Central Anatolia
Archaeology

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Our most recommended Central Anatolia Archaeology

From Istanbul: Best of Turkey 8 Days, 7 Nights Guided Tour

1. From Istanbul: Best of Turkey 8 Days, 7 Nights Guided Tour

Day 1: Arrival in Istanbul Be picked up from the arrivals terminal at Istanbul or Sabiha Gokcen Airport. Be transferred to your accommodation and enjoy some time to relax in the city after your journey.  Day 2: Full-Day Istanbul Tour (Breakfast) Start with pickup from your accommodation and discover the highlights of Istanbul on a guided tour. Visit the Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, and Hippodrome, where chariot races and the Byzantine riots took place. Visit the Grand Bazaar for some shopping and bargain hunting. Be returned to your hotel at the end of the day and spend a second night in Istanbul. Day 3: Istanbul to Cappadocia by flight – Cappadocia Tour (Breakfast – Dinner) Begin the third day with an early-morning pickup and transfer to Istanbul airport for your flight to the Cappadocia region. Upon arrival in Cappadocia, your tour guide will meet you at the airport. Start by visiting the Three Sisters Fairy Chimneys in Urgup which are the iconic symbol for the region. Descend into the Kaymakli underground city, which is one of the largest and the deepest of its kind in the region. After the tour, be transferred to your hotel for the night. Day 4: Full-Day Cappadocia Tour (Breakfast – Dinner) Discover the lunar-like landscape of Cappadocia with spectacular rock formations in the Devrent Valley. Enjoy lunch in Avanos, a center of terracotta artwork since 3000 BC. Watch a demonstration in a traditional pottery workshop. In the afternoon, visit the Goreme Open Air Museum and Uchisar Rock Castle to get a panoramic view of the valleys of Cappadocia. After the tour, be returned to your hotel. Day 5: Cappadocia – Konya – Pamukkale (Breakfast – Dinner) Begin the journey to Pamukkale early in the morning. On the way, visit the Seljukian masterpiece of Sultanhan Caravanserai, built in the 13th century. Arrive in Konya and visit the Mausoleum of Mevlana, the world-famous mystic. Continue the journey to Pamukkale and enjoy an overnight stay in a Thermal Hotel. Enjoy a swim in the hotel's rejuvenating thermal pools. Day 6: Pamukkale – Kusadasi (Breakfast – Dinner) In the morning, visit the ancient Greek city of Hierapolis known for its Theater, Apollo Temple, and magnificent Necropolis. Travel onwards to Kusadasi for an overnight stay. Day 7: Kusadasi – Ephesus – Istanbul by flight (Breakfast) Depart from Kusadasi and visit the Artemis Temple which is one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Continue to the famous Grand Theater of Ephesus. After Ephesus, visit the Catholic shrine of the House of the Virgin Mary. Located on the Aladag Mountains 5 miles from Ephesus, it is said that the Virgin Mary lived here for the remainder of her life after Christ's Ascension into heaven. Then drive to Izmir airport for your flight back to Istanbul. Upon your return to Istanbul, meet a representative of the local partner and be transferred to your hotel for the night.  Day 8: Departure from Istanbul (Breakfast) After breakfast, check out from your hotel and enjoy a private transfer to Istanbul airport for your flight back home to complete the 8-day excursion.

