Given Turkey's small size, you can visit at least five regions in 15 days. Foodies will enjoy sampling Istanbul's street food and cooking with a chef in Cappadocia. Those interested in history and heritage will appreciate a whirling dervish performance and guided tours to archaeological sites such as Ephesus. Travelers eager to unwind can indulge in a Turkish spa treatment and relax on Antalya's beaches, while those who prefer an active itinerary can trek the Lycian Way or dive along the Turquoise Coast.

Itinerary #1: Historic Highlights of Turkey: Cappadocia, Antalya, Kas, Pamukkale & Istanbul

Experience a balance of history, culture, adventure, and relaxation on this Turkey highlights itinerary. Perfect for travelers with a range of interests, you'll have the chance to join a cooking class and take a hot-air balloon ride in Cappadocia, visit one of the best preserved Roman theaters in the world at Aspendos, bike around Antalya's historic heart, trek amid the "eternal flames" of Yanartaş, cruise to the sunken city of Dolchiste, and soak in Pamukkale's hot springs. Unwind with a spa treatment at a traditional hammam, shop in İstanbul's Grand Bazaar, and end the trip with an urban hiking tour of Edirnekapi.

Explore the ancient ruins of Termessos on foot and look for Hadrian's Gate
Explore the ancient ruins of Termessos on foot and look for Hadrian's Gate
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Cappadocia, Cooking Class, Visit Avcılar & Paşabağ Valley Uçhisar
Day 2 Visit the Göreme Open Air Museum, Hike in Love Valley Uçhisar
Day 3 Hot-Air Balloon Ride, Kaymaklı Underground City, Dance Performance Uçhisar
Day 4 Transfer to Antalya via Konya & the Aspendos Theater Antalya
Day 5 Antalya E-Bike Tour, Visit Termessos Antalya
Day 6 Guided Road Trip to Kaş via Chimaera & Myra Kaş 
Day 7 Boat Tour to Kaleko & the Sunken City of Dolchiste Kaş 
Day 8 Enjoy a Free Day in the Fishing Village of Kaş  Kaş 
Day 9 Transfer to Pamukkale via the Ancient City of Xanthos Pamukkale
Day 10 Relax in the Travertines of Pamukkale, Explore Hierapolis, Fly to İstanbul İstanbul
Day 11 Explore the Vibrant City of İstanbul by Foot  İstanbul
Day 12 Guided Tour of Sultanahmet & the Grand Bazaar İstanbul
Day 13 Boat Cruise on the Bosphorus Strait, Relax at the Hurrem Sultan Hammam İstanbul
Day 14 Boat Cruise to Büyükada, Tour of the Island İstanbul
Day 15 Urban Hiking Tour of Edirnekapi, Fener & Balat, Depart İstanbul   

Kick off your adventure in Cappadocia with a cooking class followed by a walk amid the "fairy chimney" rock formations in Avcılar Valley. You'll also have a chance to check out the rock-cut churches at the Göreme Open Air Museum and float above Cappadocia's otherworldly landscapes in a hot-air balloon. Next, you'll visit one of the best-preserved Roman theaters in the world at Aspendos en route to Antalya. Cruise Antalya's Old Town by e-bike, then take a day trip to Termessos to see its ancient baths and temples. On your way to Kaş, you'll marvel at the "eternal flames" on a hike up Yanartaş.

Once in Kaş, you'll embark on a boat tour to the sunken city of Dolchiste, and have a free day to relax or hike part of the Lycian Way. After a visit to Pamukkale to bathe in its mineral-rich waters and explore the ruins of Hierapolis, you'll fly to İstanbul. Here, you'll tour the Bosphorus Strait by boat, shop for souvenirs at the Grand Bazaar, and visit Topkapı Palace (the former residence of the Ottoman sultans). You'll also have time for a spa treatment at the historic Hürrem Sultan Hammam and a boat ride to Büyükada island to admire the Victorian-era architecture before departure. Learn more

Itinerary #2: Turkish Food & Culture Tour

This immersive food and culture tour is ideal for foodies and aspiring chefs eager to taste their way around Turkey. You'll nibble on street foods and learn how baklava is made in İstanbul, try your hand at stone oven baking in Cappadocia, sample wine on the Çeşme Peninsula, feast on Aegean cuisine in Şirince, and enjoy a tour and dinner at Selia Artisanal Farm. Culture enthusiasts will appreciate the chance to witness traditional carpet weaving, pottery making, and a whirling dervish performance along the way. 

