<HTML> <HEAD> <TITLE>Cultural and Nature Tours eastern Turkey</TITLE> <meta name="Description" content="Mount Ararat trekking, Mount Ararat, Mount Demavend, Mount Demavand, Iran trekking, Eciyes Mountain, Kackar Mountain,river rafting,mountain climbing, eastern Turkey, Agri, Dogubayezit, Dogubayazit, Noah's Ark, mountain expedition, search for Noah's Ark, mountain photo gallery,Ishak Pa_a Palace,Ishak Pasha Palace,Istanbul Grand Bazaar"> <meta name="Keywords" content="mountain photo gallery,Mount Ararat photo,mountain adventure adventure mountain Turkey Ararat damavand aladaglar turkije trekking erciyes mountains travel climbing trek nomad holiday,Ishak Pasa Palace,Istanbul Grand Bazaar"> <meta name="Revisit-After" content="1 days"> <meta name="Language" content="en"> <meta http-equiv="Content-Language" content="en"> <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1"> <script type="text/javascript" src="jwplayer/swfobject.js"></script> <script type="text/javascript" src="jwplayer/jwplayer.js"></script> </HEAD> <BODY bgcolor="#FCFAD5" link=darkgreen vlink=darkgreen alink=darkgreen align=center> <font face=arial size=1> <center> <table bgcolor="green" border=0 cellpadding=0 cellspacing=1 width=740> <tr> <td colspan=8> <img src="images/kilim_kurdi_horiz.jpg" width=100% height=50 alt="Mount Ararat Trek Summit climbing tours"> </td> </tr> <tr> <td rowspan=2><img src="images/amybeam_mtararat20110804.jpg" align=left WIDTH=192 alt="Amy Beam, Mount Ararat tour operator and reservations"> </td> <td colspan=7 align=right><font color=white><B> <font face="monotype corsiva"size=+4>Mount Ararat Trek</font>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<br> <font size=3 face=arial>Dogubayazit, Agri, eastern Turkey</font>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<br> <font size=2 face="arial">Mountain Climbing ~ Film Expeditions ~ Cultural Tours ~ Searching for Noah's Ark</font></b></font>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<br> </td> </tr> <tr> <td align=center bgcolor=white><font face="arial" color="white" size=3> <A style="text-decoration: none" HRef="home.htm"><b>Home</b></A></font> </td> <td nowrap align=center bgcolor="white"><font face="arial" color="white" size=3> <A style="text-decoration: none" HRef="mountaintours.htm"><b>Mountain Treks</b></A></font> </td> <td align=center bgcolor=white nowrap><font face="arial" color="white" size=3> <A style="text-decoration: none" HRef="turkeytours.htm"><b>Cultural Tours</b></A></font> </td> <td align=center bgcolor=white><font face="arial" color="white" size=3> <A style="text-decoration: none" HRef="turkeymap.htm"><b>Map</b></A></font> </td> <td align=center bgcolor=white><font face="arial" color="white" size=3> <A style="text-decoration: none" HRef="contactmountararat.htm"><b>Contact</b></A></font> </td> <td align=center bgcolor=white><font face="arial" color="white" size=3> <A style="text-decoration: none" HRef="mountararatwarning.htm"><b>Warnings!</b></A></font> </td> <td align=center bgcolor=white><font face="arial" color="white" size=3> <A style="text-decoration: none" HRef="mountaintreklinks.htm"><b>Stories</b></A></font> </td> </tr> </table> <table cellspacing=0 bgcolor="white" width=740 align=center> <tr> <td colspan=8 bgcolor=red height=3> </td> </tr> <tr> <td width=1 bgcolor=red> </td> <td width=2 bgcolor=white> </td> <td width=200 valign=top><font face="arial" size=2><br> <font color=darkgreen size=+1><b>Cultural Day Tours</b></font> <br><img src="images/greenbullet2.gif"> Dogubayazit Tour <br><img src="images/greenbullet2.gif"> Lake Van Tour <br><img src="images/greenbullet2.gif"> Van Castle Tour <br><img src="images/greenbullet2.gif"> Ani Tour <br><img src="images/greenbullet2.gif"> Fish Lake Tour <br><img src="images/greenbullet2.gif"> Erzurum Tour <br><img src="images/greenbullet2.gif"> Istanbul Tour <hr> <img src="images/palace.jpg" width=200 alt="Mount Ararat Ishak Pa_a Palace, Turkey photo"><br> <font color=darkgreen><b>Ishak Pa_a Palace</b></font>, often referred to as the <i>Taj Mahal of Turkey</i>, is one of the most beautiful places in the whole of Turkey. This palace was the first centrally-heated building of its kind in the world. It covers 7600 square meters and overlooks Murat Camping, 5 km above Dogubayazit, on the famous Silk Route near the Iranian border. Russians removed the gold-plated doors (now in a Russian museum), but they couldn't carry off the beautiful tree-of-life motifs on the fountain in the inner