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The Great Islands of the Mediterranean: A Grand Voyage from Palermo to Barcelona

Program Number: 21204RJ
Start and End Dates:
4/28/2013 - 5/14/2013;
Duration: 16 nights
Location: Italy/Malta/Spain
Price starting at: $13,980.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Adventure Afloat Study Cruise; Small Ship Cruising
Meals: 43; 15 Breakfasts, 14 Lunches, 14 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian    

From Sicily and Malta to Corsica and Menorca, experience the great islands of the
Mediterranean on this grand voyage aboard a yacht-like small ship. These beautiful islands and their cultures, which have been shaped by a dozen different fascinating civilizations, remain relatively “undiscovered” by American travelers.




Activity Particulars

Walking up to two miles per day; some uneven and hilly terrain. Small boats are sometimes used for disembarkation and re-embarkation.



Itinerary At-a-Glance

Palermo (Italy), 1 night; aboard Corinthian, 14 nights.



Day 1: Overnight flight from the U.S.A.


Days 2-3: Arrival Palermo (Italy) / embark Corinthian:

An expert-led city excursion includes the Royal Palace with its famed Cappella Palatina, the chapel of the Norman kings of Sicily. Lodging: Four-star hotel in historic city center.



Day 4: Marsala:

Journey to the ancient Greek archaeological site of Selinunte, once a bustling seaside colony. Discover the carefully re-erected Temple of Hera.



Day 5: Porto Empedocle:

Explore the ruins of Agrigento, an important city during the golden age of Ancient Greece. Continue to the Villa Romana del Casale, a 4th-century Roman villa featuring spectacular mosaics.



Day 6: Valletta (Malta):

Step back into the time of knights at the Grandmaster’s Palace in Valletta. Venture to the megalithic temples of Hagar Qim, among the most ancient religious sites on Earth.



Day 7: Syracuse (Italy):

Experience Syracuse, one of the most powerful and prestigious cities of the ancient world, including the spectacular 15,000-seat Greek theater and the elliptical Roman amphitheater.



Day 8: Messina:

Enjoy a field trip to Taormina, a charming village on the site of an ancient Greek colony. Its ancient theater, perched on a hillside overlooking the sea, is truly magnificent.



Day 9: Lipari & Stromboli:

Sail to the volcanic Aeolian Islands, going ashore to discover two of them, Lipari and Stromboli. After dark, witness the eruptions of the active Mount Stromboli volcano.



Day 10: Palermo:

Take advantage of an additional day to explore Sicily’s historic capital.



Day 11: Valletta (Malta):

Take a journey back to the time of knights as you walk Valletta’s medieval streets and step inside the Grand Master’s Palace.



Day 12: Trapani (Italy):

Back on Sicily, visit the medieval hilltop town of Erice then continue to Segesta to find a magnificent Doric temple, among the best preserved anywhere.



Day 13: Cagliari:

Sail to the island of Sardinia to discover Su Nuraxi, the archaeological site of a village that dates to the 16th century BC. Enjoy some independent time in Cagliari.



Day 14: Corsica (France):

Voyage onward to Corsica, the French island famed as Napoleon’s birthplace. Admire the fine Gothic architecture and dramatic scenery of Bonifacio, the capital.



Day 15: Alghero (Italy):

Return to Sardinia to explore the fishing port of Alghero with its picturesque cobblestone streets and flamboyantly decorated churches.



Day 16: Menorca (Spain):

Go ashore on this Spanish island to discover its renowned prehistoric sites including a 14-foot tall taula (“table”), a stone construction exclusive to Menorca, and the large settlement of Torre d’en Galmes.



Day 17: Barcelona / disembark / departure


Corinthian

Launched in early 2009 after extensive refurbishment, redecoration, and other improvements, the private yacht-like Corinthian accommodates a maximum of 100 passengers in 50 suites, all offering ocean views. Public facilities include a single-seating restaurant, two lounges, expansive library, gym, spa, Jacuzzi and spacious sundeck.


