Turkey Uncovered
from $1695
Duration: 14 Days
See the best of Turkey on this 14-day Lonely Planet Experience powered by Intrepid. Travel from Istanbul to Cappadocia and experience cosmopolitan cities, historic battlegrounds, glittering beaches, cities carved from rock and rugged coast. Enjoy an itinerary that takes you to Turkey’s essential destinations, a local leader for insider info and plenty of flexibility and free time to explore at your own pace. With optional excursions to historical sites, abandoned villages and underground cities, you can create the Turkey tour that’s perfect for you.
  • Discover the Old City of Istanbul on a walking tour that includes the majestic Blue Mosque, the Hippodrome of Constantinople and the Grand Bazaar.
  • Explore Cappadocia’s wild natural rock formations while hiking through valleys, and see incredible stone-carved buildings in Goreme.
  • Board a ‘gulet’ boat for a day and night on the sea. Cruise over the sunken city around Kekova Island, swim in crystal-clear water and relax on deck.
  • Reflect on battles fought and lives lost with a moving visit to the Gallipoli Peninsula, touring former battlefields and the remains of Turkish trenches.
  • Spend two days exploring the cliffside waterfalls, cobblestone alleyways and ancient ruins of Antalya, a city on the Mediterranean Coast.
  • Istanbul - Leader-led walking tour
  • Gallipoli - guided visit
  • Kas - Overnight Boat trip
  • Cappadocia - Valley Walk
  • Day 1 Location: Istanbul
    Hosgeldinz! Welcome to Istanbul, a bustling mega-city with a rich history and food scene waiting to be explored. Your Lonely Planet Experience begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm, where you will meet your leader and fellow travellers. After the meeting, you might want to head out as a group to grab dinner and get to know each other.
    Day 2 Location: Istanbul
    Meet your local guide early this morning for a guided tour of Sultanahmet AKA the Old City, formerly Constantinople, to see Blue Mosque, the Hippodrome and the Grand Bazaar. Enjoy free time for the rest of the afternoon and evening. Maybe visit the jaw-dropping Hagia Sofia, said to have changed the history of architecture. Or maybe enjoy a steam session at a traditional hamam (public bath). Your tour leader knows all the best places, so they can recommend some great options for places to eat.
    Day 3 Location: Gallipoli
    Head for the shores of Gallipoli, the site of the ANZAC landings one of the most disastrous Allied campaigns of WWI. Visit the battlefields of Nek and Lone Pine and encounter remnants of trenches used by the Turkish soldiers. Hear stories of the heroism and camaraderie that unfolded among the tragedies and take the time to read moving inscriptions etched onto a sea of gravestones. There will also be the option to visit the Kabatepe Museum, which includes interactive presentations of the battle, as well as numerous relics from the campaign. Then, take the short ferry ride from Europe to Asia across the Dardanelles to Canakkale, a charming traditional fishing town that has a great range of dinner and nightlife options, not to mention medieval ruins to explore.
    Day 4 Location: Selcuk
    After breakfast, take a local bus to the traditional farming village of Selcuk. Take a guided walk around the town and the slopes of Ayasoluk Hill in the afternoon. See the 14th-century Isa Bey Mosque, the imposing the Grand Fortress and the ruins of the Basilica of St John. According to Christian lore, St John came to Ephesus with the Virgin Mary from Jerusalem and lived here until his death sometime around AD 100. The basilica stands over his alleged burial site. Your evening is free.
    Day 5 Location: Selcuk
    Today, choose whether you would like to take a guided tour of Ephesus with your tour leader or strike out on your own via a dolmus (local bus). One of the best-preserved Greco Roman cities in the world, Ephesus once had running water, public toilets, in-house heating, a renowned medical institute, a brothel and Roman baths. In the afternoon, you can choose to join an optional excursion to Sirince to taste some local wines.
    Day 6 Location: Pamukkale