From Istanbul: 2-Day All-Inclusive Trip to Cappadocia

2. From Istanbul: 2-Day All-Inclusive Trip to Cappadocia

Get an insider’s view of Cappadocia’s most iconic spots on an all-inclusive trip from Istanbul. Float above volcanic spires and honeycombed hills on a hot air balloon. Be accompanied by a guide to Goreme Open Air Museum, Avanos, Pasabag, Uchisar, and Kaymakli Underground City, and more. Day 1 Depart from your hotel in an air-conditioned minivan and make your way to Istanbul airport. Catch your domestic flight to Cappadocia. Upon your arrival to Cappadocia, meet your guide and begin your tour of North Cappadocia. Walk in the land of fairy chimneys. Visit Goreme Open Air Museum, Red River, Devrent Valley, and Pasabag. Make your way to Avanos Village for a traditional lunch and pottery demonstration. Get to the top of the Uchisar Castle, the highest point of the region, a perfect vantage point for a panoramic view of the stunning Cappadocian landscape. After sightseeing, be driven to your hotel. Spend the night in Cappadocia. Day 2 You can opt to join a balloon flight in the morning. Your day tour will be organized according to the balloon flight hours. After breakfast at the hotel, embark on a full-day tour of South Cappadocia. Go off the beaten path to visit Cavusin. See its famous rock churches. Head to Goreme Panorama for views of fairy chimneys. Hike in the Red Valley. Visit Old Greek Love Valley, Kaymakli Underground City, and Pigeon Valley. Walk through a picturesque maze of rock formations. Witness an onyx demonstration by local experts. Savor a typical Turkish lunch. Conclude the day tour by 5 PM. Then, be driven to Kayseri Airport for your domestic flight to Istanbul. Upon arrival, you will be greeted by your driver and taken to your hotel.

2-Day Cappadocia Tour From Istanbul Optional Balloon Flight

3. 2-Day Cappadocia Tour From Istanbul Optional Balloon Flight

Start the first day by visiting Devrent Valley, also known as 'Imagination Valley', this is the most surreal-looking landscape. Your next stop will be Pashabagi also called the Monks Valley. Proceed to Avanos the pottery centre of Cappadocia, this village is set on the banks of the Red River. You will have lunch in a local restaurant before continuing to Goreme Open Air Museum. The world’s most important Byzantine cave churches are found in these once remote valleys where monks and nuns pursued monastic life from the 3rd century on. Here you can see the best preserved Byzantine cave wall paintings and frescos from the Iconoclastic period through to the end of Seljuk rule.  Then admire a spectacular view over Goreme, you can see fairy chimneys, rock formations, and cave houses. You have the option of also booking a pre-sunrise hot-air balloon flight for the next morning. While your guides complete the final preparations for your flight, you are served breakfast. Your pilot will show you all the unique beauties of Cappadocia from the Red Valley to Goreme. While witnessing an amazing sunrise up in the air, you will get to see perfect panoramic views of Urgup, Goreme, Ortahisar,Uchisar, Avanos, and Nevsehir. After the landing, a celebration with refreshing drinks (non-alcoholic) will be waiting for you. On the Blue tour you hike along the Red and Rose Valley, the most breathtakingly and mysteriously beautiful valleys in the region. Conclude your hike at the Cavusin Cave Village. Marvel at the rock castle and troglodyte dwellings where people lived until the 20th Century. Enjoy lunch in a local restaurant. Descend towards the center of the earth with a trip to the Underground City of Kaymakli, one of the largest and deepest of Cappadocia’s many such settlements. Discover this underground city and its stables, cellars, storage rooms, refectories, churches, and wineries. Visit the Pigeon Valley. See spectacular view of dovecotes (pigeon or dove houses), old abandoned cave homes, and old Greek houses of Uchisar and Ortshisar Castle, as well as the biggest mass of fairy chimneys in Cappadocia.

Cappadocia Tour: Underground City, Caravanserai & Salt Lake

4. Cappadocia Tour: Underground City, Caravanserai & Salt Lake

Start with a 09:00AM pick-up from your Cappadocia hotel and your first stop will be Saratli Underground City. This city has many similarities with the Özlüce and Mazı Underground Cities. The underground city has spread to large areas but a small part has been cleaned. Underground cities date back to the Hittite period, mainly carved to protect themselves from the attacks in an emergency. They were used by the Christians during early Christianity from the slaughter of the Roman Empire. After visiting the underground city, drive to Tepesi Delik Han Caravanserai, one of Cappadocia's most important historical locations. Have lunch at 01:00PM and then drive to Lake Tuz, a saline lake occupying a huge area in the arid central plateau of Turkey. See the crystal white salt and spend an unforgettable time at the salt lake. Afterwards, drive back to your hotel at 04:00PM.

