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Fouilltes de Sagalassos
General Features

Paul of Tarsus, an extremely active missionary in his day, spent most of his Christian life traveling. The majority of his journeys occurred in the Roman provinces of Asia Minor, the lands of present-day Turkey.

On this comprehensive tour, you follow in his footsteps and visit most of the places where he preached. You will better understand the Christian communities mentioned in St. John’s Book of Revelation as you investigate the Seven Churchs of Asia Minor: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.

Day 1Arrival in AnkaraSaturdayDinner
Upon arrival, meet Pacha Tours representative and transfer to your hotel. Enjoy the Welcome Dinner. Overnight at hotel.
Day 2Ankara - CappadociaSunday184 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Explore The Museum of Anatolian Civilizations with its rich collection from the Hittite, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Seljuk, and Ottoman periods. Visit the Mausoleum of Ataturk, the father of modern Turkey. After lunch, drive along the Salt Lake into the heart of central Anatolia to the volcanic region of Cappadocia. En route, stop at Agzikarahan (13th c. Seljuk caravanserai). Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 3CappadociaMonday50 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Take a full day to discover Cappadocia. Visit the Goreme Valley, an open-air museum with rockhewn churches (7th-13th c.) adorned with biblical frescoes. At a handicraft center, learn about the arts of rural Turkey and watch a demonstration on hand-made rugs. Marvel at the cave-dwellings and fairy chimneys of the Avcilar Valley and the Kiliçlar Valley. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 4Cappadocia - Tarsus - MersinTuesday173 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Tour an Underground City, a multi-level labyrinth for protection during invasions. Continue south to Tarsus, birthplaceof the Jew named Saul. Tour St. Paul’s Church (site of the 1992-93 Symposium and Ceremony) and sip holy water from the well. Admire the Ulu Cami Mosque, as well as the Eski Cami Mosque. See Cleopatra’s Gate, where she entered the city, and note that her alliance with Mark Anthony against Octavian occurred in Tarsus. Continue to Mersin. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 5Mersin - Antakya - MersinWednesday340 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Drive through the Plain of Issus (Dortyol) to Antakya (ancient Antioch). In this cradle of Christianity, see where Peter allegedly first celebrated Mass, the Grotto of St. Peter, and revere this place of pilgrimage. Admire the ancient treasures of the Mosaic Museum. Continue to Seleucia of Pieria, Antioch’s ancient seaport, from which Paul and Barnabas set sail on their first journey. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 6Mersin - KonyaThursday211 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
In the morning, stop at Kanlidivane (ancient Kanytelis). Near Silifke, visit Ayatekla (Meryemlik) to see the remains of a 5th c. church honoring the first female martyr, St. Tekla. Then discover the site of the Alahan Monastery. After lunch, drive to Manazan, a Byzantine monastery carved into the rocky hillside. Continue to Lystra, another Vatican designated place of pilgrimage. Proceed to Konya. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 7Konya - AntalyaFriday237 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
In Konya (ancient Iconium), visit the Museum of Mevlana honoring the famous mystic poet and founder of the Sufi Order of the Whirling Dervishes. Tour the Medrese of Karatay and the Mosque of Aladdin. Enjoy lunch beside lovely Lake Beysehir. In Yalvac, visit the Archaeological Museum, as well as the site of Antioch of Pisidia. Drive to Antalya. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 8Antalya - Demre - AntalyaSaturday180 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Drive to the ancient port city of Phaselis, surrounded by a pine forest. Continue to Myra, where Paul sailed to Rome, to admire Lycian rock-cut tombs overlooking the Roman theatre. In the city where the legend of Santa Claus began, Demre, visit the Church of St. Nicholas built over the tomb of the martyred bishop of Myra. After lunch, ride a motorboat on Kekova Bay to view the ruins of the Sunken City through the crystal-clear water. At Simena, photograph Lycian sarcophagi emerging from the sea, symbol of the picturesque village of Kalekoy. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 9Antalya - Side - Perge - Aspendos - AntalyaSunday94 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Drive to Aspendos, a treasure with the world’s best-preserved Roman Theater (2nd c.). After lunch, explore Perge, a spectacular Greco-Roman city visited by St. Paul on his first missionary journey. Tour the classical ruins of Side. Return to Antalya to stroll the narrow streets of the picturesque old town (Kaleici) with its wooden houses overlooking the marina. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 10Antalya - Aphrodisias - PamukkaleMonday220 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Drive to Aphrodisias, the ancient site dedicated to the goddess of beauty, love, and fertility. Appreciate Anatolia’s best-preserved stadium. At this site which drew artisans to its school of sculpture, enjoy the Temple of Aphrodite, the Tetrapylon, and the Theatre. After lunch, admire the unreal landscape at the "Cotton Castle" of Pamukkale with its white terraces of limestone deposited by thermal waters through the ages. Visit the ancient city of Hierapolis, where Philip was martyred. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 11Pamukkale - Sardis - IzmirTuesday139 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Visualize four of Revelation’s Seven Churches today. In the morning, explore Laodicea, which formed a triad with the neighboring cities of Hierapolis and Colossae. Continue to Philadelphia to tour the remains of the church named after St. John. Enjoy lunch in Sardis and explore the remains of the capital of ancient Lydia. Proceed to Izmir, ancient Smyrna, to visit the Church of Polycarp. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 12Izmir - Ephesus - IzmirWednesday110 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
After breakfast, discover one of the world’s best places to visualize an ancient Roman city, Ephesus. View the remains of the Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Visit the House of the Virgin Mary, a place of pilgrimage. Enjoy lunch in Sirince, a charming village. Return to Ephesus to tour the Basilica of St. John with its tomb and museum. Dinner and overnight at hotel

