Trip Overview

Explore the architectural splendor of Istanbul and the natural beauty of the Turkish countryside with AdventureWomen! From Istanbul to Ephesus and the villages in between, experience the life and culture of modern and ancient Turkey during this cultural adventure.

After arriving in Istanbul, you’ll settle into your hotel and enjoy a lively welcome dinner at a local restaurant. The following morning, you’ll explore the historic city by foot, as you’ll visit such iconic sites as the Blue Mosque, the Basilica Cistern, and Topkapi Palace. Marvel over the spectacular ancient architecture as you learn about the city’s history from your expert guide. And, of course, your AdventureWomen Ambassador will accompany you throughout your journey to help you make the most of your week in Turkey. In the early evening, set off on a private boat voyage along the Bosphorus River before dinner at a seafront restaurant.

Visit the famed Haghia Sophia, an awe-inspiring monument to the Byzantine Empire, in the morning before flying to Isparta, which is the Turkish center for rose production. Drive to a local rose field where you will learn how the roses are tended and picked before taking part in the annual harvest yourself! Immerse yourself further into local life with visits to an asparagus farm and a felt atelier, both of which offer hands-on learning opportunities for you to enjoy.

The next morning you’ll set off on a walk through Ephesus, where you will have the opportunity to see and visit the ancient site of Artemision and the Basilica of St. John. Visit a Turkish rug cooperative and learn about the art of carpet weaving and enjoy lunch with the women who craft the rugs. Later in the day, you will venture into Ephesus on foot to admire the well-preserved homes, temples, theaters, baths, markets, libraries and gymnasiums that date back to ancient times. Stop at the remains of Artemision, which is one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and is dedicated to the female deity of Artemis, the goddess of wilderness, animals, and chastity.

Fly back to Istanbul the following morning and go directly to Ebristan to participate in a marbling lesson with a local marbling artist and enjoy lunch in a historic Ottoman house on the Asian side of the Bosphorus. Tonight, you’ll celebrate your week of adventure over a spirited farewell dinner at a local restaurant. Raise a glass with your fellow travelers and share stories of your Turkish exploration.

After breakfast the following morning, you’ll return to the airport in Istanbul for your flight home and bid farewell to your new AdventureWomen friends.

Main Attractions

  • Visit the famous historical sites in Istanbul
  • Enjoy a private cruise along the Bosphorus Straight and dine seaside
  • Take part in the annual rose petal harvest in the Isparta province
  • Explore the ancient city of Ephesus

What You'll See and Do

  • Archaeology
  • Architecture
  • Boat Cruising
  • Cultural Exploration
  • Walking
  • Women-To-Women Exchanges

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Trip Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Istanbul
Arrive in Istanbul where you’ll be met by your guide and transferred to the hotel.

Check in and relax before dinner tonight.

Enjoy a lively welcome dinner at a local restaurant as you get to know your fellow travelers this evening. Share stories and learn about why everyone is excited to explore the Turkish sites (and sights!).

Overnight: Hotel Arcadia Blue

Day 2

Today, you’ll walk throughout the city of Istanbul, stopping for lunch along the way as you take in some of the ancient sites:

Topkapı Palace, the home and administrative headquarter of Ottoman Sultans for 400 years, where you’ll see the Harem, the Treasure and the other sections of the Palace.

The Hippodrome, where you can still see the arched curving brick wall and the standing monuments along the central axis of the ancient hippodrome today.

The Blue Mosque which was built in 1616 and has an elegant architectural design and an interior decorated with famous blue Iznik tiles and blue floral frescoes.

Basilica Cistern which was the largest underground cistern of Byzantine Istanbul erected in the 530’s.

Spice Bazaar that dates back to the 1600’s when it was the last stop for the camel caravans that travelled the Silk Road from China, India and Persia. Spices were also brought by ships set off from Alexandria in Egypt and docked just in front of the Bazaar.

In early evening, you’ll take a private boat trip along the Bosphorus, the natural strait that forms part of the boundary between Asian and European continents. Along the shores of the Bosphorus are old Ottoman villas, old palaces, fortresses and parks that contribute the beauty of the strait. You’ll be joined by Pelin Unker, an award-winning investigative journalist for a discussion about her life and career. You’ll enjoy dinner at a sea-front restaurant by Bosphorus before returning to the hotel for the night.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Hotel Arcadia Blue

Day 3

Istanbul to Isparta
After breakfast at the hotel this morning, you’ll visit Haghia Sophia, one of the most extraordinary buildings in the history of architecture and a monument to the golden age of the Byzantine Empire, dating from 537 CE.

