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Explore Turkey in the footsteps of Alexander the Great

Ephesus is a must-see archaeological site on tours of Turkey. Photo by Bob Schulman.

It's 334 B.C., and you've left your home in Macedonia at the head of an army of 35,000 soldiers armed to the teeth. Your name is Alexander the Great, and before your 22,000-mile trek ends with your death 10 years later, you'll have built one of the greatest empires of the ancient world.

Modern-day adventurers are invited to put themselves in the sandals of Alexander as he crosses Turkey on the first leg of his long journey. Along the way you'll explore the country's archaeological treasures at places like Troy (where Alexander ran naked around Achilles' tomb) and Rome's super-city at Ephesus (home of one of the Seven Wonders of the World and a still-standing amphitheater where the apostle Paul was booed by the Ephesians).

You'll go on to visit the ancient Greek sanctuary of Apollo at Didyma (where you'll pass by fabulous ruins dotting the city's 12-mile-long Sacred Way) and Herodotus' birthplace at Bodrum (home of St. Peter's Fortress and the Mausoleum of Mausolus, another of the Seven Wonders of the World) and many more spots like these.

Put together by Peter Sommer Travels, the trip is aptly titled "In the footsteps of Alexander the Great, Part 1." Sommer, who in 1994 walked 2,000 miles across Asia Minor, retracing Alexander's march from Troy to the battlefield of Issus, will personally escort the 11-day adventure. It's set to begin April 28.

A spokeswoman for Peter Sommer Travels notes: “Traveling back through time, the tour will delve into Alexander’s personality and the lives of the people that inhabited his tumultuous world...while telling a tale of romance, war and power.”

Cost of the trip is around US$5,399 per person, including lodging, meals, ground transport and other itinerary items. (Note: You'll have to get from home to the start of the tour at Istanbul on your own. Ditto for flying back home from the tour's final day at Bodrum.)

Alexander the Great fans may be up for a related Peter Sommer Travels tour (new for 2014) called “Exploring Macedonia: The Homelands of Alexander the Great ." This one stretches out for 14 days, and besides Macedonia you'll visit archaeological sites linked to Alexander's early life as well as mighty castles, Byzantine monasteries and 7,500-year-old prehistoric sites. Departing June 14, the trip costs around US$5,399 per person.

Other new Peter Sommer Travels tours will take visitors to Sicily (April 6-18), the Dodecanese Islands (Sept. 20-Oct. 4), Athens (June 1-8) and Cappodicia and the Land of the Hittites (Oct. 5-14).

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