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15 days: Anatolia between Euphrates and Tigris to the Black Sea

Göbekli Tepe Southeast Anatolia - an archaeological sensation! Only a fraction of this first man-made monumental cult site has so far been exposed. The oldest sculptures, enigmatic figures and relief-decorated megalithic pillars, lay hidden in the earth here for over 10,000 years. Humans settled in the fertile crescent north of the Syrian desert, this is the cradle of civilization. In the early Neolithic, permanent settlements emerged, and agriculture and cattle breeding developed. Historically, the Hittites, Greeks and Romans have left their mark on the region. Biblical ground in Urfa, the city of Abraham. In today's Antakya the followers of Jesus were called "Christians" for the first time; The journey leads through northern Mesopotamia to the ancient Christian settlement area of Tur Abdin. A special experience awaits us at Nemrut, the mountain of the gods, with gigantic colossal statues of the Commagenic ruler Antiochus.

Day 1: ARRIVAL Flight to Gaziantep; Transfer to the hotel. Dinner and overnight stay (-/-/D)

Day 2: Gaziantep / Urfa Walk through the old town, visit to the Archaeological Museum, climb to the city fortress, continue to Urfa, the Edessa of the Crusaders, where Abraham is said to have set up camp on the way from Ur to Chaldea to the Promised Land. Today Urfa is home to Arab, Kurdish and Turkish Muslims, Greek Orthodox, Armenian and Roman Catholic Christians and a Jewish community. Stay at Abraham's Pond with its holy carp; Halil Rahman - prayer house, madrassas, old mosque, hotel accommodation in Urfa (B/-/D)

Day 3: Urfa - Harran Visit to the museum with Neolithic sculptures and small sculptures from Göbekli Tepe and Nevali Cori. Visit to restored city palaces, climb to the citadel. On the way to Harran visit the Abraham hermitage, a Muslim pilgrimage site, with the grave of Job and the “birth grotto” of Abraham. Harran, inhabited for 5000 years, today a remote trulli village, was a late Babylonian travel and trading station with a temple to the moon god Sin. In the ruins are the remains of the oldest university of the East and West. Back to Urfa, stroll through the old town bazaar. Overnight stay in Urfa (B/-/D)

Day 4: Urfa Nemrut Dagi We drive to the Atatürk reservoir on the Euphrates and up to the Nemrut Dag (2150 m), the center of the Hellenistic kingdom of Kommagene. The “Throne of the Gods”, the huge tumulus (burial mound) on the mountain peak, is guarded by gigantic stone heads. We want to experience the sunset here. Overnight in Kahta. (FA)

Day 5 and 6: Kahta – Mardin- Midyat via the reservoir and further via Diyarbakir, the Kurdish metropolis of the east. Maybe if time is right We visit the walled old town with the Great Mosque (Ulu Cami) and the Catholic Church of St. Mary. Overnight in Midyat. TUR ABDIN The Aramaic language of early Christianity has remained alive to this day in the Syrian Orthodox monasteries of the Tur Abdin region (“the mountain of the servants [of God]”). We visit St. Mary's Church of Hah, the large and lively Mar Gabriel Monastery, the Ananias or "Saffron" Monastery and the cities of Midyat and Mardin. 2 nights in Midyat. (FA)

Day 7: Hasankeyf, Lake Van We continue towards Lake Van via the town of Hasankeyf, which is picturesquely located at a narrow point in the Tigris but is threatened by a reservoir project. Above Tatvan lies the volcano, also named after the biblical and Koranic King Nimrud, at whose picturesque little crater lake we want to have a picnic. In Ahlat on the northern shore of Lake Van we see the extensive Seljuk necropolis with well over 1000 magnificent grave steles. 3 nights in Van. (FA)

Day 8: Lake Van, Akdamar We drive to the Armenian monastery island of Akdamar with the recently renovated Holy Cross Church, which became world famous especially because of the unique biblical scenes on the outer walls; In Lake Van (about seven times larger than Lake Constance) with its special alkaline water quality, we of course also have the opportunity to swim. Afterwards we look at Kilise, which means seven churches, in a village near Van Yedi. Remains of a total of 7 churches remain here. Overnight stay in Van (B/-/D)