Meals and Lodgings
   Grand Hotel et Des Palmes
  Palermo, Sicily, Italy, Italy 1 night
   Corinthian
  Aboard the Corinthian, At Sea 7 nights
   Corinthian
  Aboard the Corinthian, At Sea 6 nights
 Grand Hotel et Des Palmes
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: Located in the very heart of Palermo’s historical centre, “Des Palmes” as it is fondly known locally, is the most legendary hotel on the island of Sicily, having welcomed illustrious visitors since the 19th century including Richard Wagner, who finished Parsifal within one of its luxuriously-decorated suites. Steeped in history, evoking old-world glamour, elegance and charm with that of modern comfort
  Ship Information: n/a
  Contact info: Via Roma, 398
Palermo,  90141 Italy
phone: +091 6028111
web: www.grandhoteldespalmes.com
  Room amenities: All rooms are sound-proofed and fully air-conditioned as standard, have private bathrooms, and all are equipped with amenities such as a safe, hairdryer, minibar, satellite TV, dial direct telephone and Internet connection (WI FI in public areas).
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: n/a 

 Corinthian
Type: Cruise Ship
  Description: This private yacht-like cruise ship accommodates only 100 guests in 50 suites.
  Ship Information: Gross Tonnage: 4,077 Overall Length: 290 feet Beam: 50 feet Draft: 12 feet Flag Malta
  Contact info: 132 East 70th Street,
New York ,, NY 10021 USA
phone: 800-257-5767
web: www.traveldynamicsinternational.com/
  Room amenities: All accommodations aboard the Corinthian are suites. And include a bedroom with two twin-sized beds or one queen sized bed, sitting area, mini bar, VCR/DVD/CD player, color TV, Marble appointed bathroom with spacious shower and other amenities.
  Facility amenities: Public facilities include a restaurant tha accomodates guests at a single, unassigned seating, two lounges, expansive library with Internet access, state-of-the-art gym/spa, beauty salon, boutique,Jacuzzi, hospital and ample deck areas for sunbathing and relaxing.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
This program begins late in the afternoon of Day 2 at the program hotel You will be staying at Grand Hotel et Des Palmes that night.
  End of Program:
After breakfast on board the ship in Barcelona You will be staying at Corinthian the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required.
  Parking availability:
n/a
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
To Start of Program
  Location:  Palermo, Sicily, Italy
  Nearest airport:  Palermo International Airport (PMO)
  Transportation to site: The Grand Hotel et Des Palmes is located in the heart of Palermo, Sicily -approximately 7km from the Palermo International Airport (PMO). The transfer will take approximately 15 minutes. All participants who are arriving on April 29 will be met at the airport and transfered to the hotel. Participants arranging their own air should arrive no later than 3:00pm. Taxis are readily available at the airport for independent travelers.
  From End of Program
  Location:  Aboard the Corinthian
  Transportation from site: All participants who are departing on May 14th will be transfered from the port in Barcelona to the airport. Participants arranging their own air should not book flights that depart earlier than 12:00 pm.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Overnight Flight from the US
(Sunday, April 28)
   
 Depart From: Depart the US for international flights to Palermo, Italy

Day 2: Arrivals
(Monday, April 29)
   
 Arrive To: Arrive in Palermo, Italy and transfer to the hotel.
 Dinner: In the evening, join your group leader for a welcome dinner and program orientation at the hotel.
   
