Lindos, Rhodes
Lindos, Rhodes

Wonders of Turkey and the Greek Isles

Apr 25 - May 12, 2014 (Call to Inquire)
Discover the legendary ancient sites of the Aegean Sea, from Santorini to Rhodes, as well as Pergamum and Troy aboard the Aegean Odyssey
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Special Offers
  • $595 ROUND-TRIP AIRFARE from 60 North American gateways, including all airline and government fees and taxes.
  • Prices include shore excursions, educational program, cruise staff gratuities, most meals, wine or beer with dinners, port fees & service charges, and more!

    Overview
    This fascinating cruise reveals the lasting influence of the Greeks on western civilization. After a two-night stay in Athens, embark Aegean Odyssey for a twelve-night voyage to some of the great cities of antiquity. During a cruise of the Greek Isles, witness the ancient Minoan site of Akrotiri on Santorini, marvel at the 4th-century BC site of Asklepios on the island of Kos, and explore the Citadel of the Knights of St. John on Rhodes. Then visit outstanding archaeological sites in Turkey, including Pergamum and Troy, the immense Roman ruins at Ephesus, the Helenistic city of Perge, the ancient Roman town of Aspendos, and the Mausoleum of Halicarnassos, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Your Mediterranean cruise concludes with two nights in Istanbul, and features a highlights tour of Byzantine and Ottoman sites and time to explore on your own. Lecturers will enhance your on-board experience with depth and insight.

    Check out our slide show for a photo journey of this cruise!
    View photos by clicking "Next Photo" at the top of the page!

    Itinerary
    April 25-26 — U.S., Athens, Greece

    Depart the U.S. on your overnight flight. Upon arrival in Athens, transfer to your hotel for your two-night stay.

    April 27 – 28 — Acropolis, Acropolis Museum; Embark
    Built during the “Golden Age” of Athens between 447 and 438 BC under the orders of the great statesman Pericles, the Acropolis represents the magnificent achievements of the Athenian culture during this remarkable era. Delve deeply into ancient history during your guided tour of this ancient citadel of Athens as well as the remarkable new Acropolis Museum. Enjoy an exclusive visit to the Cycladic Museum and ample free time to explore other remarkable sites, such as the ancient Agora and the National Archaeological Museum.

    In the early afternoon, transfer to the port of Piraeus to board Aegean Odyssey. (2B,D)

    April 29 — Syros
    Discover one of the most charming of Greek Islands, with its neoclassical villas and picturesque villages. Once a hub of trade in the Aegean, today Syros offers a number of memorable sites including the impressive Cathedral of St Nicholas and the Church of the Assumption containing an icon painted by El Greco. (B,L,D)

    April 30 — Santorini
    You are greeted this morning by one of the Aegean’s most spectacular sights—the cliffs of Santorini rising from the enormous half-moon caldera. This was created by one of the largest volcanic eruptions in recorded history, which occurred some 3,600 years ago at the height of the Minoan civilization. Discover the Minoan settlement of Akrotiri, abandoned after several earthquakes, then covered in pumice by a volcanic eruption but wonderfully preserved under the volcanic ash. Visit exquisite Oia, a village of whitewashed houses, blue-domed churches, and tavernas carved into the hills and enjoy breathtaking views in all directions. Conclude your adventure in the cliff top town of Fira where you will have the option to return to the ship by cable car. (B, L, D)

    May 1 — Kos
    Witness the remarkably well-preserved ruins at the ancient site of Asklepeion, built in the 4th century B.C., and serving as a temple to Asklepios, the god of health. The island of Kos is situated just off the Turkish coast and is best known as the birthplace of Hippocrates, father of Western medicine. (B,L,D)

    May 2-3 — Rhodes
    Discover a stunning ensemble of Gothic architecture in the medieval city of Rhodes, dating to the era of the Knights of St John of Jerusalem who lived on the island from 1309 to 1522. These World Heritage monuments testify to the role of Rhodes as a strategic crossroads in ancient times. The first building of the 14th-century Crusaders, the Palace was modeled on the great Papal Palace of Avignon and served as a fortress in times of war and a residence for the Grand Master of the Knights. Enjoy an optional tour of the Acropolis at Lindos and gain inspiration from its exquisite natural setting with sweeping views over St Paul’s Bay. With Aegean Odyssey’s overnight stay in the port of Rhodes there is ample time to enjoy adventures ashore. (2B,2L,2D)

    May 4 — Antalya, Turkey
    Once an important Byzantine city, Antalya boasts a beautiful Old Town and is the gateway to the isolated sites of Aspendos and Perge. Aspendos was a major port city in Roman times. Though Perge was not as large, its theater was spectacular with seating for 14,000 and a stage that still bears traces of the marble reliefs that once covered the entire façade. (B,L,D)

    May 5 — Fethiye
    Modern Fethiye was built upon the site of ancient Telmessos, the great Lycian city built in the Ionic style, and the Hellenistic theater is located by the main quay. Visit the ruins of the ancient cities of Xantos, Letoon and Patara including the impressive agora. The Fethiye Museum displays and testifies to the successive chain of civilizations that existed in the area starting with the ancient Lycians. (B,L,D)

    May 6 – Bodrum
    Today you have the unique opportunity to visit the site of one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World: the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus. Bodrum was called Halicarnassus of Caria in ancient times and the Father of History “Herodotus”, who lived in the 5th century B.C., was born here. Though the mausoleum was destroyed by an earthquake in the 13th century, its ruins were used in the construction of the Castle of St Peter when the Knights Hospitaller founded Bodrum. You will delve deep into history during your visit to this remarkable area. (B,L,D)

    May 7-8 — Izmir
    Arrive in the port of Izmir in the early afternoon for your overnight stay. Marvel at Ephesus, the ancient Roman capital of the province of Asia, one of the greatest sites of the classical world featuring the Library of Celsus, Temple of Hadrian and the Grand Theater where St Paul once preached his sermons. Experience a cable car ride to the spectacular hill-top capital of Pergamum, which once rivaled Athens and Alexandria as a center of culture and learning. See what may be one of the world’s first full-service health clinics: the Asclepion, a site of pilgrimage for centuries, named after a god of health, and entered by a sacred road lined with columns. The Asclepion had latrines, a library, a theater and sacred spring fed pools that were the basis for various water therapies. (2B,2L,2D)

    May 9 — Canakkale
    Discover the storied city of Troy, long believed to be a mythical city until 19th century excavations uncovered the ruins of a fortress and evidence of a great city. This prominent trading port was considered a crossroads between East and West and is best known for being the setting of the Trojan War, described in the Illiad, one of the two epic poems attributed to Homer. Alternatively, you may wish to take a ferry across the Dardanelles to the moving memorials of Gallipoli. (B,L,D)

    May 10-12 — Istanbul, Turkey. Disembark.
    Disembark Aegean Odyssey this morning and explore Istanbul’s highlights during your included tour. Marvel at the 6th-century cathedral of Hagia Sophia, the Topkapi Palace, and the Sultan Ahmet Camii (Blue Mosque) – all World Heritage sites. Check into your hotel and enjoy an afternoon at leisure for independent exploration or relaxation. Known throughout history as Byzantium, Constantinople, and now Istanbul, this city is home to some of the most significant buildings and works of art in the Western world. During your two-night stay, you may choose to visit the Archaeological Museum, the amazing underground cisterns, or sail on the Bosphorus to view the city from different points of view.

    Transfer to Ataturk Airport for your flight home. (3B)



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