• Explore Istanbul over several days, discovering both its Ottoman heritage and remnants from its Byzantine past
• Stop at Bursa, the first Ottoman capital, complemented by a visit to the late Ottoman village of Cumalikizik
• Wander the streets of ancient Troy, excavated by Schliemann in the 1870s
Andrew Wilson, BA, BD, FSAScot
specialist in archaeology and ancient history
Depart London Gatwick 1150 on Turkish Airlines, arriving Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen 1740. Transfer to Istanbul hotel for five nights.
Morning lecture: Ottoman Architecture. Visits to the Hippodrome (modelled on Rome’s Circus Maximus) and 17th century Sultan Ahmet ‘Blue’ Mosque (exterior). Afternoon: Topkapi Palace (Mehmet the Conqueror’s seat of government).
Morning cruise from Golden Horn along the Bosphorus. Afternoon: Sinan’s Sokollu Mehmet Pasha Mosque and 6th century Church of Saints Sergius and Bacchus (converted into mosque in 16th century). Evening lecture: Islam in the Ottoman State.
Morning: Sehzade Mosque (built by Sinan), 14th century Kariye Camii (glorious Byzantine mosaics and frescoes), great land walls of Theodosius II. Afternoon: Justinian’s great church of Hagia Sophia (Ayia Sofya) followed by free time. Evening lecture: The Ottoman State. Free evening.
Morning: Suleymaniye Mosque (Sinan’s masterpiece built for Suleiman the Magnificent) and spice bazaar. Afternoon: optional visits to Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts (set in Ibrahim Pasha Palace, fine example of 16th century domestic architecture) or Archaeological Museum.
By road and ferry to Iznik (ancient Nicaea) with visits in the ancient town and lakeside lunch. Continue to Bursa for two nights.
Bursa (first Ottoman capital): Yesil Camii (Green Mosque), 14th century Ulu Camii (Great Mosque), afternoon visit to traditional late Ottoman village of Cumalikizik.
Visit to Muradiye complex with mosque and Ottoman cemetery, and nearby Ethnographical Museum, then continue to Çanakkale on Dardanelles for two nights. Evening lecture: Ancient Troy.
Walking tour of Troy (city of Priam) followed by optional tour of Gallipoli peninsula (including Anzac Cove, site of 1915 Allied landings).
Edirne (second Ottoman capital): 15th century Beyezid II complex, Uc Serefeli Camii (minaret with three balconies), Selimiye (Sinan’s crowning achievement). Overnight at Edirne.
Depart Istanbul Atatürk 1355, arriving Gatwick 1600.
2 Jun — 12 Jun 2019
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Cost includes: return airfare, accommodation based on sharing a twin or double bedded room, breakfast, one lunch, nine dinners with water & coffee, excursions & admissions, gratuities.
Not included: visa, travel insurance, single room supplement £355.