Private Jewish Heritage Tour (Izmir-Sardes-Ephesus)
We present you our tour called Private Jewish Heritage Tour (Izmir-Sardes-Ephesus), which is one of the Turkey package tours from Istanbul.
Duration: 2 days 1 nights
Tour Style: Private Tour
Pickup Point: Istanbul-Turkey
Highlights: Beth Israel Synagogue, Dario Moreno and Havra (Synagogues) Streets, Kizlaragasi inn, Clock tower, Kadifekale (Velvet Castle), Elevator, Agora of Izmir, and Kemeralti Bazaar, Krezus, Bin Tepeler, Hermus, King Way, Gymnasion, Sardis Artemis Temple, Synagogue, Gold Refining Workshops, Sardis Agora (Bazaar) and Sardis Acropolis, The Temple of Artemis, Ephesus Archaeological Site, The House of Virgin Mary,
05:30 Early morning transfer to Istanbul airport with the private transfer
07:00 Direct Flight from Istanbul to Izmir Adnan Menderes Airport
08:10 Arrive at Izmir Adnan Menderes Airport, and meeting with your guide, and transfer to Izmir center with private transfer
09:30 Arrive in Izmir Center
WHY SHOULD YOU SEE IZMIR, SARDES AND EPHESUS?
Among the original Hellenistic city-states on Asia Minor’s Aegean coast, only Smyrna, now Turkish Izmir, endured regional calamities. Smyrna is also believed to have been the home of Homer, the author of the epic poems Iliad and Odyssey. When exploring Izmir, don’t miss the Historical Elevator. For Jewish heritage, visit Beth-Israel Synagogue, and for Christian history, Saint Polycarpe Church is a must.
Sardis, located 80 km from Izmir’s center, is approximately a 1.5-hour drive away. In ancient times, Sardis served as the capital of the Lydian State. Notably, it was the first place in history where money was minted with state guarantee. The ancient city of Sardis and the Thousand Hill Lydia Tumulus are on the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List. Within Sardis, the monumental Bath-Gymnasion, one of the Seven Churches of Anatolia, played a crucial role in spreading Christianity westward. Explore the Temple of Artemis, Synagogue, Gold Refining Workshops, Agora (Bazaar), and Acropolis (Upper Settlement).
Ephesus is a highly sought-after destination in Turkey, renowned for its ancient ruins. It’s home to the Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Ephesus is among the First Seven Churches of Christianity mentioned in the Bible and boasts some of Turkey’s best-preserved Greco-Roman city ruins. The House of the Virgin Mary is recognized as a pilgrimage site by the Vatican since 1961.
Day1: Izmir Center Tour and arrive Sardis City within the same day
At 05:00 in the morning, your hotel or designated pick-up point will be the starting point for our journey. We’ll head to the airport, where you’ll catch a 07:00 flight from Istanbul to Izmir Adnan Menderes Airport. Upon landing at Izmir Adnan Menderes Airport, our transfer team will greet you, marking the beginning of your exploration.
Our first destination is the Beth-Israel Synagogue, the construction of which commenced in 1905 by the decree of Sultan Abdulhamid II. It’s situated in the Karatas district of Izmir and was inaugurated in 1907. This synagogue holds the distinction of being the largest in Izmir. Our next stop takes us to an area known as the “Elevator,” passing through Dario Moreno Street, named after the artist of Jewish origin who loved Izmir. Following this, we’ll visit Havra Street, home to several centuries-old Small Synagogues.
Havra Street is conveniently close to the Historical Kemeralti Bazaar, allowing for an easy transition. Our exploration continues with a visit to the historical Agora of Izmir. Established in the 4th century BC, it was rebuilt with the support of the Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius following the earthquake in 178 AD. Concluding our Izmir tour, we’ll head to Kadifekale, another historical site.
Next, we’ll journey to the ancient city of Sardis, which is about a 1.5-hour drive from Izmir. Our first stop at Sardis will be the Temple of Artemis (Sardis), one of the seven sacred temples of Christianity in Western Anatolia. Following that, we’ll explore the Gymnasion Complex, consisting of the bath, courtyard, and sports area, symbolizing the ancient city. Continuing our visit, we’ll pass by the Sardis Synagogue, a place of great significance for the Jewish community. It is known as the third synagogue in the world, with a history dating back to 200 BC. Our tour concludes with visits to Sardis Acropolis and Bin Tepeler respectively.
We’ll then proceed to your Kusadasi hotel, where you will spend the evening.
Day2: Ephesus Tour
We’ll pick you up from your hotel around 9 am, marking the beginning of our Ephesus Tour. As we embark on this journey, we’ll traverse through the lush and picturesque countryside before reaching our first destination: The House of the Virgin Mary. It is widely known that St. John brought the Virgin Mary to Ephesus 4 or 6 years following the death of Jesus.
Our next stop, after The House of the Virgin Mary, will be the remarkable Ancient City of Ephesus. This leg of the tour involves a captivating walking excursion, guiding you through one of the most magnificent archaeological sites globally. You’ll have the opportunity to explore the Odeon, The Fountain of Trajan, the Scholastic steam baths, the Temple of Hadrian, and, of course, the renowned library of Ephesus. The library, adorned with columns and statues, is a true masterpiece.
The Grand Theatre, where Saint Paul once delivered his teachings, stands as a colossal structure, boasting a capacity of 24,000 seats, making it the largest of its kind in antiquity. As we continue our journey, we’ll pass through the Arcadian Way, once graced by the procession of Mark Anthony and Cleopatra.
Finally, Then we will continue on the tour and head on for our next stop which is the Temple of Artemis (Diana), this outstanding temple was built in honor of the Greek Goddess of hunting, wild nature, and fertility, deemed as one of the Seven wonders of the ancient world. The temple of Artemis used to be the largest marble temple in the ancient Greek world since it was four times as big as the Parthenon in Athens, Greece.
When our tour called Private Jewish Heritage Tour (Izmir-Sardes-Ephesus) is completed, we will transfer you to Izmir Adnan Menderes Airport to take a flight to Istanbul.Afterwards we take you to hotel in Istanbul with private transfer.
If you wish, you can extend the Turkey Package Tour for 1 or 2 days.
Kusadasi: Korumar Hotel, Lavista Hotel, Pine Marina Hotel, Ilayda Hotel
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE TOUR?
- One night accomadation
- Domestic Flight Tickets
- Private Transfers to and from Istanbul Airports
- English-speaking tour guide during the tours
- 2 Local Lunch (Vegetarian lunch option available upon request)
- Entrance fees mentioned in the itinerary
- Local taxes and service charges
WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED IN THE TOUR?
- On personal expenses
- Tips to Guide and Driver