I’m considering this tour for next September or October, any comments about this tour? I don’t see it mentioned in the forum.
Good morning Nancy,
YES, you ought to sign up for this tour - AMAZING (especially if your lucky to have Mert Taner as your tour guide)! Leave all the negatives that you may have heard about Turkey behind. I traveled alone (I was in Istanbul for three days prior to the tour) and never felt unsafe - Beautiful country and wonderful people.
Took it. Loved it. Mert is outstanding.
Hagia Sophia is an absolute architectural wonder.
Had a wonderful soup in a cafe in the market that I found by wandering, seeing a small sign pointing up a stairway and climbing up. One of my all time favorite travel memories was this tiny restaurant.
People were welcoming. Traveled solo. Walking around at night never a problem.
It’s a country I’d return to in a nano second!
Sign up and GO! You won’t regret it!
It’s a great tour. One of our favorites!
One of my favorite tours out of the 16 RS tours I have taken. Istanbul is one of my favorite cities and I am just waiting for things to settle down in that are before returning.
I took this tour in October 2018 and the weather was lovely. If the heat bothers you, go as late in October as you can.
Go on the hot air balloon ride in Cappadocia, try out a Hamam, the Turkish bath. Great experiences, great people!
My friend’s scrapbook for the tour won 3rd place in the 2018 scrapbook contest. Look through it for an idea of the tour. The Turkish people are so warm and welcoming. We met many in the markets in the small towns.
Just got back from this tour a month ago. It was wonderful and I would encourage you to go! The people of Turkey are among the friendliest I have met in all my travels. The landscape, food and adventures you can participate in (hot air balloon ride) are truly memorable. You will not regret going on this tour.
Nancy, I took this tour in 2018 and thought it was excellent, with varied stops and activities The tour spends a short and quite rushed time in Istanbul, and I would definitely recommend you spend more time there, either before and/or after the tour. Also, the distances in Turkey are significant, so there are a few days with several hours to cover by bus. There are always stops every two hours or so, either sites or activities or meal or pit stops, so it’s not long hours at a time on the bus. However, it does sometimes mean an early evening arrival at your next stop, then off to dinner and to bed, which can reduce your time to wander. I myself am a big wanderer.
Loved Turkey and its people. The current political issues between our leaders makes me feel disappointed to say the least. I hope they can patch this up. I wish I could find eggplant here like they make it in Turkey.
The only times I felt unsafe (not for my personal safety but for my wallet) was when I was approached by a guy whose cousin was the head of the World Bank and because of this connection he could get me a great deal on a carpet. Then there was the guy who wanted to team up with me for a good time since his wife was not with him. (Gosh, that's a huge warning right there!) Again, it was a scam to get me to pay for overpriced food, liquor and women. Food and drink in Turkey are reasonably priced, and though I am a first class Nerd, enough women seem to like my company.
Oh, there was the scammer who dropped his shoe shine brush and then hit me up for money. I just told him no and kept on walking.
But, wash your ears out with this. Twice I left a store in a hurry and left my change on the little dish on the counter. Both times I was chased down by a store clerk who returned my change. And then there was the encounter with the Turkish Korean War vet (who knew Turkish troupes were in that war?). We chatted for a while though I doubt if either of us understood more than 10% of what the other said. I bought him a cup of tea and he let me take a photo of him in full uniform, including his medal) holding the Turkish flag. What a great encounter in the park.
This was one of my very favorite RS tours! So good, I would consider doing it again. I traveled alone, and met 5 other wonderful solo women travelers! Loved visiting the mosques (they will lend you pull on skirt/scarf at the door if needed), loved the food and the 20+ flavors of Turkish Delight and baklava I sampled throughout the trip. The lamb dishes were delicious. The locals were lovely to me, friendly, welcoming, and so helpful. The variety of experiences was amazing, from a private yacht cruise and swim in the sea, to hot air ballooning in Cappadocia, to swimming in Cleopatra's pool, to Turkish baths, I loved every day and every site. Mine Taner was also one of my favorite RS guides. Do spend extra days before the tour begins in Istanbul, which is an exotic wonder of a city. I spent 5 days before the tour there, staying in the heart of the old city, and could have spent a week without running out of things to do, and places to see. Dollars go a long way in Turkey, which made this trip seem like an amazing bargain compared to other European countries.
Everyone makes their own choices, but this is one tour I would not go on due to recent actions by the Turkish Government. No judgement on anyone who feels differently.