18 days in The Balkans Itinerary

18 days in The Balkans Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Turkey vacation maker

Make it your trip
1
Istanbul
— 5 nights
Fly
2
Goreme, Cappadocia
— 3 nights
Fly
3
Antalya
— 3 nights
Drive
4
Pamukkale
— 3 nights
Fly
5
Istanbul
— 2 nights

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Istanbul

— 5 nights

Queen of Cities

A physical and cultural bridge between Europe and Asia, the transcontinental city of Istanbul serves as a living reminder of the Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman empires.
Istanbul is known for historic sites, museums, and shopping. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: take in the spiritual surroundings of Hagia Sophia Mosque, explore the activities along Bosphorus Strait, explore the galleries of Rumeli Fortress, and indulge in some culinary diversions at a local gastronomic tour.

To find photos, maps, and more tourist information, read Istanbul trip itinerary planner.

If you are flying in from United Arab Emirates, the closest major aiports are İstanbul Airport, İstanbul Atatürk Airport and Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen International Airport. Expect a daytime high around 34°C in July, and nighttime lows around 23°C. On the 24th (Sat), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly to Goreme.

Things to do in Istanbul

Historic Sites · Shopping · Tours · Museums
Find places to stay Jul 19 — 24:

Goreme, Cappadocia

— 3 nights
Famed for its landscape of unusually shaped stone formations and churches cut into the natural rocks, Goreme sits in the central part of the country, an area originally settled during Roman times.
Explore Goreme's surroundings by going to Derinkuyu (Derinkuyu Yeralti Sehri & Kaymakli Underground City). There's still lots to do: soar above the sights with a balloon tour, explore the wealth of natural beauty at Goreme National Park, see Off-Road Tours, and explore the striking landscape at Fairy Chimneys.

To see more things to do, maps, reviews, and tourist information, read Goreme trip planner.

You can fly from Istanbul to Goreme in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of train and bus. Expect slightly colder evenings in Goreme when traveling from Istanbul in July, with lows around 18°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Tue) early enough to fly to Antalya.

Things to do in Goreme

Parks · Nature · Historic Sites · Tours

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jul 24 — 27:

Antalya

— 3 nights
Offering both sandy beaches packed with modern amenities and a historical town center filled with Roman ruins and Ottoman mosques, Antalya serves as one of the country's major tourist destinations.
Explore Antalya's surroundings by going to Side (Tyche Tapinagi, Temple of Apollo, &more) and Alanya (Alanya Kalesi, Kleopatra Beach, &more). Next up on the itinerary: take a stroll through Kaleici, stroll around Karnaval Park, admire the sheer force of Lower Duden Waterfalls, and steep yourself in history at Hadrian's Gate.

To find reviews, more things to do, maps, and other tourist information, use the Antalya online vacation maker.

You can fly from Goreme to Antalya in 3 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. Expect somewhat warmer temperatures when traveling from Goreme in July; daily highs in Antalya reach 41°C and lows reach 27°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 31st (Sat) so you can go by car to Pamukkale.

Things to do in Antalya

Historic Sites · Parks · Neighborhoods · Outdoors

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jul 27 — 31:

Pamukkale

— 3 nights

Cotton Castle

A popular spa since the second century BCE, the modern city of Pamukkale continues to draw worldwide attention with its hot springs and travertines--naturally formed calcite bathing pools.
Pamukkale is known for nature, historic sites, and nightlife. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: witness a stunning natural landmark at Pamukkale Thermal Pools, take a stroll through Karahayit, contemplate the long history of Hierapolis, and explore the different monuments and memorials at Anatolia Cemetery.

To see reviews, photos, and other tourist information, use the Pamukkale vacation planner.

Drive from Antalya to Pamukkale in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 3rd (Tue) to allow time to fly to Istanbul.

Things to do in Pamukkale

Historic Sites · Parks · Tours · Outdoors

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jul 31 — Aug 3:

Istanbul

— 2 nights

Queen of Cities

Start off your visit on the 4th (Wed): explore the world behind art at Istanbul Modern, take in the spiritual surroundings of Sultan Ahmed Mosque, don't miss a visit to Sogukcesme Sokak, then take an in-depth tour of Topkapi Palace, and finally indulge in some personalized pampering at Ayasofya Hurrem Sultan Hamam. On your second day here, wander the streets of Istiklal Caddesi, contemplate the long history of Historic Areas of Istanbul, then explore the world behind art at Chora Museum, and finally visit Ortakoy.

For photos, reviews, and tourist information, read our Istanbul trip planner.

Fly from Pamukkale to Istanbul in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of taxi and bus.

Things to do in Istanbul

Museums · Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Spas
Find places to stay Aug 3 — 5:

Cappadocia travel guide

4.6
History Museums · Geologic Formations · National Parks
The region of Cappadocia reveals fascinating tales of civilizations long past with its honeycombed hills characterized by geological rarities, including two World Heritage Sites. Sedimentary rocks formed in lakes and ignimbrite deposits from erupted volcanoes left soft rock formations scattered across the land, which were then carved out to create houses, churches, and monasteries in 300 CE. Explore these rock houses on your own or on a tour, or take in the topography from above on a hot air balloon ride. Complete your holiday with a hike along the trails and marvel at the dusky orange panorama and accordion-shaped valleys.

Antalya Province travel guide

4.2
Ruins · Beaches · Waterfalls
Once a land of ancient cities, Antalya Province lies along the Mediterranean coast and is now home to Turkey's largest international sea resort. Tour the narrow, cobbled streets and historical houses in the province's eponymous city, or pay a visit to the World Heritage Site of Xanthos. Ancient cities and ruins scattered throughout the province give it its historical character. The 657 km (408 mi) long shoreline offers plenty of space to relax along its immaculate beaches and ports. Fill your holiday itinerary with a yacht tour, game of golf, rock climbing, and bird-watching.