Turkey and Tehran Trails

This 17 day overland tour journeys from Tehran to Istanbul through Iran, Turkey

  • Duration: 17 Days
  • Guaranteed Departure:
  • Physical rating: Light
  • Supplier Tour ID: ZTI2/250889
  • Your Guide: English speaking
  • Starts: Tehran, Iran
  • Finishes: Istanbul, Turkey
  • Age requirement: 18 +
You will Visit
  • Tehran
  • Zanjan
  • Tabriz
  • Doğubayazıt
  • Göreme
  • Egirdir
  • Olympos
  • Pamukkale
  • Selcuk
  • Gallipoli Peninsula
  • Troy
  • Istanbul



Day 1: Tehran

Border Information: if joining in Tehran, you will most likely enter Iran at Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport (IATA code: IKA).

There will be a pre-departure meeting at 10:00am - please look out for a note from your leader at the reception of the joining hotel upon arrival with more details about this important meeting.

After the meeting we will have an included tour of the stunning Golestan Palace and the fascinating National Museum of Iran.

In Tehran we will stay in a local hotel.

Please note that due to restrictions on citizens of the UK, USA and Canada being permitted to remain unaccompanied in Iran, we would only be able to book one extra night of accommodation in Tehran for these nationalities before the trip starts. You will also be required to book an airport transfer in advance via Dragoman. Please ensure the correct dates for your plans are clearly stated on all your visa applications.


Day 2: Zanjan

Today we will set off from Iran's chaotic capital and head west to the impressive Dome of Soltaniyeh, where we have an included visit. The 14th-century mausoleum is the 3rd largest dome in the world.

After our visit, we will continue our drive to the small town of Zanjan, where we have free time to explore and possibly visit the fascinating historical laundry hall of Rakhatshor-Khaneh.

In Zanjan we will stay in a local hotel.

Estimated Drive Time - 5-6 hours (please note that all drive times given here are the approximate number of hours that the truck will be in motion only, and does not include any time taken for coffee or lunch stops, border crossings, photo stops, activities en route, comfort breaks, shopping stops, toilet stops, etc. The times given are approximate estimates only and whilst given with the best of intentions, the drive times are heavily dependent on traffic, road conditions, weather, police roadblocks, and many other factors - flexibility is essential on any overland trip!).


Day 3: Tabriz

Today we will drive to the western Iranian city of Tabriz, where we will have free time to explore some of the sights of the old town.

In Tabriz we will stay in a local hotel.

Estimated Drive Time - 4-5 hours.


Day 4: Doğubayazıt

Border Information: Exit Iran at Bazargan, enter Turkey at Gurbulak.

Today we will drive across the border to Turkey and the Kurdish town of Do ubayaz t. En route we will have an included visit to the Ishak Pasha Palace and enjoy the spectacular views of the surrounding landscapes and the nearby Mount Ararat.

In Do ubayaz t we will stay in a basic local hotel.

Estimated Drive Time - 5-6 hours.


Day 5-6:

Over the next two days we will travel through the stunning landscapes in eastern Turkey towards the central Cappadocia region.

We will aim to wild camp or stay at a basic local campsite near Lake Numut on the first night, and near Mount Nemrut on the second.

Estimated Drive Time - 5-7 hours each day.


Day 7-8: Göreme

Today we will complete our drive to G reme, a small enchanting town in the heart of the Cappadocia mountains.

In G reme we will stay 2 nights here in a well-equipped hostel - please note that dorm beds are sometimes used here.

Estimated Drive Time - 6-8 hours.

One the second day we will explore Goreme, including a guided tour of the enchanted valley of Cappadocia. There will also be an opportunity for a magical optional balloon ride over the valley during your time here.


Day 9: Egirdir

After breakfast we will continue south towards the town of Egirdir, today will mostly be a travel day.

Estimated Drive Time 7 - 8 hours

Tonight we will wild camp near the small town of Egirdir


Day 10-11: Olympos

This morning we will continue onto the ancient beach town of Olympos on the Southern Turkish coast.

On the way we will make a small detour to visit the ancient city of Termessos in Gulluk Dagi National Park.

Estimated Drive Time - 6 -7 hours

We will have 2 nights in Olympos staying in a local guesthouse.

On the second day there will be plenty of time to explore and participate in optional activities, in the evening we will walk up to the Chimera Fire Mountain and toast some marshmallows.


Day 12: Pamukkale

Today we will head back inland to the small village of Pamukkale. Either this afternoon or tomorrow morning we will have time to visit the thermal hot springs and traverse the travertine pools and terraces.

Estimated Drive Time 5 - 6 hours

Tonight we will either camp near the village or stay in a local hotel.


Day 13-14: Selcuk

We only have a short drive this morning to make it to our next destination Selcuk where we will have two nights. On arrival we will have free time to explore the local area or simply relax in one of the many cafes or tea bars which are great for people watching.

On the second day we will spend the day exploring the Ephesus Ruins and Terraced Houses.

Estimated Drive Time 2 - 3 hours

For the next two nights we will stay in a local hostel.


Day 15: Gallipoli Peninsula

After breakfast we will leave Selcuk and drive to Helsik following the coast. Here we will have an included tour of the Troy Ruins.

In the afternoon we will cross the Dardenelles by ferry to arrive into Ecebat where we will stay the night in a local hostel.

Estimated Drive time 6 -7 hours

Tonight we will stay in a local hostel.


Day 16: Istanbul

Rising early we will have an included tour of Gallipoli with our local guide.

After lunch we will then jump on the truck one last time to make our way to the bustling city of Istanbul.

In Istanbul we will stay in dorm accommodation in a fantastic hostel with good facilities, which is a 5 minute walk from the Blue Mosque.

Estimated Drive Time - 5- 6 hours


Day 17: Istanbul

Border information: if leaving the trip in Istanbul, you will most likely exit Turkey from Istanbul Atat rk International Airport (IATA code: IST).

Today will be free to explore the many sights of the incredible exotic city of Istanbul, including the Grand Bazaar, the Bosphorus River and the phenomenal Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia!

Today is the end day for passengers finishing their trip in Istanbul. Please note there is no accommodation included on the trip tonight - please contact the Dragoman Sales team if you are interested in booking extra nights of accommodation in order to fully explore and take part in some of the optional activities listed below.

    • Explore the former royal complex of Golestan Palace, a huge site built in the 16th century and Tehran's oldest monument
    • Learn all about Iran's rich and fascinating history at Tehran's National Museum of Iran
    • See the spectacular Dome of Soltaniyeh, the huge mausolem of the Ilkhanate (Mongolian) emperor Öljeitü built in the 14th Century and the 3rd largest dome in the world behind the Cathedral of Florence and the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul
    • Explore the Early Christian underground cities of Derinkuyu or Kaymaklı, used as a hiding place from persecutions for centuries
    • Walk through the beautiful ancient valley of Ihlara, containing the beautiful rock-hewn churches built by the Cappadocian Greeks during the Byzantine era
    • Walk the marbled streets of Ephesus, one of the best preserved ancient cities
    • Guided Tour of Ephesus Ruins and the Terraced Houses
    • Pay your respects to the fallen at Gallipoli on a guided tour through the battlefields
    • Guided tour around the ancient ruins of Troy
    • 20% Camping - 80% Hotels
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