    Take a train inland to one of Turkey's most photographed sites, Pamukkale, which literally translates to ‘cotton castle’. Here spectacular natural hot springs with high calcium bicarbonate content cascade over the edge of the cliffs, leaving white terraces (the ‘cotton’). It's been used as a spa since the 200 BC. Though you won't be able to bathe in these travertines, you can take a walk through them (after removing your shoes). You can choose to take an optional excursion to the ancient city of Hierapolis in the afternoon – speak to your leader for more information.
    Day 7 Location: Fethiye
    Take a local bus to Oludeniz and enjoy some time at the three-kilometre-long beach. Please note you will need to pay a small fee if you want to access the Blue Lagoon. Later, transfer to the quaint town of Fethiye. If conditions allow, it is possible to take an optional excursion to Kayakoy ghost village, an abandoned town that is both eerie and beautiful. This evening, enjoy a walk by the harbour and look up to see massive Lycian rock tombs cut from the cliffside.
    Day 8 Location: Southern Coast Cruising
    This morning take a local bus to Ucagiz. Board a boat for a memorable voyage along the Turquoise Coast, viewing some of the most stunning coastal scenery in the world. Cruise to the sunken cities around Kekova Island, where ancient remains can be viewed just below the water’s surface, and take a walk to Simena Castle, which offers spectacular views of the surrounding bays and islands. Spend your time on the boat swimming in the Med, relaxing and exploring the natural and historical sites along the way.
    Day 9 Location: Antalya
    Disembark the boat in Ucagiz this morning after breakfast and continue to Antalya, your base for the next two nights. Enjoy free time on arrival to explore at your own pace.
    Day 10 Location: Antalya
    Enjoy a free day to explore at your own pace. There are a number of optional excursions to choose from if you want a little guidance. For those after a nature fix, Duden Waterfalls is a lovely spot to relax. If you’re interested in visiting historical sites, there are optional excursions to Termessos, Aspendos or Side to choose from. Alternatively, stay in Antalya and soak up the charms of this seaside town.
    Day 11 Location: Konya
    This morning take a local bus inland to Konya, a traditional Turkish city where mainstream tourism is yet to arrive. The city is closely linked with the Whirling Dervish sect of Islam developed by in the 13th century by Rumi (or Mevlana). Get your bearings on an orientation walk with your leader and enjoy a refreshing drink in one of the many tea gardens. Later this evening, maybe join your group for some central Anatolian cuisine.
    Day 12 Location: Cappadocia
    This morning after breakfast, travel by local bus to Goreme, Cappadocia, a city made from the soft volcanic rock of the region. On arrival stretch your legs with an orientation walk with your leader.
    Day 13 Location: Cappadocia
    Today is free for you to explore Goreme and surrounds, including the World Heritage-listed Goreme Open Air Museum, a monastic complex is composed of churches, rectories and dwellings carved from the earth. Perhaps explore one of the region’s underground cities, the largest of which are almost ten levels deep with narrow passages connecting the floors like hamster tunnels. If you’re a hiker, you may like to walk the valleys of Red, Rose, or Love. Your leader is available help you organise your day.
    Day 14 Location: Cappadocia
    Your trip ends after breakfast this morning. Check-out time is 11 am.
    Dates
    Prices
    Availability
    Departure Date:
    05OCT2020
    Return Date:
    18OCT2020
    1840NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    12OCT2020
    Return Date:
    25OCT2020
    1710NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    19OCT2020
    Return Date:
    01NOV2020
    1705NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    15MAR2021
    Return Date:
    28MAR2021
    1695NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    22MAR2021
    Return Date:
    04APR2021
    1765NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    05APR2021
    Return Date:
    18APR2021
    1765NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    19APR2021
    Return Date:
    02MAY2021
    1765NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    28APR2021
    Return Date:
    11MAY2021
    1765NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    10MAY2021
    Return Date:
    23MAY2021
    1830NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    31MAY2021
    Return Date:
    13JUN2021
    1830NZD
    available
    Last modified (date)

