Church of the Holy Cross in Akdamar Island in Van Lake

Archeological & Cultural Tour of Turkey: Antioch, Harran & Gobekli Tepe

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Customizable Itinerary

This is a sample itinerary to inspire a personalized trip designed with your travel specialist

Countries Visited


Places Visited

Gaziantep, Sanliurfa, Mount Nermrut, Akdamar Island...

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Suggested Duration

12 Days

Civilization between the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers has been documented for thousands of years. Travel through contemporary and ancient history on this custom tailored tour that will take you through Turkey’s celebrated archeological treasures. From Abraham’s Caves to a 10th century Armenian cathedral, Hittite sculptures to the ancient city of Antioch, you will reach into the depths of the countryside and find the past overflowing with exceptional ancient architecture, art, and culture. Turkey’s...

Customizable Itinerary

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Trip Highlights

  • Visit the architectural splendor of Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque
  • Traverse an ancient Hittite settlement at the Karatepe Open-Air Museum
  • Witness the exceptional ancient Hittite sculptures at Yesemek
  • Immerse yourself in the culture of the Grand Bazaar at Sanliurfa
  • Wander through fabulous historic statues on the summit of Mount Nemrut
  • See the oldest uncovered temple in the world at Gobekli Tepe
  • Discover the historic cave dwellings at Hasankeyf beside the Tigris River
  • Explore the beehive homes of Harran, one of the oldest inhabited sites in the world

Detailed Description

The upper reaches of Mesopotamia will be discovered and explored on your 12-day luxury travel through Turkey’s eclectic culture and rich history. Hagia Sophia adds an impressive dome to Istanbul’s skyline. The reliefs of Gobekli Tepe are over 8,000 years old. You find a procession of polytheistic statues at the top of Mount Nemrut. From the cave dwellings alongside the Tigris River to the golden Monastery of Deyrulzafaran, the images of Turkey’s countryside will soon transcend ancient legend and become discovered history.

Your Turkish discovery begins with your arrival in Istanbul. The city is a mixture of tradition and modernity, filled with customs that straddle both East and West. You will transfer to Adana and the nearby Open-Air Museum of Karatepe National Park. The Neo-Hittite capital is a beautiful example of the fabulous artistry of history and the depths of antiquity held in Turkey’s countryside. You will spend the evening in Antioch.

In the morning you will visit the Church of St. Peter and see the Archeological Museum that contains magnificent mosaics from the Roman and Byzantine empires. Also visit the ancient city of Seleuceia in Pieria. You will travel to the ancient quarry of Yesemek that was once home to a Hittite sculpting school. In Gaziantep the aroma of pistachios and honey is strong and inviting. Visit the historical stone house and Emine Gogus Cuisine Museum.

The following day you will set out for Sanliurfa by way of the Ibis farms of Birecik. Once in Sanliurfa you will head to the celebrated Cave of Abraham. The beehive mud style houses of Harran date back to the times of Mesopotamia. On Mount Nemrut you will find the gigantic funerary sanctuary of King Antiochos I.

Travel to Gobekli Tepe to witness the oldest discovered temple in the world. You will then make your way to the Monastery of Deyrulzafaran and visit the exceptional religious history of Mardin. The ancient village of Hasankeyf is filled with both grand displays of its opulent past and sensational cave dwellings set alongside the river. Venture onto Van Lake to see Akdamar Island and the 10th century Armenian cathedral. Your final day will return you to Istanbul to make the journey home. You could always extend your stay in Turkey and enjoy more of the country’s extraordinary history and unparalleled landscape.

Zicasso offers a variety of tours to Turkey. You may also want to browse the reviews for luxury tours operators for Turkey.

Starting Price

$4,051 per person (excluding international flights)

Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.

What's Included

  • Accommodations
  • In-country transportation
  • Some or all activities and tours
  • Expert trip planning
  • 24x7 support during your trip

Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.

Reviews of Zicasso's Referral Service

4.91 stars based on 250 reviews.

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