Meet your guide at Adiyaman airport and explore Mount Nemrut National Park after lunch. Watch the sunset with ancient sculptures at 7500 ft...
Drive to Gaziantep to taste the world famous pistachio baklava. Listen the rhythm copper smiths make in the old city...
Witness the evolution of religion in Gobeklitepe excavation site; the oldest temple found so far. Visit beehive houses of Harran before exploring Sanliurfa city...
A journey to the medieval ages awaits you today in the narrow streets of Mardin. Visit an active Assyriac monastery as well before returning to your hotel...
Journey back to the past continues today with the old city of Mardin. Meet people giving life to the volcanic stones and silver...
See the second longest city walls of the world surrounding the old city of Diyarbakir. Enjoy the breathtaking views of Hevsel Gardens by the River Tigris recenly listed by UNESCO...
- Mount Nemrut National Park
- Zeugma Mosaic Museum
- Baklava dessert of Gaziantep
- Gobeklitepe Excavation Site
- Beehive Houses of Harran
- A museum City: Mardin
- An active Assyriac Monastery
- A Kurdish night out; Sira
- Delicious South Eastern Kitchen
- Great wall of Turkey
- Monastic wine of Midyat
- Euphrates and Tigris rivers
Day 1 - Arrive to Adiyaman Airport and visit Nemrut Mountain National Park in the afternoon
Pick up from Adiyaman Airport in the morning and drive to Kahta Town near the Mount Nemrut National Park. we will drive to Kahta Town near the Mount Nemrut National Park. We will be wandering in the land of King Nimrod, Antiochus I Theos. The Commagene Empire was established in the south east region of Anatolia and it is world famous thanks to the statues and the grave of King Nimrod at the top of Mount Nemut National Park, 2250 metres above sea level. First we visit the mound of Karaus; "blackbird" in Turkish, where the family of I Theos was buried. Our next stop will be the Severan Bridge which was built in the 2nd Century and was recently used for transportation by the local Turkish and Kurdish community there. A tea break by the bridge is a must which is overlooking the valley. Afterwards, we will start ascending to Mount Nemrut to visit the burial sanctuary of Antiochus I Teos, locally known as King Nimrod. Man-made statues over 6 meters and the mound he is buried in offers magnificent photo opportunities of the South East and Mediterranean landscape. After a loop around the huge mound of King Nimrod, we will enjoy the sunset which is listed among the "1000 things you should do before you die". When the sun finally sets over the mountains of Anatolia, we will walk down to the car park for a well-deserved hot cup of hot tea. We will meet with our driver and drive down to the banks of the Ataturk Dam for a fresh trout dinner. Overnight in Kahta or Adiyaman.
Day 2 - Tour of Gaziantep City and Zeugma Mosaic Museum
After breakfast at your hotel, a 2-hour drive will take us to Gaziantep. This rapidly growing city is considered the Paris of south east Anatolia and houses the biggest mosaic museum in the world. The mosaics were unearthed from Zeugma, a prosperous Roman city which was built by the banks of the Euphrates River. Being a trading outpost, Zeugma became one of the richest Roman cities in Anatolia which is evident from the mosaics that once embellished the houses of the officials and tradesman of the city. After our journey from the 21st century back to the 2nd, we will drive to the old city of Gaziantep to stroll in the old bazaars and listen the craftsmen hammering their copper ware. The cuisine of Gaziantep is famous across Turkey, especially the pistachio baklava. We will check in to our hotel in Gaziantep for Overnight.
