Day 1: USA
Depart the USA for Turkey.
Day 2: Istanbul
Arrive at the airport in Istanbul, & transfer to the hotel. Enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure.
Day 3: Istanbul – Izmir – Kusadasi
Discover the wonders of Istanbul today. Visit the 17th-century Sultan Ahmed Mosque, or “Blue Mosque,” which boasts a beautiful interior décor, consisting of marble & handcrafted ceramic tiles. Explore the magnificent Hagia Sophia, & learn about its conversion throughout history, from church to mosque to the Museum of Byzantine Art. Venture through the Grand Bazaar, home to thousands of shops featuring antiques, spices, jewelry, & more. Other highlights include the imperial Topkapi Palace, which features the actual bones from John the Baptist’s arm & hand. Afterward, transfer to the airport, & board flight to Izmir. Upon arrival, transfer to the hotel in Kusadasi for dinner & an overnight stay.
Day 4: Kusadasi – Miletus – Ephesus – Kusadasi
Travel to the ancient city of Miletus, where the Apostle Paul informed the elders of the Ephesian church that he was on his way to Jerusalem. Sightseeing highlights include the Greco-Roman theatre. Afterward, head to Ephesus, a site of one of the seven churches of Revelation & one of the most amazing displays of ancient Greek & Roman architecture. Learn about the long-lost Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Stand on the stage of the Great Theatre, where the Apostle Paul preached the gospel to the Ephesians. This amazing structure, which can hold a congregation of 25,000, is still being used for events to this day. Other famous structures include the Stadium, the Library of Celsus & the Gate of Augustus. Later today, visit the house where the Virgin Mary spent her last days on Earth. A Mass will be held inside the house (pending availability). Tonight, enjoy another overnight stay in Kusadasi.
Day 5: Kusadasi – Thyatira – Pergamum – Alexandria Troas – Troy – Canakkale
See the ruins of ancient Thyatira, home to the church that allowed Jezebel to falsely advise its members. Next, visit Pergamum, the ancient city referred to in the Bible as Satan’s lair. See the stunning Hellenistic theatre, one of the world’s steepest, which dates back to the 3rd century B.C. See the remains of the Red Basilica, a Roman structure that served as a pagan house of worship before converting to a Christian church. Walk in the footsteps of the Apostle Paul this afternoon as you explore the ancient city of Alexandria Troas. It was within this great, Greek province that Paul spread the word of God, brought back Eutychus from the dead, & received the vision of the Macedonian man asking Paul to help him and his people. Afterward, head for the archaeological site of Troy. Enjoy examining the ruins from inside the replica of the legendary wooden horse of Troy. Today’s journey ends in the town of Canakkale.
Day 6: Canakkale – Nicea – Istanbul
Enjoy a scenic route to Nicea, through the valleys of the Marmara region. Visit Hagia Sophia Church, & learn about the Christian councils which once met there. Afterward, head back to the capital city for a farewell dinner at a local restaurant.
Day 7: Istanbul – USA
Transfer to the airport, & board return flight home.