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Aegean Region itinerary - what do you think?

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Hello,

we are 2 families travelling to Turkey and Greece (each one with two kids, girls and boys from 9 to 14 years old), and are wondering if our tentative itinerary makes sense to you.
None of us has been in Turkey before.

I'll begin with the Aegean Region itinerary and ask about the rest of the itinerary in future posts:

May 6th:
- fly to Izmir, arrive in the early morning,
- take the car (either rental car or private tour, we have to check costs and convenience)
- Stay at Izmir for 30 min / 1 hour
- Drive to Cesme (1 hour drive) get to know the town (Cesme Castle + strolling = 2 hours?)
Hotel in Alacati (Cesme) for one night - I was thinking it would be better to sleep in Izmir, it would make more sense to take a city as base. Though, searching hotels in booking.com I found nicer places in Alacati. What do you think?

May 7th
- Leave Alcati or Izmir, depending on where we slept
- drive to Cesme (1 hour or some minutes)
- Take the ferry to Chios for a day excursion Ferry departs at 9:30 am and arrives to Chios at 10:30 am. Leaves Chios at 6 pm and arrives to Cesme at 7 pm.
- Dinner and sleep at selected base town (either Alacati or Izmir … would it make sense to make it Ephesus?)

May 8th
- Alacati: depart at around 8:30 am
- drive 1h30 to Ephesus
- Ephesus: sightseeing (theater and library + square + curetes street) – is that enough 3-4 hours?
- drive to Afrodisias 2h30 and sleep there

May 9th
- Afrodisias: visit museum + ruins (2 hrs?)
- drive 1:30 to Herapolis + Pamukkale
- lunch
- visit Pamukkale + Herapolis (2hrs):
- drive to Denizli Cardan airport to leave the car and fly back to Istanbul (any other airport that is good to drive from Pamukkale? We would love to have an airport that has direct flights to Cappadocia (or do we have to go back to Istanbul).

So, my main questions are:
1) Base town should be Alacati? Ephesus? Selcuk? Izmir?
2) We would like to go to a greek island. would it be better to go to a) Cesme and Chios or b) Kusadasi and Samos
3) the final airport Denizli Cardan doesn't seem to have as many flights as the Izmir airport. Would it be better to do the trip backwards?
4) Are the estimated times per attraction / town reasonable? Or should we take more / less time per place?

Thanks for your help,
Barbara
PS. the rest of the itinerary is:
3/5-5/5: Istanbul
6-9: Aegean Region (flight early morning to Izmir, return by plane too)
10-11: Athens or Cappadocia
11: Madrid flight to Lima

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