courtyard. Construction started in 1685 and was completed in 1784. It served as the administrative center of old Bayazit city. <hr> <img src="images/ahmedixani.jpg" width=200 alt="poet philosopher Ahmedi Xani Tomb photo"><br> <font color=darkgreen><b>Tomb of Ahmedi Khani</b></font> - (Ehmed Xan, 1651-1707) a Kurdish writer, poet and philosopher, fluent in Kurdish, Arabic, and Persian. He was born amongst the Khani's tribe in Hakkari province in present-day Turkey. He moved to Dogubayezit where he taught Kurdish and wrote his Arabic-Kurdish vocabulary "N-Buhar" in 1663. His most important work is the Kurdish classic love story <i>Mem Zn</i> written in poem form in 1692. His literary works portray 17th century Kurdish life. Today, he is still revered by the Kurdish people who picnic near his tomb on weekends. <p> Until recently, it was illegal to speak or sing in the Kurdish language. In 1991 the Turkish government legalized the speaking of the Kurdish language. <a href="http://216.239.59.104/search?q=cache:H4_vqQQhRi0J:www.cogsci.ed.ac.uk/~siamakr/Kurdish/KURDICA/2001/2/Hassanpour.html+illegal+to+speak+kurdish+language&hl=tr&ct=clnk&cd=2&gl=tr" target=top> Read more.</a> <hr> <a href="images/girl in village_t.jpg" target=_overlay> <img src="images/girl in village_t.jpg" width=200 alt="Kurdish village Turkey photo"></a><br> <font color=darkgreen><b>Kurdish village</b></font> - Your Dogubayazit Tour will include a visit to a traditional Kurdish village with time for you to walk through the village, photograph and talk with local Kurdish people. Your tour guide will translate. Kurdish people love to meet visitors and have their photo taken. <hr> <a href="images/noahs_ark.jpg" target=_overlay> <img src="images/noahs_ark.jpg" width=200 alt="Mount Ararat Noah's Ark National Park photo"><br></a> <font color=darkgreen><b>Noah's Ark National Park</b></font>(Durupinar) is located 10 km. from Mount Ararat. As part of the Dogubayazit Tour, we take a breath-taking drive through the mountains to get there. It is a one-hour hike along an interesting geological rock formation, but please do not expect to see Noah's Ark. We lead legitimate Noah's Ark searches annually on Mount Ararat by geologists, archeologists, and Biblical scholars from around the world. We are not involved with Noah's Ark Ministries International (NAMI) and the Kurdish guide nick-named Parasut, who announced they discovered Noah's Ark in 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010. We hear they are planning to discover it again in 2012. Click on our "Stories" tab, above, to read about the Noah's Ark fraud. <hr> <img src="images/meteorcrater.jpg" width=200 alt="Mount Ararat meteor crator photo, Turkey"><br> <font color=darkgreen><b>Meteor Crater</b></font>, located 18 km from Mount Ararat, is the second largest meteor crater in the world, after the largest one located in Alaska. Meteor Crater is 60 meters deep and 30 meters across, but it is half-filled with dirt now. This is an optional stop on the Dogubayazit Tour. <hr> <img src="images/hot_springs_pool.jpg" width=200 alt="Mount Ararat hot springs photo"><br> <font color=darkgreen><b>Visit the hot springs</b></font> <hr> <a href="images/kilims amy_t.jpg" target=_overlay> <img src="images/kilims amy_t.jpg" width=200 alt="Kurdish kilims Persian carpets for sale"></a><br> <font color=darkgreen><b>View Kurdish kilims and Persian carpets</b> (Don't go home without one!)</font> </td> <td width=1 bgcolor=red> </td> <td width=4 bgcolor=white> </td> <td width=500 valign=top><br><font face = arial size=2> <iframe width="500" height="285" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/W4v2kf4_494?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> <br><A HRef="http://www.youtube.com/user/TravelBeam?feature=mhee#p/u/3/W4v2kf4_494" target=_blank alt=Ishak Pa_a Palace, Dogubayazit, Turkey, part of Dogubayazit cultural tour with Mount Ararat Trek></center> <font color=darkgreen size=3 face=arial><b>Dogubayazit Tour</b></font></A> starts with I_hak Pa_a Palace (closed on Mondays), Tomb of Ahmed-I Hani (famous scholar and poet), Urartian Castle, old Dogubayazit city (archeological stone ruins), mountain drive to Noah s Ark National park (Durupinar), and visit Kurdish village. The Dogubayazit tour finishes with a drive to natural hot springs followed by soaking your aching muscles for one hour in a private room. Water temperatures are 95-120F. Lunch provided and Mount Ararat photo stops included. Celebration and farewell dinner at Murat Camping Restaurant with live Kurdish music. View traditional hand-knotted, locally made kilims and Persian carpets (for sale). <p> <hr> <iframe width="500" height="285" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/WIlP_Hnw8EU?