15 days in Turkey Itinerary

15 days in Turkey Itinerary

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Route & dates

15 days in Turkey Itinerary

Start: Johannesburg
Fly:  13​h 30​min
1
Istanbul
— 5 nights
Fly:  3​h 45​min
2
Selcuk
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
3
Pamukkale
— 2 nights
taxi + Fly:  5​h 30​min
4
Goreme, Cappadocia
— 4 nights
Fly:  16​h 30​min
End: Johannesburg

5
nights
Istanbul

Istanbul ©
A physical and cultural bridge between Europe and Asia, the transcontinental city of Istanbul serves as a living reminder of the Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman empires.
You'll visit kid-friendly attractions like Hagia Sophia Museum / Church (Ayasofya) and Suleymaniye Cami . There's lots more to do: admire the striking features of Basilica Cistern, admire the masterpieces at Kariye Museum (The Chora Church), take an in-depth tour of Topkapi Palace, and wander the streets of Ortakoy.

For reviews, maps, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read Istanbul trip planner .

Johannesburg, South Africa to Istanbul is an approximately 13.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and shuttle; or do a combination of bus and flight. Traveling from Johannesburg to Istanbul, you'll lose 1 hour due to the time zone difference. When traveling from Johannesburg in November, plan for cooler days in Istanbul, with highs around 17°C, while nights are about the same with lows around 17°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Thu) so you can travel to Selcuk.

Things to do in Istanbul

Historic Sites Museums Neighborhoods
Find places to stay Nov 30 — Dec 5:
Highlights from your plan
Basilica Cistern ©
Basilica Cistern
Dolmabahce Palace ©
Dolmabahce Palace

3
nights
Selcuk

Selcuk ©
An ideal base camp for exploring the Aegean coastline, Selcuk draws big tourist crowds due to its proximity to the ancient city of Ephesus.
Selcuk is known for historic sites, museums, shopping, theme parks, and nightlife. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: explore the ancient world of Ancient City of Ephesus, steep yourself in history at Meryemana (The Virgin Mary's House), get to know the fascinating history of Mermerli Yol, and see the interesting displays at Ephesus Museum.

For where to stay, maps, other places to visit, and tourist information, go to the Selcuk tour itinerary planner.

You can fly from Istanbul to Selcuk in 4 hours. Other options are to do a combination of shuttle and flight; or drive. Expect somewhat warmer weather when traveling from Istanbul in December: highs in Selcuk hover around 15°C, while lows dip to 3°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Sun) so you can drive to Pamukkale.

Things to do in Selcuk

Historic Sites Theme Parks Museums
Find places to stay Dec 5 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Ancient City of Ephesus ©
Ancient City of Ephesus
Aqua Fantasy- Aquapark Hotel & SPA ©
Bibliotheque de Celsus ©
Bibliotheque de Celsus

2
nights
Pamukkale

Pamukkale ©
A popular spa since the second century BCE, the modern city of Pamukkale continues to draw worldwide attention with its hot springs and travertines--naturally formed calcite bathing pools.
Start off your visit on the 9th (Mon): take in the natural beauty of Pamukkale Thermal Pools, steep yourself in history at Hierapolis, and then stroll the grounds of Anatolia Cemetery. Here are some ideas for day two: fly like a bird with a parasailing or paragliding tour, soar above the sights with a balloon tour, and then contemplate the long history of Byzantine Church.

To see maps, more things to do, traveler tips, and more tourist information, refer to the Pamukkale itinerary tool .

You can drive from Selcuk to Pamukkale in 3 hours. Other options are to take a train; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 10th (Tue) so you can travel to Goreme.

Things to do in Pamukkale

Historic Sites Tours Outdoors
Find places to stay Dec 8 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Hierapolis ©
Hierapolis
Pamukkale Thermal Pools ©
Pamukkale Thermal Pools
Anatolia Cemetery ©
Anatolia Cemetery

4
nights
Goreme, Cappadocia

Famed for its landscape of unusually shaped stone formations and churches cut into the natural rocks, Goreme sits in the central part of the country, an area originally settled during Roman times.
Goreme is known for museums, historic sites, nature, shopping, and nightlife. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: soar above the sights with a balloon tour, explore the fascinating underground world of Cappadocia Cave Dwellings, explore the striking landscape of Goreme Tarihi Milli Parki, and explore the world behind art at Naile Art Gallery.

For where to stay, reviews, photos, and other tourist information, go to the Goreme tour planner.

You can do a combination of taxi and flight from Pamukkale to Goreme in 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In December in Goreme, expect temperatures between 6°C during the day and -3°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Sat) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Goreme

Outdoors Parks Nature

Side Trip

Cappadocia Cave Dwellings
Find places to stay Dec 10 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
Balloon Rides
Goreme National Park ©
Goreme National Park
Cappadocia Cave Dwellings ©
Cappadocia Cave Dwellings

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