This 12-day tour is really Eastern Anatolia travel at its best.
What to see during the 12-day Extended Cultural Eastern Anatolia Tour?
Tours can be customized according to the group you want to go to. Our knowledgeable and experienced travel consultants will be able to reach your desired holiday location without having to search for individual places.
What to expect during the 12-day Extended Cultural Eastern Anatolia Tour?
Day 1: Arrive Trabzon
Welcome to Trabzon Upon our arrival at Trabzon Airport, our professional tour guide will meet with you, greeting you with a board with your name on it. We will provide transportation, and take you on your first visit. Visit the 14th-century Byzantine church of Hagia Sofia overlooking the Black Sea before proceeding to the cliffside monastery of the Virgin Mary at Sumela in the Altindere national park. From Sumela, we drive along the coast of the Black Sea to Hopa on the Georgian border where we will spend the night.
Day 2: Artvin to Erzurum
After breakfast, we depart for Erzurum via Artvin, Ishan, and the spectacular Georgian Valleys.
Day 3: Erzurum to Kars
After breakfast, we depart for sightseeing in Erzurum before the final departure for Kars via the Aras River valley and the First World War battlefield site of Sarakimis. After arriving at Kars, we will continue to visit the ancient Armenian city of Ani on the Arpacay River.
Day 4: Kars to Van
On to Dogubeyazit after breakfast and passed the Biblical mountain of Ararat to visit the Ishak Pasha Saray and then on to the city of Van where we will spend the night. Van is as well popular with his cats, they are white and have two different colors of eyes mostly blue and green.
Day 5: Van Tour
Sightseeing in the Van region upon breakfast including a visit to the 17th-century fortress of Hosap, sitting astride the ancient Silk Road into Persia and the Orient. In the afternoon, we will visit the island of Akdamar in Lake Van to visit the 10th-century Church of the Holy Cross.
Day 6: Van to Tatvan
After breakfast, we depart Van along the southern shore of Lake Van for Tatvan and then visit the great Volcano Crater of Nemrut and the Seljuk monuments of Ahlat.
Day 7: Tatvan to Mardin
After breakfast, we continue down the Bitlis Gorge, via the city of Batman, to the town Hasankeyf for lunch. In Hasankeyf (soon to be submerged under the lake of a new dam on the Tigris) we will visit some of the many caves and the ruins of the medieval Byzantine City. On our way west to Mardin, we will stop in Midyat to see the Silver Bazaar. Arrive to Mardin visit Kasimiye Medrese.
Day 8: Diyarbakir Tour
After breakfast, we visit Deir-Al-Zafaran (Saffron Monastery). The Saffron Monastery was once the ancient center of the Syriac Christian Patriarchy. This site has been the center of religious worship for many centuries, the monastery itself is built over an ancient temple, built in 1000 BC and dedicated to the worship of the sun and which now provides the foundations to the main part of the monastery buildings – it is a fascinating structure as the roof of the temple to the sun is, essentially, a flat arch! From Mardin, we will travel northwest to Diyarbakir to see the 10 Arches Bridge on the Tigris River.
Day 9: Diyarbakir to Nemrut
Sightseeing in Diyarbakir after breakfast: the Ulu Cami (Mar Thoma)(Mosque and Church), then visit the Great wall. Leave for Nemrut via the ferry over the Euiphratesry arriving in Narlice Village in Nemrut National Park. We will travel to the top of Mount Nemrut, the Tombs of the Commagene Kingdom, and the Colossal Statues of Gods. Climbing up to Tumulus of Antiochos, the capital of Kommagene, we will watch the sunset from the summit of Nemrut. This ancient funerary monument at the peak of Mt Nemrut was forgotten and lost to memory for nearly 2000 years.
Day 10: Nemrut to Sanliurfa
After breakfast, you will see Karakus Tumulus, a burial sanctuary, and the Cendere Bridge, erected by the XVI Legion in the honor of Roman Emperor Septimus Severus, before proceeding to Urfa. Via Urfa, we will visit the Ataturk dam a part of the giant South East Anatolia Project. Arriving in Urfa, we will visit the Holy Pools of Abraham and the cave where, tradition tells us, the Prophet Abraham was born. Visit the Bazaar.
Day 11: GobekliTepe to Gaziantep
After breakfast, we will visit the ongoing archaeological dig at GobekliTepe. The most important archaeological dig currently being undertaken anywhere in the world – this site represents a major shift in our understanding of man’s early history. Here lie the remains of the earliest religious structures built by man yet to be discovered. At about 11000-13000 years old and pre-dating pottery, writing, Stonehenge, and the Pyramids! We, then, depart for Gaziantep where we will visit the stunning mosaic museum which houses a priceless collection of mosaics from the now-sunken city of Zeugma. We will visit the citadel and the Old Town of Gaziantep.
Day 12: Gaziantep to Istanbul End of tour
After breakfast, we depart for Gaziantep airport for our domestic flight to Istanbul and then back home after breakfast.
Extra Tour Details
- Everyday departure (All year round)
- Duration: 12 days
- Groups / Private
What is included during the Excursion?
- Accommodation BB
- All sightseeing & fees mentioned in the itinerary
- Lunch at a local restaurant
- Flight tickets
- Transfer service from Hotels & Airport
- English Guide
- Beverage during the tour
- Tips to the guide&driver(optional)
- Personal expenses