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two week guided tour of cappadocia and south eastern turkey
  Tour summary
   
  Tour of South East Turkey
  Duration: 10 days
  Tour features: Goreme, Mt Nemrut statues, Hasankeyf, Nemrut crater lakes, Lake Van and Akdamar island, Mt Ararat, the palace of Ishak Pasha.
  Prices from 1500 euros per person
Based on 4/5 star accommodation
Click here for prices & tour schedule
 

Tour to Cappadocia & South Eastern Turkey

Starting in Cappadocia, the eastern most part of the Roman province of Asia Minor, and early stronghold of Christianity, with its unique physical features and on to visit Mt. Nemrut with its mountain top monuments of an ancient megalomaniac! Traveling to Urfa, birthplace of the Prophet Abraham and on to Hasankeyf which will soon be lost under the flood waters of a new dam on the river Tigris and culminating with visits to Van with its 3000 year old Urartian fortress and Ishak Pasha's pleasure palace at Dogubeayzit overlooking the Plains of Ararat. This is a comprehensive tour that will allow you experience not only an astounding diversity of scenery but will give you a unique glimpse of human history from early Biblical times to the present day.

Ortahisar
Ortahisar
 
Ballooning over Goreme, an optional extra to this guided tour of Cappadocia and South East Turkey
Balloon over Goreme
 
Guided tour around Nemrut mountain, Eastern Turkey
Nemrut Mountain in Adiyaman
 
Dig site at Gobekli Tepe
Dig site at Gobekli Tepe
 
Day 1
Devrent Valley, Zelve Open-Air Museum and Monk's valley (Pasabagi) where you will see the famous "fairy chimneys." Break for lunch in Avanos and then continue on to the Goreme Open-Air Museum, which is a UNESCO world heritage site, to visit the numerous rock carved churches and monasteries. Depart for a panaromic view of Esentepe and then on to Uchisar, a natural rock castle at the end of the tour back to the hotel.

Day 2
Walk through orchards and vineyards, between fairy chimneys and rock-carved houses and visit the old Christian Village of Cavusin. After breaking for lunch, visit Pigeon Valley, and then experience the intriguing Underground City Kaymakli and on to Ortahisar, a castle carved out of the living rock.  (Optional Balloon tours are available at extra cost)

Day 3
Nemrut Mountain in Adiyaman, famous throughout Turkey for its enigmatic summit- top statues of the gods. These unforgettable monuments will be seen in the late afternoon - a spectacular vision at sunset.

Day 4
On our way to Urfa we will stop to see the Ataturk Dam. This is part of the Southeastern Anatolia Project (GAP) a massive hydro- electric and irrigation project on the upper reaches of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. In Urfa we will have lunch and then enjoy some sightseeing. Urfa called the city of prophets for its biblical connections. After a stop off at the castle with Roman columns we will visit the "Pool of Sacred Carp" and then on to the birthplace of the Prophet Abraham.

In the late afternoon we will visit the on going archaeological dig at Gobekli Tepe. Although this site is not widely known it is one of the most important archaeological digs currently being undertaken anywhere - 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 the pre-dated pottery, writing, Stonehenge and the Pyramids!

Day 5
Harran, a town of the region of Urfa. Harran is a famous city from ancient Mesopotamian times: a mystical and ancient place of "bee hive" houses built of mud brick. Genesis speaks of this town as the place where Abraham and his family lived. It is also the site of the first Islamic University of the world.

On to Diyarbekir. At least 5000 years old, Diyarbekir is one of the oldest cities in the world, encircled by a massive parapet built of jet-black blocks of basalt. It is a city based on a Roman plan with four Gates. A walking tour takes us to the fortification walls, the ancient walls of Diyarbekir.   There will also be time to visit Ulu the (Great) Mosque from the Seljuk period, and the 3rd century Aramaic Church of the Virgin Mary.

 

Day 6
Mardin: located on a high hill overlooking the plains of southern Turkey and Syria. After breakfast, we will visit Deir-Al-Zafaran (the Saffron Monastery), center of the Syrian Orthodox Patriarchy and still an active monastery. After lunch drive to Hasankeyf, situated by the Tigris river. Soon to be submerged under the flood waters of a new dam on the Tigris,   Hasankeyf   has hundreds of caves, hidden waterways, tombs, a larger and smaller Palace, as well as ruins of the Great Mosque. After Hasankeyf drive to Tatvan. Diner and overnight Tatvan.

Day 7
On the south eastern shore of Lake Van we find Nemrut Mountain (not to be confused with Nemrut Dagi in Adiyaman) rising above Tatvan. The highest peak of the mountain stands at 3050 meters. The volcanic cone was belived to have originally been higher. It was at 4450 meter before its eruption. The last time it was active was in 1440 BC. There are five lakes within the crater, and the largest of the two, which we will visit, are wonderfully different.The Cold Lake (13 sq.kms) has an average depth of 100 meters, The Hot Lake has a visible amount of steam rising from its thermal springs. The heat may reach up to 60 degrees centigrade! We will pinic by the crater lake and stroll around the crater itself. For those who arrive between June and September we will see and visit with the nomadic people who spend their summers around Nemrut Crater Lake.

On to Van via   Akdamar Island, with its ancient Armenian Church of the Holy Cross.

Day 8
On to Dogubeayzit via the waterfall at Muradiye. The road to Dogubeyazit contains numerous views of Mt. Ararat with its permanently snow capped peak rising above fertile plains.

Just outside Dogubeyazit, Ishak Pasha's pleasure palace sits on a hill to the east of the old town over looking the plains of Ararat, the final resting place of Noah's Ark and the setting place for the Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh.

Day 9
Return to the city of Van, dominated its ancient Urartian citadel. We will take time to explore these rich ruins and watch the extaordinary sunset over Lake Van.

Day 10
Return to Van for departure.

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Saffron Monastery, part of the guided tour of eastern turkey
Deir-Al-Zafaran
 
Mount Ararat
Mount Ararat
 
Ishak Pasha's Pleasure Palace
 
View of Akdamar island at Lake Van, Eastern Turkey
View of Akdamar Island at Lake Van
 
 
Map of the region
 
map of south eastern turkey
 
Tour of Cappadocia and south eastern turkey
Tour to Cappadocia and South Eastern Turkey Brochure
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Download pdf brochure
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Is a 10 day tour too long for you?
View some of our more shorter tours including a four day expedition to Mt. Ararat or a more relaxing tour of Lake Van region
Lake Van 4 day tour
view tour details
  A relaxing 4 day tour around Lake Van & Nemrut Volcano
Mount Ararat Expedition
view tour details
  Mt. ararat hiking expedition in Turkey
7 day tour of North Eastern Turkey
view tour details
  Sumela monestary - on the 7 day northeastern turkey tour
 

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