Footsteps of St Paul

Day 1: Toronto-Istanbul (on Thursday)

Day 2: Arrive to Istanbul airport, meet & transfer to your hotel, overnight at your hotel.

Day 3: After breakfast, city tour of Istanbul, multicultural city with traditions, its beauty and architectural monuments are a legacy to the city’s rich history and a capital of the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires. Visit Hagia Sophia Museum, once a place of worship for Christians and later on for Muslims, continue to visit the Blue Mosque, the largest structure of its kind in the world, the German fountain of Wilhelm II,Visit Topkapi palace supplement , Shopping ,Carpet and finish at the Grand Covered Bazaar. Overnight at Ramada Old city or similar hotel. (B.L.)

Day 4: After breakfast, start the day tour by driving through the Golden Horn to Spice Bazaar , visit Dolmabahce Palace (harem excluded) across , visiting the Imperial Gardens of the Royal Yildiz Palace, PM 15:30 Transfer to airport. 17:40 fly to Denizli, 18:50 Arrival & transfer to Hotel. Dinner & Overnight at Pam Thermal or similar in Pamukkale. (B.L.D.)

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Day 5: Breakfast, S/S Hierapolis Ruins & Pamukkale, Laodecia, Philadelphia, Sardes, Bergama, Dinner & overnight in Izmir Surmeli Ephesus or similar hotel. (B.L.D)

Day 6: H/D visit Ephesus and Maryamena, Leathershop than transfer to Kusadasi to the cruiser boat, No lunch. Embarkation from Kusadasi to join the 4 nights cruise by Louis cruises / Louis Majesty. In the afternoon reach the island of Patmos

Optional excursion St. John’s Monastery & Grotto of the Apocalypse Half day

Depart from the port of Scala and enjoy a short drive to the village of Chora, where the Monastery of St. John is built within the walls of a strong fortification. As you walk uphill towards the entrance of the monastery marvel at this magnificent structure, which was built 900 years ago. View the courtyard, the monks’ dining room and the old bakery before you visit the main church noted for its outstanding frescoes and interior decoration. Next, visit the small museum where priceless ecclesiastical treasures, books, manuscripts, mosaics, icons, splendid medieval textiles, vestments and jewellery are housed. Return to your motor coach and continue to the nearby Grotto of the Apocalypse and the Monastery of the Apocalypse above it. Walk down the steps to the Grotto of the Apocalypse. Here you will see the niches in the wall that mark the pillow and ledge used as a desk by the author of the Book of the Revelation in the rock made by the voice of God honouring the Holy Trinity. Drive back to the port of Scala an
d enjoy free time in this picturesque town.

REMARKS: Tour not suitable for passengers with walking difficulties. Includes visit to religious sites, knees and shoulders must be covered.

Day 7: Arrival to the island of Rhodes: Optional excursion Old City & Philerimos (RHO – 02) Half day Drive along the medieval walls to the summit of Mount Smith, the Acropolis of ancient Rhodes. From the tumbled massive pillars of the Temple of Athena, the view encompasses the nearby Temple of Apollo, the stadium of Diagoras and the port, once protected by the Colossus of Rhodes, one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world. The drive continues across the island to Philerimos. The summit of Philerimos was the site of Ialysos, one of the three ancient cities of Rhodes. Later sites include the restored Byzantine Church of Our Lady of Philerimos, a chapel with 15th century frescoes, and the ruined Castle of the Knights. After the visit and some free time, return to Rhodes and begin a guided walk of the old walled city to the Porte d’Amboise. It is a pleasure to stroll the street of the Knights with its medieval buildings, winding alleys, towers, turrets and emblazoned façades. You will then visit the impressive Grand Master’s Palace and have the chance to see the superb mosaics. The pleasant walk passes through the Marine Gate before you return to the ship.

Day 8: Arrival to the island of Crete Optional Knossos Palace in Crete. The largest and the most rugged of the Greek islands. Home of the great Minoan Civilization and the mythological home of Zeus. Short drive through the town of Heraklion will arrive at the Knossos excavations. Here, Sir Arthur Evan’s archaeological discoveries revealed a civilization dating back to 4000 B.C., when a great empire flourished on the island, this was the site of the ancient Minoan Kingdom. Your guide will lead you on a journey of discovery to learn of the sophisticated culture flourished thousands of years ago on this island. The Palace, the Hall of the Royal Guard, the Hall of the Double Axes, the King’s Chamber with the alabaster throne, the Queen’s Apartment, beautiful courtyards and shrines. Having visited this remarkable site will drive back to Heraklion port.

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REMARKS: Walking in the archaeological site of Knossos will be on uneven gravel surfaces. Passengers may not be allowed to enter the site with big bags/rucksacks.