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> <br><a href="http://youtu.be/WIlP_Hnw8EU" alt="Lake Van tour with Mount Ararat Trek amybeam@yahoo.com" target=_blank> <font face=arial color="darkgreen" size=3><b>Lake Van Tour</b></font></A> includes Van airport pickup upon arrival, followed by a boat tour to Akdamar Island to see 10th century church, lunch on shore of Lake Van, stop at Muradiye Waterfalls en route to Dogubayazit. Arrive to Murat Camping for dinner overlooking lights of Dogubayazit, followed by orientation meeting for climbing Mount Ararat. <p> <font face=arial color="darkgreen" size=3><b>Van Castle Tour</b></font> - If you spend a night in Van before departure, you may add a visit to Van Castle in the morning and an independent visit to Van Museum, walking distance from your hotel, or visit Hosap and Cavustepe Castles south of Van. If you include the Van Castle Tour, you must take a late afternoon flight out of Van airport or spend a second night in Van before departure. <p> <hr> <iframe width="500" height="285" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/27rjtDgfZwA?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> <br><A HRef="http://youtu.be/27rjtDgfZwA" target=_blank alt=Ani ruins, Kars, cultural tour with Mount Ararat Trek> <font color=darkgreen size=3 face=arial><b>Ani Tour</b></font></A> Pickup from Kars airport, tour of ancient ruins of Ani, city of 1001 churches on Armenian border, 42 km NE of Kars; stop for ice cream or lunch in Igdir, arrive to Murat Camping for dinner overlooking lights of Dogubayazit, followed by orientation meeting. If arriving from Georgian border, you must get to the border by noon in order to visit Ani and drive to Dogubayazit the same day. Otherwise, add an overnight in Kars and visit to Kars Museum when you arrive. The next morning you will visit Ani ruins, stop for ice cream or soup in Igdir, then drive to Dogubayazit arriving in time to visit Ishak Pa_a Palace before it closes or take a climb above Murat Camping. <p> <hr> <iframe width="500" height="285" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/O31vGrH9fm8?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br> <a href="http://www.youtube.com/embed/http://youtu.be/O31vGrH9fm8" target=_blank><font color=darkgreen size=3><b>Fish Lake Tour</b></font></a> Pick up at Agri airport and 4-hour drive through countryside, mountains and around Fish Lake. Stop to photograph, swim, buy fresh fish from fisherman, visit with families in small Kurdish villages. Arrive to Murat Camping late afternoon, dinner overlooking lights of Dogubayazit followed by orientation meeting for climbing Mount Ararat the next day. <p> <hr> <iframe width="500" height="285" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Myy7UdYMHgo?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> <a href="http://youtu.be/Myy7UdYMHgo" target=_blank><font color=darkgreen size=3><b>Erzurum Tour</b></font></a> - After finishing your Kackar Mountains expedition, drive to Yusufeli then Erzurum and spend the night in a hotel. In the morning visit the museum and take a guided walking and shopping tour of the historic sites and beautiful stone carvings on the facades of buildings. This is your last chance to buy camping equipment, sports clothing, and hiking boots before driving to Dogubayazit (for Mount Ararat, Ar1 Dai) in the afternoon or catching a plane at Erzurum airport. Lunch and dinner in Erzurum are not included in the price of the tour. <p> <hr> <img src="images/istanbul night fountain.jpg" width=500 height=285><br> <font color=darkgreen size=3><b>Istanbul Tour</b></font> - <i>Mount Ararat Trek</i> provides airport transfer, an elegant new hotel with breakfast and spa in the historic section of Istanbul, and itineraries for self-guided walking tours to Topkapi Palace, Blue Mosque, Grand Bazaar, Spice Bazaar, Bosphorus watefront dining, historic section. If your feet get tired, the tram system is easy to use. <p> </td> <td width=1 bgcolor=red> </td> </tr> <tr> <td colspan=8 bgcolor=darkgreen > <img src="images/kilim_kurdi_horiz.jpg" width=100% height=50 alt="Mount Ararat Trek Summit climbing tours"> </td> </tr> </table> </center> </BODY> </HTML>