Read what other Viator.com travelers think about the 8-Day Best of Turkey Tour from Istanbul: Pamukkale, Bursa, Troy, Gallipoli, Ephesus. What they loved, what they liked and what they think could be improved, it's all here to help you make the most of your next trip.
I loved this tour of Turkey. Our guide was excellent and I really feel I learned so much about the history, culture and heritage of this beautiful country. The only recommendation I would have is to have one free afternoon to chill and do some shopping at some stage, perhaps on the last day. Otherwise great and very comprehensive tour.
This tour was excellent - thanks to the care and services provided by our guide Kivanc and driver Wasel. This was a continuing tour with the same guide, driver and tourist group.
The tour followed the itinerary advertised and Kivanc was always accommodating to any reasonable requests made regarding extra time at various locations (but not at the expense of time being lost at the next location). Additionally, he gave us more of his own time showing us extra points of interest not on the itinerary, eg Basilica Cistern, the spice market and the Bosphorus Cruise, Whirling Dervish ceremony at Pamukkale. Lunch/snack/toilet breaks were notified well in advance, (generally every 2-2 1/2 hours).
Kivanc also organised reasonably priced flights and transfers back to Istanbul and our hotels on the final day for those not wanting to endure 9 hours in the bus (6 of us took up this offer). This flight option back to Istanbul should probably be offered as an alternative in the official tour.
Istanbul was amazing and the free day (Day 1) should probably be used for more organised guided sightseeing. One day (Day 2) was really not enough.
Checkins for all of the hotels were efficient and quick (due to Kivanc's assistance). Breakfasts and dinners (buffet dinners) all provided were all satisfactory. Accommodation in Istanbul (Hotel Momento), Kusadasi and Pamukkale were all good, but the accommodation in Canakkale was ordinary (a nice lobby and dining area but basic old rooms - at least they were clean).
In summary - all of the sights in the itinerary were well covered in the tour. For us the highlights were the guide and driver and the group of people we travelled with all bonded to ensure a great tour. Kivanc also advised us on reasonable prices for purchases (leather, carpets and Silk Bazaar).
Turkey is an amazing place with many wonderful sights and the tour organised through the local tour company was flawless. We highly recommend this tour.
Brian and Mary - Melbourne Australia
This was a fantastic tour. We got to see much more than we would have if we had done the trip independently. We had a good size group (23) and our guide Metin had excellent knowledge of the history of Turkey. Highly recommended if you have one week in Turkey and are looking to get a feel for the country and its history.
The tour was fantastic and it was a history buffs dream come true. Our guide Hassan was really informative and helpful and Turkey is now in our hearts and we cannot wait to return. Everyone should go to Turkey and this is a great introductory tour
This was a fabulous tour, the tour guide was great (Hasan)
We saw lots of amazing places and stayed in nice hotels
It was only a small group of people , so lots of friendships were formed
Highly recommended, as Turkey has a lot to offer
This was the first bus tour my husband and I joined. We enjoyed every minute of it. Although the travelling per bus was very exhausting we stopped every hour and a half to stretch our legs. The places are very far apart and we would not have seen it if it was not for the tour. Our tourguide, Kevanc was very knowledgeable and professional and it was a pleasure to travel with him. From our pick up to our departure to the airport was very well planned. The last day e took an early flight back to Istanbul from Phumukale as we did not want to spend another 9 hours on the bus.
Outstanding trip. Our tour guide Murat and driver Mustaffa were very nice people. lots of fun and very friendly. The tour was coordinated very well. The only only slight draw back was the quality of the over night stay (3rd night} at the Grand Onder Hotel in Kusadasi. Overall this was a GREAT and ENJOYABLE trip.
This tour and a wonderful guide, Huseyin, who went to great lengths to keep us informed and safe in the group.
However, it would have been good to have had better contact with Fez travel prior to trip for general information.
Disappointing substandard accommodations in Kusadasi at Royal Palace hotel.
Overall good value for money. Starting and end point at hotel Momento a bonus, very good location in old town with very helpful staff.