In the afternoon reach the island of Santorini Excursion to Oia Village Half day. Driving along the road you will have the unique opportunity to admire the panoramic view of the Aegean Sea and the neighbouring islands. A unique sight is the various layers of lava that can be seen on the face of the rock, each layer being another phase of the activity of the volcano. Built on the Caldera rim, Oia Village is an excellent example of Cycladic architecture. Explore the village walking along the cobble-stone streets and the white washed houses with blue shutters where one gets the impression that they are a beautiful travel poster. After Oia the bus will drive you up to Fira, where you will make your own way back to the ship.

Day 9: Arrival to Athens at 07:00 and Disembark Meet our professional guide and proceed for City tour of Athens incl Acropolis and Museum Our expert guides will take you to see the Panathenaic Stadium where the first Olympic Games of modern times were held in 1896 (short stop). Continue and pass by the Prime Minister’s residence (ex Royal Palace) guarded by the Euzones in their colorful uniform, the Temple of Olympian Zeus, the Hadrian’s Arch, the Parliament and the memorial to the Unknown Soldier, the Academy, the University, the National Library, the Constitution Square,(Syntagma) On the Acropolis visit the Architectural Masterpieces of the Golden Age of Athens: The Propylaea, the Temple of Athena Nike, the Erechtheion and finally “the harmony between material and spirit”, the monument that “puts order in the mind”, the Parthenon, Continue and visit the place where at last the statues found their home and admire the wonders of the classical era: The new Acropolis museum. Then continue for Ancient Corinth tour, Leave Athens and drive South West to reach the Corinth Canal which connects the Aegean Sea with the Ionian Sea (short stop). Drive on and visit the ancient town of Corinth where St. Paul lived and preached for two years. The remains of the City, which include the Agora and Apollo’s Temple (6th century B.C.) clearly show how rich and important Corinth was in Ancient Times. A short stop at the Site of the Ancient Port of Cehries, where St. Paul disembarked, will conclude the visit.Return to Athens. Dinner and overnight in Titania Athens.

Day 10: Early morning after breakfast proceed for Meteora Kalambaka village monasteries. Visit Meteora and enjoy a unique and most impressive scenery with ageless Monasteries, containing priceless historical and religious treasures, standing between earth and sky atop huge rocks. Dinner and overnight in KALAMBAKA

Day 11: After Breakfast, drive to Thessaloniki en route visit Agia Paraskevi. Upon arrival take a city tour of Thessaloniki, Paul preached in Thessaloniki during the winters of 49-50 AD and wrote two epistles to the ancient Thessalonians. See the ramparts of the city, the triumphal Arch of Galerius starting at the Via Agnate, once a strategic artery of the Roman Empire. Dinner at the hotel and overnight.

Day 12: After breakfast, visit Philippi, where Paul delivered his first sermon in Europe, sowing the seeds of Christianity – “from there, he went to Philippi, which is the leading city of the district of Macedonia and a Roman Colony. We remained in this city some days. �Acts16:12-18, Here Paul baptized a certain woman named Lydia, the first Christian convert in Europe. visit the Roman forum, completely excavated, from after Paul’s time, among the ruins, located on the town’s main road, the prison where Paul and Silas were thrown. Continue into the port of Kavala (ancient Neapolis), where Paul, accompanied by Silas, Luke and Timothy first set foot in Europe, Dinner and overnight in Thessaloniki.

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Day 13: After breakfast check out from the hotel and transfer to Thessaloniki Airport or  drive till Athens (6 hours approx)

Day 14: After breakfast free day

Day 15: After breakfast free time transfer to airport for your flight to Toronto.

Hotels in Istanbul:

(Istanbul Ramada old city)

(Istanbul Golden Park or Grand Oztanik) + Add $30 Per Person

Ist – Pam One way Domestic Air ticket,

2nts Istanbul Hotel BB ,

Pamukkale Pam Thermal or similar 5 star,

Kusadasi Surmeli Ephesus or similar 5 star,

3 Lunch at local restaurant ,

2 dinner at Hotel,

ferry fee , everyday one small bottle water on bus , Turkey map

3D/2N Athens: Titania hotel 4* on HB basis (Breakfast & Dinner)

2D/1N Kalambaka: Famissi hotel 3* HB basis (Breakfast & Dinner)

3D/2N Thessaloniki: Grand hotel 5* HB basis (Breakfast & Dinner)

4D/3N Cruise by Louis cruises- majesty (FB-breakfast.lunch,Dinner) Ocean view cabins (XA,XB,XD,XC)

Deluxe AC Coach and Escort in all the above itinerary as mentioned

English speaking guide/escort in all tours as mentioned above

All entrance fees in above mentioned sites

All taxes not included
All optional tours mentioned
Lunches in tours
Personal expenses
Tips for guides and drivers

Optional tours during the cruise

Knossos palace Crete : 65 Euro pp
Patmos st. John Monastery: 55 Euro pp
Oia village tour Santorini: 60 Euro pp
Rhodes old town and filerimos: 60 Euro pp
Ephesus & Mariamena: 64 Euro pp

5 Stars Deluxe
5 Stars Superior
Sep 01- Dec 10
Dec 11 – Jan 02
Jan 03 – Apr 30
May 01 – May 31
Jun 01 – Aug 31