'Historic Turkey, the Aegean and Athens' is a great vacation getaway beginning in Istanbul, which you discover in depth with this Escorted tour. Travel to Turkey and see the beautifully preserved remains of the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires; explore the Hippodrome, ancient site of chariot races; the magnificent Blue Mosque, the glorious St. Sophia Museum, the lavish Topkapi Palace and test your bargaining skills when buying memorable souvenirs at the colorful Grand Bazaar. Travel along the Dardanelles, visiting Gallipoli, site of a bloody WW1 battle. Visit Troy, site of Homer's great epic the Iliad, and Pergamum, famed across the Ancient world as a great cultural and religious center. From Kusadasi explore the ruins of Ephesus, among the best preserved archeological sites in the world. Visit the house of Virgin Mary, where it is believed she lived the final years of her life. A highlight of this journey is an Aegean cruise with breathtaking and legendary ports of call. Patmos, Rhodes, Heraklion and Santorini. Optional shore excursions will reveal the splendors and history of each island. Ageless Athens, cradle of democracy and birthplace of Western Civilization will crown this vacation. Here you see the House of Parliament and Memorial to the Unknown Soldier. Hadrian's Arch, the Temple of Olympian Zeus (known as the Olympieion), the Panathinaikon Stadium, culminating with the Parthenon atop the Acropolis plus the night scene of fun loving Plaka district.