The region of Mesopotamia has been considered by many to be the birthplace of all world civilizations. We invite you to explore a land located at the intersection of civilizations and religions, Southeast Turkey…
The most beautiful town in the old empire is Mardin, or the city of the sun, which is strategically positioned on a rocky hill near the Tigris River that winds through the plains of Mesopotamia. Gaziantep is located on the ancient Silk Road and is one of the oldest settlements in Mesopotamia. Sanliurfa is considered the Jerusalem of Anatolia and, according to the Old Testament, is the birthplace of the Prophet Ibrahim.
We will discover the rhythm of contemporaneity in Adana and Gaziantep and not least In turn we will explore Göbekli Tepe considered to be the oldest place of worship of mankind.
Terms & Conditions
- All prices quoted are Per Person on HB basis in EURO
- Rates are applicable for a minimum of 15/20/25/30 + 1 FOC persons traveling at one time.
- Rates are based on Superior or Standard category of rooms depends on the Hotels Classes.
- Prices may vary according to the number of people participating in the tour and the requested dates
- For Additional Information and details or different type of tour that you want , please contact with us.
DAY 1: _____ – ISTANBUL – MARDİN
Arrival in Mardin __ ____ at time __:__, one of the oldest settlements in Mesopotamia, which resembles in its air the old Jerusalem, unique in its well-preserved architectural richness, with stone houses, elegant madrasas, imposing mosques and Orthodox churches , which denotes cultural diversity and religious tolerance. Dinner and accommodation in Mardin at Hotel.
DAY 2: MARDIN – GÖBEKLİ TEPE – SANLIURFA
After breakfast walking tour on the old brick roads of Mesopotamian Cities in Mardin, then visit to the Deyrul Zafaran Syrian Orthodox one of the oldest in the world, and the former headquarters of the Patriarchate. Syrian Orthodox Church for 800 years. This monastery was built on the site of a temple over 4000 years old Monastery. Departure to Sanliurfa.
We continue the itinerary Göbekli Tepe, the oldest religious structure ever made by man, revolutionized the status of the Eurasian Neolithic. Göbekli Tepe is located in Upper Mesopotamia, a region which saw the emergence of the most ancient farming communities in the world. Monumental structures, interpreted as monumental communal buildings (enclosures), were erected by groups of hunter-gatherers in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic period (10th-9th millennia BC).
The monuments were probably used in connection with social events and rituals and feature distinctive limestone T-shaped pillars, some of which are up to 5.50 meters tall. Some of the pillars, which are abstract depictions of the human form, also feature low reliefs of items of clothing, e.g. belts and loincloths, as well as high and low reliefs of wild animals. Recent excavation works have also identified the remains of non-monumental structures which appear to stem from domestic buildings. The route continues to the current city of Sanliurfa or the ancient Ur, a well-preserved city with traditional buildings and an amalgam of colors that delight the visitor. City of Harran renowned for its conic domed houses, medieval castle and an ancient university. In the famous “Harran School” Sabian, Christian and Muslim scholars could carry on their studies freely and translate the ancient Greek scripts to Syriac and Aramaic. Dinner and accommodation in Şanlıurfa at Hotel.
DAY 3: SANLIURFA – ADIYAMAN
After Breakfast. The first part of the day is dedicated to visiting the old town of Urfa, which dates from about the century. Just south of Urfa province in the Southeastern Anatolia region of Turkey, Harran is a well know town for its traditional beehive houses. Despite the fact that it is situated in the middle of a droughty and barren plain, Harran has managed to stay alive for 5000 years. Said to be Biblical Ur, where the Prophet Abraham was born and began his monotheistic teachings, Sanliurfa is one of Turkey’s great pilgrimage cities. The commerce from Anatolia to Mesopotamia, and from Mesopotamia to Anatolia took place through Harran for thousands of years and provided a rich and ineradicable culture to the area.
We will visit Hazreti Ibrahim, Abraham’s Cave – Dogum Magarasi, Golibasi, a tourist complex with beautiful gardens and pools of “holy carp” in the courtyard of the Halil’ul Rahman mosque and we will walk the streets of the old city and the bazaar. We continue the itinerary Adıyaman, we will cross the Euphrates and pass through Birecik, the old Apamaea, an important starting point for Roman incursions to the East, today being one of the two places in the world where the bald ibis nests, a protected species. Dinner and accommodation in Adıyaman at Hotel.
DAY 4: ADIYAMAN – GAZIANTEP
After breakfast, we will climb with minibuses on Mount Nemrut, one of the least known and also one of the most spectacular places in Turkey, the highest mountain in northern Mesopotamia, located at an altitude of 2,134 m. The mausoleum of Antiochus I (69–34 B.C.), who reigned over Commagene, a kingdom founded north of Syria and the Euphrates after the breakup of Alexander’s empire, is one of the most ambitious constructions of the Hellenistic period. With a diameter of 145 m, the 50 m high funerary mound of stone chips is surrounded on three sides by terraces to the east, west and north directions. Two separate antique processional routes radiate from the east and west terraces. Five giant seated limestone statues, identified by their inscriptions as deities, face outwards from the tumulus on the upper level of the east and west terraces. These are flanked by a pair of guardian animal statues – a lion and eagle – at each end. The heads of the statues have fallen off to the lower level, which accommodates two rows of sandstone stelae, mounted on pedestals with an altar in front of each stele. One row carries relief sculptures of Antiochos’ paternal Persian ancestors, the other of his maternal Macedonian ancestors.
We will then descend Mount Nemrut and stop at the Roman Ash Bridge, built over one of the largest tributaries of the Euphrates, once known as the Nymphaium River and then the Karakus Tumulus, surrounded by carved pillars with animal motifs.
