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For three centuries Smyrna had been one of the most important cities in Asia Minor. Jesus’ message to Smyrna highlights contrasts: the one “who is the First and the Last,” who was dead but came to life, speaks to those who are impoverished yet rich, persecuted by those who claim to be Jews but are not, and will, like Jesus, find life in death.
DAY 1: ARRIVE İSTANBUL
Our guests will arrive in Istanbul. Welcome to Turkey! Your guide will be waiting to meet you at the İstanbul airport. After the baggage’s are placed in the bus by the help of staff, our guests will be transferred to the hotel by an orientation tour of the city. Dinner will be served at the hotel.
Overnight at hotel.
DAY 2: İSTANBUL – ÇANAKKALE
After breakfast at the hotel, drive to Çanakkale via the East Coast road of the
Marmara sea The road offers nice scenery and different types of agriculture.
Sunflowers planting are very famous in the area. Cross the Dardanelles with the
ferryboat to reach the Anatolian side. On arrival to Çanakkale lunch will be
served at a local restaurant. Visit Troy, which is home to excavations that
revealed nine principal levels of occupation dating from 3000 BC to 400 AD.
Here, one can see the ruins of the city and the famous wooden horse of Troy.
This is the place the mythological war of Troy took place, which Homer
immortalized in his Iliad. Lunch will be served at a local restaurant.
Continue to Assos. Assos is even more interesting for its situation than its
ancient remains .It is in the northwest of Asia Minor, opposite Lesbos on the
South coast of the Troad and at the entrance to the Gulf of Edremit on a steeply
terraced tracheae cone (767 ft) Dinner and overnight will be in Hotel.
DAY 3: ÇANAKKALE – İZMİR
After breakfast at the hotel departure to Bergama via Thyatira. Visit Thyatira,
which is one of the seven churches, mentioned in the bible. Visit Bergama.
Towering 1000 feet above the city, the ruins at Pergamon command an
extraordinary view in nearly all directions. One can understand how Pergamon
dominated the entire region and cast its shadow over the realm. This great
Hellenistic City was a great center of culture. Pergamon was the rival of
Ephesus in the field of commerce and of Alexandria and Antioch in that of
letters and the arts. Visit the Asclepion, the sanctuary that was dedicated to
the God of Medicine and which was the first complete health spa in history.
Lunch will be served at a local restaurant. Visit Acropolis where the ruins of a
library and sanctuary Athena are located, as well as an impressive theatre of 80
rows, allowing seating of nearly 10,000. Continue to İzmir for dinner and
DAY 4: İZMİR – PAMUKKALE
After breakfast at the hotel departure to visit Izmir (Smyrna), the third
biggest city in Turkey and one of the seven churches mentioned in the bible.
Visit Sardes, that was the capital of the Lydian empire .One of the cultural
achievements of the Lydians was the invention of coins .The coins were first
made of electrum, an alloy of silver and gold, during the reign of Croesus, and
after this there were gold and silver coins. The city offers good preserved
ruins and a wonderful smell of history. Lunch will be served at a local
restaurant. Visit Philadelphia, which is one of the seven churches, mentioned in
the Bible. Dinner and overnight in Pamukkale.
DAY 5: PAMUKKALE
After buffet breakfast, visit Pamukkale(Hierapolis) which is a
shimmering white cascade formed by limestone-laden hotsprings, which have formed
stalactites, potholes and magical fairy-tables. Bathing in this warm water that
has bubbles is an exhilarating experience. Incidentally, the water is reputed to
be beneficial to eyes, skin, rheumatism, etc. Visit the Hierapolis. In this
ancient city, the ruins spread over a mile from the city founded by Eumenes II
of Pergamon. It was leveled by an earthquake in AD 17 but was rapidly rebuilt
and enjoyed prosperity between the second and third centuries. Visit Leodicea
Antic City, which houses one of the seven churches according to the bible.