Day 3 - The World's Oldest Temple and the Beehive Houses of Harran
After breakfast, we will start driving east and visit Gobeklitepe. This is an early Neolithic sanctuary which includes massive stones carved about 12,000 years ago by people who had not yet developed metal tools or even pottery. This ancient temple is the first temple built on earth and rocking the History of Archeology right now since it was built by the Hunter and Gatherer Neolithic people for religious practices. Excavations still continue today and the mystery over the ancient site is revealed very slowly every year. Our next stop is Sanliurfa City for a lunch break. Afterwards we will drive to Harran village to visit mud bricked houses which will remind you honey combs. We will have our Arabian coffees overlooking the first university of Islam and then drive back to Sanliurfa to check in to our hotel. In the afternoon, we will walk around the holy pool of the prophet Abraham. It is called the 'Fish Lake' thanks to a special kind of carp - considered holy by the local people. After a big kebab dinner, we will get back to our hotel. Overnight near the Abrahams pool, Sanliurfa.
Day 4 - Mardin; a Museum City
A 2.5 hour drive will take us to Mardin City, the necklace of South East Anatolia. We will drive through the old city of Mardin and arrive to Deyrulzafaran, an active Syriac Orthodox monastery. The monastery is located in the area known as Tur Abdin, the motherland of the Assyrian/Syriacs. Founded in 493 AD, the monastery was formerly the seat of the patriarch of the Syriac Orthodox Church from 1160 until 1932 until it was relocated to Damascus. The monastery has 365 rooms - one for each day of the year. After our break in the beautiful gardens of this monastery, we will drive back to Mardin for lunch, visiting the old Bazaar and stroll in the narrow streets of the city which will take you back to the Middle Ages. This walk will worth every step once you arrive at the Grand Mosque of Mardin, with astonishing minarets and stone work. We will walk up to the Mardin's busy street and meet our driver to take us to Kasimiye madrassah which has amazing views to the Mesopotamian plains. Close to sunset, we will check in our hotel in the old city of Mardin and overnight.
Day 5 - Midyat and its Environs
After our breakfast on the terraces of our hotel, we will drive 1.5 hours to get to Midyat, a smaller version of Mardin. Midyat City has always been very important for the Syriac Orthodox since it hosts the biggest monastery of the Assyrians. We will first visit the Mor Gabriel Monastery which is located in the outskirts of Midyat. It is the oldest surviving Syriac Orthodox monastery in the world. Founded in 397, Dayro d-Mor Gabriel is the most vital Syriac Orthodox monastery in Turkey, with around fifteen nuns and two monks occupying separate wings, as well as a fluctuating number of local lay workers and guests from overseas. It is also the seat of the Metropolitan Bishop of Tur Abdin (Mardin). We will get back to the center of Midyat to stroll in the bazaars and see the world famous silver craftsmen create their filigree. It is a delicate kind of jewelry metalwork, usually of gold and silver, made with tiny beads or twisted threads, or both in combination, soldered together or to the surface of an object of the same metal and arranged in artistic motifs. After our lunch in the town center of Midyat, we will get back to Mardin for overnight.
Day 6 - Diyarbakir, a sophisticated city
After breakfast, we will leave our hotel and drive to Diyarbakir City which is one of the largest cities in southeastern Turkey situated on the banks of the Tigris River. We will first stop at the city walls of Diyarbakir - the 2nd longest city walls on earth after the Great Wall of China. We will then browse the old city to visit the Grand Mosque of Diyarbakir which was built in 1091. It is among the biggest grand mosques of Turkey and can accommodate 5000 worshippers at a time. You will also be able to visit one of the old Diyarbakir houses which are built with the basalt stone of Karacadag volcanic mountain nearby Diyarbakir city. The houses are built with a square plan with a garden in the middle and still hold their oriental splendor. We will stroll in the narrow streets of Diyarbakir to get to a Caravanserai used as a social center in the middle of the old Diyarbakir. After lunch, we will be walking to see a very interesting minaret, standing in the middle of the street built on top of 4 columns. There is an active Chaldean Catholic Church near this minaret that we will also not miss. We will have the opportunity to meet with this small minority in Diyarbakir; the last members of the Chaldean Dynasty. Recently renovated, The Armenian Church of Saint Giragos will be the highlight of today. Overnight in Diyarbakir or catch an evening flight back to Istanbul
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