After your visit to the Haghia Sophia, you’ll return to the hotel to check out before leaving for the airport for your flight to the Isparta region.

Arrive at the airport where you’ll board your early afternoon flight to Isparta, which is the center of rose production.

Leave the airport and start your 50-minute drive to Egirdir, a town that is home to a beautiful fresh water lake. You’ll explore the old monuments of the town by the lake and walk around the Yesilada (Green Island) which once had a monastery of women. After your walking tour, you’ll drive just over 20 miles to Isparta.

Arrive at your Isparta hotel and check in before heading out to enjoy dinner at a local restaurant this evening.
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Barida Hotels

Day 4

Rose Harvest
Enjoy breakfast at your hotel this morning before starting your 25-mile drive to Güneykent Village in the mountains, one of the many rose growing places in Isparta province. Try your hand at harvesting roses in the field accompanied by a village woman who shows you the proper method to pick the flowers. Afterwards visit a traditional distiller where you’ll see the distillation process first-hand and have the chance to buy rose products like rose oil, rose water, and a variety of cosmetics that contain roses.

Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant in the village after your morning with the roses.

Following lunch, you’ll pass through Isparta on your way to Golcuk, a volcanic lake in the middle of the caldera. Set out on a 3-mile hike around the lake and take in the scenic views.

Join your fellow travelers for dinner at the hotel tonight.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Barida Hotels

Day 5

Isparta to Fethiye
After breakfast at the hotel, you’ll drive just over an hour to Lisinia, which is a small school for social and sustainable development with a focus on wildlife rehabilitation and eco-friendly agriculture.

This afternoon you will explore the ancient city of Cibyra along with Associate Professor Sukru Ozudogru who will give an informative talk about the many excavations that are underway in the area. Then get your legs moving with a power-walking competition with your fellow travelers in the well- preserved ancient stadium of Cibyra.

Continue your drive for another hour and forty-five minutes until you arrive in Fethiye where you’ll check into the hotel which will be your home for tonight. Then enjoy the rest of the evening on your own.
Breakfast, Lunch

Overnight: Ece Saray Marina Resort

Day 6

Fethiye to Selcuk
After breakfast this morning at the hotel, you’ll drive for an hour and a half to a woman-owned, woman- run asparagus farm where you’ll join in the fields with the women workers and take part in the annual harvest.

Continue on to Doganyurt village where you’ll enjoy lunch and then visit the nearby ancient city of Alabanda where all girls learned to play the harp in ancient times.

Drive for another one and a half hours to the village of Sirince where you’ll visit a felt atelier and meet the owner and have a chance to do some shopping.

Late in the afternoon, you’ll arrive at your hotel and check in before dinner.

Tonight you’ll enjoy dinner at the hotel.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Kalehan Hotel

Day 7

Enjoy a 2.5 hour walk to see some of the magnificent sites of Ephesus. First, visit the Basilica of St. John which dates back to the 6th century before stopping at the Seljuk Castle, a fortress that was built by the Byzantines. Afterwards, continue walking to Artemision, the Temple of Artemis, which dates back to the 4th century BC. While only two columns remain of the original structure, you can get a good sense of the magnitude of the original temple.

After your hike, you’ll visit a Turkish rug cooperative where you’ll first eat lunch with the weaver women. After lunch you’ll learn the methods of wool spinning, weaving, and dyeing before having the opportunity to purchase rugs.

Later in the afternoon you’ll tour glorious Ephesus, one of the best preserved ancient cities in the world. Marble paved avenues, wonderfully preserved homes, temples, theaters, baths, markets, brothels, libraries and gymnasiums bring us back to the splendor of the ancient world.

Return to the hotel after your day of exploration, and enjoy dinner.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Kalehan Hotel

Day 8

Ephesus to Istanbul
After breakfast at the hotel, you’ll head to the airport for your morning flight back to Istanbul for a final day of exploration in this majestic city.

Leave the airport an drive to Ebristan, where you’ll learn how to make marble art from the husband and wife who own and operate the atelier that sits below their home. After your marble workshop, you’ll enjoy lunch at Ebristan.

Following lunch, drive on to Istanbul where you’ll check into the hotel and have time to relax a little before dinner.

Share stories about your week of exploration in Turkey with your traveling companions during a celebratory farewell dinner in a local restaurant.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: Hotel Arcadia Blue

Day 9

Depart Istanbul
All great adventures must one day come to an end. This morning, enjoy your last breakfast in Turkey and say “hoşça kalin” to your new friends before departing for the airport for your flight home.