    12 Jul 2020

    Trip title

    Turkey Uncovered

    Trip code

    ERRS

    Validity

    Validity: 01 Jan 2020 to 31 Dec 2021

    Introduction

    See the best of Turkey on this 14-day Lonely Planet Experience powered by Intrepid. Travel from Istanbul to Cappadocia and experience cosmopolitan cities, historic battlegrounds, glittering beaches, cities carved from rock and rugged coast. Enjoy an itinerary that takes you to Turkey’s essential destinations, a local leader for insider info and plenty of flexibility and free time to explore at your own pace. With optional excursions to historical sites, abandoned villages and underground cities, you can create the Turkey tour that’s perfect for you.

    Style

    Basix

    Themes

    Lonely Planet Experience

    Transport

    Public Bus,Private Bus,Train,Gulet

    Physical Rating

    2

    Joining point

    Golden Horn Hotel - Istanbul

    Hocapasa Mah. Istasyon Arkasi Sk. No 9

    Sirkeci

    Istanbul

    TURKEY

    Phone: +90 2125141544

    Joining point description

    Centrally located in the heart of the Historical Peninsula, the Golden Horn Hotel is within walking distance of many of the areas main attractions such as: Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, Topkapi Palace, Grand Bazaar and Basilica Cistern. **Please note that there is a hotel of a similar name 'Golden Horn Hotel' located just around the corner. Please check the address carefully if you are making your own way to the hotel.**

    Joining point instructions

    Private airport transfers are available for pre-booking through Intrepid. Contact your agent for details. Be sure to advise which of Istanbul's two airports you will be flying to at the time of booking. There are two International Airports servicing Istanbul. Istanbul New Airport (IST) is situated 52kms from your starting point hotel. The quickest and easiest way to the hotel is by taxi - there are ranks outside the arrival’s terminal. This service should be approximately 125-155 TL. There is a bus service HAVAIST to various locations in the greater Istanbul, this service is located one level down from the arrival hall. Please enquire at the information booths on the transport level for schedule times and for the purchase of prepaid tickets. You will require the bus for the Eminounu locality and then a short walk from here to your hotel – this fee will be 18TL for the bus. Sabiha Gokcen Airport (SAW) is located at Pendik / Kurtköy on the Asian side of Istanbul and 50km from you starting point hotel. Taxis are available outside the arrivals hall this service should cost 135-175 TL. There are public buses (IETT) and contracted Bus Services HAVATAS to various locations in the greater Istanbul, please enquire in the terminal building for up to date schedule times. We recommend the HAVATAS bus to Kadikoy and the ferry to Eminounu if choosing public transport. Your hotel will be a short walk from the ferry terminal. If you have pre-booked a transfer, please refer to the instructions below depending on arrival airport. Private Transfer from IST Airport As of January 2020, transport companies are no longer allowed to greet arriving customers with signage at IST Airport. The below process is regulated by local airport authorities. -Arriving customers will walk out at the arrivals hall and must make their way to the meeting lounge, veer left and follow the signage to this area. In the Meeting Lounge give your name to the local representatives. -the airport representative will contact the appropriate transfer representative waiting in the airport, who will arrive and escort you to the waiting vehicle. Should you experience any problems with this process please provide the number of our transport company to the airport representative at the Meeting Lounge: + 90 553 313 47 60 Private Transfer from SAW Airport When exiting into the arrivals hall, please look for our representative who will be holding signage with your name and or our company Logo. For all issues regarding arrivals please contact our local emergency number +90 532 641 28 22

    Finish point

    Ciner Hotel

    Ciner cad.

    Goreme

    Nevsehir

    50180

    TURKEY

    Phone: +90 384 271 2039

    Finish point description

    The Ciner Hotel is a small, comfortable hotel in the heart of Goreme. It is ideally located as a base to explore all Cappadocia has to offer. The hotel facilities include a small pool, restaurant and WiFi. The rooms are basic but some have views of the magnificent hot air balloons floating over Cappadocia in the mornings.

    Finish point instructions

    Private airport transfers are available for pre-booking through Intrepid. Contact your agent for details. Be sure to advise which airport you will be flying from at the time of booking: Neveshir or Kayseri. If you have any problems with departure transfers please contact our Intrepid Istanbul office on +90 212 512 7144.

