Back
Web Page Book Now

Turkey & Greece

2 countries22 cities
17 UNESCO World Heritage-listed sites
? NEW TOUR!Uncover treasures from these two richly vibrant countries. Travel from Istanbul to Athens via incredible Cappadocia, magical Meteora and the stunning Greek Islands. Delve into ancient history, explore colourful bazaars, cruise idyllic islands and visit amazing clifftop monasteries on this fascinating journey.A city of contrasts and colourful viewsOur tour follows a unique itinerary, as we start in Turkey's capital, Istanbul. This is a fascinating city where the old world architecture seems to blend in harmony with the newer, more modern parts of the city. We'll visit the magnificent Topkapi Palace, the unique Blue Mosque, the exotic Spice Bazaar and famous Grand Bazaar.Discover ancient citiesWe continue our tour of Turkey to Gallipoli, where we pay homage to the ANZAC legend before visiting the ancient cities of Pergamum and Ephesus. Pergamum was once home to Alexander the Great and is famous for the invention of parchment paper. Ephesus is the largest ancient city ever uncovered, once home to more than 300,000 people, it's a great place to get a feel for what life was like in the time of the Romans. Greek island hopping & the mainlandAs part of our tour we'll spend 3 nights on a cruise ship as we make our way via the Greek Islands to mainland Greece. After relaxing on the islands we travel to the mainland and visit the beautiful countryside and historic sites of Nafplio and Olympia. We also cross through the mountains of central Greece to the fascinating monasteries of Meteora also known as 'hanging rocks', and enjoy a spectacular journey on the Odontotos Rack Railway. Our tour of Greece ends with time in Athens where we explore the lively Plaka district, the Acropolis and the magnificent Parthenon.

Inclusions

Travel

  • Return economy-class flights from Australia to Europe. Taxes included
  • Economy-class flight within Europe
  • Airport transfers on the first and last day of tour
  • All touring in air-conditioned vehicles
  • Tipping Made Easy, $220pp pre-paid

Accommodation & Meals

  • 18 nights in good quality hotels (3-4 star)
  • 3 nights in an outside stateroom cabin, shore excursions are included
  • 21 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 10 dinners, including group welcome and farewell dinners

Tour Guides

  • English-speaking locally based tour directors

Sightseeing

Turkish Delights

  • Tour Istanbul's magnificent Topkapi Palace, once home to the great Sultans and their families.
  • Admire the interior walls of the unique Blue Mosque in Istanbul which are covered with twenty thousand blue Iznik tiles.
  • Enjoy some tastings of Turkey's unique flavours including coffee, turkish delights and baklava.
  • Browse at will through the stalls, with the scents of hundreds of spices permeating the air of the Istanbul Spice Bazaar.
  • Explore Istanbul's famous Grand Bazaar. Built in 1457, it is one of the largest covered markets in the world.
  • Walk across the Hippodrome, once the heart of Istanbul's political and sporting life.
  • Visit the Underground Basilica Cistern in Istanbul, the largest surviving Byzantium Cistern.
  • Tour Istanbul's domed Basilica of St. Sophia (Hagia Sophia), which has inspired architects and religious leaders for almost 1,500 years.
  • Visit the World War I battlefields famous for the ANZAC involvement in the Gallipoli Campaign.
  • Stop in the town of Troy, one of the oldest discovered sites in Asia Minor.
  • Watch a traditional turkish pide-making demonstration and taste this local treat!
  • Tour the ancient city of Pergamum, a small settlement during the Archaic Period which developed in to the capital of the Hellenistic Attalid Dynasty.
  • Enjoy a hands on cooking class with the locals in central Anatolia.
  • Visit the open-air museum at Zelve Valley which became one of the most important settlements and religious centres for the Christian community between the 9th and 13th centuries.
  • Explore the local villages Ortahisar and Mustafapasa.
  • Visit the hidden monastic valley of Pasabagi, with a large number of carved rock houses and churches.
  • Travel to the fascinating G reme Valley, with its amazing moon-like setting. Over thousands of years, the rain has eroded this landscape to give rise to strange rock formations known as 'Fairy Chimneys'.
  • Follow the paths of the stunning Red Valley as the sun sets this evening and admire the richly coloured rock formations.
  • Visit one of Cappadocia's underground cities where, during the sixth century, the Christian inhabitants of this region began to tunnel into the large soft volcanic rock hills.
  • Explore the village of Avanos, famous for hand-made pottery.
  • Visit the Mevlana Museum and learn about the mystical religious order known as the Whirling Dervishes.
  • See Catalh y k, the largest and best-preserved Neolithic site with spectacular artworks and wall paintings, dating back to approximately 5,700 BC.
  • See the unique natural site of Pamukkale - white calcareous castles are formed by limestone-laden thermal springs, creating the unbelievable formation of stalactites, potholes and cataracts.
  • Visit the site of Hierapolis, meaning 'Sacred City', in Pamukkale.
  • See the beautiful city of Aphrodisias, one of the finest archaeological sites in Turkey.
  • Explore Ephesus, the largest Roman city ever uncovered.
  • Visit the House of Virgin Mary, where it is believed the Virgin Mary visited in her last days.