Please note: AdventureWomen will attempt to adhere to the itinerary as much as possible. However, certain conditions (political, climatic, environmental, and cultural) may necessitate changes in the itinerary. AdventureWomen reserves the right to alter any itinerary at any time, if necessary. We will attempt to notify participants of changes as far in advance as possible. Costs incurred by such changes will be the responsibility of the participants. 


If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Traveling to Turkey

Arrival and Departure Information


We are happy to help you make your flight and travel arrangements. If you’d like to do anything prior to or following the AdventureWomen trip, we’d be delighted to help you arrange any trip extensions you’re interested in.

Note: The recent trend in travel is for travelers to finalize their plans much closer to departure time than was customary in the past. While we try to be as flexible as possible booking last-minute registrants, we must release hotel rooms two to three months prior to departure! Please keep this in mind when making your travel plans.

Preparation and Packing  

Please use the following guides as a reference when preparing for your adventure. We also encourage you to adapt the guides to your travel style as well as the destination’s forecasted weather.  


Gratuities are highly trip-dependent and details will be provided to you prior to departure. As a general reference, AdventureWomen suggests $200-250 (or more) for gratuities on most trips. As always, tipping is at your discretion. 

Passports and Visas

Citizens of the United States must have a passport valid for six months beyond your travel dates with at least two blank facing pages. If you do not have a passport, please apply now!

US Passport holders will need a visa to visit Turkey. We will provide detailed information before your departure on how to obtain your visa.

Activity Level

We rate this trip as Moderate. Our Moderate adventures exercise your mind more than your body and are designed for women who prefer a leisurely, less rigorous experience. For example, you could walk up to 2 miles per day through cities and villages, stand in museums for a few hours, relax on a boat, or view wildlife from a vehicle. Please note that this is a general description of what you might encounter; for specific details about your trip, please consult the itinerary.

We recommend training before your trip (with your doctor’s permission!) to make the most of your adventure. We have a partnership with FitForTrips, a company that will design an individualized fitness plan for you with this itinerary in mind. Best of all, AdventureWomen guests get a 25% discount with the code FITWOMEN. Learn more on the FitForTrips website.

You should come with a flexible, adventurous, and enthusiastic spirit, and a wonderful sense of humor that adventure travel requires.

Health Considerations

Make an appointment with a travel clinic. There are no immunization requirements for travel to Turkey, however your local travel clinic may have recommendations for you based on your age, health, and past vaccination history.

For more health information, go to and navigate to the page about Turkey.

How to Register

Call the AdventureWomen office at (800) 804-8686 to determine space availability and register for this trip. We can complete your registration, including taking your credit card deposit over the phone.

If you prefer, you can register online by clicking “Sign Up for this Trip” on the trip page.

Please be sure to read the AdventureWomen policies before registering!

Forms and Final Payment

The deposit for this trip is $800, and is nonrefundable and nontransferable. Once you book, you will need to fill out and return to AdventureWomen:

  • Information Form
  • Booking Conditions Form
  • Copy of Flight Information
  • Copy of Issuing Page of Passport (Photo Page)
  • Supplemental Release for COVID

Final payment is due to AdventureWomen in a cash form (check, money order, or wire transfer). A maximum of $1,500 per person can be put on a credit card, which includes your deposit.

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

What's Included


  • Accommodations as per itinerary based on double occupancy
  • All meals as listed in the itinerary
  • All ground transportation
  • Guided sightseeing and activities as indicated in the itinerary
  • All gratuities except for head guide

Not Included

  • International airfare
  • Cost of hospitalization or evacuation
  • Fees for passport, visas, immunizations, or travel insurance
  • Meals not specified in the itinerary
  • Alcoholic beverages (unless otherwise specified)

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686


Hotel Arcadia Blue

The Hotel Arcadia Blue is a centrally-located hotel that is within walking distance to many of the city's famous sites, including the Blue Mosque and the Hagia Sophia.

Amenities: All rooms have a shower, safe, air conditioning, and free WiFi.

Barida Hotels

Located in Isparta's city center, the Barida Hotels are comfortably elegant. The property features a spa with both a sauna and a Turkish bath as well as an indoor pool.

Amenities: All rooms include a shower, safe, hairdryer, and free WiFi.

Ece Saray Marina Resort

This property is a 48-room boutique hotel located inside a private marina that has an outdoor pool and a spa center.

Amenities: All rooms feature a shower, safe, hairdryer, and WiFi access.

Kalehan Hotel

The Kalehan Hotel is family-owned property that was built in the style of a traditional Ottoman Inn.

Amenities: All rooms come equipped with a shower, air conditioning, hairdryer, and free WiFi.

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

What to Bring

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686