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Classical Turkey

Fly over the fairy chimneys aboard a hot air balloon, cook up an Aegean-style feast and sail the Med in your own private boat 

Classical Turkey

8 Days | From $3380

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  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Accommodation
  • Important Notes

About your trip

Turkey’s rich cultural heritage, extraordinary culinary delights and pink-hued terrain collide in spectacular fashion in this seven-night, eight-day trip. 

With your fellow travelers, you’ll lose the tourists, and embrace the real Turkey, a country where you can swim in secret turquoise coves, take to the skies in a hot air balloon and pick your way through ruins dating back to the fourth century.

Turkey’s famous food and hospitality will form the backbone of your trip, from the talented chefs who show you how to make gözleme and the artisans who teach you local crafts, to the guides who lead you through classical ruins and take you on a heady tour of Istanbul’s spice market. This is an unmissable odyssey through Turkey, which will sweep you away from the crowds and straight to the heart of this incredible country.

What's Included

  • Max 14 travelers per group
  • Exclusively for people in their 30s & 40s
  • All activities mentioned on the itinerary
  • 7 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 4 dinners
  • Stay in hand-picked 3-5 star hotels
  • 2 domestic flights
  • We offset your carbon emissions
  • Private minibus
  • Arrival airport transfer
  • Accommodation in twin rooms
  • Experienced Pack Leader with you throughout the trip

Flashpackers must provide evidence that they have purchased travel insurance for the duration of their adventure. Remember, flights aren't included and prices are based on sharing a twin room.

Itinerary

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Your Itinerary

  • Day 01 A welcome feast

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    Your Turkish escapade begins at a boutique hotel on the Aegean coast. Here, you’ll enjoy a welcome drink with your Flash Pack group and guide before heading out into Izmir’s culinary backstreets to sample some stand-out Turkish specialties (think stuffed mussels, vine leaves and lokma honey balls). But don’t fill up! As night falls, you’ll weave your way to a local tavern for a traditional mezze dinner and raise a glass of raki to seven days of adventure to come. What better way to start your trip?

  • Day 02 Private boating on the Med

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    Fueled by a delicious Turkish breakfast, you’ll head off to the port for the ultimate Aegean experience. Today, you’ll spend an idyllic day soaking up the coastal scenery on your very own private boat. During your hours gently cruising across the glittering Mediterranean, you’ll drop anchor in sheltered bays to swim in the crystal blue water while your crew prepares a delicious lunch on board: think freshly cooked fish or chicken, small plates and salads to share. Back on dry land, you’re in for more foodie delights at an exclusive cookery class just for Flash Pack. Together, you’ll discover traditional Aegean recipes, learn the art of clay pot cooking and spend the evening devouring your creations with your group.

  • Day 03 Turkey’s finest classical site

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    After breakfast, you’ll take a short drive to Ephesus – the best-preserved classical site in the eastern Mediterranean and one of the original Seven Wonders of the World. Take in the vast amphitheatre, stroll the marble streets once walked by Cleopatra and Mark Antony, and marvel at the baths and beautifully restored Library of Celsus. After exploring this ancient wonder, you’ll hop over to the stunning Temple of Artemis, before ending with a traditional Turkish feast in a local restaurant, seated on the floor, where you can watch local ladies baking gözleme – a Turkish version of pancakes.

  • Day 04 Explore an underground city

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    You’ll be up early for a short flight to one of Turkey’s most fascinating regions: Cappadocia. Your first stop is a subterranean city hollowed out of the tufa rock. Here, you’ll discover a labyrinth of tunnels, schoolrooms, churches, water wells and even a winery – everything a community needs to thrive 40 metres below ground. Then, you’ll have the rare opportunity to enjoy a pottery workshop with world-famous artist Galip Korukcu. Later, you’ll check in at your Cappadocia hotel before heading out to a nearby valley for wine tasting with a local sommelier. As the sun sets, bathing the landscape in that famous dusky pink glow, you’ll sip some of the best local wines of the region while savouring the incredible views over the fairy chimneys and honeycombed hills of this otherworldly landscape.

  • Day 05 Sunrise hot air ballooning

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    Before sunrise, you’ll climb into your hot air balloon and float silently up into the sky. Sipping champagne as the sun slowly illuminates the unique geological landscape of Goreme National Park beneath you is an unforgettable experience. Back on the ground, you’ll get up close to the surreal towering boulders on a hike through the Cappadocia valleys. Next, a visit to a local carpet weavers to learn how the threads are spun, carded and woven into intricate Anatolian patterns before lunch with a local family in their traditional Cappadocia cave house. Adrenaline junkies might choose to switch up the pace on an optional ATV tour, before heading to a local restaurant for a pottery kebab – an Anatolian specialty of meat and vegetables stewed for several hours in a clay pot.

  • Day 06 Sunset on a private yacht

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    Today you’ll fly to Istanbul and check into your final hotel. This ancient city, where East meets West, straddles both Europe and Asia. Although no longer the country’s capital, it remains the economic, cultural and intellectual heart of Turkey with a staggering wealth of attractions: from the huge Byzantine church of Aya Sofya and the imposing city walls to the striking domes and minarets of Ottoman mosques and palaces. This evening you’ll view these incredible sights on board a sunset cruise. Sailing out into the Bosphorus, as the sun sinks slowly below the horizon, you’ll witness the twinkling lights of the great suspension bridge reflected in the glistening strait that separates the two continents.  

