Image: Cappadocia, Turkey
Yoray Liberman  /  New York Times via Redux
Hot-air balloons float above the hills and rock formations of Cappadocia, Turkey. Enjoy a seven-day escorted tour of Turkey’s highlights for $1869; or an epic 15-day exploration of Turkish delights for $2699.
updated 9/12/2007 4:49:58 PM ET 2007-09-12T20:49:58

Book by: Sept. 20, 2007
Travel by: Various through December 2007

The deal
At the crossroads of Europe and Asia Minor, Turkey is among the world’s most alluring destinations, a treasure trove of historical and cultural attractions. Did you know, for example, that the exotic metropolis of Istanbul (the former Constantinapole) is the only city in the world that bridges two continents — Europe and Asia? Fall is the best time to visit Istanbul, and the rest of Turkey, as the heat subsides and tourist packs go home. Pick between a city break in Istanbul for just $847; a weeklong Athens & Istanbul combo for $699; a seven-day escorted tour of Turkey’s highlights for $1869; or an epic 15-day exploration of Turkish delights for $2699.

See bustling Istanbul from just $847
Want to explore bustling Istanbul for a week? Picasso Tours has a fantastic offer, valid for Wednesday or Thursday departures later this fall, between November 1 and December 13. This six-night jaunt is now priced at a mere $847, including the flight between New York or Boston and Istanbul; five nights at midrange Kafkas Hotel; daily breakfast; and roundtrip airport transfers. The hotel in question is a modern property located in Sirkeci, the center of historic Istanbul, a stone’s throw from all major tourist attractions. Departures from other getaways are also available at low extra cost, starting at $21 from Philadelphia and running up to $210 from Seattle.

Athens & Istanbul for only $699 this Nov.
If you want to see the Aegean Sea and the Bosphorus Strait in one fell swoop, we have a stellar Greco-Turkish city combo for you. Visit Athens and Istanbul for seven days from just $699 this November! Airfare alone, on the New York-Athens-Istanbul-New York route, is costlier than this entire hotel-inclusive package. The European Destinations special in question covers three nights’ accommodation in each city; flight from New York to Athens; airfare between Athens and Istanbul; and daily breakfast. From Chicago, the same package will cost you $829; from Miami, it sells for just $20 more; Los Angeles departures go for $1,299.

See more of Turkey for a week from $1,869
To see more of Turkey, we recommend the Go-Today six-nighter we found for $1,869, good for travel between November 1 and December 13. The package covers air from New York or Boston to Istanbul; lodging with daily breakfast; lunches and dinners; domestic flight to Ankara and back from Izmir; a variety of escorted sightseeing tours with transfers; and entry fees to sites and museums. Among guided activities are a city tour of Ankara and Pamukkale; an excursion to scenic Cappadocia region; and an outing to the ancient city of Ephesus. The base price covers simple accommodation but upgrades are available, too, running up to $2,189 for the deluxe version of the package. Airfare add-ons from other gateways cost a wee bit extra.

Epic 15-day trip around Turkey for $2,699
For a more epic journey around Turkey, Foreign Independent Tours has the best option. Their 15-day tour of intriguing Turkey starts at $2,699 (valid between December 1 and 12), with a slew of inclusions. Those are: air from Boston to New York; all on-tour transportation; 13 nights’ lodging in Izmir, Kusadasi, Pamukkale, Antalya, Konya, Cappadoccia, Ankara, Bursa, Istanbul; 38 meals; and fully escorted sightseeing with an English-speaking guide. Highlights include a visit to the Underground City of Kaymakli in Cappadocia where early Christians lived secretly in order to survive and keep their faith; a city tour of Bursa, the first capital of the Ottoman Empire in the 14th century; and a visit to the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, considered one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

The dollars
The prices of all of the above deals are based on double occupancy and include hotel taxes. Air taxes and fees, however, are additional.

The Catch
Kebabs not included!

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