During a conversation at a friend’s party one of our friends mentioned that he had had a great travel in Turkey a few years back. He told us that he and his family had opted for a private Ephesus tour when their cruise docked at the Port of Kusadasi and that was a great tour worth any penny. That was how we got the idea of a trip to Turkey.

We had done some search online and realized that there would be so many places worth visiting and we had wanted to see as many places as possible within 2 weeks of our holidays. So we got the contact info of the travel company from which my friend had booked their trip to Turkey. After many emails and calls back and forth, the company had designed a trip of Turkey to meet our needs which included 3 private tours, Jewish Heritage Tour in Istanbul, Ephesus Tour from Kusadası, and Cappadocia tour.

We stayed 3 days in Istanbul visiting first Blues Mosque, Aya Sophia Palace, Grand Bazaar for shopping as well as a Bosphorus boat trip. We also visited most places of Jewish heritage such as Galata Quarter, a 4-century-old Jewish neighborhood, Neve Shalom Synagogue, Ashkenazi Synagogue, Zulfaris Synagogue which has served as the Museum of Turkish Jews since 2001, Ahrida Synagogue known foremost by its 20-foot long boat-shaped tevah and theJewish Cemetery.

Our guide then flew with us from Istanbul to Izmir from where we went to Kusadasi by a very comfortable Mercedes van to Kusadasi which was our base for the next 4 days. We had a great experience one-day tour in Ephesus, the House of Virgin Mary and the Temple of Artemis. The next day we kind of slowed down our pace; we visited Kirazli village for its famous organic farming where we actually picked Cherry and enjoyed a relaxing day living village life and having local village meals. On the third day we headed for one-day Pamukkale tour, the round trip took about 7 hours which was a bit time-consuming and tiring although the whole trip was great. Thanks to our next program, visiting Sirince village, we not only had a great time walking around this old Greek village and testing numerous locally produced fruit wines but also felt replenished .

The last 4 days of our holidays were spent in Cappadocia. Hot air balloon trip was just awesome; we videoed the breath-taking views  overlooking the whole Cappadocia. In Kayseri we went to a 100-year-old Turkish bath and the massage made us feel like reborn again! No wonder Turkish bath has been famous and popular. In Goreme we lived in a hotel which was a real cave for Christians who had fled from the persecution by Muslims in the history. Those underground cities, some of them 7 floors deep, were developed so modern considering very limited technology and equipment there were when they were built.

This was a tour of Turkey in a lifetime! So many thanks to our guide Mr. Selcuk  who accompanied us from day 1 till the end and many drivers ( my apology for not being able to remember their names) in different places.

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A tour of Turkey in a lifetime, 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 rating