  • Day 07 Istanbul insider's tour

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    For your last full day, it’s time to really get to know this vibrant city. Starting at the Galata Bridge, you’ll watch the local fisherman hunting for the catch of the day before heading into the hustle and bustle of the famous Istanbul Spice Market. Here you’ll pass towering mounds of red pepper flakes and sacks of sumac in search of sugar-dusted Turkish delight. Cravings satisfied, hop on the tram to the buzzing Grand Bazaar, the world’s biggest covered market. The peaceful Basilica cistern is next – the perfect place for a moment of reflection – before finishing your tour at the sacred Blue Mosque and heading back to your hotel. You’ll have time to indulge in an optional hammam before ending your final night with a grand farewell dinner.

  • Day 08 Goodbye, Turkey

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    It’s time for your last breakfast with your Flash Pack group but it doesn’t need to be your last day in Turkey. We recommend you spend at least a day – or more – exploring Istanbul. And then there’s the rest of this beautiful and welcoming country to see. Ask us for some tips, and we’ll happily point you in the right direction. Until next time, safe travels.

Our Favorite Hotels

Here's a taste of the hotels we sometimes use on this adventure. The hotels you'll stay in for your departure will be shared with you one month before you go.

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Doors of Cappadocia

One of Turkey’s best cave hotels, carved into the mountain, with a rooftop pool and beautiful views of Goreme National Park.

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Nişanyan Hotel

Turkey’s first boutique hotel run by the impressive Ms Mujde, lauded for her cookery skills and peerless hospitality.

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Marmara Pera Hotel Istanbul

The views from the roof terrace of this hip hotel are incredible – perfect for sipping cocktails by the side of the pool.

Important Notes

Which airport do I need to fly in and out of? Plus airport code

Fly into Izmir Adnan Menderes Airport (ADB). Fly out of either Istanbul Airport (IST) on the Europe side or Sabiha Gökçen International Airport (SAW) on the Asia side.

What time should my flight arrive (in time for the welcome meeting)?

We recommend arriving by 3 pm.

Your welcome meeting with your Flash Pack guide and group will begin around 5-6 pm, although we suggest getting to Izmir earlier to enjoy some free time to explore.

What time should my flight depart on the last day?

There are no activities planned for the last day, so leave any time you wish. The airport is approximately 45 minutes away from your final hotel.

Do you include airport transfers?

If you arrive on Day 1 of your adventure, or you book pre-tour accommodation with us, your airport arrival transfer will be included. If you book alternative pre-tour accommodation or are arriving by another mode of transport you must arrange your own arrival transfer.

Arrival transfers are private to Flash Pack and will be in groups depending on flight times. Sometimes this means waiting in the airport for a short while until other flights have arrived.

We don’t offer a departure transfer as Flashpackers leave at different times of the day and many stay for extra nights. However, your Pack Leader will offer you support with finding a local taxi.

Are tips included?

Please note that tips are not included in the cost of this adventure. Suggested amounts per person are:

  • Pack Leader: 25 USD per day
  • Driver: 15 USD per day
  • Local tips: your Pack Leader will be able to advise on how much to tip local guides, porters, waiters, etc. Some Pack Leaders will collect a tipping kitty at the welcome meeting to take care of local tips.

However, all tips are at your discretion depending on what you feel comfortable with.

Do I need a visa?

You do not need a visa if you’re visiting as a tourist from the EU or UK for up to 90 days. 

You will need a visa if you are from the USA, Australia and Canada as well as some other countries.

Check with your local consulate or this link if your country requires a visa: https://www.mfa.gov.tr/visa-information-for-foreigners.en.mfa

You can purchase your e-visa from the Turkish government website: https://www.evisa.gov.tr/en/.

We recommend that you travel with at least six months validity remaining on your passport and can show a return ticket. Please ensure there is a blank page for entry and exit stamps as advised by the Turkish government.

How much luggage can I bring?

The luggage allowance for the internal flights is 15kg. You can pay locally for extra luggage at a cost of 80 Turkish lira (approximately USD 5) for each additional 5kg.

How much should I budget per day for extras?

Approximately 400 Turkish lira, the equivalent of USD 45 per day.

The luggage allowance for the internal flights is 15kg. You can pay locally for extra luggage at a cost of 80 Turkish lira (approximately USD 5) for each additional 5kg.

 

 

What fitness levels do I need for this trip?

We recommend having a read-through of the itinerary above, and getting in touch if you have specific questions on fitness here. This adventure is fast-paced, however, the activities aren’t too strenuous so it is a fantastic trip for those with a normal level of fitness who want to see a lot in their time here.

Will this itinerary change?

Please be aware that the itinerary, activities, and hotels are subject to change. These changes are rare but can happen with little notice due to availability, poor weather, seasonal changes, or other circumstances beyond our control – but we’ll always do our best to ensure it has little impact on your experience. From time to time, we may also make changes to your itinerary to try out new ideas and keep things fresh and exciting which we will always try and communicate to you.

OUR PROMISE

Joining the Flash Pack comes with a few special guarantees

THE PEOPLE

Our mission to create 1 million friendships so we obsess over the group dynamic. Everyone is aged 30-49, 98% travel solo & 80% stay friends. Want to know more about your group? GET IN TOUCH

THE SECURITY

We operate using a 3rd party trust bank account meaning we guarantee refunds in 14 days if your trip has to be cancelled BOOK WITH CONFIDENCE

THE TRIPS

Our trips are made up of ‘can’t-do-by-yourself’ experiences – think staying on your own private island in the Arctic and glamping in Land Rovers on the Serengeti SEE TRIPS

THE GUIDES

We only work with trusted local guides who know their destinations better than anyone.

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