Day 13Izmir - Bursa Thursday260 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Envision two more of the Seven Churches today. Tour Thyatira, a center for the indigo trade, where Paul allegedly visited. Drive to Pergamum to explore this ancient city where parchment was invented. Ride a cable car to the upper city to take in the ruins of the Acropolis. In the lower city, explore the Asclepion, a sanctuary and healing center dedicated to the god of healing, Asclepius. In the Red Courtyard, see the remains of a church dedicated to St. John. Continue to Bursa. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 14Bursa - Iznik - IstanbulFriday171 miBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Explore Bursa, first capital of the Ottomans (1326-1364). Visit the Green Mosque and the Green Mausoleum, as well as the Tombs of the Sultans, the Silk Bazaar, and the Great Mosque (Ulu Cami) with its 20 domes. After lunch, drive to Iznik, ancient Nicaea, site of two ecumenical councils in the Byzantine era. Continue to Istanbul. Dinner and overnight at hotel.

Day 15IstanbulSaturdayBreakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Explore the Blue Mosque, recognizable by its six minarets. Visit the Hippodrome, where political, cultural, and athletic activities took place during Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman times. Tour the imposing Hagia Sophia, which marked the apogee of Byzantine Emperor Justinian's reign. Marvel at treasure-filled Topkapi Palace (15th -19th c. residence of the Ottoman sultans) with its terraces overlooking the Marmara Sea, the Bosphorus, and the Golden Horn. End the day at the historic Grand Bazaar. Enjoy a Farewell Dinner. Overnight at hotel.

Day 16DepartureSundayBreakfast
Transfer to airport for your return flight.
Special Features

Included :
o Accommodation in shared twin rooms at specified or similar hotels,
o Arrival and departure transfers,
o Transportation by air-conditioned vehicles,
o Fully escorted by a professional guidelecturer,
o Admittance fees to the museums specified in the itinerary.

Meals :
o Daily breakfast, 14 lunches (mostly in small, quaint Turkish restaurants near the sites). 15 dinners at buffet style or set menus depending on restaurants.
o One bottle of water (1/2 lt.) per person at lunch.

NOT INCLUDED : Travel Insurance, Personal expenses, Gratuities for the guide and driver, Visa fee.

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