Trail Running, Hiking, Yoga, and Cultural Adventure in Turkey - October 2015


Destination - Cappadocia

Cappadocia is a UNESCO world heritage site with exceptional natural wonders and a peerless historical heritage. 

This trip features cultural adventures in Turkey's capital, Istanbul, and the Cappadocia countryside, as well as the North Face Ultra Trail races. 

Highlights

  • Istanbul Cultural Tour with experienced local guides to visit historic squares, mosques, spice markets and bazaars
  • Cruise in Bosphorus Bay
  • Yoga - daily! 
  • North Face Ultra Races - Participate in 30k (18.6 miles); 60k, or 110k races, or be a supporter, mingle and cheer, and enjoy the healthy camaraderie among international runners
  • Healthy local cuisine
  • Visit ancient villages of Cappadocia with experienced local guides
  • "Table-top" mountains and "Fairy Chimneys" rocks 

How to Get There

Fly directly into Istanbul.

Several major US and Canadian airports have a direct non-stop flight.

Alternately, you may choose to fly via a European city (Amsterdam, Zurich, Munich, Frankfurt, etc.). 

Registration

Step 1. Fill out Registration Form.

Step 2. Submit your Deposit of $500. Full Payment is due 30 days before the start of the retreat, by September 20, 2015.

Step 3: Get our Confirmation Email before you make any Air Flight reservations.

We need a minimum of 6 Registered Participants to run this retreat. In the unlikely event of retreat cancellation, your payment or deposit will be refunded.

Payment 

Option 1: Call: 781-296-6249 if paying by any major credit card

Option 2: Mail a Check: Running Treks, 12 Hazel Street, Waltham, MA 02451

Option 3: Safe payment through Paypal (please note that Paypal payment is subject to an additional 4% Paypal fee)

Payment Options

Daily Itinerary

Day 1 - Arrival - Oct 21 - Wednesday

Welcome you at Istanbul Ataturk or Sabiha Gokcen Airport and transfer you to your hotel in old town “Sultanahmet” or Sirkeci.

Overnight in Istanbul.

Day 2 - Istanbul - Oct 22 - Thursday

7am - optional Run (45 minutes)

8am - optional Yoga class at your hotel (1 hour) 

9:30am - Meet our guide at breakfast at your hotel. We start our day by strolling to the great square which was once the Byzanne Hippodrome. Now it is a great park-like area surrounded by the Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia, and the Underground Cistern, commonly called the Basilica Cistern. After lunch at a local restaurant, we retrace our steps and visit Istanbul Archaeological Museum. We end our day with a visit to Grand Bazaar.

5:30pm - optional Yoga class (1 hour)

Overnight in Istanbul.

Day 3 - Istanbul Day 2 - Oct 23 - Friday 

7am - optional easy Run (45 min)

8am - optional Yoga class (1 hour)

9:30am - Breakfast

10:30am - Walk to the Rustem Pasha Mosque, then visit Spice Market, where the Genoese and Venean goods used to be sold before Suez Canal, and all spices from the East were also brought here after being loaded on vessels in Egypt. After Spice Market, we get on board and take a leisurely Bosphorus Cruise from Eminonu. After having lunch, we visit Topkapi Palace. More than a palace, it is an assemblage of museums containing the collections amassed by the Sultans over almost five centuries.

4pm - Transfer to Ataturk Airport and fly to Cappadocia

6:30pm - Pasta Party Dinner near Race Village

Overnight in Cappadocia.

Day 4 - Race Day 1 - Oct 24 - Saturday

7am - Hotel pickup and transfer to start point in Race Village. After you finish the race, massage and open buffet at Race HQ.

5pm - optional Yoga class

Overnight in Cappadocia.

Day 5 - Race day 2 - Oct 25 - Sunday

Mingle and meet the race participants.

Enjoy the natural beauty of the surrounding area.

Finish and prize ceremony.

Optional Yoga Class.

Overnight in Cappadocia.

Day 6 - Cappadocia Tour Day 1 - Oct 26 - Monday

After breakfast at hotel, the tour begins with a descent towards the centre of the earth, with a trip to the underground city of Kaymakli, one of the largest and deepest of Cappadocia’s many such settlements. From here we drive to the famous Goreme Open Air Museum to see the best examples of Byzanne art in Cappadocia. These are found in rock-cut churches with frescoes and paintings dating from as early as the 10th century. Here we also stop at Avanos, a centre of terracota art since 2,000 BC, for a demonstraon in a traditional poetry workshop.

After lunch in Avanos, we visit Pasabag’s “fairy chimneys”, where the voice of the wind harmonizes with the songs of the fairies. We end the tour with a visit to Sarihan Caravanserai, a very fine example of the Turkish Seljuk art, built in the early 13th century on the legendary Silk Road, for the accommodaon of the traders and their camels.

Optional Yoga Class at your hotel before dinner. Overnight in Cappadocia.

Day 7 - Cappadocia Tour Day 2 - Oct 27 - Tuesday

Our first stop on second day is the Soganli valley, which is one of the earliest selements in Cappadocia. After this, we drive back to Urgup through the unspoiled villages, surrounded by the “table-top” mountains. On the way we visit the Medrese in Taskinpasa, a Theological School of the Seljuk Turks. After lunch in Mustafapasa at an old Greek house hosted by a local family, we visit Uchisar Castle. Overnight in Cappadocia.


Optional Air Balloon Flight

At five in the morning, smoke is beginning to rise from the village chimneys below you. The barking of dogs startled by the balloon, atracts sleepy villagers outside to wave enthusiascally. The weird twisted landscape of corroded rock to which you have partially become accustomed from the ground level, becomes even more unearthly when viewed from several hundred feet above. A 90-minute hot air balloon flight culminang in a champagne breakfast on landing. In two words? Breathtaking and Unforgeable!

Options and Prices:

90 minute deluxe flight (maximum 12 people in the basket): Euro 250 per person, (Euro 230 if paid in cash).

60 minute comfort flight (maximum 16 people in the basket): Euro 180 per person, (Euro 170 if paid in cash).

60 minute standard flight (up to 24 people in the basket): Euro 160 per person, (Euro 150 if paid in cash).


Day 8 - Departure - Oct 28 - Wednesday

Transfer from your hotel to Kayseri or Nevsehir Airport and fly back to Istanbul