This tour is a unique opportunity to explore the ancient sites of the Christian world. These churches, located in modern-day Turkey, were visited by the apostle John in the book of Revelation and hold significant historical and religious importance. On this tour, you will have the chance to visit each of the seven churches and Istanbul, the city that spans two continents and three civilizations, Discover about their rich history and importance in the early Christian community. This tour offers a fascinating glimpse into the past, from Ephesus’s magnificent cathedral to Thyatira’s humble ruins.
DAY 1: ARRIVAL TO ISTANBUL
Welcome to Turkey, the crossroads between East and West! Our representative will meet you at Istanbul airport and escort you on a private transfer to the hotel. Enjoy rest of the day at your own leisure to explore the hidden treasures of this magnificent city!
DAY 2: FULL DAY ISTANBUL TOUR
Our journey begins in Istanbul, the only city in the world situated on two continents. Byzantium, Constantinople, Istanbul – its three names span more than 2600 years, nearly 1600 of them as the capital of two of the greatest empires the world has known, Byzantine and Ottoman. We visit the Topkapi Palace, Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque and Hippodrome, where chariot races and the Byzantine riots took place. Visit Spice Bazaar (Egyptian Bazaar): The air here is filled with the enticing aromas of cinnamon, caraway, saffron, mint, thyme and every other conceivable herb and spice.
DAY 3: FULL DAY ISTANBUL TOUR – IZMIR
Today’s visits begin with Grand Bazaar, one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world, with 61 covered streets and over 3,000 shops! Later, transfer to the port for a cruise on the Bosporus. A traditional excursion by boat, along the waterway separating Europe and Asia. The shore is lined with old wooden villas, marble palaces, fortresses, and small fishing villages. Afternoon visit to the Underground cistern and transfer to Istanbul airport for flight to Izmir.
DAY 4: PERGAMUM – THYATIRA – IZMIR
Drive to Pergamum, modern-day Bergama [Rev. 1:11; 2:12]. Explore the impressive Acropolis, the steepest theater in the world and the Asklepion. See the Altar of Zeus mentioned as the «Throne of Satan» in the book of Revelation. Continue to Thyatira (Akhisar) [Rev. 1:11; 2:18-24; Acts 16:14] and visit the remains of the Basilica. Enjoy a panoramic drive through Smyrna, the third largest city in Turkey and one of the sites of the Seven Churches of Asia [Rev. 2:12-17]. Dinner will be provided at the hotel in Izmir.
DAY 5: IZMIR – SARDIS – PHILADELPHIA – LAODICEA – HIERAPOLIS
Early morning start and first visit is Sardis (presently Sart) [Rev. 1:11; 3:1-4], one of the most picturesque sites of the Seven Churches of Asia. We visit the great Temple of Artemis and the Temple of Cybele. In Philadelphia (Alasehir) [Rev. 1:11; 3:7] we will see the remains of the Byzantine Basilica and 11th century frescoes. Proceed to Laodicea (Denizli) [Rev. 1:11; 3:14; Col. 2:1; 4:13-16], where we see the ancient theater and visit the Gate of Domitian, and the Arcadian Way among other monuments. Today’s tour ends with a visit to Hierapolis (Pamukkale) [Col. 4:13] where ancient hot springs cascade over steep cliffs, forming stalactites and pools. Enjoy dinner at the hotel in Hierapolis.
DAY 6: EPHESUS – KUSADASI
Drive to Ephesus (Acts 18:19-21) and visit the ancient city and the Basilica of St. John. The Apostle Paul preached to the Ephesians and lived here for three years. We tour the spectacular ruins where excavations still continue in this once great and important city, which was founded in the 10th century BC. Visit the House of Virgin Mary before driving to Kusadasi for dinner and overnight at the hotel.
DAY 7: IZMIR – ISTANBUL
In the morning we transfer to Izmir airport for afternoon flight to Istanbul. Remainder of the day is free to explore the city on your own. Discover the old and new parts of Istanbul and get a real feel of this fascinating city!
DAY 8: DEPARTURE
Meet with your escort and driver and transfer to the Airport for your international flight. We hope that visiting the Churches found in Revelation has brought you a new understanding of the Bible to go along with fresh memories, souvenirs and a renewed interest in Turkey, the land of culture, faith and mystery.
CUSTOMIZE THIS TOUR!
Enjoy an upgrade to a luxury hotel for the duration of your stay.