    Important information

    SINGLE SUPPLEMENT A single supplement is available on this trip, except for Day 8 Overnight Boat (1 night). GROUP MEETING There is a welcome meeting at 6 pm on Day 1. ENTRANCE FEES Most entrance fees are not included. If you wish to take part in these activities, you pay these fees as you go along. DEPARTURE This trip finishes on Day 14 in Cappadocia and does not include a transfer back to Istanbul. Overnight buses are available, and Cappadocia is serviced by two airports, Kayseri and Neveshir. Speak to an Intrepid booking agent if you wish to secure additional accommodation (subject to availability). SAFETY We recommend that you check your government's advice for the latest information on travelling in Turkey before your departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas of your itinerary. We have links to prominent government travel advisories and regular updates on issues affecting tours on the Travel Alerts page – www.intrepidtravel.com/travel-alerts. Departure 22nd April 2020 ERRS200422 – this departure of Turkey Explored includes attendance at ANZAC Day commemorations for 2020. Attendees of the dawn service and ANZAC commemorations require an attendee’s pass.  As at the 24thFebruary passes are available for pre-registration at:https://overseascommemorations.ticketek.com.au/seriesevents/EDVP0000020GA/tickets Attendees must select to either attend the Dawn Service only, or the Dawn Service and one memorial service (Lone Pine – Australian Service) OR (Chunuk Bair – New Zealand Service). Please enter Intrepid Travel as your tour Operator and select Tour Coach as the means of travelling to the site.  Please remember that attendees are expected to walk from the Dawn Service to the Lone Pine site and then continue to Chunuk Bair where coach loading will take place after the final memorial service. If attending the Lone Pine Service, you will be required to wait for completion of the Chunuk Bair service, this will be the only pick up point for coach loading.  There will be food and beverage service available at the Chunuk site. The distance to Chunuk Bair via Lone Pine is approximately 8km and is a steady uphill walk.  You can register for mobility assistance if required. Whilst Group registration is possible, we ask all our customers to register independently to ensure correct details are provided and mobility assistance requested if required. After registering you will receive a registration ID please keep this handy and wait for further email advice.        

    Group leader

    All group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. We endeavour to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. You can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. In Turkey, in accordance with local regulations your Leader will also be a licensed Tour Guide and will not only have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip; but will also have specialised knowledge on the sites visited and provide full guiding services.

    Safety

    Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trip. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns. For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to Intrepid's operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field: www.intrepidtravel.com/safety

    FIRE PRECAUTIONS Please be aware that local laws governing tourism facilities in this region differ from those in your home country and not all the accommodation which we use has a fire exit, fire extinguishers or smoke alarms. BALCONIES Some hotel balconies don't meet western standards in terms of the width of the balcony fence being narrower than 10cm. TRAFFIC AND DRIVING ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROAD Depending on where you come from please note that drivers in this part of the world may drive on the opposite side of the road from what you are used to. Look both ways before crossing any road. Traffic can be a little more chaotic than you might be used to at home. Be aware! SEAT BELTS Please be aware that local laws governing transportation safety may differ from those in your home country and not all the transport which we use is able to provide seat belts. PICK POCKETING & PERSONAL SAFETY While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking at night and encourage you to walk in groups and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair or on the floor and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing. WATER SAFETY Please take care when taking part in any activities in the ocean, river or open water, where waves and currents can be unpredictable. It's expected that anyone taking part in water activities is able to swim and have experience in open water. All swimmers should seek local advice before entering the water. TRAVEL ADVICE & TRAVEL INSURANCE We recommend that you check your government's advice in relation to the areas you will be visiting for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers.

    SAFETY IN TURKEY: We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before your departure and that you ensure your travel insurance covers you for all areas in your itinerary. We have links to all major travel advisories and regular updates on issues affecting your trip on our safety page (link above). The safety of our travellers and staff is our first priority. We continue to monitor the situation through official travel advisories and our local operations team, and we’re able to quickly change arrangements if for any reason we become concerned. If there should be any changes to the situation you will be advised immediately. Whilst travelling in Istanbul before, after or during your tour we would recommend avoiding crowded areas like Taksim Square, Galatasaray and Kadikoy Meydan after 6.00pm especially on a weekend. If using public transport in the city please refer to http://www.iett.gov.tr/en for the latest updates and announcements.

    Visas

    PASSPORT As a general rule most countries expect that your passport has a minimum of 6 months validity remaining. Please ensure the name on your passport matches the name on your booking and airline tickets. Your passport details are required to complete your booking. Your consultant will contact you when this is required. Take a copy of the main passport pages and other important documents with you, and leave another copy at home with family or friends. VISAS Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with acquiring visas. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time. TURKEY: Australia: Yes - apply for an e-visa before you go Belgium: Yes - apply for an e-visa before you go Canada: Yes - apply for an e-visa before you go Germany: No - not required Ireland: Yes - apply for an e-visa before you go Netherlands: Yes - apply for an e-visa before you go New Zealand: No - not required South Africa: Yes - apply for an e-visa before you go Switzerland: No - not required United Kingdom: Yes - apply for an e-visa before you go USA: Yes - apply for an e-visa before you go Most nationalities require a visa to enter Turkey. Visas must be obtained through the e-Visa system. To apply for an e-visa, please go to https://www.evisa.gov.tr/en/ at least two weeks before you arrive in Turkey. This multiple entry e-Visa costs USD60 as is valid for 90 days. Please note, visa costs can change at any time and with little notice depending on the political climate of the region. Some countries do not require a visa at all. This includes passport holders from New Zealand, Argentina, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Japan, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland for stays up to three months. We recommend all nationalities check with their local consulate o embassy as this information can change. Entry Requirements – Passport Validity: Foreigners entering Turkey must carry a passport with at least 60 days validity beyond the expiry date of their visa.

