and be enchanted by the incredible Underground City of New Saratli. New Saratli is one of the newest (It is the newest historical underground city found during the latest excavations one of the most comfortable underground city in Cappadocia with three stories and one a place of refuge for 15000 Christians. After this return back to your hotel for Dinner & Overnight in Cappadocia.

DAY 4- CAPPADOCIA                                                                                                       ( B  & D )

Optionaly: Today Early Morning You may join you may join Hot Air Balooning over the Charming Landscape during sun rise is this morning time.

After OBF Breakfast at your hotel, start full day Cappadocia City Excursion Today first, get the rare chance to experience the beauty and work of Turkey’s Handmade Crafts through a Turkish Carpet Weaving Course. Next proceed to visit the Open Air Museum in Goreme and You can sight to see these churches along our Goreme Open Air Museum hiking route with the early Christian churches (St.Basil’s Chapel, the Church of St. Barbara and Apple Church) decorated with unique frescoes depicting various scenes from the Bible. Thereafter, proceed for sights to see the Camel Valley Camel-like rock at Dervent Valley. Thereafter If the local authorities allow, we can visit the Deryamanlı Church (Virgin Mary Church) in Cappadocia, here available to have your mass for Groups only at Deryamanli Church. Late afternoon, drive to Avanos Village, very scenic residential areas of the region, with shopping facilities for the worldwide famous pottery ateliers and wine factories, on the way to back to your hotel, you will be able to degustate regional famous wines. Finaly return back to hotel for Dinner & Overnight in Cappadocia.

Optionaly: Today Afternoon You may join Jeep Safari Adventure along the Fairy Chimneys    

Optionaly: Today Evening You may join Traditional Turkish Folkloric Night Show incld. Drinks

DAY 5- CAPPADOCIA – KONYA                                                                                      ( B & D )

Today, After OBF Breakfast at your hotel, drive to Konya. Enroute first visit will be the World Famous Turkish Turquoise Onyx Stone Jewellery Center to have Rare Chance for Shopping with in special offered rates. Next short Photo stop will be given at a 700 year old Ancient Caravanserai Tepesidelikhan (a’hotel’ for ancient traders and travelelers on silk road) Then proceed for visit the museum of 13th Century Philosopher Melvana Celaleddin-I Rumi, which used to be the cloister for Mevlevi Dervishes. Mevlana was a philosopher & mystic of Islam, but not a Muslim of the orthodox type. His doctrine advocates unlimited tolerance, positive reasoning, goodness, charity & awareness thru’ love. To him & to his disciples, all religions are more or less truth. Looking with the same eye on Muslim, Jew & Christians alike, his peaceful & tolerant teaching has appealed to men of all sects & creeds. Next visit will be the Church of St. Paul in Konya. Konya was a place in which they made many moving speeches and where they succeeded in converting many people to Christianity. Here Paul preached both to Jews and God-fearing Gentiles, winning over many of the latter. The most important of these people was St. Thecla (Haghia Thecla) who was much affected by St. Paul's sermons and went on to become one of Christianity's foremost missionaries. She was the first female martyr. Finaly Check in to your hotel for Dinner and Overnight in Konya.

DAY 6- KONYA - PAMUKKALE                                                                                            ( B & D )

After OBF Breakfast at your hotel, today We drive (go) Higher and Healthier at Paul mention to  Barnabas  visit the Pysidia Antioch (Contemporary name Yalvac) with remains of the church and the rocktemple from the non-Christian times. St. Paul was here on his first missionary journey twice and once during his 2nd Journey. After Lunch Break in Yalvac, in the afternoon continue drive to Eskihisar to visit he Ancient Laodicea, on the Seven Churches of the Revelation. Thereafter continiue drive to Pamukkale. Check in to our hotel for Dinner and Overnight in Pamukkale.