Cruising the Cyclades

  • Discover the island of Patmos where the Monastery of St John sits atop the island's highest hill.
  • See Rhodes, the island of the Knights and site of one of the demolished Wonders of the Ancient World - the Colossus of Rhodes.
  • Spend some time on breathtaking Santorini, the most beautiful island of the Aegean.

Ancient Greece

  • See the famous Corinth Canal.
  • Visit the ancient and well preserved theatre of Epidaurus.
  • Visit Mycenae, one of Greece's most important archaeological sites, and see the tomb of Agamemnon and the famous Lion's gate.
  • Experience a hands-on Greek cooking class and taste some local products along with the lunch you've prepared.
  • Discover the ancient site of Olympia including the Temple of Zeus, the Palaestra, Phidias's Workshop and the Olympia Archaeological Museum.
  • Take the 'Rack & Pinion' train on a spectacular hour's journey through the scenic Vouraikos gorge, travelling along the river and through rock tunnels to the village of Kalavrita.
  • In Delphi admire the Sanctuary of Apollo, the Treasury of the Athenians and visit the museum, home to the famous "bronze charioteer".
  • Be amazed by the fascinating cliff-top monasteries of Meteora.
  • Discover Athens on a panoramic tour of the city, taking in the Academy, the National Library, the Greek Parliament and the Tomb of Unknown Soldier, the Panathinaikon marble stadium where the first modern Olympics took place, Hadrian's Arch, the Temple of Olympian Zeus, and other monuments and landmarks of the city.
  • Enjoy a guided visit to the museum of Acropolis, considered one of the best museums in Europe.
  • Stroll through the popular Monastiraki and Plaka areas.
Tour Provider Bunnik Tours
Number of Days
24
Price From
AUD $10,745
Start Location
End Location
Age Range
Avg. 50+
Group Size
1 to 20
Tour Style
Comfort
Tour Themes
Rail, Slow paced, Small Marine/Cruise
Physical Rating
Moderate
Incudes Flights
Yes
Tour departure dates
StartEndAvailabilityPrice
25 Apr 201918 May 2019Guaranteed DepartureAUD $10,185
09 May 201901 Jun 2019AvailableAUD $10,185
30 May 201922 Jun 2019Limited SeatsAUD $10,185
22 Aug 201914 Sep 2019Guaranteed DepartureAUD $10,685
05 Sep 201928 Sep 2019AvailableAUD $10,685
26 Sep 201919 Oct 2019AvailableAUD $10,385
10 Oct 201902 Nov 2019AvailableAUD $10,385
ItineraryExpand
Turkey & Greece

Abbreviation: [B,L,D] Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 1. Depart Australia
Day 2. Arrive in Istanbul

Welcome to magical Istanbul, the city where East meets West, at the border of Asia and Europe. Meet your fellow travellers and Tour Director tonight for a welcome drink.

Day 3. Istanbul

Today we'll explore the opulent Topkapi Palace, once home to the great sultans. We'll also visit the iconic Blue Mosque, the aromatic Spice Bazaar and the famous Grand Bazaar. Tonight we enjoy a group welcome dinner at a local restaurant. [B,D]

Special Experience: Taste some Turkish delicacies. Think baklava and Turkish coffee, and of course, Turkish delight!

Please note: The Blue Mosque is currently undergoing renovations and therefore will be partly covered in scaffolding.

Day 4. Istanbul

We visit the famous Hippodrome today (once the heart of Istanbul's political and sporting life), the Underground Basilica Cistern and the magnificent domed Basilica of Hagia Sophia. Considered one of the world's greatest buildings, it has inspired architects and religious leaders for almost 1,500 years. [B]

Please note: The Basilica Cistern is currently under renovations and may partly be without water.

Day 5. Istanbul - Gallipoli - anakkale

Special Experience: We make our way to Gallipoli to pay homage to the spirit of the ANZACs. We visit ANZAC Cove, the Lone Pine and Chunuk Bair Memorials, and Johnston's Jolly with a specialist Gallipoli guide. [B,D]

Day 6. anakkale - Troy - Izmir

This morning we visit Troy, one of the oldest discovered cities in Asia Minor where the legend of the wooden horse was born, before continuing to the ancient city of Pergamum, once ruled by Alexander the Great. [B,L,D]

Special Experience: For lunch we'll watch a traditional Turkish pide-making demonstration and taste this local delicacy.