    Why we love it

    Discover the Old City of Istanbul on a walking tour that includes the majestic Blue Mosque, the Hippodrome of Constantinople and the Grand Bazaar.

    Explore Cappadocia’s wild natural rock formations while hiking through valleys, and see incredible stone-carved buildings in Goreme.

    Board a ‘gulet’ boat for a day and night on the sea. Cruise over the sunken city around Kekova Island, swim in crystal-clear water and relax on deck.

    Reflect on battles fought and lives lost with a moving visit to the Gallipoli Peninsula, touring former battlefields and the remains of Turkish trenches.

    Spend two days exploring the cliffside waterfalls, cobblestone alleyways and ancient ruins of Antalya, a city on the Mediterranean Coast.

    Is this trip right for you

    The weather can be hot in July and August, but this is also the best time to enjoy the clear water of the Mediterranean – don’t forget your swim gear. This trip gives you lots of control over your travels, with some included site visits and lots of choices for your free time. You’ll need walking shoes, a hat, sunscreen and a daypack for the Gallipoli site visit and the valley walk in Cappadocia. These tours are guided, but you can wander at your own pace if you prefer. On Day 8, the overnight cruising excursion takes place on a traditional boat called a 'gulet'. Sleeping arrangements are multishare and open-air. Bathroom facilities are shared. All bedding is provided. The gulet has shared bathroom facilities, with limited fresh water for washing.

    Health

    All travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, we reserve the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund. You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations and anti-malarial requirements before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements (including a spare pair of glasses) as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. DRINKING WATER As a rule we recommend you don't drink tap water, even in hotels, as it may contain much higher levels of different minerals than the water you are used to at home. For local people this is not a problem as their bodies are used to this and can cope, but for visitors drinking the tap water can result in illness. Generally this isn't serious, an upset stomach being the only symptom, but it's enough to spoil a day or two of your holiday. Many hotels and lodges provide safe drinking water, while bottled water is another alternative. Water consumption should be about two litres a day. Rehydration salts, motion sickness tablets, and diarrhoea blockers are available from many pharmacies.

    Food and dietary requirements

    Your group leader or representative will endeavour to cater for specific dietary requirements where possible, and vegetarianism and gluten intolerance will be catered for in most instances. There are, however some meals and activities that are fixed in advance and therefore cannot be modified to suit dietary requirements. Please notify your booking consultant of any dietary requirements at the time of booking. For those suffering from particular food allergies, your group leader or representative will endeavour to disclose to their fullest knowledge the main ingredients in dishes being consumed. It is, however, your personal responsibility to ensure that you do not ingest any foods to which you are allergic.