Ps: We have Free Time to enjoy with our Thermal Bath in our Hotel. Kindly bring your Swimming  Clothes

DAY 7- PAMUKKALE - KUSADASI                                                                                       ( B & D )

After OBF Breakfast at your hotel, the tour continue on to the ancient Roman thermal city of Hierapolis, where we will visit the. Visit St. Philip’s Octagon (Martyrium). Touring the beautiful snow – like white ‘frozen waterfalls’ see the wonderful formation of stalactites in Pamukkale, highligts of the day in Pamukkale will be the Roman thermal baths, theater, main streets and Apostle Philip amidst the sites extensive ruins. After Lunch break, in the afternoon continue on to visit the Ancient Philedelphia,the least distinguished of the cities of Seven Churches with very few ruins visible now. Ancient Philedelphia,the city of brotherly love is now called Alasehir which has thick Byzantine walls that defended the city in the Middle Ages.The most interesting ruins are a Byzantine basilica built of brick with a high arch and frescoes.The city was destroyed in 17 and 23 AD because of eartquakes,but rebuilt by Roman Emperor Tiberius, Upon Arrival Check in to your Hotel for Dinner and Overnight in Kusadasi.

DAY 8- KUSADASI    Full Day Tour                                                                         ( B & D )

After OBF Breakfast, this morning, travel up to Selçuk and visit World Famous Turkish Naturel Lether Products Center and Join Fashion Show, here you may have shopping. Afterawards proceed for visit one of the world’s most outstanding archeological sites Ancient City of Ephesus which is listed by UNESCO Heritage, one of the world’s most outstanding archeological sites. Ephesus was an ancient Grecoroman City and the Capital of Ancient Ionia on the west coast of Asia Minor, during your visit will see Odeon, Marble streets (walk in its well preserved), Hadrian Temple, Roman Bath, Library of Celcius (3rd biggest in the ancient World), Grand Amphi Theathre, Temple of Artemis etc. (which is one of the seven wonders of ancient the World). Next View of St. John Basalica where the < St.John Evangelist was buried here >.  Ancient City of Ephesus was a major trading center in its time. A must-see for history enthusiasts. After Lunch Break in the afternoon proceed for visit the Meryamana to visit the House of the Virgin Mary,(SHRINE OF THE VIRGIN MARY) the most important Christian (Catholics) edifice of Ephesus.  It is situated within a Roman building constructed during the first half of the 2nd century A.D.  One of the highlights of the journey is Ephesus, one of the biggest and richest excavation areas of the world. Finaly Return back to hotel for Dinner and Overnight.

DAY 9- KUSADASI- IZMIR (Smyrna)                                                                      ( B )

After OBF Breakfast at your hotel, depart from Kusdasi for Izmir enroute visit Sardis (Sart) which is one of the most picturesque areas of any of Seven Churches. It is set upon a steep hill surrounded by an impregnable citadel. The city is sprawled below the citadel, where there was a famous temple of Artemis dating back to 400 B.C. Recent excavations have uncovered a synagogue,the last meters of The Royal Road from Susa to Sardis and a gymnasium. Thereafter proceed to Izmir is 3rd largest city in Turkey, having been built on the site of the ancient Greek town of Smyrna which includes Some of the ruins of old stadium and Ancient Agora can be seen on a hill to the west of the city. Today Lunch break will be in Izmir, in the afternoon proceed to visit one of the Seven Churches in Smyrna (St. Policarp Church). After and of the day Check in and overnight at the hotel in Izmir. (Today during your rest time in the evening, you may have your Dinner, which includes Cold and Hot Mezes and delicious fresh fish of the Aegean Sea, on Kordon Street, accompanied by a delicious sunset).

 

DAY 10- IZMIR (Smyrna)- PERGAMON - CANAKKALE                                                   ( B & D )

After Early Breakfast depart from hotel, Today first visit will be the Thyatira; visit one of the Seven Churches of Revelation, continue drive to visit the Pergamon Acrapolis, we take a Cable Car to see the Temple of Trajan, the Ancient Theather, the Library and Altar of Zeus. Next visit the Red Basilica, which is one of the Seven Churches of the Apocalypse. After Lunch Break In the afternoon, continue journey to visit Alexandra Troas, as you follow the footsteps of Apostle Paul, where St.Paul met Luke. Finaly Check in to hotel for Dinner and Overnight will be in Canakkale (Gallipoli).

