Tour Departure

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Greece

(Suggested Nights 6)

Greece is a country in southeastern Europe consisting of 2 mainland peninsulas and thousands of islands throughout the Aegean and Ionian seas. It`s often called the birthplace of Western civilization, and Athens, its capital, retains ancient landmarks including the 5th-century-B.C.E. Acropolis citadel and Parthenon temple. Greece is also known for its beaches, from the black sands of Santorini to the party resorts of Mykonos.

Athens - Capital of Greece

Athens has been the center of Greek civilization for some 4,000 years. The capital of modern Greece, it’s still dominated by 5th-century-B.C.E. landmarks, including the Acropolis, a hilltop citadel topped with ancient buildings such as the colonnaded Parthenon temple. But it’s also a contemporary city, and it’s not uncommon for the nightlife hubs of Kolonaki, Psiri and Gazi to stay busy until dawn.

Places to Interest:

  • Parthenon, Acropolis
  • Plaka
  • Ancient Agora
  • Erechtheum
  • Temple of Olympian Zeus
  • Syntagma Square
  • National Archaeological Museum, Athens
  • Mount Lycabettus
  • New Acropolis Museum
  • National Garden, Athens

Santorini

Santorini, one of the Cyclades islands in the Aegean Sea, was devastated by a volcanic eruption in the 16th century B.C.E., forever shaping its rugged landscape and villages. The whitewashed, cubist houses of its 2 principal towns, Fira and Oia, cling to cliffs above an underwater caldera (crater). They overlook the clear Aegean and beaches made up of black, red and white lava pebbles.

Places to Interest:

  • Imerovigli
  • Santorini Caldera
  • Akrotiri
  • Nea Kameni
  • Ancient Thera

Mykonos

Classic whitewashed buildings line the labyrinthine streets of Mykonos, the largest town on the Greek island of the same name. Matoyianni Street is particularly charming. Iconic 16th-century windmills keep watch over the village from the hills above, and the fully functional Boni Mill is part of the Mykonos Agricultural Museum. The Aegean Maritime Museum and the Folklore Museum will give you a proper introduction to the area’s rich cultural and economic history.

Turkey

Turkey is a nation straddling eastern Europe and western Asia with cultural connections to ancient Greek, Persian, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires. Cosmopolitan Istanbul, on the Bosphorus Strait, is home to the iconic Hagia Sophia, with its soaring dome and Christian mosaics, the massive 17th-century Blue Mosque and the circa-1460 Topkapı Palace, former home of sultans. Ankara is Turkey’s modern capital

Istanbul

Istanbul is a city in Turkey that straddles Europe and Asia across the Bosphorus Strait. The Old City reflects cultural influences of the many empires that once ruled here. In the Sultanahmet district, the open-air, Roman-era Hippodrome was for centuries the site of chariot races, and Egyptian obelisks remain. The iconic Byzantine Hagia Sophia features a soaring dome and Christian mosaics.

Antalya

Antalya is a resort destination in Turkey and gateway to its southern Mediterranean region, known as the Turquoise Coast for its blue waters. During the Roman era Antalya was a major port city; today a modern metropolis surrounds ancient fortifications. Beaches are flanked by large hotels, and popular outdoor activities include golfing, diving and hiking the 500km Lycian Way footpath.

  • Duden Waterfall
  • Hardrian’s Gate
  • Antalya Museum
  • Karaalioglu Park
  • Yivliminare Mosque
  • Konyaalti Beach
  • Ataturk House Museum

Ankara

Ankara, Turkey’s capital, sits in the country’s central Anatolia region. Vibrant and cosmopolitan, it’s a center for the performing arts, home to the State Opera and Ballet, the Presidential Symphony Orchestra and several national theater companies. Overlooking the city is Anitkabir, the enormous hilltop mausoleum of Atatürk, modern Turkey’s first president, who declared Ankara capital in 1923.

