Light beaming through the dome of a hamam (Turkish Bath)

The arts and crafts related to Turkish Bath
Massage, Thermal baths, facials, relaxation 
Oct. 15,2008 - Oct 25, 2008


If you are stressed out tired, or want to have fun with your friends at a place where time seems like have stopped, try a Turkish Bath. The Romans had grapes in one hand and wine in the other while they were enjoying their baths 2,000 years ago.When you are in Rome do like the Romans. When you are in Turkey, bath like the Turks have for centuries.

Pause here to read a fascinating History of Turkish Baths.

The process starts in the "Hot" room. The Romans called it the calderium, the Turks call it the SICAKLIK. Just sit on the marble and pour water over yourself. As you relax with the moderate heat (not as hot as sauna) and water, it seems like it is only natural to start singing. They say that any voice will sound good under the dome of the Turkish bath.

The copper bowls with a little dimple in the middle will clack on the marble once in a while. The sound will be like a percussion in a badly conducted orchestra. But soon you will be so relaxed even that sound will not bother you. When the skin is softened enough you will move to your next spot. The big marble set in the middle of the bath is called the Navel Stone. Lay on it and let your body be treated by the expert hands.

You will be scrubbed with a " kese." The dead skin will come out like tootsy rolls. Then you will be soaped and massaged. When the washing part is finished the pleasure of being in the Turkish bath is not finished yet. You will be wrapped in colourful Pestemals (Turkish Towel). While you are sitting in the cold part of the bath, the frigidarium, you will be served tea to complete the most relaxing experience in your life.

Henna in a cup

You will smell the clean smell of the olive oil soap and your skin will fell like a baby when you leave the hundreds of years old Turkish bath. If ladies want to color their hair with henna (pictured in the cup), a Turkish bath is the right place to do it

If this were a text for a riddle the question could have been, "name at least seven things that you would see people making if you were taking a Turkish Bath tour and also try to see related crafts of Turkey."

The answer would have been, "we will see marble workers making basins. We will see weavers making towels and pestemals. We will visit olive orchards and family run soap factories. We will buy henna from the Spice market where henna has been sold for 800 years and more.

Spice Market
Spices displayed in the Istanbul Spice Market

Tour Dates

 Oct. 27, 2007  -  Nov. 6, 2008

Cost of this tour is US $ ..........
See below for details.

Reserve seats on any Melitour  tour without obligation

Arrival Suggestions: 
US citizens need a visa to travel in Turkey. You may obtain this visa upon your arrival at the Istanbul airport. The fee is $100 in US currency. The visa is valid for three months.

We will arrange individual transfers from the airport to the hotel. Please let us know your arrival information. Look for a MELITOUR sign at the departure from the customs area at the airport

If you plan to arrive a few days before the tour to get over jet lag we can reserve a room at Hotel Ayasofya (Single US$50, Double US$70) 

In case of unexpected delay or change of flight, should there be a problem in meeting the person who should be waiting for you at the airport please call Hotel Ayasofya at 0212-51694-46 or take a taxi to Hotel Ayasofya. Your taxi fare will be refunded.

Hotel Ayasofya 
Kucuk Ayasofya Mahallesi 
Demirci Resit Sokak 
Sultan Ahmet Meydani Alti

We can suggest itineraries for those who want to explore on their own or with a guide before or after the tour. Simply send us an e-mailwith your request.


Day 1 - Oct 27
The tour starts with a group meeting in Istanbul in the lobby of Hotel Ayasofya at 5:00 PM. After a short group meeting visit the Blue Mosque 
Dinner at a nearby resturant  Overnight at Hotel Ayasofya

Day 2 - Oct. 28
Istanbul has been a capital for three empires. The visits to The Cistern, The Church of St. Sophia and The Chora Church will reveal this unique city's glorious past. The Spice Market (MISIR CARSISI) was the end of the Silk Road where spices, essential oils and herbs of Asia were distributed to their final destination in Europe. There we will see the best of the henna, the biggest variety of oils and rose water being sold next to natural sponges, hand woven kese (used in Turkish baths for scrubbing) and herbs. 
Dinner at a fish restaurant in the historic district of the old city 
Overnight at Hotel Ayasofya

Day 3 - Oct. 29
Three hour Drive to Bursa. 
Bursa was the capital of the Ottoman Empire before the capital was moved to Istanbul. The imperial nature of the town becomes more exciting with the crowded, lively markets where the famous Turkish Towels, keses, copper bowls and olive oil soap is being sold. 
Our Hotel tonight is built on the spring of the natural hot waters. Enjoy the stupendous pools of the hotel where you will go back to the early Ottoman time while you are enjoying the curative waters of this spa.
Overnight at Gonlu Ferah Hotel which is the oldest, the most popular hotel in Bursa for its excellent Turkish baths.