Departure to Gaziantep, one of the oldest cities of Hittite origin in eastern Anatolia, famous for the pistachio “baklava” produced here. After arriving in Gaziantep we will visit the impressive Archaeological Museum, which preserves beautiful mosaic panels recovered from the ancient city of Zeugma, the last Roman fortress on the eastern border of the Roman Empire, currently covered by the Birecik Dam on the Euphrates. The museum exhibits Hittite reliefs and impeccably preserved mosaics, of which the “Tigancusa din Zeugma” stands out, a mosaic from the 15th century. II, in which Alexander the Great is supposed to be embodied. Dinner and accommodation in Gaziantep at Hotel.
DAY 5: GAZİANTEP – ANTAKYA
Breakfast. Gaziantep has been the home of various civilizations throughout the history because of its geographical location. The city is between Mesopotamia and Mediterrenean lands, it has been housed since the pre-historic ages, the historical silk road passes through the city, it is at the intersection point of the roads. All these reasons have made the city popular in commercial, cultural and artistic fields so far.
Gaziantep is famous for its three regional specialties:
The copper-ware products
The delicious lahmacun (a kind of thin pizza)
Sweet pastry baklava
Our journey then continues to the Middle East, to Antakya or biblical Antioch, one of the Christian capitals of the world called the “Golden City”, “Pearl of the Orient”, “Beautiful Antioch”, “Voluptuous Antioch”, “Antioch of Pleasures” or “Sensual Antioch ”, which all the emperors of Rome who visited overwhelmed her with gifts. In 42 AD, the disciples of Christ who were called Nazarenes or Galileans, took the name of Christians here for the first time and since then, Antioch has been considered the cradle of Christianity. Also here the saints Barnabas, Paul and Peter preached. Dinner and accommodation in Antakya at Hotel.
DAY 6: ANTAKYA – ADANA
After breakfast. In the morning we will visit the Hatay Archaeological Museum. Marvel at Paleolithic artefacts, medieval pottery, Roman sarcophagi, statues including c.1000 BC King Suppilulium, the world’s second largest collection of 2nd and 3rd century mosaics plus depictions of Narcissus and Orpheus, Thalassa and the Nude Fisherman and much more. This incomparable museum contains one in all the world’s finest collections of Roman and Byzantine mosaics, covering a period from the first century AD to the 5th century. Many were recovered almost intact from Tarsus or Harbiye, 9km to the south.
We will continue to visit the church-cave (exterior) where St. Peter between 47 and 54 AD, Sen Piyer Kilisesi, considered to be the oldest church in the world. Next we will go to Samandag (old Seleucia Pieria), the old port of Antioch. The day continues with the journey to Adana, passing by Iskenderun, Alexandretta in Greek, a city with a Levantine flavor, built in triumph by Alexander the Great after the defeat of the Persian emperor Darius in 333 BC, thus changing the course of history.
Arrival at Adana, the fourth largest city in Turkey, the birthplace of the famous spicy kebab, a city where we will see the New Mosque Merkez Camii, a beautiful huge building with six minarets, whose white marble is reflected in the river Seyhan and which is preceded in size only by the Sulimaniye Mosque in Istanbul. Dinner and accommodation in Adana at Hotel.
DAY 7: ADANA – CAPPADOCIA
Breakfast. Today we will move to Tarsus, a city dating back to approx. from the year 3,000 BC. and which, according to legend, was discovered by Seth, the son of Adam. Here is the birthplace of the Jew Saul, who, living a revelation on the road to Damascus, became St. Paul. At the same time, according to Plutarch, in Tarsus, Cleopatra met and seduced Marc Antony. The day continues with the trip to Cappadocia whose capital is Kayseri, one of the oldest cities in Anatolia, the capital of the Greco-Roman province from 380 BC, which became Caesarea of Cappadocia, after the Roman Emperor Tiberius conquered it. Dinner and accommodation in Cappadocia at Hotel.
DAY 8: CAPPADOCIA
After breakfast. Day dedicated to visiting Cappadocia, a region in the heart of Turkey, dominated by the ancient Mount Argaeus, today called Erciyes Dagi, the third highest mountain in Anatolia, with an altitude of 3,916 m. Cappadocia is famous for its fantastic, mysterious, strange landscape. dug by nature in the volcanic lava of the mountain, and for Christians it is the region where some of the most important fathers and theologians of the Church lived: St. Basil the Great, St. Gregory of Nyssa and St. Gregory of the Nazis. We will visit the National Open Air Museum in Goreme, included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site, one of the most famous tourist sites in Turkey, a monastic complex of over 30 churches carved in stone, with chapels covered with frescoes.
Next we will explore the towns of Avanos on the river Kizilirmak known for pottery workshops, Ürgüp with the oldest rock churches in the region and numerous cave houses, Uchisar with the rock fortress that dominates the landscape, Pasabağ known for its stone formations chimneys, after which we will make an incursion on the Ihlara valley to admire the canyon formed by the river Melendiz. Dinner and accommodation at Hotel in Cappadocia.
DAY 9: CAPPADOCIA – KAYSERI – ISTANBUL – _________
Breakfast. In the morning we will visit the underground city of Kaymaklı, the largest in Cappadocia, a city dug into the rock, which stretches over 8 levels of which only 4 are accessible and open to the public and which communicate in a complicated way, specially designed to confuse potential opponents. The area was the place of refuge of the first Christians, and later, the place of refuge from the Arab invasions. Transfer to Kayseri airport for the flight to Istanbul with __ ____at time __:__