Turkey is an incredibly diverse country, with rich history, stunning landscapes, vibrant culture and mouthwatering cuisine. Trying to see it all in just 7 days may seem daunting, but it’s completely doable if you plan your 7 days Turkey tour packages wisely.
With limited time, focus on Turkey’s top destinations – Istanbul, Cappadocia, Pamukkale and Ephesus. This classic route will allow you to marvel at Istanbul’s Byzantine wonders, explore otherworldly Cappadocia, relax in Pamukkale’s cotton castle travertines and walk through ancient ruins at Ephesus.
Follow this complete 7 day Turkey itinerary to help you plan your dream vacation and make the most of your week in this captivating country.
Day 1: Arrive in Istanbul
Kickstart your Turkey trip by discovering historic Istanbul. With such little time, prioritize must-see attractions like:
- Hagia Sophia – Former Orthodox cathedral with staggering Byzantine architecture
- Blue Mosque – Iconic mosque known for its blue Iznik tiles and soaring domes
- Topkapi Palace – Sprawling Ottoman palace complex with lavish pavilions
- Grand Bazaar – Vast indoor market selling everything from jewelry to carpets
Wandering around Sultanahmet District allows you to see these sights and more in close vicinity.
In the evening, take a Bosphorus cruise for magical views or walk through bustling Taksim Square.
Top tip: Book a hot air balloon ride over Cappadocia for Day 3 now, as spots sell out quickly.
Day 2: Continue Discovering Istanbul’s Treasures
Istanbul deserves more than a quick day trip. Use Day 2 to keep uncovering incredible history and culture:
- Basilica Cistern – Eerie ancient underground cistern with marble columns
- Süleymaniye Mosque – Ottoman imperial mosque known for its grandeur
- Spice Bazaar – Colorful market overflowing with spices, dried fruits and Turkish delights
- Galata Tower – 14th-century tower with phenomenal views of Istanbul
- Istiklal Street – Iconic shopping thoroughfare full of boutiques and cafes
In the evening, opt for a Bosphorus Dinner Cruise to admire Istanbul’s sparkling minarets from the water while enjoying delicious Turkish cuisine.
Day 3: Fly to Cappadocia
On Day 3, catch an early morning 1-hour flight to Cappadocia to marvel at its moonlike landscape and cave dwellings.
Start with a hot air balloon ride at sunrise for breathtaking views over the erosion-formed valleys and towering rock formations known as “fairy chimneys”.
After landing, top things to do include:
- Göreme Open Air Museum – Rock-cut churches and frescoes from Byzantine era
- Avanos and pottery making – Try sculpting clay into a plate, mug or vase
- Derinkuyu Underground City – Immense ancient cave system used as a shelter
- Ihlara Valley hike – Peacefully walk this lush valley with rock-carved churches
- Uçhisar town – Wander through narrow tunnels and cavern houses carved into pinnacles
At nightfall, watch a mesmerizing Whirling Dervishes show over dinner for a cultural spectacle you won’t soon forget.
Day 4: Pamukkale’s Healing Hot Springs
On Day 4, relax in the milky-white travertines and thermal waters of Pamukkale.
- Start by walking barefoot along the limestone terraces and taking a dip in the petrified pools and cascades.
- Pay a small fee to enter Hierapolis, an ancient Greco-Roman spa city with remarkably well-preserved ruins like the Antique Pool.
- Wander down Pamukkale’s main thoroughfare to shop for souvenirs or enjoy Turkish coffee at a local cafe with a view.
Spend the night in Pamukkale before continuing south.
Day 5: Journey to Ephesus & Şirince
Rise early on Day 5 for the 3-hour drive to famous Ephesus – one of the best-preserved Roman sites and a focal point of early Christianity.
Must-see highlights include:
- The monumental Library of Celsus
- Intricate floor mosaics lining the Terraced Houses
- The massive Great Theatre, which seated 25,000 spectators
- The perfectly preserved façade of the Temple of Hadrian
After exploring Ephesus’ sprawling ruins, head uphill to quaint Şirince village. Originally settled by Greeks, it charms visitors with fruit wines, weaving workshops and dazzling olive grove views. Spend the afternoon sipping Turkish wine on Şirince’s quiet streets lined with grape vines.
As the sun sets, driving 1.5 hours north will bring you back to Izmir or Selçuk for overnighting.
Day 6: Fly Back to Istanbul
Catch a late morning flight back to Istanbul, arriving early afternoon. Upon returning, dive back into all the things you didn’t have time for originally.
Top options include:
- Marveling at miniatures and priceless artifacts inside Topkapi Palace’s Harem and Treasury rooms
- Walking the 1.4km tunnel connecting Europe and Asia inside the Marmaray Subsea Tunnel
- Bartering for vibrant lanterns and ceramics at the Grand Bazaar
- Sampling baklava and other Turkish desserts like kunefe and kadayif
- Taking a ferry to the Princes Islands for biking, hiking and swimming along pine-forest lined shores
- Experiencing Turkish bath culture with a rejuvenating hamam session
At night, take in one last magical view of Istanbul’s glittering skyline over dinner along the Bosphorus or at a rooftop restaurant.
Day 7: Departure
After a week discovering Turkey’s top highlights from Istanbul’s bustling bazaars to Cappadocia’s otherworldly valleys and Pamukkale’s cotton terraces to ancient sites like Ephesus, it’s time for your Turkish adventure to come to an end.
You’ve covered an incredible amount of ground in 7 short days thanks to well-planned 7 day Turkey tour packages. Catch your departing flight home with hundreds of photos and endless memories to share.
I hope this complete Turkey itinerary gives you a solid blueprint for planning your dream 7 day trip. Let the travel planning begin! Please don’t hesitate to reach out with any other questions.