DAY 11- CANAKKALE          (Galipoli) –ISTANBUL                                                                      ( B )

After Early Breakfast depart from hotel, Enroute crossing from Dardanelles by ferryboat. photo stop will be given at Replica of Trojan Horse (which is popular with Brad PiTt’s Movie) mythological & legendary city of Homeros. Next continue drive to to Istanbul. Upon Arrival Istanbul in the afternoon a comprehensive city tour starts including Bosphorus Cruise, a natural channel between Europe and Asia.  See the Ottoman mansions, fortresses and charming “yali” houses of the 18th and 19th centuries along the strait. After Disembark from the boat, enjoy to visit the Spice Bazaar Egyptian Bazaar (Spice Bazaar) was constructed Through the orders of Safiye Sultan, who was the wife of Sultan Murad III and the mother of Sultan Mehmed III, the construction was apart of the complex of New mosque Yeni Valide (New Queen Mother) in 1663.  Egyptian Bazaar (Spice Bazaar) was consructed as part of Yeni Valide (New Queen Mother) Mosque Copmplex to act as an economic institution making the pious foundation survive in order to generate funds for the upkeep of the mosque. Spice Bazaar has a total of 85 shops selling spices, Turkish delight and other sweets, jewellery, souvenirs, and dried fruits and nuts. The bazaar was (and still is) the center for spice trade in Istanbul.etc. After Lunch break  in the afternoon enjoy your free time to visit and explore ninety-two streets of the famous Grand Bazaar. The Grand Bazaar is the largest and oldest covered Bazaar in Turkey with more than 4,000 shops. A variety of Turkish Handicrafts, Oriental carpets, rare jewels and inexpensive souvenirs all sold in small shops next to each other. The merchants are selling everything from antiques, home wares, books, copper ware, ceramics, gold and inexpensive souvenirs. Venture into the hidden courtyards or hans, lookout for marble fountains and ornate kiosks. The streets are named according to the trades, such as gold and silver sellers, carpet sellers, booksellers, etc. Finaly Check in to your hotel for Overnight in Istanbul.

DAY 12- LEAVING FROM ISTANBUL                                                                                             ( B )

After OBF Breakfast Today is the Free and Easy Day for Rest and Leisure, untill your Transfer Time Back to Airport for your flight to back home. 

 

SUGGESTED  5 & 4 STARS CATEGORY HOTELS   :

CANAKKALE       :               TRIOA TUSAN HOTEL or Similar Category Hotels  (4*)

IZMIR                    :               ANEMON  IZMIR  HOTEL or Similar Category Hotels (4*)

KUSADASI          :               MARINA HOTEL KUSADASI or Similar Category Hotels  (4*)

PAMUKKALE     :               LYCUS RIVER THERMAL HOTEL or Similar Category Hotels  (5*)

KONYA                 :               GRAND KONYA HOTEL or Similar Category Hotels (5*)

CAPPADOCIA    :               ORTAHISAR CAVE HOTEL or Similar Category Hotels  (Special Class Cave Hotels)

ISTANBUL           :               GRAND YAVUZ HOTEL or Similar Category Hotels (4*)

 

ITINERARY INCLUDED :

11 NIGHTS  Accomodation (5 or 4 Stars & SC Cave Category ) at the Above Mentioned Itinerary

Licensed professional local tour guide in English language throughout the itinerary.

Private Vehicle with A/C over 2016 Year and above With Free WI-FI

2 x 500ml Miniral Water Each Day for Per Person Onboard Coach Through the Itinerary

V.A.T. / All Enterence Fees and Parking, Autoban, Ferry Expences

Meals mentioned on the itinerary (B, L, D)

1 Big Bottle of water for 4 pax during meals

 

ITINERARY EXCLUDED :

SWAB PCR TEST will be Include 48 Hours Before your flight back to home (Extra USD30,- PP)

Beverages during the meals

Guide and Driver Gratitudues 

Personal expenses ( telephone, loundry, minibar, porterages at Airports and hotels etc.)

Domestic and International Flights

Travel Insurance & Photo and Camera Fees in Museums

All Others which not mentioned Above Itinerary

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