Originally scheduled for spring 2020, we hope to offer this tour in the fall, 2021, dependent on pandemic conditions. This tour explores traditional and classical
sites and seldom visited areas. The tour has 3 segments - Bulgaria,
Cappadocia hiking, and eastern Turkey. You can choose one or more
With a maximum of 12 participants we eat at small local restaurants and go where larger groups cannot. We stay in 3-4 star hotels, often with 2 night stays. We travel in an air conditioned, private minibus.
After arrival in Istanbul we head north to explore Bulgaria which we scouted last spring for this trip. We'll traverse beautiful mountain valleys hiding Orthodox monasteries completely covered in bright frescoes. We'll explore the medieval hilltop fortress of Tsarevets guarding an antique town set along a ox-bow river gorge.
Back in Istanbul we visit the Byzantine masterpiece of Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, Justinian' s underground cisterns, the sprawling opulence of the Topkapi Palace, perched on the cliffs above the Bosphorus and bustling covered and spice markets.
Next we'll fly to Cappadocia where we have easy hikes through its strange geological formations. Pottery and carpet weaving are among the many crafts to be found here. Finally, we head to the Aegean coast where short hikes along the Lycian Way feature less traveled villages, a 5th c monastery, ruins of Roman silk road routes, aqueducts and a tiny Greek city that held off Alexander the Great. We finish in Bodrum with its fortress of the Knights of St. John Hospitaller.
A sense of adventure is required as some of these areas are not visited very often, and we may adjust the itinerary due to local conditions, weather or unique opportunities. Expect to walk 1-4 miles each day (When possible we'll find alternatives for those who decide not to walk)
Our friend of 20 years, Lutfi Atay, is licensed as a guide by the Turkish Ministry of Tourism and is a professor at the University of Canakkale. He has been our guide for previous trips and will be with us throughout this trip. I'm licensed as a State of Washington Seller of Travel and will escort this trip. I' ve visited Turkey many times and led similar tours over the last 20 years.
for pricing and detailed itineraries.
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