Day 7. Izmir - Cappadocia

This morning we fly to UNESCO World Heritage-listed Cappadocia, renowned for its spectacular landscape. For lunch today we will prepare dishes in a cooking class with locals in central Anatoila. This afternoon we explore the Zelve Valley, one of the most important settlements and religious centres for the Christian community between the 9th and 13th centuries, and the local villages of Ortahisar and Mustafapasa. [B,L,D]

Day 8. Cappadocia

Visit the hidden monastic valley of Pasabagi and a traditional carpet factory to learn how the beautiful Turkish carpets are made today. Next we explore the G reme Valley, situated amongst the amazing 'fairy chimneys'. The landscape has been eroded by rain over thousands of years, giving rise to these strange rock formations.

Optional Walking Discovery: Follow the paths of the stunning Red Valley as the sun sets this evening and admire the richly coloured rock formations. Learn more [B,D]

Day 9. Cappadocia - Konya

We explore the village of Avanos, famous for its ceramic art dating back to the 12th century BC. We'll then visit one of the many underground cities for which Cappadocia is famous - some of them are up to 80 metres deep, spread over eight levels. [B]

Day 10. Konya - Pamukkale

Today we'll visit the Mevlana Museum and learn about the mystical religious sect known as the Whirling Dervishes. We also see Catalh y k, the largest and best-preserved Neolithic site dating back to around 5,700 BC and characterised by its spectacular wall paintings. [B,D]

Day 11. Pamukkale - Kusadasi

Today we explore the amazing landscape of Hierapolis, an ancient Greek city sitting on the site of Pamukkale. Over a period of 14,000 years, nature has created a unique grouping of hot springs that cascade over a cliff, forming pools. This afternoon we continue to Kusadasi via beautiful Aphrodisias and its famed Sculpture School. [B]

Day 12. Ephesus Excursion

Step back in time as we visit Ephesus, the largest Roman city ever uncovered. We'll walk the streets, passing by the Library of Celsus, the Temple of Artemis and the Sacred House of the Virgin Mary, where she is reputed to have spent her last days. [B]

Day 13. Kusadasi - Patmos

Embark Cruise: This morning we embark on a cruise of the Greek Islands. The first port of call is the timeless island of Patmos. Originally a hillside cave, its famed Monastery of St John sits atop the island's highest hill. [B,L,D]

Day 14. Rhodes

We cruise onwards to Rhodes, former home to one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World - the now-demolished Colossus of Rhodes. [B,L,D]

Day 15. Crete - Santorini

We reach Crete, Greece's largest island and home to the legendary Minotaur. We continue our journey to what many regard as the most beautiful island of the Aegean, Santorini. [B,L,D]

Day 16. Piraeus - Nafplio

Disembark Cruise: We disembark the cruise and head to Corinth to see the ancient sites before visiting the ancient theatre of Epidaurus. We then make our way to Nafplio. [B]

Day 17. Nafplio

Today we explore a citadel with Cyclopean walls in Mycenae. Next we head to the region of Nemea where we visit a local winery and take part in a wine tasting.

Special Experience: We'll cook up a Greek feast with a hands-on lesson.

Later we take a walk through town and along the sea front of Nafplio. [B,L]

Day 18. Nafplio - Olympia - Nafpaktos

This morning we visit the home of the Olympic Games, Olympia. We'll discover ancient sites including the Temple of Zeus, the Palaestra and Phidias's Workshop, and tour the museum. We'll continue to the fortified coastal town of Nafpaktos this afternoon. [B]

Day 19. Nafpaktos

Special Experience: From the village of Diakopto, we'll embark on a 'Rack and Pinion' train journey along the 19th century Odontotos Rack Railway through the stunning Vouraikos Gorge. [B]

Day 20. Nafpaktos - Delphi - Kalambaka

This morning we visit Delphi, considered by the ancient Greeks to be the centre of the world. We'll enjoy a guided tour of the archaeological ruins including the Sanctuary of Apollo and the Treasury of Athenians and visit the museum, home to the famous "bronze charioteer". [B]

Day 21. Kalambaka - Athens

On our way to Athens, we stop to visit the impressive clifftop monasteries of magical Meteora. Monks have lived atop these 'columns of the sky' since the 11th century. The tallest of these incredible rock formations reaches 400 metres high. [B]

Day 22. Athens

After breakfast we discover the diversity of Athens on a panoramic city tour. Highlights include the ancient Acropolis, the magnificent Parthenon, the Greek parliament and the Panathinaikon marble stadium, where the first modern Olympics took place. We'll also wander through the lively Thisio, Monastiraki and Plaka districts to get a taste of the local atmosphere. Tonight we enjoy a group farewell dinner. [B,D]

Day 23. Depart Athens

Today we bid farewell to Athens and begin our journey home. [B]

Day 24. Arrive in Australia