Day 4 - Oct. 30    Drive to Afyon via Kutahya. 
Kutahya is the tile making center of Turkey since the 16th century. Visit tile makers and hear about traditional designs and techniques. Relax at our Spa hotel enjoying the curative waters of the hot springs. Have your choice of   the treatments.
The herbal wrap make you feel 10 years younger.This establishment have private Turkish baths where you can soak in the warm waters in your own privacy.  Dinner and overnight at Afyon Orucoglu Thermal Spa Hotel.

Day 5 - Oct. 31
The towel that is used in the Turkish bath is called Pestamal. The art of weaving these colorful pestamals is as old as the joy of taking a bath in a Turkish Bath. Every house in Pasalar Village weaves miles and miles of cotton thread in their houses to meet the demand of the Turkish baths not only in Turkey but all around the world. Will the village continue to have this reputation with the next generation is the big question. And the obvious answer is No! Once the old ones in the town pass away, no young ones will sit by the loom to throw the shuttle by hand when they know that the complicated machines can do it faster. This will be an opportunity to see a dying craft. 
Dinner and over night at a Spa Hotel in Pamukkale (UNESCO world heritage site with its unique spa and rock formations) The hotel has the most glorious thermal pool. A perfect way to relax. Professional massage is also available. If you want to have your toe massaged for one hour they even can give you a toe massage

Day 6- Nov 01
Drive from Pamukkale to Kusadasi. Visit Nyssa 
Dinner and over night at Meli's house ( only of the group is 2-3 people

Day 7 - Nov 02
Ephesus is the biggest excavation in Turkey. It is the city of St. Paul and St. John. For many people visiting Ephesus becomes a spiritual experience. We will enjoy the site and the museum in a very relaxed manner and appreciate how nice it is to be at this great place without the crowds of the high season. End the day at a 300 year old Turkish bath in Kusadasi 
Dinner and overnight at Selcuk 

Day 8 - Nov 03
Turkey is like an open air museum. When excellent ancient sites are right on your way we will certainly not miss the opportunity and stop at the acropolis of Pergamum and visit the ancient hospital the Ausculapion to learn about how spa theraphy was used thousands of years before our time. Ayvalik is in the midst of an "ocean of olive trees."  
Overnight in a village where the the first beauty contest of the world was held. Paris had picked Aphrodite to be the most beautiful woman right next to thehotel where we will be staying over tonight. 

Day 9 - Nov 04
Visit Troy on our way to Gonen. Standing on the windy hills of Troy, it is not difficult to imagine the hair of the beautiful Hellen blowing as described by Homer. The Trojan horse is not 3,000 years old but it certainly sits at the right place to welcome the visitors to this city of all ages. (The ancient city of Troy was built on 9 main levels over more than 4,000 years. 
Gonen is a popular spa center.Massage available. Very professional. this spa is used only by the Turkish people. It is an interesting experience to be at a hotel where no other tourists come. 

Day 10 - 
Nov 05
Take a ferry boat to Istanbul 
Free time for shopping. 
Farewell Dinner 
Overnight at Hotel Ayasofya 

Day 11 - Nov 06
End of the tour. Transfer to the air port is included in the price

Tour Price

The tour price of $............... includes the following:

  • 10 nights hotel, double occupancy
  • All Turkish bath charges and tips
  • All meals with water
  • All entrance fees
  • All tips at the hotels and the restaurants
  • All transportation
  • Massages in Bursa and Gonen
  • Guide

Tour Price does not include

  • Flights to and from Turkey
  • Beverages
  •  Facials, herb baths and massage at Orucoglu Spa

Single Room Supplement

The single room supplement is $250.-

The Hotel Chart

All rooms are double occupancy

Day Location Hotel Style of Hotel

Phone / Fax

1 Istanbul Hotel Ayasofya Renovated old
Ottoman house a/c
90 212 516 9446
90 212 518 0700
2 Istanbul Hotel Ayasofya Renovated old
Ottoman house a/c
90 212 516 9446
90 212 518 0700
3 Bursa Gonlu Ferah Spa Hotel Five star hotel 90 224 233 9210
90 224 233 9218
4 Afyon Orucoglu Spa
Thermal Hotel
Five star hotel 90 272 251 5050
90 272 251 5060
5 Pamukkale Richmond Spa Hotel Five star hotel 90 
6 Selcuk Kalehan Otel Special hotel (S) 90 232 892 6154
90 232 892 2169
7 Selcuk Kalehan Otel Special hotel (S) 90 232 892 6154
90 232 892 2169
8 Manici Kasri IDA DAG Boutique Hotel 90 286 7521731
8 Gonen Gonen Spa
Thermal Hotel
Four star hotel 90 432 212 1610
90 432 212 0660
10 Istanbul Hotel Ayasofya Renovated old
Ottoman house a/c
90 212 516 9446
90 212 518 0700