At 8:00am, you will meet your professional local guide in the hotel lobby for your trip to Iznik and drive approximately 2 hours.
The development in the art of ceramic tiles in Iznik can be easily understood from tile coverings on historical structures. According to the historical records, the ceramic tiles used in the constructions of Istanbul were produced in İznik. Flower motifs such as tulip, hyacinth, pomegranate and clove are very common on Iznik Tiles as well as animal figures such as birds, rabbits, dogs and sheep. Blue, turquoise, green and red are the most frequently used colors.
You will visit the Church of St. Sophia which is situated almost in the very center of Iznik, where the two main roads meet. It was built in the Byzantine era and repaired after the earthquakes that hit in the 11th century. This church has a sacred significance for Christian pilgrims. Orhan Gazi converted the church into a mosque in 1331. Other churches in Iznik are the Church of the Koimesis, which is only ruins now and the Church of Hagios Tryphonos.
Lunch is recommended at a local restaurant in town.
You will visit the head office of the Iznik Foundation where you will be able to see the showroom with many tiles of different motifs and colors. You will also be able to visit many Iznik art ateliers and shops which you will be able to see the process of the art and artists painting.
Then, you will visit the Sultan Hamami which was built in 15th century by Sultan Murad II. The historical hamam now houses small local tile shops.
At the end of the day, you will drive back to Istanbul and return to your hotel approximately around 5:00pm.