Try delicious Turkish dishes and traditional Turkish coffee on this 15-day itinerary
Try traditional dishes and Turkish coffee on this culinary tour
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in İstanbul, Dinner at Tuğra Restaurant İstanbul
Day 2 Visit Topkapı Palace, Cruise Down the Bosphorus Strait, Dinner at Mikla İstanbul
Day 3 Guided Tour of Sultanahmet & the Grand Bazaar İstanbul
Day 4 Street Food Tour of Eminönü & Kadıköy İstanbul
Day 5 Fly to Cappadocia, Lunch & Cooking Class, Whirling Dervish Show Cappadocia
Day 6 Hot-Air Balloon Ride, Guided Tour, Dinner at Seki Restaurant Cappadocia
Day 7 Kaymaklı Underground City, Ihlara Valley, Dinner at Lil'a Restaurant Cappadocia
Day 8 Fly to İzmir, Visit Urlice Vineyards, Transfer to Alaçatı Alaçatı
Day 9 Visit Can Carpets, Explore Ephesus, Transfer to Şirince Şirince
Day 10 Visit Pamukkale, Choose Your Dinner at Kuşadası Fish Market Şirince
Day 11 Transfer to Bodrum via Lake Bafa & Kapıkırı Village, Dinner at Orfoz Restaurant Bodrum
Day 12 Explore Bodrum at Your Own Pace Bodrum
Day 13 Bodrum City Tour, Dining Experience at Selia Artisanal Farm Bodrum
Day 14 Fly to İstanbul, Join a Walking Tour, Visit Hürrem Sultan Hammam İstanbul
Day 15 Depart İstanbul  

Get your first taste of Turkey with dinner (and baklava for dessert) at Tuğra Restaurant and Lounge in İstanbul. In the morning, you'll delve into how the desert is made on a visit to Karaköy Güllüoğlu, a baklava shop in business since 1843. Then, you'll board a Bosphorus Strait cruise before heading to Michelin-starred Mikla to savor a meal showcasing the chef's Turkish-Scandinavian heritage. Before leaving İstanbul, admire the blend of Byzantine and Ottoman styles at the iconic Hagia Sophia and sample dürüm (a meat-filled wrap) and other street food on a tour of Eminönü and Kadıköy.

Fly to Cappadocia next, where you'll learn to bake in a stone oven and enjoy a picnic in the Ihlara Valley. In nearby Avanos, you'll get insight into local culture with a pottery demonstration and a meditative dance performance. Then, you'll fly to İzmir and sample wine at Urlice Vineyards before touring the ruins of Ephesus and indulging in ciğ balık (fish carpaccio) and other Aegean dishes at Nisanyan House. Your driver will then take you to Bodrum to enjoy free time at the beach and a seafood dinner at Orfoz Restaurant before you fly to İstanbul for a farewell dinner at Sofyalı 9, a Turkish tavern. Learn more

Plan your trip to Turkey
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Itinerary #3: Ancient History & Heritage in Turkey: From Istanbul to Antalya

History buffs will enjoy the variety of archaeological sites and guided tours on this journey through ancient Turkey. Highlights include a visit to the ruins of Troy, a walk through the ancient underground tunnels of Pergamon, a full day at Ephesus, and guided tours of İstanbul and Antalya's historic districts. This trip also offers the chance to connect with the natural environment with a hike in Mount Güllük National Park, a dip in the thermal waters of Pamukkale, and a beach day in Antalya. 

Explore the Ancient Ruins of Ephesus including the Library of Celsus
Visit the Library of Celsus at the ancient Ruins of Ephesus
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in İstanbul, Explore the Bridge Between Europe & Asia İstanbul
Day 2 Guided Tour of Sultanahmet, the City's Historic District İstanbul
Day 3 Guided Tour of Eminönü, Private Boat Tour on the Bosphorus Strait İstanbul
Day 4 Boat Cruise to Büyükada, Guided Tour of the Island İstanbul
Day 5 Visit the İstanbul Archaeological Museum, Transfer to Çanakkale Çanakkale
Day 6 Discover the Ancient Ruins of Troy & Assos, Transfer to Adatepe Adatepe
Day 7 Transfer to Bergama, Visit the Ancient Ruins of Pergamon Bergama
Day 8 Transfer to Şirince, Wine Tasting at Yedi Bilgeler Vineyard Şirince
Day 9 Explore the Ancient Ruins of Ephesus & the House of the Virgin Mary Şirince
Day 10 Transfer to Pamukkale, Visit the Travertines of Pamukkale & Hierapolis Pamukkale
Day 11 Transfer to Antalya, Guided Tour of Kaleiçi, Visit the Archaeological Museum Antalya
Day 12 Visit the Ancient Ruins of Aspendos & Perge Antalya
Day 13 Visit the Ruins of Termessos, Explore Mount Güllük National Park  Antalya
Day 14 Relax on Antalya's Beaches or Go Paragliding Antalya
Day 15 Fly to İstanbul, Depart  