Departure to Ku?adas?. Lunch will be served on the way .The wonderful site
Aphrodisias will be visited. Aphrodisias named after the Goddess Aphrodite,
whose cult- like status became synonymous with the celebration of sensual love
and exquisite femininity, the ancient city of Aphrodisias itself became renowned
throughout Asia Minor as a center of medicine and philosophy but above all, of
sculpture and the arts. Aphrodisias has undergone a series of earthquakes in the
late antiquity and was abandoned by the survivors after the attacks of the
Arabs. Dinner and overnight will be at the hotel in Kuşadası
DAY 6: KUŞADASI
After buffet breakfast at the hotel drive to Selçuk. The guests will be visiting
the largest archaeological site in the world; Ephesus. Unmatched by any
archaeological site anywhere in terms of sheer magnitude, Ephesus appeals to
every visitor, whether serious or casual. The roots of this impressive site goes
back to the 13th century B.C. The surviving ruins of Ephesus belong to the Roman
Imperial Period. There is an impressive amphitheater big enough to hold 25,000
people and a well preserved and restored bibliotheque called the Library of
Celsius. Ephesus is known with one of the seven churches mentioned in the Bible.
See the ruins of the Artemis temple which is one of the seven wonders of the
world and find the possibility to take a photograph of it with on the back side
a wonderful view of the Isabey mosque, the Basilica of St.John, a ruin of an
Ottoman bath and the Citadel of the city. Lunch will be served in Selçuk. Visit
the Basilica of St.John near Selcuk. It is believed that St.John lived in that
area during the last years of his life and is buried under the Basilica. Lunch
will be served at a local restaurant. Visit the House of Virgin Mary, the small
house where Mary lived from AD 37 to 48, which has been visited by two popes and
millions of pilgrims. Continue to Izmir airport for the flight to İstanbul.
Transfer to the hotel in İstanbul. Dinner and overnight in İstanbul.
DAY 7: İSTANBUL
After breakfast at the hotel, departure to visit the Orthodox Pathricate.
Continue to the old city part. Visit Chora Museum; which dates back from 11th
century, and is famous for its fascinating mosaics and frescoes, most of which
date back to 13th and 14th centuries, and are by far the most important works of
Byzantine pictorial art known today. Lunch will be served in then area. After
lunch continue to The Hippodrome Square; where the four-horsed chariots raced
around beneath the gaze of the Byzantine emperors and a quarter-million
spectators. The Hippodrome dating back to 203 BC. Under the Roman Rule, this was
the largest track in the ancient times. The monuments of spinal (central line)
which survived until our days are the Egyptian Obelisk, the Serpentine Column
and Constantine;s Column. Visit St.Sophia Museum; originally a church, converted
into a mosque and now a museum, this superb building wins admiration for the
splendor of its Byzantine artwork. It was built by the Emperor Constantine, then
re-built by Emperor Justinianeus in the 6th century; this magnificent example of
architecture rises with dignity in the Old City. Besides the dome, which wins
admiration by its height and size, the mosaics and frescoes decorating the walls
are unique examples of Byzantine art. Visit Blue Mosque; which is the only
mosque in the world with 6 minarets, was constructed between the dates 1609-1617
by the order of Sultan Ahmed. Inside the mosque, everything seems to float in
the azure light reflected from the 21,043 blue ceramic tiles from Iznik.
Continue to the Grand Bazaar, which was built by the order of Sultan Mehmet the
Conqueror, after the conquest of Istanbul in 1460’s with its 4400 shops.
Transfer back to the hotel .The last evening in Istanbul will be made
unforgettable with a dinner that will be served at a superior restaurant near
the Bosphorus. Overnight at the hotel.
[The St Sophia is closed on Mondays, The Chora Church is closed on Tuesdays, and
The Grand bazaar is closed on Sundays]
DAY 8: DEPARTURE FROM İSTANBUL
After breakfast at the hotel our guests will be transferred to the airport by
their guide. After baggage handling at the airport end of