We visited biblical ruins, Roman ruins, Greek ruins, Hittite ruins, Lycian ruins, Byzantine, and Ottman buildings, bascillicas, and mosques. We viewed a sunken city on the Mediterranean through the glass bottom of a boat. We saw whirling dervishes. I had a Turkish bath. I’ve always wanted to take a hot air balloon ride – Ertunga arranged one for me in Cappadocia over volcanic “fairy chimneys”. Istanbul lives up to it’s fabulous reputation. We traveled 2,500 miles together, which allowed me to ask all kinds of questions about his amazing country — about it’s history, culture, and people. Turkish guides are extremely well qualified, and Ertunga was able to answer everything. It was the trip of a lifetime, and I am so grateful that I found him and his travel company.
Both myself and 4 friends travelled to Turkey for the first time. We were not sure of many things eg culture, cost, itinerary, food to name a few. All of those concerns melted away when we met Erti. From the very first meet he assured us that he got things covered. He is very genuine, honest, engaging and above all knowledgeable in what he does.
We engaged him as tour guide but got a friend instead that was how comfortable we were with him even though it’s our first time. We enjoyed our Ephesus, Sirince and Pamukkale trip. We experienced Turkey through his life experience more in a very unique way. He painstakingly explained the history, culture and its significance in simple English. The whole experience was very enriching and made us appreciate Turkey’s rich history and culture.
He speaks good and concise English (he is a English teacher mind u ). We enjoyed the roast lamb in Obam restaurant. If u want a relaxing yet enriching tour u must engage Erti.He is the best tour guide we had Turkey. We highly recommend him. We are still talking about him even though we are back to Malaysia.
We will definitely engage him again in a heart beat the next time we visit Turkey. Thank u Erti for being who you are and all that you have done for us. Our trip is more meaningful because of you. God willing we will meet again
Albeit we bid adieu to Erty personally at Pamukkale, he had made arrangements in other areas too with his team which were all professional and commendable thus leaving us to enjoy a comfortable and relaxed trip throughout. Big thanks from us to Erty for making this trip a worthwhile experience which will be in our minds forever.
We went on this culinary tour during an 8 hour layover in Istanbul. We spent around 5 hours on the tour including transport time which had us back at the airport at just the right time before our flight. We were also able to keep our carryon baggage in the tour car so we didn’t have to carry it around all day.Our guide Osman Özmen brought us to a bunch of delicious local places in the Taksim area, and we got to sample what he promised was local food. It was all excellent! At our request, he even arranged for a Turkish ice cream vendor to play the classic turkish ice cream trick on me (look for videos online).
Osman catered the tour to our request: we’d been to Istanbul before and had seen the major sites, so he still showed us some cool stuff (like the spice market) but kept our short trip focused on new sights and food. He took us to a few local grocery stores and specialty shops to see fresh honey and local cheese, and he took us to a great Turkish Delight shop that also had a beautiful selection of teas and spices. This didn’t feel like a high pressure sales pitch, it was just another selection of foodstuffs to experience on our tour.
Overall it was a great way to spend our layover which we otherwise would’ve spent trying to figure out transportation or cooped up in the airport. We’d highly recommend it, just don’t eat beforehand!
Other than transportation between the airport and the city we spent the whole time walking (or sitting and eating). One of our party had a recent leg injury so our guide catered the walking pace to our needs, which was perfect.
On our tour, we ate:
Adana Kebab (common turkish meat wrap)
Ayran (salty yogurt drink)
Kokoreç (lamb intestines, kind of like a bruschetta)
Midye Dolma (stuffed mussel)
icli köfte (breaded meatball)
Kestane (roasted chestnuts)
Turkish ice cream
Dolma (stuffed vine leaves)
Patlican ezmesi (eggplant dip)
Deniz Börûlcesi (glasswort seaweed salad)
Zeytinyagli kuru domates (sundried tomatoes)
Kadinbudu köfte (meatballs)
Greek salad (spread made of cheese and some sort of green, like spinach)
Fistikli Baklava (typical sweet turkish desert)
Künefe (sweet grilled cheese with honey)
Tūrk kahvesi (coffee)
Ertunga is a fabulous guide and we thoroughly enjoyed our time with him. Not only did he organize a 10-day tour that met our specific interests, but his flexibility was appreciated when a late itinerary change was necessary. Ertunga is enthusiastic, knowledgeable, passionate about his country and its history, and his English is excellent – we would not hesitate to recommend him. We were also impressed wth the driver and the vehicle provided. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience and we had a lot of fun too!
After visiting numerous sites in Istanbul for two days with a colleague of Ertunga we flew to Cappadoccia, where Ertunga met us with a driver. During the next nine days we drove about 3000 miles visiting ancient ruins of Greco Roman cities and archeological sites. Ertunga was the perfect guide. His vast knowledge about history made all the difference. He really took time with all of the history of each place we visited. We learned a great deal from him and will tell others about our trip there. I simply cannot say enough nice things about him.
The pacing and variety of activities and meals and hotels particularly “Tashkonalari” in Cappadoccia were perfect. There was the right amount of scheduling and down time. The driver was outstanding apart from being a great driver, he was extremely polite and attentive for our comfort..
We had an unbelievably amazing trip and we really are thankful for all of the hard work Ertunga and his spouse Maria put in carefully planning our trip especially for us. The trip included everything we had imagined and the places we visited were amazing.
The personalized service is the finest you could ask from any professional private tour organizer.
The professionalism and demeanor put by Ertunga and Maria are above and beyond expectations from a private tour organizer. We strongly recommend them to anyone who plans to take a private tour in Turkey. A great trip thanks to Ertunga, Maria and their local partners.
Kirk & Nora Sinanian