This 3-day tour covers Cappadocia and Ephesus, with flights. Explore Cappadocia and visit the UNESCO-listed Göreme Open-Air Museum, Ortahisar Castle, and Kaymakli Underground City. Visit the archeological site at Ephesus and visit the House of the Virgin Mary.
Duration: 3 days
Day 1: Istanbul – Kayseri – Cappadocia (D)
Your tour starts with a transfer to Atatürk Airport or Sabiha Gokcen Airport. Upon arrival, you will meet your guide, hop inside your minibus and travel a little further into Cappadocia to see its wondrous sights. Your first stop will be Göreme Open-Air Museum, a UNESCO World Heritage site, home to fairy chimneys and a collection of rocky monuments that attest to Byzantine days in Cappadocia. Then you will continue to the small town of Avanos, which is famous for its pottery production. After a quick look around the pretty town, enjoy a stop nearby in Pasabag (Monk’s Valley), and take a walk through the area’s cone-like rocks to see where monks and hermits once lived in isolated seclusion. You will discover through Dervent Valley, where fairy chimneys pepper the landscape, and then travel back to your cave hotel in Cappadocia in time for dinner.
Overnight: 4-star Dilek Kaya Cave Hotel or Alfina Cave Hotel in Cappadocia
Day 2: Cappadocia – Kayseri – Izmir (B,D)
After breakfast in your hotel, you will meet your guide for another tour of Cappadocia. You will take a walk
through Rose Valley, a gorgeous stretch of land that takes its name from its abundance of red-hued rock. Straddling the villages of Göreme and Çavuşin, the valley is peppered with rock-carved churches and tunnels, and your guide will point out the best ones as you walk. You will end this route in Çavuşin and discover its cave mosque and enjoy some free time for lunch (own expense). Hop aboard your minibus and continue your day’s tour to the town of Ortahisar to see its crowning glory, Ortahisar Castle. You may pose for photos by the unique rock fortress before traveling onward to the Kaymakli Underground City, one of Cappadocia’s best-preserved subterranean sites.
Explore its maze of passages, seeing underground stables and cellars while learningabout the early Christians who once hid here to escape persecution. Continue on to explore Pigeon Valley and afterwards return to your hotel. Please check out in the late afternoon, and travel with your guide to Kayseri Airport for your 1.5-hour evening flight to Izmir. You will arrive at Izmir Adnan Menderes Airport on your own, and enjoy a transfer to your hotel. Refuel with a late-evening meal of sandwiches laid on by the hotel.
Overnight: 4-star hotel in Izmir
Day 3: Izmir – Ephesus – Izmir (B)
After breakfast at your hotel, you will travel to Ephesus, an important archeological site, considered as one of Europe’s best-preserved Classical cities. You will explore the ruins on a walking tour and see sights such as the Temple of Hadrian — a monument built to celebrate the Emperor Hadrian’s visits to the city. You will take a break for lunch in the main town, before traveling to the House of the Virgin Mary, a site that many believe is where the Virgin Mary spent her final days.
Enjoy a look around the chapel and hear about its history as a place of pilgrimage from your guide. The tour ends with a drop-off at the Izmir airport, Izmir hotel, or Kuşadası hotel. Alternatively, upgrade to include a flight back to Atatürk Airport in Istanbul, and finish your tour there instead.