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* Safranbolu - Amasra - Amasya - Trabzon (from Istanbul) * 7 days

Itinerary:

Day - 1 - Istanbul to Safranbolu

At about 11:00 AM, we'll depart from your hotel, and transfer you to the main bus terminal in Istanbul. We'll board a noon bus for
a 5-hour bus ride to Safranbolu. Once you arrive, we will transfer you to your renovated Ottoman home that's been converted into a hotel - complete with all of the original furnishings and decor. The rest of the day is yours to explore at your leisure.

A little about Safranbolu
Safranbolu is an idyllic and classic Black Sea town with narrow, winding streets and shops and cafes operating out of restored wooden Ottoman-era structures, konaks. Safranbolu is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Day - 2 - Safranbolu - (B)
After breakfast, you will depart from your hotel for a day trip to Amasra, a beautiful and scenic 1-hour drive through the mountains. Once we arrive, you will have free time to explore Amasra. (Depending on weather conditions, you can hire a boat to take you on a 40-minute boat ride exploring the old city and its castles. Later in the afternoon, the driver will take you from Amasra back to Safranbolu.

Overnight in Safranbolu

A little about Amasra
In the 6th century BC Amasra was called Sesamus, and its inhabitants were known as the Megara people. The town has a cute small harbour with a Roman bridge and watchtower. Other interesting places to see in the town: a Byzantine-era church and a 19th century harbor (iskele) mosque; also some portions of the Byzantine city walls are still standing.

Day - 3 - Safranbolu to Amasya - (B)

After breakfast, we will put you on a bus to Ankara, which is about 3 hours. Once you arrive, you will have few hours' worth of free time.

(For those who want to stay in Ankara, we can extend the tour and add a couple more nights' accommodation here.)

After a break, you will depart the Ankara bus terminal for Amasya (5 hours), and, once you arrive, you will be picked up at the bus terminal and transferred to your hotel.
Overnight in Amasya

Day - 4 - Amasya - (B)
Today is the free day for you to discover Amasya on your own.

* In Amasya, one can see the influences of the Hellenistic, Roman, Byzantine, Seljuk, Ilhanli, and Ottoman civilizations, leading up to the early days of the Turkish Republic. In addition to being endowed with historical and cultural significance, Amasya is rich in natural beauty as well - as evidenced in the thermal springs that are in this region. Amasya's Yaliboyu houses are the best instances of Ottoman architecture and are currently being restored by the Foundation of Protecting Cultural and Natural Wealth.

Amasya is also famous for its apples, cherries, peaches and okra. If you would like to enjoy a blend of cultural tradition along with natural scenic beauty, then Amasya is truly the ideal. Overnight in Amasya

Day - 5 - Amasya to Trabzon - (B)
After breakfast, you will depart Amasya for Trabzon, cutting through dramatic Black Sea mountains. After arriving in Trabzon, we will check into the hotel.

A little about Trabzon's history:
The earliest evidence of civilization in Trabzon dates to about 7,000 BC. Established as a Greek colony (along with Amasra and Sinop) the town benefited from its position on the busy trade route between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean. It grew quickly and was the seat of the Pontic kingdom, and, later, the Commagene period at the beginning of the 13th century, and the city gained a reputation as a sophisticated cultural center. The Genoese and the Venetians came here to trade as Trabzon was the terminus of a northern branch of the Silk Road. Finally, in 1461 Trabzon fell under Ottoman rule. Overnight in Trabzon

Day - 6 - Trabzon - (B)
After breakfast in the hotel, we will then take you on a full-day guided tour of Trabzon's tourist highlights.

* Sumela Monastery sits high up on the cliffs of Mela, southeast of Trabzon. It was founded in the 4th century by two Greek monks, Barnabas and Sophronius, who were guided to the site by an icon of a "black" image of the Virgin Mary, elegantly painted by St. Luke. After their deaths, Sumela became a place of pilgrimage. Decorated with frescoes, Sumela's treasures include priceless manuscripts and silver plates. Since the monastery was rebuilt several times, the ruins seen today date largely to the 19th century. During the Ottoman era, Sumela enjoyed the protection of the sultans, but it was ultimately abandoned and also badly-damaged during the War of Independence. In recent years, thankfully, extensive restoration has been carried out.

Overnight in Trabzon

Day - 7 - Trabzon to Istanbul - (B)
After breakfast, we will transfer you to the airport, for your 1.5-hour domestic flight back to Istanbul. Your arrival will mark the end of this tour.

We look forward to seeing you on a future trip!

Prices are starting from $______.00 per person in a double, contact us to get a price quote for your dates

Price includes
:
* 6 nights' hotel accommodation in charming hotels
* All land transfers
* Admission to Sumela Monastery
* Domestic flight tickets from Trabzon to Istanbul
* All taxes and service charges

This itinerary can be customized by adding on other sites such as Cappadocia or the Aegean coast, just ask!


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