Day 9: Van, Dogubayazit The Iron Age culture of Urartu (the “Land of Ararat” of the Old Testament) is the focus today. Southeast of Van we drive to the ruins of Çavuştepe (8th century BC) and further over the picturesque waterfalls of Muradiye through the bizarre lava landscape of the Tendürek volcano and reach the foot of Mount Ararat near the Iranian border. In the old Dogubayazit we admire the Ishak Pasha Palace (the “Neuschwanstein of Turkey”) and see an original 60 meter deep meteorite crater. Overnight stay in Dogubayazit (B/-/D)

Day 10: Ararat - Noah's Ark The 5165 m high, snow-covered Great Ararat with its 3937 m little brother to the side majestically dominates the landscape in the four-country triangle Turkey-Iran-Armenia-Azerbaijan. The nearby suspected “landing site of Noah's Ark”, a natural terrain formation with ship-like structures, which are passed off as authentic in the local “Noah's Ark Museum” is original and attractive. Afterwards, after a short drive, we will see the north side of Ararat with ruins of an ancient Armenian settlement. Nothing is known historically about this place. Overnight stay in Dogubayazit (B/-/D)

Day 11: Dogubayazit - Kars We drive from Dogubayazit towards Kars. On the way we visit a salt mine. Kars is the setting for Orhan Pamuk's book “Snow”. The high plateau creates excellent conditions for the production of yogurt, milk, cheese, honey and meat. Carpets and kilims are made there, known for their special color combinations and unique designs. In Kars we first drive up to 1800 meters to the fortress hill with the citadel “Kars Kalesi”, below which the Kars Cayi (river) meanders. From here you have a beautiful view over the city. What is particularly striking is the Armenian Apostle Church, which today serves as a mosque and has reliefs of the twelve apostles. After these impressions we move into our hotel. Overnight stay in Kars (B/-/D)

Day 12: Ani, Kars Drive to the wildly lonely ruins of the legendary medieval Armenian capital Ani, which everyone who travels to the region must have seen. The city, which once had a population of 100,000, extends on a sprawling rocky plateau bordered on three sides by deep gorges. It is located directly on the Turkish-Armenian (formerly Soviet) border, a deep riverbed of the Aras (Armenian Akurian). Overnight stay in Kars. (B/-/D) Day

Day 13: Kars - Erzurum Drive to Erzurum, the “capital of the East”, where magnificent mosque buildings from the Seljuk and Ottoman times await us: double minaret - mosque, Ulu Cami, vizier mosque. Overnight stay in Erzurum (B/-/D)

Day 14: Trabzon Ayasofya (Trebizond, Hagia Sophia) Drive through the Pontic Mountains to Trabzon, the capital of the Byzantine Empire of Trebizond. After checking into the hotel, we visit the cross-domed church of Hagia Sophia from the 13th century with its well-preserved, colorful frescoes. Like its big sister in Istanbul, Trabzon's Aya Sofya was converted into a mosque. Finally, an evening walk along the Black Sea. Overnight in Trabzon.

Day 15: Keyword: Sumela Monastery. (Sumela, Trebizond) Today we visit the Sumela Monastery (original name: “Holy Mary of the Black Mountain”), which is located like an eagle's nest on a rock face, the highlight of every Trabzon visit. In the year 385, the Greek hermits Barnabas and Sophronius, following a mystical instruction, are said to have recovered an icon of Mary personally painted by the evangelist Luke, for which they built a sanctuary. It later became a well-known pilgrimage site. The relics of the monastery, in addition to the icon a splinter from the cross of Christ, are now in Greece, where a new Sumela monastery was founded. The Greek Orthodox monastery became a national heritage site in 1970. (FA)

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Level 1: easyIt

is a cultural trip by bus without hiking


  • Group size       : 6  - 15 people

  • Travel time          :  15  Days

  • Overnight hotel accommodation   : 15 nights

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  • German speaking tour guide

  • all transfers according to the program with modern bus 

  • Overnight stays in the hotel in a double room

  • Half board

  • Water throughout the tour

  • all admissions and fees

  • All flights 

Detailed Travel information  →

pdf indir.webp

Price: €1790 per person

Single room supplement: €220




04.05 -19.05.2024

07.09 -22.09.2024

05.10 -20.10.2024

Eigene Wunschtermine für Mai, Juni, September oder Oktober auf Anfrage - ab 2 Personen Durchführung garantiert   

Program changes. 

On this trip, despite careful preparation, changes to the program due to unforeseeable events must be expected. These can arise due to weather conditions or short-term changes as a result of legal regulations, political decisions or health problems of participants, etc. In any case, we will try to carry out the travel program within the framework of what is responsible or, if not possible, to organize an equivalent alternative program.

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