Turkey - Tour Operator: Pacha, OAT or ??

Old Jan 9th, 2010, 03:17 PM
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Turkey - Tour Operator: Pacha, OAT or ??

My partner and I are considering a trip to Turkey after having to cancel plans elsewhere. We decided that we do not want to travel independently, though we have always done so before and never traveled with a tour group or by bus. I was looking at Pacha Tours and Overseas Adventure Travel. Have any fodorites had experience with these groups in Turkey? Or with any other tour operators? Any information would be much appreciated.
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Old Jan 9th, 2010, 04:28 PM
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We have been to Turkey twice. The first time was to western Turkey with Globus. The second trip was to eastern Turkey with OAT (this trip was discontinued a few years ago). Both were excellent -- supremely interesting, topnotch guide/leaders, good hotels, fine food. The Cappadocia area was covered by both tours -- and we were so happy to see that region again. I would recommend either company. On our second trip, we took a four-day extension in order to stay in Istanbul longer -- it's a wonderful city with so very, very much to see and do. Our Globus trip was led by an professional archeologist. Our OAT trip was led by the gentleman who later was promoted to head their operations in that area. Both were splendid and expert in all respects.
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Old Jan 9th, 2010, 04:51 PM
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We went to Turkey with Odysseys, Unlimited. It was an outstanding trip with 11 other travelers. The pace was just right, the hotels were well located so we could do independent exploring, and the food was great. I can't say enough good things about our tour director. Take a look at their website.
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Old Jan 9th, 2010, 05:36 PM
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I have twice traveled with Pacha Tours in the past (1996 & 2007). The guides are both trips were outstanding. I chose to travel again with Pacha because my first trip was excellent.

I would be happy to elaborate on my trips if you care to e-mail me at [email protected].
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Old Jan 11th, 2010, 10:05 AM
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You might try Credo Travel. It is a local travel agency with a fine reputation. We have been to Turkey many times and have used them twice.We used Pacha a long time ago.Although the guiding was excellent, the hotels ,for the most part, were sub standard as was the food.I hope this helps.
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Old Jan 11th, 2010, 10:09 AM
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I did a great trip in 2006 with Guerba who have now been bought by Intrepid. Excellent Turkish guide and a group of about 16, age range 25-75, about 5 or 6 nationalities, couples and singles.
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Old Jan 11th, 2010, 10:37 AM
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Another supporter of Pacha Tours, here. We did their western Turkey tour in 2007 and thought it was great. It was the first organized tour that we had ever taken.
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Old Jan 12th, 2010, 03:04 PM
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Pacha is probably the lowest cost tour company for Turkey and their hotels are generally two or three star and the food is very plain and in my opinion did not represent Turkish cuisine very well. Also, the groups tend to be very small and you will spend endless hours in a small van.That being said if food and hotels don't matter to you you would be ok with them as they do cover all of the same sites as the other companies.I have travelled to numerous countries with several tour companies and in my opinion Pacha was the lesser of all of them.One other point is that if you are used to traveling independently you can do so in Turkey rather easily.
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Old Jan 12th, 2010, 03:10 PM
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We did Turkey independently and had no problems. Flew from Istanbul to Antalya, picked up a car and drove up the coast to Bursa. Hydrofoil back to Istanbul. We didn't even have hotel reservations except in the major cities.
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Old Jan 13th, 2010, 08:30 AM
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Hi me again,

You list only OAT and Pacha as the two companies you are looking at which is confusing as OAT is one of the best companies and Pacha is well down from there. There are many companies in between the two.The main problem with Pacha aside from the food and hotels is that they drive the entire two thousand mile route rather than flying to many points and you will spend around six hours per day in a cramped van.

As per Gwendolynn's posting many people on this forum have gone independently with no problems. You may want to research the archives for Turkey and read some of these.
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Old Jan 14th, 2010, 05:11 AM
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Where are you planning to see during your trip?
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Old Feb 1st, 2010, 11:01 PM
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I also looked at Pacha and OAT for Turkey, along with several other companies. The hotels used by Pacha Tours did not seem to be as good as the hotels used by OAT. We have traveled extensively with OAT and their sister company GCT, and can highly recommend the company. Their tour guides are always fantastic, and they both offer great value for the money. We ended up booking our Turkey tour for May with GCT (Grand Circle Travel) since we didn't like the one night at a homestay that was included in the OAT tour. I did an Excel spreadsheet comparing several companies, that I would be happy to send to you if you send me your email address.

My email is [email protected].
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