With the exception of the 'hard sell' visits to the leather and carpet factories, this was a good tour, good value, well-chosen sights and good accommodation. The guide's English was sometimes a bit difficult to understand but he was otherwise good, and obliging.
This is a comprehensive trip covering a lot of the most popular sites around Western Turkey. For those with limited time, I would suggest this trip. There are a lot of older people on this tour and its not really an adventure or trekking type of vacation. The hotels are pretty good and the meals are too. I would suggest reading some books about ancient Anatolia before because there's a lot of history and it can be overwhelming.
Chagman is a good guide and knows a lot about Turkey. He is helpful and accommodating. Good value for the cost and covers a lot.
Great value for money, i recommend this tour to everyone who wants to see the best of Turkey, just like it promises.
Our first guide was very professional, had a great sense of humor and a lot of information about the historical sites.
Our driver was very friendly and managed to get us everywhere without problems or stress.
The hotels that were included, were very nice and adequate, thumbs up for the Colossae Thermal Hotel in Pammukkale ( excellent ) and thumbs down for the Marina Hotel in Kusadasi ( first our room was already booked, then the keycard did not work for our next room and then i had to call reception 3 times to get the ac working in the room ).
We joined a second group, traveling from Pamukkale, Bursa back to Istanbul and although we were together for only a short period, this was also a very positive experience.
Our second guide arranged a dervish show and the restaurant she showed us the next afternoon served the best turkish style kebab i ever had.
The weather was great and very high temperatures from time to time, so sunscreen and head gear are no unnecessary luxury.
When you book this tour, be prepared to get up early and to travel long distances by minivan.
The earliest we had to wake up was 5.30 am and the travel from Pamukkale to Istanbul took 10 hours.
J K S
Fine otherwise except for hotel standards of IRIS. Rooms and everything in Momento Hotel r small, tight, and just thrust in. Being asked to pay for water even during B/L/D is shattering in all the hotels.
Merry Lee M
Loved this tour! We had a small group. Our guide was very knowledgable, friendly and personable and our driver did an excellent job. While Gallipoli was interesting it meant a lot more to the Turks and Australians but still worth a visit.
Everything is good, just tired for long ride
The tour guide and driver is good. Except the driver to airport in last day, the driver is a careless driver
Hotel in Istanbul was an issue. We paid for Momento, a four star property. We only stayed at Momento the first night. We were moved to a two star property, Baron, for the next night. Why were we subjected to this and not the new guests? While the hotel staff was 'nice at Momento', and physically moved our bags, no one at Fez tours, the guide or the initial person that came to greet us did anything to help the situation. This was most inconvenient and avoidable.
I enjoyed this tour. There is a lot of bus riding time because of the amount of territory covered but if you are a adventurer and not a prima dona it is worth it. I would have liked more free time at the various stops. I would have preferred less time spent at the battlefield spots but it is worth seeing and hearing about the history. I would have liked to have had a list of the fellow tour participants and their emails so that I could have contacted them later. I didn't like the leather factory stop because it was just a hustle to buy their products and you were hounded by salesman. The Turkish rug factory was both informative and a chance to buy their products without being overly pressured. I would have also liked to have had the detailed pre tour information before I left home and not when I got to the Isatanbul hotel.
The tour went to a lot of great destinations however the amount of driving on the last day was too much. Bursa was not worth the extra hours on the bus. Our tour guide, while extremely knowledgable on the history of Turkey, seemed impatient and and agitated most of the tour which discouraged interaction and made the trip less fun. A couple of the hotels were also sub-par. Overall I don't regret doing the tour however it is unlikely I would do another with this tour group or recommend it to others.
I was really looking forward to the tour but our guide who i will not name had rather poor english skills which made it very difficult to concentrate and get involved at the sites . There is a lot of time spent on the bus over 3,000 kms in 6 days which made it very tiring and only 2 of the hotels ( the one in Istanbul and the one in Pammukale ) were of an acceptable standard . Having made those criticisms i did love the Turkish countryside the sites and the hospitality of the Turkish people .