Un­lock best of Turkey

Sunday Mail - Travel/Escape - - WHAT’S ON -

IT’S easy to step in­side Turkey’s mys­tique on a 19-day tour of­fered by King Wil­liam Travel and In­sight Va­ca­tions that in­cludes vis­it­ing Gal­lipoli, An­zac Cove and the vol­canic re­gion of Cap­pado­cia.

The es­corted, Turkey 2013 tour takes off from Ade­laide on Au­gust 16 and also takes in Ankara (two nights), Is­tan­bul (three nights), An­talya (two nights), Konya (one night) and Izmir (one night).

Af­ter fly­ing into Is­tan­bul and a drinks re­cep­tion, it’s down to sight­see­ing the next day in­clud­ing the or­nate, Dolmabahce Palace on the Euro­pean coast of the Is­tan­bul Strait which in­cludes a greet­ing hall fea­tur­ing 750 lights il­lu­mi­nated from 4.5 tonnes of crys­tal.

On day four, the group will visit the (Egyp­tian) Spice Bazaar be­fore tak­ing a pri­vate mo­tor boat for a cruise along the Bospho­rus and lunch on board.

A visit to the mau­soleum of mod­ern Turkey’s great­est leader, Ataturk, is on the agenda for the next day as well the Hit­tite Mu­seum.

On day six, get set for ex­plor­ing the ar­chae­l­og­i­cal site of Hat­tusha, the former cap­i­tal of the Hit­tite Em­pire, in­clud­ing the en­sem­ble of rock art at Yazi­likaya, Lions Gate and the Great Ci­tadel.

One of the best pre­served Seljuk car­a­vanserais in Ana­to­lia will be vis­ited en route to Cap­pado­cia the next day.

Troglodyte dwellings and­mush­roomshaped ‘‘ fairy chim­neys’’ will be among the scenery on day seven as the tour moves from Ankara to Cap­pado­cia.

There will be a full day of sight­see­ing the nat­u­ral, vol­canic beauty of Cap­pado­cia as well as the cone of Uchisar and the car­pet view­ing fac­tory and pot­tery vil­lage of Avanos.

The pur­ported, first set­tle­ment in the world with houses (6800BC) at Catal­hoyuk is reached on day nine, mov­ing onto Konya, the old cap­i­tal of the Ana­to­lian Seljuk Em­pire.

A visit to pos­si­bly the best pre­served Ro­man The­atre, the Aspendos, awaits the next day at An­talya be­fore a drive to the Ro­man city of Perge.

The high­light of day 11 will be a cruise on the Mediter­ranean from An­talya’s old har­bour and the chance to swim near the Du­den Wa­ter­fall be­fore some leisure time later in the day.

Cross­ing the Taurus Moun­tains the next day, it’s on to Pa­mukkale and its famed lime­stone ter­races as well as the ru­ins of an­cient Hier­apo­lis and the ‘‘ Cot­ton Cas­tle’’ in Turkey’s in­ner Aegean re­gion.

Tourists will also take in more iconic sites such as Askle­pion, a fa­mous, an­cient shrine and ther­a­peu­tic cen­tre as well as Homer’s Troy, see­ing the ru­ins of nine cities built on each other.

On day 17 the group crosses the Dar­danelles Strait by car ferry on to Gal­lipoli Penin­sula to reach An­zac Cove and the Lone Pine Ceme­tery.

The fi­nal day of tour­ing cov­ers the Top­kapi Palace, a walled city perched above the Bospho­rus and the Golden Horn and shop­ping at the Grand Bazaar be­fore fly­ing out.

The tour is priced at $5286 a per­son (twin share) in­clud­ing re­turn air­fares with Emi­rates, fees and taxes. A sin­gle room sup­ple­ment of $814 ap­plies to the package which also in­cludes most break­fast, din­ners and qual­ity ho­tel ac­com­mo­da­tion. Trav­ellers re­ceive limou­sine trans­port to and from Ade­laide Air­port from the sub­urbs.

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