  • Anitkabir
  • Kocatepe Mosque
  • War of Independence Museum
  • Atakule
  • Ankara Castle
  • State Art & Sculpture Museum

Izmir

Izmir is a city on Turkey’s Aegean coast. Known as Smyrna in antiquity, it was conquered by Alexander the Great and the Ottoman Empire, and retains landmarks from its long, rich history. Kemeraltı, the traditional bazaar district, is home to the Kızlarağası Han, a market in a restored inn, and Hisar Mosque,

  • Izmir Clock Tower
  • Konak Pier
  • Kadifekale
  • Asansor
  • Karatas Izmir

Kusadasi (Suggested Nights 2)

Kuşadası is a beach resort town on Turkey’s western Aegean coast. A jumping-off point for visiting the classical ruins at nearby Ephesus (or Efes), it’s a major cruise ship stop. Its seafront promenade, marina and harbor are lined with hotels and restaurants. Just offshore on Pigeon Island is a walled Byzantine castle that once guarded the town, connected to the mainland via causeway.

  • Ladies Beach Kusadasi
  • House of the Virgin Mary
  • Temple of Artemis
  • Ephesus Archaeological Museum
  • Basilica of St.John

SPAIN

Spain, on Europe’s Iberian Peninsula, is really 17 autonomous regions, each with its own geography and culture. The capital, Madrid, is home to the Royal Palace and singular Prado museum, housing works by European masters, and Segovia to the north has a fairy-tale medieval castle and Roman aqueduct. Catalonia’s capital, Barcelona, is defined by Antoni Gaudí’s quirky modernist architecture, including the Sagrada Família basilica.

Barcelona

Barcelona, the cosmopolitan capital of Spain’s Catalonia region, is defined by quirky art and architecture, imaginative food and vibrant street life. It has medieval roots, seen in the mazelike Gothic Quarter, but a modernist personality represented by architect Antoni Gaudí’s fantastical Sagrada Família church. Its restaurant scene, anchored by the central Boqueria market, ranges from fine dining to tiny tapas bars.

  • Sagrada Familia
  • Park Guell / Museu Picasso
  • Gothic Quarter / Parc de la Ciutadella
  • Magic Fountain of Montjuic

MADRID

Madrid, Spain`s central capital, is a city of elegant boulevards and expansive, manicured parks such as the Buen Retiro. It’s renowned for its rich repositories of European art, including the Prado Museum’s works by Goya, Velázquez and other Spanish masters. The heart of old Hapsburg Madrid is the portico-lined Plaza Mayor, and nearby is the baroque Royal Palace and Armory, displaying historic weaponry.

  • Royal Palace of Madrid
  • Buen Retiro Park
  • Plaza Mayor Madrid
  • Plaza De Cibeles
  • Thyssen- Bornmisza Museum
  • Royal Chapel of St.Anthony of La Florida
  • The Madrid Zoo Aquarium
  • Royal Tapestry Factory

TENERIFE – Island in Spain

Tenerife, the largest of Spain’s Canary Islands, off West Africa, is dominated by Mt. Teide, which rises 7,500m above the ocean floor and is among the world’s largest volcanoes. Still, Tenerife may be best known for its huge pre-Lent Carnival, as well as its beaches (with sands from yellow to black) and busy, upscale resorts, including Los Cristianos and Playa de las Américas.

  • Loro Parque
  • Siam Park
  • Mt Teide
  • Playa De Las Teresitas
  • Teide National Park
  • Auditoria De Tenerife

IBIZA

Ibiza is one of the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean Sea. It`s well-known for the lively nightlife scene in Ibiza Town and Sant Antoni, where major European nightclubs have summer outposts. It’s also home to quiet villages, yoga retreats and beaches, from Platja d`en Bossa, lined with hotels, bars and shops, to quieter sandy coves backed by pine-clad hills found all around the coastline.

  • Amnesia
  • Cala De Sant Vicent
  • City of Arts & Sciences
  • Valencia Cathedral
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