    Money matters

    When it comes to money matters on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities, tipping and laundry. It’s always better to bring a little more than you think you’ll need. Also make sure you’ve read your trip details thoroughly so you know what’s included in the trip price and what isn’t. This should make budgeting a little easier. You’ll find this info in the Inclusions section of your Essential Trip Information (that’s this document). CURRENCY The Official currency of Turkey is the Turkish Lira (TRY). Most goods and services can be paid for using the local currency. The EUR is also acceptable as is the USD. For the supply of everyday services like meals and general shopping we recommend the local currency. BANKING ATMs are widely available in all major towns and cities throughout Turkey. Credit and debit cards are the best way to access money throughout most trips (note though that charges are made for each transaction). Credit cards are generally available in tourist shops and restaurants. Visa and MasterCard are generally preferred over American Express, Diners, etc. Smaller venues take cash only. TIPPING If you're happy with the services provided during your trip, whilst not compulsory it is considered cultural appropriate to offer a gratuity.  Whilst it may not be customary to you, it's of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many Intrepid destinations. The following amounts are based on local considerations and feedback from our past travellers: Restaurants: Local markets and basic restaurants - leave the loose change. More up-market restaurants we suggest 5% to 10% of your bill. Drivers: You may have a range of private drivers on your trip. Some may be with you for a short journey while others may be with you for several days. We would suggest a higher tip for those more involved with the group however EURO 1 - 2  per person per day is generally appropriate. Blue Cruise: If you trip includes an overnight or daily Mediterranean cruise you may want to consider leaving a goodwill gesture for the crew EURO 1-2 per person per day is generally appropriate adjusted based on the duration of the cruise. Your Group Leader: You may also consider tipping your leader for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline  EURO 3 - 4 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip.  Tipping in local currency equivalent is perfectly acceptable and often preferred. Tipping Kitty: Over the years we have found that many of our travellers find the need for tipping to be both tiresome and embarrassing, especially if they don't have the correct small change. To overcome this, we have established a tipping kitty system. At your group meeting, your tour leader may discuss the idea of running a group tipping kitty, whereby everybody contributes an equal amount and then your tour leader pays the tips while keeping a running record of all monies spent (except restaurant tips). The record can be checked at any time and any money remaining at the end of the tour returned to group members. As a general note, bathrooms in Turkey do often charge a fee.  This fee can vary but generally 2-3 TL is required, so it is useful to keep some loose change handy. SHOPPING There are many opportunities to purchase souvenirs and handicrafts while on this trip, they can be a fantastic memento of your trip, and often these purchases help to support local artisans. Your Leader may suggest visits to different stores during your tour.  Rest assured that these vendors have been selected by our team on ground.  They provide good service and good quality products at fair market prices.  It also means that after sales service is available should you get home and have a problem with your purchase.  Some visits may be included as part of your itinerary where we feel the making of the craft is relevant to the destination and interesting for everyone to visit.  If this is the case you are under no obligation to purchase anything, simply enjoy the demonstrations and learning about the local craft.    We do also encourage you to enjoy shopping in the markets to compare prices and quality. EMERGENCY FUNDS We try to plan for every eventuality, but there are still some things beyond our control. Please make sure you bring an extra USD500 for emergencies (e.g. natural disasters or civil unrest). Sometimes these things necessitate last minute changes to our itineraries, and we can’t guarantee there won’t be some extra costs involved. TRAVELLERS TO TURKEY PLEASE NOTE Turkey is often misjudged when it comes to the cost of goods and services and prices can vary considerably, between regions. Cities like Istanbul and Antalya are very European and as such the standard of restaurants and cafes is very high and the cost equivalent to its European counterparts. Eating in local restaurants, road side stalls and markets is still inexpensive and lots of fun. Budgets are a personal choice but please bear in mind that you should not expect Turkey to be a budget destination.