North Cappadocia: Guided Day Tour with Lunch

5. North Cappadocia: Guided Day Tour with Lunch

Immerse yourself in the history and beauty of Cappadocia while discovering the city’s famous rock formations and breathtaking views. Start the day by taking in the beautiful panorama at Uchisar Castle while learning about the rich history of Cappadocia and its unique rock formations. Next, head to the Goreme Open Air Museum and explore thousand-year-old fresco-covered cave church walls with your guide. Watch a pottery demonstration using a kick wheel. Show off your own talent or just observe. Try traditional Turkish food during lunch in Avanos. Then see the Halys River, the longest river in Turkey. Stop off in Pasabag, also known as Monks Valley, and see the chapel dedicated to St. Simeon along with unique mushroom-shaped fairy chimneys. Make a final stop in Devrent Valley and take fantastic pictures with the animal-shaped rock formations.

Cappadocia: Green Tour in the Ihlara Valley

6. Cappadocia: Green Tour in the Ihlara Valley

Benefit from pick-up at your hotel and get a panoramic view of Göreme en route to Derinkuyu Underground City. Marvel at the subterranean city, used by the Romans to shelter against invasions by the Arabs. Get explanations about the area's deepest underground city before moving on to the Ihlara Canyon, formed by volcanic activity from Mount Hasan and erosion by the Melendiz River. Learn how early Christians carved churches from the rock on a 3.5-kilometer hike through the Ihlara Valley, and pause for lunch at a riverside restaurant. Next, visit the rock-carved Selime Monastery and learn about monastic life in Cappadocia. Continue to Pigeon Valley to learn how the locals have used pigeon eggs and droppings for different purposes and why they carved pigeon houses on the slopes of the valley. End with a visit to an onyx factory in Uçhisar and watch a demonstration about how volcanic stone is shaped by a master craftsman.

Cappadocia: Small-Group Cappadocia Green Tour

7. Cappadocia: Small-Group Cappadocia Green Tour

Get picked up from your accommodation by your guide and head out on a small-group tour through Cappadocia. Start with a stop at Goreme Panorama, a scenic viewpoint that presents you with the expansive vista formed by the city below and the stunning rocky hills that back it. Then, drive to Kaymaklı Underground City to learn firsthand how early Christians protected and defended themselves from persecutions and invasions for centuries. Hike through Turkey's largest canyon, which features over 2,670 different plants that thrive in the valley's microclimate. Afterward, make the 1.5-hour drive to Ihlara Canyon for a 3.8 km hike along the river and through the area's beautiful nature. After the hike, satisfy your appetite with lunch at a local restaurant in Belisırma. Then visit Selime Monastery, the biggest religious building in Cappadocia with a cathedral-size church. Before returning you to your hotel, your guide will stop at Pigeon Valley, the best photo spot in all of Cappadocia.

Cappadocia: Full-Day Private Custom Tour

8. Cappadocia: Full-Day Private Custom Tour

Following pickup from your hotel, your first stop is the fantastic viewpoint of Uchisar Castle. Whilst there, receive information about the rich history of Cappadocia and its unique rock formations. Next up is the Kaymaklı Underground City, which was used by early Christians as a shelter to hide themselves against their enemies. Afterwards, take a break for terrific views of Pigeon Valley, where your guide informs you about carved pigeon houses. You are then gifted some time to enjoy lunch. Following lunch, visit the Devrent Valley, where you can take fantastic pictures with the area's animal-shaped rock formations. You then visit Pasabag, commonly known as Monks Valley. There you have the chance to see the famous mushroom-shaped fairy chimneys, as well as the St. Simeon’s Monk Cell carved into the rock. Towards the end of your tour, visit the Goreme Open-Air Museum. There your guide explains the meanings of the frescoes covering the walls of the 1,000-year-old cave churches, as you explore this spectacular UNESCO World Heritage Site. Your final stop is then to the Ortahisar Castle, where you conclude your tour with terrific views of the castle and old Greek houses.