Get a birdseye view of İstanbul from Galata Tower's observation deck, then experience nightlife and live music along İstiklal Avenue. In the morning, you'll tour the historic Sultanahmet district, with stops that include the Blue Mosque, famous for its blue tiles and domed roof. Sample some "Turkish delight" sweets at the Grand Bazaar before your private boat tour of the Asian and European shores along the Bosphorus Strait. Next, your driver will take you to Çanakkale for a seafood dinner before continuing to the ruins of Troy. You'll also have a chance to wander the underground tunnels in the ancient city of Pergamon.

Enjoy a wine tasting at Yedi Bilgeler Vineyard and a soak in the hot springs of Pamukkale before moving on to Antalya. Here, you'll tour the walled historic district, starting at Hadrian's Gate and ending at the Yivli Minaret Mosque, known for its fluted minaret. Then, you'll take a day trip to the ancient city of Perge, where you can walk the colonnaded streets and visit the grand theater. Another day trip takes you to Mount Güllük National Park for a guided hike through native forests, where you may spot European badgers. Spend your final full day as you wish, perhaps paragliding or relaxing on the beach. Learn more

Itinerary #4: Explore Turkey's Turquoise Coast by Land & Water

Experience coastal landscapes and guided tours on this whirlwind Turquoise Coast trip. Sun seekers who like to pair outdoor adventures with historic sites will appreciate a packed itinerary that includes visits to World War I battlefields, a tour of Ephesus, bird-watching at Lake Bafa Nature Park, and a boat trip to Black Island. Take to the water for a four-day cruise down the coast by private sailboat, stopping along the way for scuba diving in Kaş and beach time in Çıralı, then get your land legs back with a trek up Yanartaş.

End your trip in Antalya, the largest city on the Turquoise Coast
Complete your journey down the Turquoise Coast in Antalya
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in İstanbul, Explore the Bridge Between Asia & Europe İstanbul
Day 2 Transfer to Çanakkale, Stopping at World War I Sites Çanakkale
Day 3 Transfer to Bergama via Troy & Pergamon Bergama
Day 4 Transfer to Alaçati via Urlice Vineyards Alaçatı
Day 5 Transfer to Kusadası via Selçuk & Ephesus  Kuşadası
Day 6 Transfer to Bodrum via Lake Bafa Nature Park Bodrum
Day 7 Boat Tour of Black Island, Dinner at Selia Artisinal Farm Bodrum
Day 8 Transfer to the Port City of Fethiye, Explore at Your Own Pace Fethiye
Day 9 Start Your Four-Day Gulet Cruise, Optional Paragliding Excursion  St. Nicholas Island
Day 10 Cruise to Aquarium Bay & Kaş, Optional Scuba Diving Excursion Kaş
Day 11 Cruise to Kekova, Admire the Sunken Ruins of Dolchiste, Visit Kaleköy Kekova Island
Day 12 Disembark the Gulet, Transfer to the Hidden Paradise of Çıralı Çıralı
Day 13 Free Day in Çıralı, Jeep Safari or Climb Yanartaş Çıralı
Day 14 Transfer to Antalya, Visit Perge & Aspendos, Picnic at Manavgat Falls Antalya
Day 15 Depart Antalya  

Start off in İstanbul with some local street food, such as kebabs or pide (Turkish pizza), and a tour of the city's iconic sites, including the Byzantine-era Blue Mosque. Then, your driver will take you to historic World War I sites on the Gallipoli Peninsula en route to Çanakkale. Explore the archaeological wonders of Troy and Pergamon before a relaxing day of wine tasting in Urla and souvenir shopping in Alaçatı that ends with sunset at Alaçatı Beach. Next, you'll tour the ancient city of Ephesus and snap a photo of the famous Celsus Library facade, before continuing to Kuşadası for a quiet night on the coast.

