The Real Deal: Round-trip airfare to Istanbul on Lufthansa, United, or similar; an overnight train ride from Istanbul to Ankara in a standard sleeper compartment on the Ankara Express; two nights in Ürgüp in the Cappadocia region at the Dinler Hotel Ürgüp; one night in Pamukkale at the Lycus River Hotel; two nights in Kusadasi at the Pine Bay Marina; one night in Çanakkale at the Hotel Akol; one night in Istanbul at the Best Western Eresin Taxim Hotel; bus transfers; 19 meals; the services of a guide throughout; tours of several attractions, including the Kaymakli Underground City in Cappadocia and the ruins of Hierapolis; fuel surcharges; and hotel taxes and fees, from $1,999 per person—plus about $189 in airport taxes and fees.
When: Feb. 5, 2010; add $100 for Jan. 1; $200 for Sept. 17, Nov. 12, 19, 26, Dec. 31; $300 for Jan. 22, 29, Feb. 12, 19, 26, March 5, 12, 19; $400 for Dec. 25, 2009, March 26, Dec. 10, 17, 24, 2010; $500 for April 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, May 7, 14, 21, 28, Sept. 3, 10.
Gateways: New York City; add $20 for Dallas, D.C., Houston; $45 for Detroit, Minneapolis; $60 for Orlando; $70 for Atlanta; $75 for Seattle; $110 for San Francisco; $260 for Denver, L.A.; additional gateways available.
The fine print: Add approximately $189 per person in airport taxes and fees. Based on double occupancy; the single supplement is $399. Read these guidelines before you book any Real Deal.
Book by: No booking deadline.
Contact: Foreign Independent Tours, 800-248-3487, fittours.com.
Why it's a deal This package breaks down to about $274 per person per night. To put the cost and value of the package in perspective, we ran a search on Kayak, which showed that the lowest round-trip flight between New York City and Istanbul for travel in early February is $736 with taxes (Air France).
For $1,452 more, the Foreign Independent Tours package covers airfare, plus an overnight train, seven nights' accommodations in four-star hotels, bus transportation, a full-time guide, tours at each stop, and all taxes and fees. Plus, you have the added convenience of all-in-one booking.
More: Add a balloon tour in Cappadocia for an extra $299 per person. Upgrade to five-star hotels for an additional $399 per person. Extend your stay at Istanbul's Best Western Eresin Taxim Hotel or a similar hotel at the beginning or end of the tour for about $59 per person per night, based on double occupancy and depending on travel dates. You can book this package without airfare for $1,799.