Cappadocia: Ihlara and Underground City Tour with Lunch

9. Cappadocia: Ihlara and Underground City Tour with Lunch

Visit sights in Derinkuyu, the Ihlara Valley, Belisırma, and Göreme, all on this guided multi-stop trip in Cappadocia. Take in the fresh air on a hike, try Turkish cuisine during lunch, and explore the Selime Monastery. Take advantage of included entry fees and round-trip transportation. After pickup, your first stop is Derinkuyu, the biggest underground city of Cappadocia. It goes to a depth of 85 meters and has several floors. Here, see a variety of rooms: storage rooms, cellars, stables, refectories, churches, wineries, and more. Vertical staircases provide access to the third and fourth floors, leading to the cruciform church on the lower floor. A ventilation shaft 55-meters deep was also used as a well. Although Derinkuyu Underground City was opened to visitors in 1965, only 10% of the city can be visited to this day. Then, trek through the scenic Ihlara Valley. The early Christians built their houses and temples carved into the rock, carving tuffs in the Ihlara Valley, along the Melendiz River. After trekking through the Ihlara Valley, get ready for a good lunch in Belisırma, featuring a mix of Turkish and Western cuisine with a dessert. With full stomachs, stop at the outskirts of Göreme, which opens up the Pigeon Valley with age-old rock-cut dovecotes. Next, head to the Selime Monastery to witness the huge kitchen and the high chimney. The center of the structure carved into the rock is the church, surrounded by a gallery and stables with feeders and many other remnants of the Middle Ages. The final destination will be Göreme Esentepe. Here you will see solidified lava flows dating back to the Neocene period. It formed an incredible landscape of tuff and ash in Göreme. Thousands of years of erosion have left visitors a real miracle of nature to see. 

From Istanbul: Cappadocia, Ephesus, & Pamukkale Private Tour

10. From Istanbul: Cappadocia, Ephesus, & Pamukkale Private Tour

See Istanbul, Cappadocia, Izmir, Ephesus, Pamukkale, and Hierapolis. Enjoy pre-selected hotels, with breakfast and lunch included. Choose your own spot for supper and explore a bit on your own. Day 1: Istanbul To Cappadocia by Plane; Full-Day Tour of Southern CappadociaEnjoy pick-up from your hotel to the airport for a one-hour flight to Cappadocia. Upon arrival at Cappadocia, meet your guide at the airport who will have your name on a sign. Relax while your guide transfers you to the tour office in Goreme. Next, depart for a full-day tour of Southern Cappadocia. See Pidgeon Valley, the Underground City of Kaymakli, the continue along the countryside to the Kızılcukur Valley. Visit Selime Monastery before returning to your hotel.  Day 2: Cappadocia To Izmir; North TourBe picked up from your hotel after breakfast and depart for a full-day exploration of North Cappadocia. Visit Goreme Open Air Museum, Cavusin Vallage, Monsk Valley, Devrent, and the towns of Urgup, Ortahisar and Avanos. Return to your hotel in Cappadocia before leaving for your transfer to the airport for the flight to Izmir. Upon arrival in Izmir, you will be met at the airport once again with your name and you will be delivered to the next hotel in Kusadası. Day 3: Full-day Ephesus TourLeave your hotel after breakfast and depart for Ephesus. See the Temple of Artemis, one of the 7 Ancient Wonders of the World. Visit the biggest amphitheater and the Celsius Library. Tour around ruins left from the ancient city, and see the House of the Virgin Mary, thought to be her last dwelling. At the end of the tour enjoy a transfer back to the hotel. Relax and explore Kusadasi at your own pace with free time in the evening. Day 4: Tour of Pamukkale and The Ancient City of Hierapolis; Flight Back To IstanbulBe picked up from your hotel after breakfast and depart for a full-day Pamukkale and Hierapolis tour. Visit the Old Gates, the cemetery, and the theatre of Hierapolis (part of the James Bond film shoot).  Take in the waterfall known as Travertines, and swim in the calcified pools made famous by Cleopatra. At the end of the tour sit back as you are delivered to the airport for a short flight back to Istanbul.

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What people are saying about Central Anatolia

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 195 reviews

Yuell was a terrific guide. He was very knowledgeable, and I loved all of the tidbits he shared. He was so personable!! The tour itself was fabulous and simply mouth-dropping gorgeous. It rained briefly, but that did not ruin our day in the least. This was one of my favorites!

Absolutely amazing, everything was perfectly coordinated no delays or issues. Our tour guide was really good, excellent knowledges and interesting and funny - kept us all engaged throughout the tours and visits. Definitely recommend

It was a very exciting tour, awesome hikes, the guide was very knowledgeable and gave us enough time to do everything. It was a lovely experience.

A very lovely experience and a tour worth chososing Highly recommend

Onur the tour guide was great. Very informative. Amazing tour.