Accommodations: Grand Hotel et Des Palmes
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 3: Palermo / Embark Corinthian
(Tuesday, April 30)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel
 Morning: Your morning is at leisure to explore Palermo on your own.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own
 Afternoon: Meet back at the hotel and depart for a panoramic overview of Palermo. See sights such as the Royal Palace and Cappella Palatina. Transfer to the port to embark the Corinthian.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Marsala / Selinute / Motya or Erice / Marsala
(Wednesday, May 1)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: From Marsala, enjoy a morning field trip to Selinunte, the most westerly ancient Greek colony in Sicily. A highland overlooking the sea provides a tranquil setting for the expansive ruins of what was once among the island's least progressive cities.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: This afternoon you will have two options: Option 1: Explore Motya, founded by the Phoenicians in the 8th Century B.C. as a commerical base. Its museum exhibits superb sculptures. Option 2: Drive to Erice, a medieval, mountainside town. Please indicate your preference on the form in the back of this booklet.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship.
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Porto Empedocle / Agrigento / Piazza Armerina / Porto Empedocle
(Thursday, May 2)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: This morning, enjoy a choice of excursions: 1) Visit Agrigento's Valley of the Temples, a series of superb Doric temples. Admire the extraordinary collection at the Archaeological Museum. 2) Explore Sicily's finest Roman site, the Imperial Roman Villa del Casale. Located outside Piazza Armerina, a town situated amid wooded hills, the villa was built in palatial proportions in the 3rd century and features superb floor mosaics.
 Lunch: Lunch in Piazza Armerina at a local, typical Sicilian restaurant.
 Afternoon: Enjoy a free afternoon to explore the port of Empedocle before the ship sets sail this evening.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Valletta, Malta
(Friday, May 3)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship.
 Morning: Enjoy a choice of excursions this morning: 1) Explore the Palace of the Grand Masters and the National Museum of Archaeology. Then it's a short drive to the remarkable Tarxien Temples, which date back to 2800 B.C. 2) Visit Hagar Qim, even older than the Tarxian Temples, that stands atop a hill on the southern edge of the island overlooking the sea.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: In the late afternoon, transfer to Palazzo Parisio to attend a musical performance.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship.
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Syracuse, Sicily, Italy
(Saturday, May 4)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship.
 Morning: Syracuse sits at the head of a beautiful bay on Sicily's southeast coast. Colonized by the Greeks in the 8th century B.C., Syracuse became one of the most powerful and prestigious cities of the ancient world, rousing the hostility of Athens. Discover the spectacular 15,000-seat Greek theater, among the most impressive to survive antiquity, and the elliptical Roman amphitheater, one of the largest of its kind.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Walk the winding lanes of Syracuse's Old Town, situated on the island of Ortygia, and explore the remains of the Temple of Apollo, the Fountain of Aretusa, and the Cathedral, which incorporates the remains of the famed Temple of Athena.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship.
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Messina / Taormina / Messina
(Sunday, May 5)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Enjoy an excursion to Taormina. Clinging to the edge of Mount Tauro, Taormina looks out to sea and the dramatic cone of Mount Etna. A Greek colony was founded here in 403 B.C. and prospered throughout the Hellenistic and Roman periods. Wonder at the magnificent Greek theater.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: The afternoon is at leisure to explore Messina on your own.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Lipari / Stromboli
(Monday, May 6)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Arrive at the white pumice slopes of Lipari, one of the seven islands of the Aeolian Archipelago claimed by Greek mythology as the home of Aeolus, the god of the winds. Dominating the unspoiled, twin-harbor town of Lipari is a Norman castle-turned archaeological museum on the site of an ancient acropolis.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Your afternoon is free to explore Lipari on your own.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship.
 Evening: At night, after dark, we will sail close to Stromboli to observe the eruptions from one of Europe's few active volcanoes.
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10: Palermo / Disembark
(Tuesday, May 7)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship.
 Morning: Explore Palermo
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Continue exploring Palermo
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Valetta, Malta
(Wednesday, May 8)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Explore Malta
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Continue exploring Malta
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12: Trapani, Sicily / Erice / Segesta / Trapani
(Thursday, May 9)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Drive up winding roads to the medieval town of Erice. The town was known for its temple to the fertility goddess, Astarte. Look around the 12th-Century Venus Castle
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant
 Afternoon: Continue on to Segesta for a glimpse of its magnificent Doric temple, built in 420 b.c. and among the best preserved ancient Greek sites.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13: Cagliari / Su Nuraxi / Nora or Cagliari, Sardinia
(Friday, May 10)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Arrive in Cagliari, Sardinia's capital, built on a hill facing the sea. Disembark and drive to the village of Barumini to visit Su Nuraxi, Sardinia's most important and impressive nuraghic complex and a UNESCO Heritage of Humanity Site
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship or at a local restaurant
 Afternoon: Arrive in Cagliari, Sardinia's capital, built on a hill facing the sea. Disembark and drive to the village of Barumini to visit Su Nuraxi, Sardinia's most important and impressive nuraghic complex and a UNESCO Heritage of Humanity Site
 Afternoon: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 14: Bonifacio, Corsica, France
(Saturday, May 11)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Call in Bonifacio, built on spectacular high cliffs on Corsica's south coast. Admire the fine Gothic architecture and dramatic scenery.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Continue exploring Bonifacio.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 15: Alghero, Sardinia, Italy
(Sunday, May 12)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Experience Alghero, the region's major fishing port, and explore the picturesque cobblestoned streets and flamboyantly decorated churches of its historic core. Also visit the nearby Anghelu Ruiu Necropolis - a pre-Nuraghic cave complex with more than 30 hypogea and Nuraghe Palmavera.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Continue exploring Alghero
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 16: Mahon, Menorca, Spain
(Monday, May 13)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Explore two prehistoric sites: Torralba d'en Salord, with its spectacular 4.3 meter-high taula, a stone construction that is exclusive to Menorca, and the large prehistoric settlement of Torre d'en Galmes.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the ship
 Afternoon: Learn more about the island's history and archaeology in Mahon's Museum of Menorca.
 Dinner: Dinner on board the ship
   
Accommodations: Corinthian
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 17: Barcelona, Spain / Disembark
(Tuesday, May 14)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board the ship
 Morning: Disembark and transfer to the airport
   
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


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Midnight in Sicily, On Art, Food, History, Travel and La Cosa Nostra


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Sea and Sardinia


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Sicily, Three Thousand Years of Human History


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