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Exploring Saint Paul's Birthplace

Elite tour

Visiting The First Church of Christianity

Following The Footsteps of St. Paul

Following The Footsteps of St. Paul As He Travelled To Spread The Word

Following The Footsteps of St. Paul

Travel Style » Religious Tours » Following The Footsteps of St. Paul

FOLLOWING FOOTSTEPS OF ST PAUL IN TURKEY

Day 1: Istanbul

When you arrive in Istanbul Ataturk Airport you will be met by your driver and private car, for your transfer to the hotel. A welcome package with tour vouchers, map, and other touristic information will be waiting for you upon arrival. This is a free day so we suggest you experience a traditional Turkish bath nearby your hotel.

Day 2: Full Day Tour of Byzantine & Ottoman Highlights

Today is the day to have a full day tour of St Sophia Museum, the pride of the Byzantine architecture, the Hippodrome, where once chariot races were held; the Blue Mosque, famous for its blue Iznik tiles; and enjoy shopping in the Grand Bazaar. After lunch, you will visit Topkapi Palace, famous palace of the Ottoman Sultans. Please note that The harem section is not included in the tour.

Day 3: Istanbul – Antakya

Today you will be transferred to the airport for an early flight to Hatay (Antakya). When you arrive, you will be met by your guide and driven to the Archaeology Museum (Antakya Mosaic Museum) famous for its mosaic and coin collections. Then visit the first Catholic Church of the world, Saint Pierre. You will also tour other Catholic & Orthodox Churches still used by Christians in the city. After visiting an old traditional house, you will enjoy free time at the bazaar before checking into your hotel. You will stay overnight in Hatay.

Day 4: Highlights of Antioch

You will be able to discover the highlights of the city including St Simone Monastery, Tunnel of Emperor Titus, the Armenian Village, and Harbiye, a famous and beautiful plateau promenade and important district for uncovered statues and touristy souvenirs.  Overnight will be in Antakya.   

Day 5: Tarsus – Izmir (Smyrna)

Today after an early breakfast, you will go to Tarsus, the birthplace of St. Paul. During St. Paul's time, Tarsus was a university city surpassing Athens and Alexandria. Cicero was a governor here in 51-50 BC and the romantic meeting between Cleopatra and Mark Anthony took place in Tarsus. Highlights here will be St. Paul's House, water well in the garden and Church. You will also have the chance to see Cleopatra's Gate built by Marcus Antonius. Then you will be transferred to the airport to take a flight to Izmir where we will stay overnight.

Day 6: Pergamon

The tour of Smyrna starts after an early breakfast.  This is called Izmir nowadays, a modern Turkish city. In ancient times, it was a powerful trading position on the Aegean Sea known for its harbours, commerce, and marketplaces. You will be able to see Polycarp church, then drive to Pergamon, located on the plains and foothills along the Caicus River in Western Turkey. The city, described in the Book of Revelations as having the throne of Satan, is “praised for its martyrdom and perseverance but those who hold false teachings are criticized” (Rev. 2:12-17). Here you will have the chance to see the Acropolis, Greek & Roman Temples as well as the unique Greek theatre built into the steep hillside. Also you will visit the Asclepion, the ancient medical centre for the Greeks. Then you will be transferred to the hotel for an overnight stay in Pergamon.

Day 7: Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia

After breakfast,  you will be driven to Thyatira, known for its textiles and dyeing trade. It is now known as the Turkish city of Akhisar and was “praised for its increasing faith and service, but criticized for its tolerance of Jezebel, an immoral woman who calls herself a prophetess” (Rev. 2:18-29). You will then head to Sardis, located on the banks of the Pactolus River in western Asia Minor. “The church of Sardes is described as dead, and it must wake up. However, there are some who have not "soiled their clothes."” (Rev. 3:1-6). You will end the day with a visit to ancient Philadelphia that was known for its variety of temples and worship centres. “The church of brotherly love that endures patiently” (Revelation 3:7-13). You will arrive in Pamukkale and stay overnight.

Day 8: Hierapolis, Laodicea-Kusadasi

After breakfast, you will visit the ancient City of Hierapolis as well as the world famous travertine of Pamukkale. You will have lunch on the way to Laodicea, located in the Lycus River Valley of western Asia Minor, a primary trade route between the cultures of the West and East. "The "lukewarm" church with a faith that's neither hot nor cold" (Rev. 3:14-22). You will stay overnight in Kusadasi.

Day 9: Ephesus

Today, after breakfast, you will join Mass held in the House of the Virgin Mary, then visit Ephesus, the most influential capital city of Asia Minor on the Aegean Sea. "Ephesus receives praise for its perseverance, but criticism for forsaking its "first love"" (Rev. 2:1-7). You will be able to explore well preserved theatres, fountains and buildings, and see the nearby Basilica of St John which stands over the believed burial site of St. John, who is identified as the apostle, evangelist (author of the Fourth Gospel) and prophet (author of Revelation). Overnight will be in Kusadasi.

Day 10: Fly Home

Today is the end of your tour. After breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport or port for your departure flight to Istanbul or ferry to Samos, Greece. please note that flight to Istanbul or ferry ticket to Samos is not included in the price.

 

DATES & PRICES

Please note that the prices below are for per person travelling. 'Twin/Double' prices per person apply when there are 2 people travelling and sharing a room. The 'Single supplement' applies for single travelers who require their own room and needs to be added to the 'Twin/Double' price. If you are happy to be paired up with another single traveler of the same sex on your tour, this can be arranged, thus avoiding the single person supplement. All our scheduled tour departures are guaranteed subject to a minimum of 2 travelers.

 

Every Saturday from $2750 per person