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I am very satisfied with the tour and the services of the company. The itinerary was followed as scheduled. The company was in contact with me all the time. Food was great and the hotel was nice. Transportation in Istanbul was great. Overall it was a great experience visiting a magical place.
Me and my aunt decided to travel through Turkey in March 2017, we were clueless as to what and how we would go about it. We contacted Travel Store Turkey and it was the best decision of our lives! We booked one trip with Travel Store Turkey and ended up taking 4! 1 in Cappadocia and 3 in Istanbul, and we were still left wishing for more!
We landed in Istanbul only to be greeted by a very welcoming couple, Erkan and his beautiful wife, who will make you feel at home all at once in a very foreign land. From the Hotel , to all the tours we did with them it was absolutely phenomenal.
We took the following tours:
1. Cappadocia - We took a flight from Istanbul and were taken from the airport at Kayserie to Goreme, which is a tremendous town which is almost fairy tale like, with its cozy cave hotels and scenic views it is the ultimate destination to make you feel you are in a timeless era of absolute serenity. Our hotel that was also set up by Travel Store Turkey was breath taking! The bathroom had a luxurious Jacuzzi, shower and the suite was spacious. The Green Tour was also stunning, I highly recommend it. There was so much to do and we will definitely be going back again.
2. Bosphorous Cruise: if you take this tour I can guarantee that you will not want it to end, I danced with some of the nicest people I have ever met in my life and enjoyed performances that were electrifying. It is a great way to learn about the people of Turkey and the great Ottoman history they share through the dances and musical performances.
3. Princes Islands: This tour made me feel like i had skipped off Istanbul onto the Island's of Greece, the absolutely picturesque homes and the stunningly blue water is a sight to behold. I would highly recommend having some ice cream at one of the Islands, it's a must!
4. Sufi Night : This was one of the most mystically calming performances I have ever had the opportunity to witness. The harmonic recitation, the rhythmic movements of the dervish and the absolute silence in respect is a joy. I cannot emphasize how stunning of an experience this performance was for us.
Over all, I would highly recommend Travel Store Turkey for their professionalism, their punctuality, and delivery. They do not promise anything they cannot deliver. I will also like to add, that through the Travel Story Turkey I have also found friends in a foreign land. I miss Turkey like I miss my home, and I cannot wait to go back and explore more.
Imagine being in a car driven by a reckless driver, who doesn't speak or understand English, doesn't know where the hotel is, and being driven around deserted back streets at 1 am in the morning!!! The ride to and from Ataturk airport as part of this tour was horrendous. The pick up from the hotel was by 2 drivers who did not speak or understand English. They kept asking Ataturk? We explained that yes, it was a domestic flight to Kayseri airport from Ataturk. Despite several requests for the domestic terminal, we were dropped off at the International terminal. By the time we found our way to the domestic terminal, no seats were available, and we had to wait for an agent to assign seats, while Turkish-speaking travelers kept cutting in line ahead of us. We almost missed the flight. Cappadocia was wonderful. The tours were nice. The people were nice too. On the return pick up from Ataturk to our hotel in Istanbul, we agreed to wait for 15-20 minutes to pick up other passengers on a shared ride to town. After we had waited 45 minutes, we asked to be put in a taxi or take us and return for the other passengers. More than an hour later, the other passengers came out of the gate. As we got on the van, we requested that we be dropped off at our hotel first. Again, the driver did not speak or understand English. Having ridden from Ataturk to our hotel previously, I knew the route and knew that the drive was about 1/2 an hr. at that time of the night. The driver took us on the highway, took the bridge over to the other side of the city wrong side, came over again to the right side on another bridge, stopped at the Istanbul airport shuttle office to ask for directions to the other hotel for the other passengers, dropped them off, then proceeded to drive us around the area, running red lights, driving fast and dangerously. He stopped at a place to ask for our hotel, didn't know what he was told, but kept driving us around again. Through all this we had mentioned Hagia Sophia to him. There were signs all around to Hagia Sophia, but he just kept driving around the back streets without getting there. He did not know where our hotel was, clearly could not read the signs or decided to ignore them. We felt like we were kidnapped. In the end when we saw the Basilica cistern, and he had stopped to talk on the phone, we asked him to open the door we were pulling on the handle, it was locked and once he unlocked the door, we just jumped out of the van, and walked to our hotel. By the time we got to the hotel it was 1:30 am, we went to our room and called the local contact number for the tour and complained. He said this should never have happened, and that they should have put us in a taxi, and that he would come and talk to us the next morning to make things right. Well, he never showed up, and we couldn't wait to just return from there. Viator, I have always booked through you because we've had good experiences with our tour operators in the past. They have been English speakers, and reliable and safe. This was a horrible experience with airport transfers, and we wouldn't wish any other tourists to go through a similar experience.
There were several things that went wrong in this package deal- 1 In Istanbul/ Day before Departure- Prev arranged time for Tour Co to drop off documents airline ticket, cab pickup time, etc. on day prior to starting tour. After 3-4 phone calls, someone from Tour Co showed up- 30 Minutes Late Couldn't answer any ?s because he was dropping off our documents on behalf of someone else. 2 In Istanbul/ Pickup Service to Airport 5:15 AM/ Morning Starting Tour- There are 2 airports in Istanbul in which the driver took us to the WRONG Airport Transportation was pre-arranged BY the Tour Co. 3 1st Morning- Arrive at Cappadocia Airport- Tour included pickup/ transportation to motel from Airport. Name was misspelled on drivers card Miller was Milleunch so we stood in cold In End of January for 20 minutes on phone with Tour Co trying to confirm this was our driver. Now- running late for Tour, which started at 9:30 AM, driver stopped for Gas Fill up Enjoyed a Cigarette. it had snowed the day before, so the roads were alittle icy and we had to ask the driver 2 times to stop texting while he was driving!!! 4 Arrived at Motel- GREAT!. 5 Day 1 of Tour- Last to be picked up for Tour. 15 Seater Bus in which we had 4 2 of the largest people on the tour sitting in the back row which should have been really- luggage storage area UN Exceptable!. No windows, views, or space in these seats. 6 Same Day 1 of Tour- Seemed like there was 2 Tours combined into 1- 2 Languages which slowed down the Tour. 7 Next Day- Day 2 of Tour- Smaller Group, and in only 1 Language- More enjoyable. 8 End of Day 2- Returned to motel to get ready for transportation provided by package to Airport. We were picked up and THEN for 1 1/2 hour shuttled around the town picking up other passengers PRIOR to leaving for the airport. This wasn't other people on the tour, this was locals using this same service for airport drop offs. A lot of mishaps with this tour for the price I PAID!