You'll take a bird-watching walk at Lake Bafa Nature Park, then head to Agora Pension, a restaurant featuring local olive oil dishes and regional herbs. Join a Black Island boat tour for a full day of fun on the water, including a swim at Meteor Hole and sunbathing at Red Bay. Then, you'll board a gulet in Fethiye for a four-day Turquoise Coast cruise, stopping for a hike in Butterfly Valley, a swim in the Ölüdeniz blue lagoon, and a wreck dive in Kaş. Back on dry land, you'll cap off your trip with a Jeep safari to Olympos National Park or a trek up Yanartaş followed by a picnic at Manavgat Falls. Learn more

Itinerary #5: Turkey Active Adventure: Cappadocia, Antalya, Kas & Adrasan

Immerse yourself in Turkey's natural landscapes and rich history on this active outdoor adventure. You'll hike among fairy chimney rock formations in Cappadocia, then head for the coast to join a walking tour in Antalya's historic center and trek through archaeological sites and fishing villages on a portion of the famed Lycian Way. Continue along the Aegean shores for more intrepid excursions, including a hike to Turkey's tallest lighthouse, a boat tour to Kaleköy, a rugged ascent to the fabled ruins of Olympos, and more. 

Hike along the Lycian Way to follow the ancient trade route of the Lycians
Follow an ancient hiking route along the Lycian Way
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Uçhisar, Explore the Highest Town in Cappadocia Uçhisar
Day 2 Visit the Göreme Open Air Museum, Pottery Demonstration, Love Valley Hike Uçhisar
Day 3 Sunrise Hot-Air Balloon Ride, Cooking Class, Visit Scenic Valleys Uçhisar
Day 4 Visit the Kaymaklı Underground City, Ihlara Valley Hike Uçhisar
Day 5 Transfer to Antalya via Konya & Aspendos Theater Antalya
Day 6 Guided Tour of Antalya's Old Town, Boat Cruise in the Mediterranean Sea Antalya
Day 7 Road Trip to Kaş via Yanartaş & Myra Kaş 
Day 8 Hike from the Ancient City of Phellos to Kaş  Kaş 
Day 9 Trek to Üçağız, Stopping at Apollonia & Aperlai Kaş 
Day 10 Boat Tour to Kaleköy & the Sunken City of Dolchiste, Transfer to Adrasan Adrasan
Day 11 Hike to the Tallest Lighthouse in Turkey, Gelidonya Lighthouse Adrasan
Day 12 Trek to the Olympos Ruins via Musa Dağı Adrasan
Day 13 Hike to the Olympos Valley, Transfer to Antalya Antalya
Day 14 Trek to the Summit of Mount Tahtalı & Descend by Cable Car Antalya
Day 15 Depart Antalya  

Your first stop is Uçhisar, the highest town of the Cappadocia region, where you'll visit the rock-carved monasteries of Göreme Open Air Museum and pass the fairy chimney rock formations on a hike through Love Valley. You'll also see Cappadocia from above and below with a hot-air balloon ride and a tour of the Kaymaklı Underground City. Then, your driver will take you to the Mevlana Museum in Konya to peruse the writings of the Sufi mystic, Rumi, en route to Antalya. You'll see hidden coves and ancient ruins on a boat tour in Antalya, then head to Myra to check out the tombs carved into the cliffside. 

Continue to Kaş, where you'll board a bus to Phellos, the starting point of your first hike on the Lycian Way. The next day, you'll trek from the archaeological site of Apollonia to Üçağız, a fishing village where you'll learn about burial rituals. Give your legs a rest and hop on a boat tour to Kaleköy, where you'll visit Kaleköy Castle. Your next hike takes you on a rugged trail from Karaöz to the Gelidonya Lighthouse. Get to bed early; you'll need your energy for a challenging trek up Mount Musa to the Olympos ruins. Wrap up your adventures with one last climb up Yanartaş followed by a fresh trout lunch. Learn more

More Great 15-Day Turkey Itineraries

Looking for more inspiration for your trip to Turkey? Check out these other 15-day Turkey itineraries, with outdoor adventures, cultural trips, and best-of tours to hit the highlights.


A note on diacritical and retroflex markings: In order to support the best technical experience and search functions, diacritical markings have been omitted from this article.


Map of 15 Days in Turkey - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas
Map of 15 Days in Turkey - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas