Upon arrival at Adana Airport, a representative of Biblical Turkey will meet and assist you with your transfer to the hotel for dinner and overnight.
The tour begins in Antioch, the third largest city of the Roman Empire, and the headquarters of St. Paul’s Missionary Journeys. Visit the cave church where St. Peter first celebrated Mass, then south to the Iron Gate, one of the entrances of Biblical Antioch. Next is a drive to Seleucia Peria, mentioned in the New Testament as the port from which St. Paul and St. Barnabas set sail for Anatolia on their first missionary journey. Here you will visit the Temple of Zeus for a bird’s eye view of the harbor, followed by a visit to the famous Titus water tunnel.
Today on the itinerary is a drive to Tarsus, the birthplace of Apostle Paul, where you will have the opportunity to drink from the well of the blessed water. Continue on to Cappadocia, where you will visit famous underground cities Christians built to escape persecution, including tours of cave churches carved of the porous rock, lavishly decorated with frescoes from the 9th to 11th centuries.
Enjoy another full day touring Cappadocia, visiting the Goreme Museum, the Zelve Valley, the Citadel of Uchisar, the pottery town of Avanos and dozens of cave churches decorated with unique frescoes depicting various scenes from the Bible.
Today you will visit the Ihlara Valley, containing elaborately painted cave churches, Güzelyurt (Karballa), the birthplace of St. Gregory of Nazianzus and the underground city of Kaymaklı.
Following your stay in Cappadocia, you will depart today for Konya, visiting the Mevlana Museum and the 13th century Whirling Dervish Monastery, followed by a drive to Antalya.
This portion of the itinerary features a visit to Demre, one of the six great cities of the Lycian civilization, which was first, settled in the 5th century B.C. Here you will visit the Church of St. Nicholas, the tombs and the theatre. Continue to Hierapolis. Overnight in Pamukkale.
Next on the tour is a stop at Pamukkale, where the main attraction is a vast cliff of large deposits of calcium carbonate, shaped like small castles. Here you will also visit the Martyrium of the Apostle Philip, the Gate of Domitian, the Arcadian Way, and the ancient theatre, the Nymphaeum, the Temple of Apollo, the Plutonium and the Necropolis, followed by a tour of the ancient city of Hierapolis. The tour then continues to Laodicea, one of the Seven Churches of the Revelation, continuing to Kusadasi for overnight.
The tour continues today by private boat to the Greek Island of Patmos, where Apostle John wrote the Book of Revelation in exile. Here you will have the opportunity to visit the monastery bearing his name, and you will have a chance to explore the charming town before returning to Kusadası for overnight.
This portion of the itinerary features a full day tour of the ancient city of Ephesus. Visit the House of the Virgin Mary, the Basilica of St. John, the Celsus Library, the marble paved Arcadian Road, the Brothel, the Roman Baths, the Theatre where Apostle Paul preached, the Temple of Artemis, and the Archaeological Museum of Ephesus in Selcuk. Overnight in Izmir.
After Mass at the Church of St. Polycarp, the tour continues to Sardis, one of the most picturesque sites of the Seven Churches of the Revelation and the capital of the ancient Lydian Kingdom during the 6th century B.C. Here you will also visit the Temple of Artemis, the Temple of Cybele, ancient Lydian houses, the restored gymnasium and the reconstructed Synagogue. Following is a journey to Philadelphia, where you will visit another of the Churches of the Revelation. Upon return to Izmir, you will have the opportunity to explore the city and its ancient bazaar.
Depart today for Pergamum for a visit to the Acropolis, the ancient theatre, the famous ancient medical center dedicated to Asklepion, the god of health and medicine, the Archaeological Museum and the Red Basilica. The voyage continues to Bursa, where you will visit the Green Mosque and the Green Mausoleum.
Today you will transfer to Iznik (ancient Nicaea), where two ecumenical councils were held: the First Ecumenical Council of 325 and the Seventh Ecumenical Council of 787. Visit the ruins of the St. Sophia Church where the Seventh Ecumenical Council was held. In the afternoon, drive to Istanbul where you will transfer to the hotel for dinner and overnight.
Today you will enjoy a full day of sight-seeing in Istanbul starting with the Blue Mosque, famous for its blue Iznik tiles, the Roman Hippodrome, and Topkapi Museum, the Imperial Residential Palace of the Ottoman sultans between the 16th and 19th centuries, one of the oldest and largest remaining palaces in the world. In the afternoon, take a boat trip through the Bosphorus Strait, viewing the mosques, palaces, old traditional wooden villas along the Asian and European shorelines. Overnight in Istanbul.
Your final day of the tour will be devoted to Istanbul. You will start the day by visiting Hagia Sophia, the Byzantine jewel built by Constantine the Great and reconstructed by Justinian in the 6th century, considered one of the world’s greatest architectural marvels. Following is a visit to the St. Chora Church, where you will see its beautiful mosaics. The tour concludes with a visit to the world famous Grand Covered Bazaar, housing thousands of vendors offering textiles, spices, carpets and countless other goods. Overnight in Istanbul.
Transfer to Istanbul Ataturk Airport for departure.
MEALS: B= Breakfast / L= Lunch / D= Dinner