DAY 1 : ARRIVAL ISTANBUL
Welcome to Turkey. Arrive in Istanbul Ataturk Airport; our representative will meet you at the airport with your name sign and private transfer to the hotel for overnight stay in Istanbul.
DAY 2 : ISTANBUL FULLDAY TOUR (Breakfast)
After breakfast, pick up from hotel. The only city in the world located on two continents is Istanbul, which has been the capital of three great empires – Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman – for more than 2000 years.
Our tour starts with Hippodrome square where used to take place for chariot races and the Byzantine riots during Roman & Byzantine period. Only a short walk away, we are going to visit Underground Cistern, which was the largest covered water reservoir in Istanbul, built by Justinian I. We will continue walking to Topkapi Palace, was not only the residence of the Ottoman sultans, but also the administrative and educational center of the state. Sultan Mehmed II, the conqueror of Constantinople, constructed it between 1460 and 1478. We will visit the Topkapi Palace including weapons section.
After that, we will visit Grand Bazaar where is one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world, with more than 58 covered streets and over 1,200 shops which attract between 250,000 and 400,000 visitors daily. Opened in 1461, it is well known for its jewelry, pottery, spice, and carpet shops.
Drive back to the hotel.
DAY 3 FULL DAY ISTANBUL TOUR - FLY TO IZMIR (Breakfast)
First, visit the Patriarchate at Fener which is the seat of Orthodox Christianity since Constantine The Great’ s declaration as the religion of Roman Empire. Then visit Church of Panagia of Blachernae, the best-known and most celebrated shrine of the Holy Virgin located near Golden Horn. The church is famed with the hagiasma (fountain of holy water), good to cure health problems, and the Hagion Lousma (sacred bath) good to clean the soul where the emperor also came to purify himself. Then see St. Savior in Chora (Kariye Museum) originally a Byzantine monastery with fantastic mosaics and frescoes portraying scenes from a bible, the life and miracles of Jesus. (Closed on Wednesdays) The church is considered one of the most beautiful examples of a Byzantine church.
After Chora Museum, see Pantocrator (Zeyrek) from outside. It represents the most typical example of architecture of the Byzantine middle period in Constantinople and is, after Hagia Sophia, the second largest religious edifice built by the Byzantines still extant in Istanbul.
Then visit Church of St. Mary Pammacaristos, once housed the Patriarchate for a while after the conquest. The Parekklesion, besides being one of the most important examples of Constantinople’s Palaiologan architecture, has the largest amount of Byzantine mosaics after the Hagia Sophia and Chora Church in Istanbul. See Zoodochos Pege at Balikli, dedicated to the Mother of God at Pege, with an underground cistern, full of gold fishes related to a well – known miracle, and the fountain of holy water. Visit St. Sergius and Bacchus from outside, a landmark in Byzantine ecclesiastical architecture.
This Byzantine building with a central dome plan was erected in the 6th century and was a model for the Hagia Sophia, the main church of the Byzantine Empire. Then see Hagia Eirene from outside, the old patriarchal church with its impressive size stands next to Hagia Sophia. The building reputedly stands on the site of a pre – Christian temple. It ranks, in fact, as the first church built in Constantinople
Lastly, visit Hagia Sophia, a former Orthodox patriarchal basilica, later a mosque and now a museum. Famous in particular for its massive dome, Hagia Sophia is considered the epitome of Byzantine architecture and is believed to have “changed the history of architecture”. See spectacular mosaics, which depict the Virgin Mother, Jesus, saints, Byzantium emperors and empresses and biblical scenes.Drive to Istanbul airport for flight to Izmir. Arrive to Izmir airport and transfer to your hotel in Kusadasi.
DAY 4 : EPHESUS TOUR & FLY BACK to ISTANBUL (Breakfast)
After breakfast, we will have 20 mins. Drive to Ephesus area. Ephesus (Rev. 2:1-7), major port city on the Aegean, was the commercial, political, and religious center of all of Asia Minor. After a lunatic completely burned the Temple of Diana (Artemis) on the night, that Alexander the Great was born in 356 B.C. The Ephesians worked for 120 years to complete a magnificent reconstructed temple, one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world. The city became part of the Roman Empire in the second century B.C. As a Roman capital of Asia Minor, Ephesus boasted a population approaching 250,000 people. The Apostle Paul’s first visit to Ephesus was brief—during his second missionary tour (Acts 18:19-21). His second visit lasted about three years—during his third missionary tour (Acts 19:1 to 20:31). Luke’s account of the worship of Diana appears in Acts 19:34-35. The Great Theatre (stadium) mentioned in Acts 19:29-31 could seat 25,000 people. Walk the marble-paved street with grooves made by chariot wheels. See the Fountain of Trojan, the Library of Celsus and the Great Theatre. Visit the Chapel of the Virgin Mary (Double Church), where the Third Ancient Council convened.
The House of Virgin Mary is located on the Aladag Mountains 5 miles away from Ephesus. At the third Ecumenical Council on 431 AD in Ephesus, it was claimed that Mary came to Ephesus with St. John in 37 A.D. and lived there until her death in 48 A.D. After the discovery of the house, the Archbishop of Izmir declared there as a place of pilgrimage in 1892. On July 26, 1967, Pope Paul VI visited this place and prayed there.
After House of Virgin Mary, drive to St. John’s Basilica, it is believed that the evangelist St. John had spent his last years in the region around Ephesus and buried in the southern slope of Ayosolug Hill. We will stop at Artemis Temple where used to be one of the seven wonders of the ancient world as our last stop before drive to Izmir airport for flight back to Istanbul.
Arrive to Istanbul transfer to your hotel for overnight.
DAY 5 : HOME (Breakfast)
After breakfast check out from the hotel and private transfer to Istanbul airport for your flight back home.
The end of our services.
✅ 4 nights accommodation at 4 star hotels including breakfast
✅ Professional English Speaking – Bible Oriented Tour Guide
✅ 4 breakfast
✅ Private transportation with A/C vehicles
✅ All Entrance Fees
✅ All Parking Fees
✅ Domestic return Flight tickets Istanbul – Izmir & Izmir – Istanbul
✅ Local Taxes