    What to take

    What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking, we recommend you pack as lightly as possible and make sure that you are able to carry and lift your own luggage, and walk with it for short distances. Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips. Below are some ideas and helpful tips on what you specifically need for this trip. GENERAL PACKING LIST • Travel documents: passport, visa (if required), travel insurance,    air tickets or e-ticket receipts and a copy of this document. • Photocopy of main passport pages, visa (if required), travel insurance and air tickets. • Personal medical kit. Your guide will carry a large kit but we recommend you carry items such as mild          pain killers, electrolytes and bandaids. • Daypack • Watch/Alarm clock or phone that can be used for both. • Power adaptors • Insect repellent • Sun protection - hat, sunscreen, sunglasses • Earplugs and eye mask (you might be sharing with a snorer!) • Water bottle. We recommend at least a 1.5litre capacity. The sale of bottled water contributes to an              enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a    1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion end up in limited landfill or      discarded in waterways and natural environments. • Warm clothes including hat and gloves - When travelling in cooler climates • Wind and waterproof rain jacket • Toiletries/travel wipes/ hand sanitizer  • Travel Towel • Closed in, comfortable walking shoes. As most of our trips include some walking elements, we highly          recommend that you take a pair of comfortable, closed-in walking shoes.  • Camera with spare memory cards and batteries • Clothing - The staple travel items but consider the time of year.  We recommend a fleece/jacket any time    of the year and a scarf for women for visiting religious sites   Cold Weather• Long-sleeved shirts or sweater• Scarf• Warm gloves• Warm hat• Warm layers / thermals   Warm Weather:• Sandals/flip-flops• Shorts/skirts (Longer shorts/skirts are recommended)• Sun                    hat/bandana• Swimwear LUGGAGE LIMIT On this trip, you must pack as lightly as possible because you will be expected to carry your own bag and, although you won't be required to walk long distances with your luggage, we strongly recommend keeping the weight under 15kg. If your itinerary includes a flight, please keep in mind that some domestic airlines have checked luggage limits of 15kg. CLOTHING & CLIMATE Please note that as a desert region, the Middle East can have extreme weather. Temperatures are generally hot with little rain. This can become extreme during the summer months of June to August. In the months of December to March it can be very cold, particularly next to the river or the ocean and out in the desert where night temperatures can drop dramatically. Even in the hot months, it can get cold in the desert at night. Consider bringing a sleeping bag, thermals, scarf, gloves and a warm jacket for travel in this period, especially on itineraries which include camping such as on a felucca, in a desert camp, or at a Red Sea beach camp. A light water and windproof jacket is useful and a hat is essential. VALUABLES Please try to avoid bringing unnecessary valuables, and use your hotel safes to store the bulk of your money, passport, and airline tickets. It’s also a good idea to purchase a money belt or pouch that is easily hidden. We strongly recommend that you photocopy all important documents e.g. air tickets, passport, vaccination certificate, etc. and keep the copies separate from the originals. While not valid, a photocopy makes it very much easier to obtain replacements if necessary. BATTERIES/POWER Most of our trips have access to power to recharge batteries for phones and cameras regularly. We always recommend that you carry an extra battery for your camera just in case. Charging of batteries is advised before checking out of your hotel rooms. Please bear in mind there may be some nights were electricity may not be as readily available as you might be used to – home stays, beach and desert camps etc. RESTRICTED ITEMS Generally drones are not permitted into any Middle East destination or they require registration and pre approval please refer to your airline carrier if you are considering taking a drone on your travels or check out drone laws by country on line. We have had some reports of binoculars being confiscated or causing delay in customs if carried in hand luggage.  

    Climate and seasonal

    Turkey is a large country split into seven regions, as a rule of thumb the Marmara, Aegean and Mediterranean coasts have typical Mediterranean climates with hot summers and mild, wet winters. In the east it is more mountainous with warm summers and very cold, snowy winters. Central Turkey (Cappadocia) ,has low rainfall  and very dry hot summers and cold or very cold winters. Istanbul and coastal centres can experience very high humidity. Winter (approx. November to February) can be very cold. Not all of our hotels have heating so consider bringing thermals, scarf, gloves and a warm jacket for travel in this period. Summer (approx. June to August) can be very hot. Not all our hotels have air-conditioning, and in those that do, it's not always functioning. Please consider the seasons when planning your trip. RAMADAN 2020 In 2020, the important month of Ramadan or Ramzan in Turkey will be in progress from 23 April through until 23 May, and the Eid ul-Fitr festival or Bayram in Turkey will be held directly at its conclusion for 3-4 days. Ramadan is a festival of sacrifice where the devout refrain from eating or drinking during daylight hours. During Ramadan, business hours are shortened, including opening hours at some tourist attractions. Alcohol is not permitted during daylight hours and many restaurants will be closed. While you should expect some delays and inconveniences during this period, the month is a fantastic opportunity to travel in a Muslim country and witness this unique period, particularly the nightly celebrations when the sun sets and the fast is broken. Please note that although the Eid ul-Fitr festival can also be a fascinating time to travel it's a period of national holiday. Most government offices and businesses will be closed and some tourist site opening hours may be affected. Ramadan month can differ from country to country and region to region, it can be a wonderful inclusion in your vacation. If you have concerns about travelling at this time, please check with Intrepid or your booking agent before your departure.

