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active 4 days ago

Murat Ornek

Thanks to my Turkish and Guatemalan family spread around the world, when I was younger traveling was all about visiting relatives in different countries. Since my early 20s I have been doing trips in search of the good food, history and hiking trails.

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"Specializing in adventure and experience-based travel, we do tours all around Turkey. We are the right address for those who want to pursue the less-taken paths and look for authentic experiences. Be it a lunch with the nomads after hiking, a road trip covering ancient cities as Troy and Pergamon, or simply get lost in Istanbul chasing the best street food."

How did you get involved in travel?

"Previously I had a job related to loyalty programs and direct marketing in travel industry. I used to spend long hours extracting and analyzing traveler data or working on travel promotions. Later realized that I definitely wanted to create travel experiences and spending more time out from the office. By the end of 2011, establishing a travel company specialized in active travel and elaborate cultural tours became my dream. Since 2013, I am lucky enough to have worked with some pioneer tour operators of the industry and designing customized tours for travelers around the world."

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"I still cannot forget the trip that I made to Morocco when I was 21 years old. It was a life changing road-trip with four other friends, where we slept in the desert, trekked and meditated in Dades Valley, discovered the amazing cities and got to know a climate of desert, snow and tropic in a single day."

Murat is part of the following groups: Turkey Travel Agents
Temple of Trajan in Pergamon
Ancient Greek & Christian Sites in Turkey - 5 Days

History buffs can experience well-preserved ancient Greek, Roman, and early Christian sites on this 6-day tour through western Turkey. You'll begin your trip with a dip in the hot springs of in the ancient Roman spa town of Pammukale, see Roman baths and sites of some of the early churches outside of Bergama, and continue on to the site of ancient Pergamon. Wrap it all up with a tour of the extensive and well-preserved ruins of Ephesus and a relaxing night in the village of Şirince.

Hikers on the Lycian Way
Hiking the Lycian Way in Turkey: Kas, Adrasan & Antalya - 9 Days

On this 9-day tour, you'll hike the famous Lycian Way, an ancient trade along Turkey's Mediterranean coast. You will be completing the trail from west to east, beginning in Kas, continuing to through Adrasan, and finally ending in Antalya. On the way, you will pass through ancient Lycian cities like Phellos,  Aperlai, Phaselis, and Cirali. You will also tour remote Mediterranean villages by boat, visit sites featured in Greek mythology, and enjoy some of southern Turkey's most beautiful scenery.

Ruins of the Ancient Greek City of Pergamon, Turkey
Historic Turkey, From Istanbul to Pamukkale - 9 Days

This tour takes you from Turkey's bustling capital city, where you'll visit famous sites like the Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque by foot and by boat, to the incredibly historic inland regions. You'll attend a wine tasting, visit an olive oil museum, discover battle locations from WWI, and explore the famous ancient ruins in Ephesus, Troy, and Assos. Stroll the ancient city of Pergamon before ending your trip in the historical town of Şirince and the baby-blue mineral waters of Pamukkale, where you'll stay at a spa hotel near Hierapolis.

Famous Hot Air Balloons in Cappadocia
Explore Classic Turkey From Istanbul to Pamukkale - 9 Days

This 9-day tour will explore the diverse regions of Turkey, starting with a guided tour and a boat cruise in the vibrant city of Istanbul, discovering the famous Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman sites. Next head to the lunar-like terrain of Cappadocia where you can take a hot air balloon ride over the stunning valleys, visit a historical caravanserai, and explore the underground city of Kaymakli. After discovering Izmir and the ancient city of Ephesus, end your trip at a spa hotel near the famous white travertine terraces of Pamukkale.

Balloon Flight in Cappadocia
Explore Istanbul and Cappadocia - 6 Days

Discover two of Turkey's most popular destinations, the bustling capital of Istanbul and the lunar-like valleys of Cappadocia. Explore the Ottoman and Byzantine sites of Istanbul with guided walking tours, a trip to the grand market, and a boat cruise along the Bosporus Strait. Then fly to Cappadocia to admire its stunning valleys with a hot air balloon ride over the famous fairy chimneys, plus a visit to the UNESCO Göreme Open Air Museum and the caves of Kaymakli Underground City.

Adorned Fishing Boats in Istanbul
Explore the Sites of Istanbul - 5 Days

Channeling the words of Napoleon, "If the Earth were a single state, Istanbul would be its capital", this tour explores the Ottoman and Byzantine sites of the city, including the Hagia Sophia, the Grand Bazaar, the Blue Mosque, and Basilica Cistern. View these grandiose structures by boat by cruising along the Bosphorus Strait and the Sea of Marmara, stopping on the island of Buyukada for a peek into the posh life of the 19th century. Peruse the Spice Market, explore the hip neighborhood of Beyoğlu, and climb the Galata Tower for amazing views of the city.