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Turkey and Tehran Trails Tehran - Istanbul

Trip Overview

This 17 day overland tour journeys from Tehran to Istanbul through Iran, Turkey
17 DAYS THROUGH Iran, Turkey
PRICE FROM:
$2,220 (USD) + 480 KITTY (USD)
DURATION:
17 days
TRANSPORT:
Overland expedition vehicle
CREW:
2 Dragoman crew, 1 local crew (except in Turkey)
ACCOM:
20%
80%
PHYSICAL CHALLENGE:
LIFESTYLE CHALLENGE:
TRIP CODE:
ZTI
DEPOSIT:
$350 USD

Highlights

  Guided tour of Golestan Palace in Tehran

  Learn about Iran's fascinating history at the National Museum

  See the spectacular Dome of Soltaniyeh

  Wander through the ancient bazaar of Tabriz, the largest covered market in the world

  Overnight in the Kurdish town of Do?ubayaz?t

  Overland Eastern Turkey and wild camp en-route

  Guided tour of the valley of Cappadocia

  Take an optional balloon ride over Cappadocia

  Visit the incredible Blue Mosque

  Explore the many amazing sites of Istanbul

  SHOW MORE HIGHLIGHTS  

Itinerary

Day 1 - Tehran ( 27th Sep 2021 )

Border Information: if joining in Tehran, you will most likely enter Iran at Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport (IATA code: IKA).

There will be a pre-departure meeting at 10:00am - please look out for a note from your leader at the reception of the joining hotel upon arrival with more details about this important meeting.

After the meeting we will have an included tour of the stunning Golestan Palace and the fascinating National Museum of Iran.

In Tehran we will stay in a local hotel.

Please note that due to restrictions on citizens of the UK, USA and Canada being permitted to remain unaccompanied in Iran, we would only be able to book one extra night of accommodation in Tehran for these nationalities before the trip starts. You will also be required to book an airport transfer in advance via Dragoman. Please ensure the correct dates for your plans are clearly stated on all your visa applications.

Daily Activities

Included Activities

Explore the former royal complex of Golestan Palace, a huge site built in the 16th century and Tehran's oldest monument

Included in Kitty

Learn all about Iran's rich and fascinating history at Tehran's National Museum of Iran

Included in Kitty
Optional Activities

These activities are not included in the itinerary, however they are available to book and/or payable locally.

Visit the Iranian Artists' Forum in Tehran, a large gallery for the country's best young artists to feature their work

Free

Explore the S'ad Abad Museum in the spectacular mountainside near Tehran, once a royal summer home during the Pahlavi period

USD 4.5

Visit the shocking Ebrat Museum, once the prison used by the Shah's brutal secret police before the revolution of 1979

USD 5

See Tehran's iconic Azadi Tower, the inverted Y-shaped memorial built in 1971 to commemorate the 2500th anniversary of the first Persian Empire

USD 2.5

See Tehran's Museum of the Islamic Period and its interesting collection of artifacts from various stages of Iran's history (when open)

USD 3

Visit the viewing tower at the top of the iconic Milad Tower, one of the world's tallest towers at a height of 435 metres

USD 8

Visit the Laleh Park in central Tehran, an oasis of calm and a well-designed green space to observe local life pass by

Free

See some of Iran's most precious treasures at the Treasury of National Jewels, including the 182 carat Darya-ye-Nur (Sea of Light) which is thought to be the world's largest uncut diamond, and the phenomenal 34kg Globe of Jewels, made with over 51,000 precious stones

USD 4.5
Day 2 - Zanjan ( 28th Sep 2021 )

Today we will set off from Iran's chaotic capital and head west to the impressive Dome of Soltaniyeh, where we have an included visit. The 14th-century mausoleum is the 3rd largest dome in the world.

After our visit, we will continue our drive to the small town of Zanjan, where we have free time to explore and possibly visit the fascinating historical laundry hall of Rakhatshor-Khaneh.

In Zanjan we will stay in a local hotel.

Estimated Drive Time - 5-6 hours (please note that all drive times given here are the approximate number of hours that the truck will be in motion only, and does not include any time taken for coffee or lunch stops, border crossings, photo stops, activities en route, comfort breaks, shopping stops, toilet stops, etc. The times given are approximate estimates only and whilst given with the best of intentions, the drive times are heavily dependent on traffic, road conditions, weather, police roadblocks, and many other factors - flexibility is essential on any overland trip!).

Daily Activities

Included Activities

See the spectacular Dome of Soltaniyeh, the huge mausolem of the Ilkhanate (Mongolian) emperor Öljeitü built in the 14th Century and the 3rd largest dome in the world behind the Cathedral of Florence and the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul

Included in Kitty
Optional Activities

These activities are not included in the itinerary, however they are available to book and/or payable locally.

Visit the historical underground hall of Rakhatshor-Khaneh, once used as the entire city's laundry-place

Free
Day 3 - Tabriz ( 29th Sep 2021 )

Today we will drive to the western Iranian city of Tabriz, where we will have free time to explore some of the sights of the old town.

In Tabriz we will stay in a local hotel.

Estimated Drive Time - 4-5 hours.

Daily Activities

Optional Activities

These activities are not included in the itinerary, however they are available to book and/or payable locally.

Wander through the ancient bazaar of Tabriz, once one of the most important commercial centres on the Silk Road and the largest covered market in the world

Free

Visit the Constitution House of Tabriz, where the Persian Constitutional Revolution of 1905-1907 was launched, which established the Qajar Dynasty and the country's parliament

Free

Learn all about the vast history of Tabriz and the Iranian province of East Azerbaijan in the Azerbaijan Museum

Free

See the grave of Shahriar, the beloved local poet whose Azeri-Turkish and Persian literature has been translated into more than 30 languages across the world

Free

Visit the beautiful Blue Mosque of Tabriz, built in 1465 and refurbished in 1973

Free
Day 4 - Doğubayazıt ( 30th Sep 2021 )

Border Information: Exit Iran at Bazargan, enter Turkey at Gurbulak.

Today we will drive across the border to Turkey and the Kurdish town of Doğubayazıt. En route we will have an included visit to the Ishak Pasha Palace and enjoy the spectacular views of the surrounding landscapes and the nearby Mount Ararat.

In Doğubayazıt we will stay in a basic local hotel.

Estimated Drive Time - 5-6 hours.

Day 5-6 - ( 1st Oct 2021 to 2nd Oct 2021 )

Over the next two days we will travel through the stunning landscapes in eastern Turkey towards the central Cappadocia region. 

We will aim to wild camp or stay at a basic local campsite near Lake Numut on the first night, and near Mount Nemrut on the second.

Estimated Drive Time - 5-7 hours each day.

Day 7-8 - Göreme ( 3rd Oct 2021 to 4th Oct 2021 )

Today we will complete our drive to Göreme, a small enchanting town in the heart of the Cappadocia mountains.

In Göreme we will stay 2 nights here in a well-equipped hostel - please note that dorm beds are sometimes used here.

Estimated Drive Time - 6-8 hours.

One the second day we will explore Goreme, including a guided tour of the enchanted valley of Cappadocia. There will also be an opportunity for a magical optional balloon ride over the valley during your time here. 

Daily Activities

Included Activities

Explore the Early Christian underground cities of Derinkuyu or Kaymaklı, used as a hiding place from persecutions for centuries

Included in Kitty

Walk through the beautiful ancient valley of Ihlara, containing the beautiful rock-hewn churches built by the Cappadocian Greeks during the Byzantine era

Included in Kitty
Optional Activities

These activities are not included in the itinerary, however they are available to book and/or payable locally.

Take a hot air balloon flight over Cappadocia

USD 180

Guided tour of Cappadocia and underground troglodyte cities and caves

TRY 5

Explore the ancient pre-iconoclastic Byzantine rock monastery of Zelve

TRY 15

Learn how to make the traditional Central Turkish dishes of dolma and sarma at a Turkish cooking class

EUR 65

Take an Oriental Dancing (belly dancing) class to learn the techniques of this beautiful form of dance

EUR 70

Drive through the stunning landscape of Cappadocia on an ATV quad biking trip

USD 65

See the harvesting of the grapes and learn all about the process of making the local drink of pekmez (September to mid-October only)

EUR 50

Head out for a fun evening of dinner and various Turkish dancing displays

EUR 30

Witness the hypnotic Sufi Whirling Dervishes ceremony at an ancient caravanserai near Göreme

EUR 35
Day 9 - Egirdir ( 5th Oct 2021 )

After breakfast we will continue south towards the town of Egirdir, today will mostly be a travel day. 

Estimated Drive Time 7 - 8 hours

Tonight we will wild camp near the small town of Egirdir

Day 10-11 - Olympos ( 6th Oct 2021 to 7th Oct 2021 )

This morning we will continue onto the ancient beach town of Olympos on the Southern Turkish coast. 

On the way we will make a small detour to visit the ancient city of Termessos in Gulluk Dagi National Park.

Estimated Drive Time - 6 -7 hours

We will have 2 nights in Olympos staying in a local guesthouse. 

On the second day there will be plenty of time to explore and participate in optional activities, in the evening we will walk up to the Chimera Fire Mountain and toast some marshmallows. 

Daily Activities

Optional Activities

These activities are not included in the itinerary, however they are available to book and/or payable locally.

Hike up Chimera Mountain and witness the natural phenomenon of never ending fires emerging from the rocks. 

TRY 7

Half day Sea Kayaking adventure exploring the many different caves and beautiful coastline of the Southern Turkish Coast. 

EUR 15
Day 12 - Pamukkale ( 8th Oct 2021 )

Today we will head back inland to the small village of Pamukkale. Either this afternoon or tomorrow morning we will have time to visit the thermal hot springs and traverse the travertine pools and terraces. 

Estimated Drive Time 5 - 6 hours

Tonight we will either camp near the village or stay in a local hotel. 

Daily Activities

Optional Activities

These activities are not included in the itinerary, however they are available to book and/or payable locally.

Admire the brilliant white travertine terraces and submerge yourself in the warm mineral rich pools and hot springs

TRY 35
Day 13-14 - Selcuk ( 9th Oct 2021 to 10th Oct 2021 )

We only have a short drive this morning to make it to our next destination Selcuk where we will have two nights. On arrival we will have free time to explore the local area or simply relax in one of the many cafes or tea bars which are great for people watching. 

On the second day we will spend the day exploring the Ephesus Ruins and Terraced Houses. 

Estimated Drive Time 2 - 3 hours

For the next two nights we will stay in a local hostel.

Daily Activities

Included Activities

Walk the marbled streets of Ephesus, one of the best preserved ancient cities.

Included in Kitty

Guided Tour of Ephesus Ruins and the Terraced Houses

Included in Kitty
Day 15 - Gallipoli Peninsula, Troy ( 11th Oct 2021 )

After breakfast we will leave Selcuk and drive to Helsik following the coast. Here we will have an included tour of the Troy Ruins. 

In the afternoon we will cross the Dardenelles by ferry to arrive into Ecebat where we will stay the night in a local hostel. 

Estimated Drive time 6 -7 hours

Tonight we will stay in a local hostel. 

Daily Activities

Included Activities

Pay your respects to the fallen at Gallipoli on a guided tour through the battlefields.

Included in Kitty

Guided tour around the ancient ruins of Troy

Included in Kitty
Day 16 - Istanbul ( 12th Oct 2021 )

Rising early we will have an included tour of Gallipoli with our local guide. 

After lunch we will then jump on the truck one last time to make our way to the bustling city of Istanbul.

In Istanbul we will stay in dorm accommodation in a fantastic hostel with good facilities, which is a 5 minute walk from the Blue Mosque.

Estimated Drive Time - 5- 6 hours

Day 17 - Istanbul ( 13th Oct 2021 )

Border information: if leaving the trip in Istanbul, you will most likely exit Turkey from Istanbul Atatürk International Airport (IATA code: IST).

Today will be free to explore the many sights of the incredible exotic city of Istanbul, including the Grand Bazaar, the Bosphorus River and the phenomenal Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia!

Today is the end day for passengers finishing their trip in Istanbul. Please note there is no accommodation included on the trip tonight - please contact the Dragoman Sales team if you are interested in booking extra nights of accommodation in order to fully explore and take part in some of the optional activities listed below.

Daily Activities

Optional Activities

These activities are not included in the itinerary, however they are available to book and/or payable locally.

Visit the incredible Byzantine cathedral of Hagia Sophia, built in the 6th century

TRY 25

Explore the atmospheric underground Basilica Cisterns, built by the Byzantines in the 6th century

TRY 20

Explore the majestic Topkapı Palace, the huge palace of the Ottoman Sultans for over 400 years

TRY 35

Visit the Çemberlitas Baths, a traditional Turkish Hammam, for a bath and massage!

USD 20

Explore the phenomenal Blue Mosque, built by the Ottoman Sultan Ahmed I - a stunning icon of Istanbul

Free

See the splendour of Istanbul from a boat trip on Bosphorus Strait, which marks the boundary of Europe and Asia

USD 17
Explore the colossal markets of the Grand Bazaar - once the centre of all trading between Europe and Asia, and the most visited tourist attraction in the world
Free

DATES & PRICES

This group overland journey has multiple departures.
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Trip Notes
Departing: 5 Apr 2021
Returning: 21 Apr 2021
Duration: 17 days
Route: Istanbul - Tehran
$2,220 USD + $460 Kitty (USD)
Deposit: $350 USD
available
Departing: 27 Sep 2021
Returning: 13 Oct 2021
Duration: 17 days
Route: Tehran - Istanbul
$2,220 USD + $480 Kitty (USD)
Deposit: $350 USD
available