    A couple of rules

    Everyone has the right to feel safe when they travel. We don’t tolerate any form of violence (verbal or physical) or sexual harassment, either between customers or involving our leaders, partners or local people. Sexual relationships between a tour leader and a customer are strictly forbidden. Use or possession of illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. If you choose to consume alcohol while travelling, we encourage responsible drinking and expect that you’ll abide by the local laws regarding alcohol consumption. The sex tourism industry is known to exploit vulnerable people and have negative consequences on communities, including undermining the development of sustainable tourism. For this reason, patronising sex workers will not be tolerated on our trips. By travelling with us you are agreeing to adhere to these rules. You must at all times comply with the laws, customs, foreign exchange and drug regulations of all countries visited, and you also agree to travel in accordance with our Responsible Travel Guidelines. The decision of the group leader is final on all matters likely to affect the safety or well-being of any traveller or staff member participating in the trip. If you fail to comply with a decision made by a group leader, or interfere with the well-being or mobility of the group, the group leader may direct you to leave the trip immediately, with no right of refund. We may also elect not to carry you on any future trips booked. If you feel that someone is behaving inappropriately while travelling with us, please inform your tour leader or local guide immediately. Alternatively, contact us on the emergency contact number detailed in the Problems and Emergency Contact section of this Essential Trip Information.

    Feedback

    After your travels, we want to hear from you! We realise that our partner company may ask you to complete paper or online feedback following your trip, however we would also like to know what you thought and encourage you to submit your feedback to us too. We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers.

    Emergency contact

    While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip. We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager. You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. Please do be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is completed, so informing us while still travelling will give us the opportunity to resolve the issue in real-time. In case of a genuine crisis or emergency, you can reach our local office on the number below: Intrepid's Local Operator: +905326412822

    Responsible travel

    http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/rt/responsibletraveller Our Responsible Travel Policy outlines our commitment to preserving the environment, supporting local communities, protecting the vulnerable, and giving back to the places we travel. All our trip leaders, suppliers, and staff are trained on these principles and are core to us delivering sustainable, experience-rich travel. Explore the different parts of our Responsible Travel Policy by visiting: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/responsible-travel When packing be aware that dress standards are conservative and you should dress accordingly. To respect the local culture and for your own comfort, we strongly recommend modest clothing. As a guideline, shoulders and knees at the minimum (and everything in between including midriff and cleavage) should be covered at all times. Wearing shorts and singlet tops is not appropriate and may well restrict your entry into sites of a religious nature, family homes, and will limit your local interaction opportunities in general. Loose, lightweight, long clothing is both respectful and cool in the predominantly warm climate.

    The Intrepid Foundation

    http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/ Organisations and projects currently supported by The Intrepid Foundation in Turkey include: * Mavi Kalem provides the children of rural immigrants, in the poorer areas of Eastern Turkey, with additional weekly classes through its Children's Education Program. These lessons, by trained teachers in all areas of formal education, give unprecedented educational opportunities in a region where the uneducated face limited prospects.

    Transport notes

    There are some long travel days and some rough travelling in areas away from main tourist routes. Windy roads, rough surfaces and cramped conditions make for some challenging travel experiences. On some long travel days we depart early in the morning to ensure we optimise our time at our next destination. If you experience travel sickness we recommend you consider medication to help ease the discomfort. Turkey - Public Transport When and where possible we will use public buses to travel between cities on this trip. However due to weather and seasonal bus schedules we may find it necessary to substitute public buses with private transport on some days. Public buses in Turkey don't have toilets on board. Breaks are normally scheduled at rest stops every 2-3 hours.

    Travel insurance

    Travel insurance is compulsory on all our trips for those travelling internationally. We require that at a minimum you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. If you are travelling within your home country or region please confirm before travel that you are entitled to access the public medical system easily should an accident occur. We strongly recommend all travellers have a policy that also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage or personal effects. For international trips, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24-hour emergency contact number has been sighted by your leader. If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number, and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and your credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country. Travellers who reside within the European Union or Switzerland receive basic international health insurance, so travel insurance is not mandatory under European Union Law. However, as this does not cover situations such as emergency rescues, private health care, or repatriation to their home country, comprehensive travel insurance is strongly recommended. European Union or Swiss travellers who decline travel insurance when travelling outside of their home region must sign a Travel Insurance Waiver Form at the Group Meeting. For assistance with travel insurance or other services, please visit the link below: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/booking-resources/our-services

    Your fellow travellers

    As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons, we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.

    Itinerary disclaimer

    ITINERARY CHANGES Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you review this information prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays, or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in-country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any such changes once on tour. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability, and maybe on a join-in basis. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested in the Group Meeting and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high-risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.

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