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Voyages to Antiquity: The Isles of Greece, the Black Sea and Istanbul

Program Number: 21302RJ
Start and End Dates:
8/18/2014 - 9/5/2014;
Duration: 18 nights
Location: Greece/Turkey/Ukraine
Price starting at: $5,890.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Adventure Afloat Study Cruise; Ocean Cruises
Meals: 48; 17 Breakfasts, 15 Lunches, 16 Dinners    
Meal Options: Low Fat; Vegetarian; Low Salt; Gluten Free    

From the city of legendary King Agamemnon to the opulent palace of the Ottoman sultans to the summer retreat of the Russian tsars, experience the powerful history of the Mediterranean and the Black Sea. Explore dramatic Greek isles, evocative ancient ruins and enchanting port cities on this grand voyage.




Activity Particulars

Walking up and downhill, up to two miles per day. Standing up to four hours per day, with breaks; uneven terrain and steep stairs without railings at historic sites.



Itinerary At-a-Glance

Athens (Greece), 2 nights; aboard Aegean Odyssey, 12 nights; Istanbul (Turkey), 3 nights.



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


Days 2-4:
Arrival Athens (Greece) / embark Aegean Odyssey

Walk in the footsteps of Socrates and Plato on the Acropolis of Athens. Examine archaeological treasures in a spectacular setting at the new Acropolis Museum. Lodging: Stylish five-star hotel.



Day 5:
Nauplia

Explore the archaeological site of Mycenae, a major city of Ancient Greek civilization for centuries. Learn the legend of King Agamemnon.



Day 6:
Rethminon, Crete

On the island of Crete, visit the Minoan palace of Knossos, then on to Rethminon to explore its 16th century star-shaped castle as well its Old Town with its well-preserved Venetian and Ottoman buildings.



Day 7:
Santorini

On this dramatically beautiful volcanic island, venture to Oia, a village of whitewashed houses, blue-domed churches and tavernas carved into the cliffs.



Day 8:
Delos & Mykonos

Discover the contrasting islands of Delos, the paramount religious sanctuary of the ancients, and cosmopolitan Mykonos.



Days 9-10:
Izmir

From Izmir, journey to two of the classical world’s great cities: Ephesus, whose well-preserved ruins include the Library of Celsus, and Pergamon, an ancient center of learning and medicine.



Days 11:
Çanakkale

Delve into the stories of one of two very different wars: the Trojan War at the site of Troy and World War I at Gallipoli.



Day 12:
Nessebur

Explore Nessebur’s beautiful old town including the Byzantine-style Church of Christ Pantokrator and the Archaeological Museum.



Day: 13
Constanta:

Once a Greek colony known as Tomis, this is the oldest city in Romania. The legendary Jason and the Argonauts landed here after finding the Golden Fleece.



Days 15-19:
At Sea / Istanbul (Turkey) / disembark / departure

Enjoy three full days to experience Istanbul including the Hagia Sophia, the exquisite Blue Mosque and Topkapi Palace, home of the Ottoman Sultans. Stroll through the Spice Bazaar and the Grand Bazaar to experience their colors, aromas and buzz of activity. Lodging: Four-star seaside hotel.



Aegean Odyssey

The Aegean Odyssey is a premium-class ship especially rebuilt for sailing along shallow coastlines, among remote islands and into small, uncrowded harbors that larger ocean liners can’t reach. Public areas include several gourmet restaurants, library, Internet center, sweeping sun decks, outdoor pool, gym and spa.


Meals and Lodgings
   Metropolitan Hotel
  Athens, Greece 2 nights
   Aegean Odyssey
  Aegean Odyssey - At Sea, At Sea 12 nights
   Armada Hotel
  Istanbul, Turkey 3 nights
 Metropolitan Hotel
Type: Five-Star Hotel
  Description: The Metropolitan Hotel, with its unique cosmopolitan atmosphere, combines traditional hospitality and luxury in central Athens. With a view to both the Acropolis and the Aegean Sea, the fully renovated Metropolitan Hotel is ideally situated in front of the Faleron Olympic Coastal Park. It is only 10 minutes away from Syntagma square, the center of Athens and the port of Piraeus.
  Contact info: Leoforos Syngrou 385
Athens,  175-64 Greece
phone: +30 210 947 1000
web: www.chandris.gr
  Room amenities: Each room has individually controlled air conditioning, satellite television, telephone, high speed Internet connection, radio, mini bar, hair dryer, safe box, and laptop and fax machine outlets.
  Facility amenities: The hotel offers a restaurant, lounge, bar, gift shop, fitness center, marble steam bath, outdoor heated swimming pool, business center, free wireless Internet access in lobby, and a hairdresser.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: N/A Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services if you would like assistance making hotel reservations for additional non-program nights. (800) 241-1404
  Check in time: 2:00 PM

 Aegean Odyssey
Type: Cruise Ship
  Description: The Aegean Odyssey offers boutique-style cruising at its best. In contrast to the massive vessels cruising to and from major ports, it is a midsized ship adapted for island and coastal cruising. The Aegean Odyssey can visit smaller, less crowded harbors and sail closer to the coast enabling you to really appreciate the magical views.
  Ship Information: Ship’s Tonnage: 11,563 Length: 461 feet Beam: 67 feet Draft: 20.5 feet Cruising Speed: 18 knots Passenger Decks: 7 Stabilizers: 2 Passenger Staterooms/Cabins: 198 Passengers – lower beds: 378 Classification: Lloyd’s Register Society London Ship’s Registration: Malta
  Contact info: Voyages to Antiquity
1800 SE 10th Avenue, Suite 230
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33316 USA
phone: 877-398-1460
web: www.voyagestoantiquity.com
  Room amenities: All cabins are equipped with a flat screen TV, air-conditioning, and personal safe. Particular importance is placed on the standard of bedding in cabins. Luxury bedding, including fine duvets, covers and sheets, ample soft pillows and quality towels can be expected. Also, shampoo, bath and shower gel, soap, and shower cap are provided. Your cabin steward is always available. Cabins and suites feature outlets with 220 voltage, using the “European” two round pin plug. Hair dryers are provided in your cabin and electric rollers, curling irons, electric shavers and other small appliances can be used in your cabin. For safety reasons, travel irons are not allowed.
  Facility amenities: Dining: Aegean Odyssey offers many dining facilities: The Marco Polo Restaurant is the ship's more formal restaurant, providing casual country-club elegance for lunch or dinner; The Terrace Cafe offers a combination of indoor and outdoor seating where you can indulge in breakfast, lunch and dinner from the grill or the sumptuous daily buffet. In the evenings, enjoy breathtaking views over dinner at Tapas on the Terrace. *There is a complimentary choice of wine, beer, or soft drinks with your evening meal. There will be a string trio, pianist and casual dancing before and after dinner. You may also wish to partake in afternoon tea, served in the Observation Lounge or enjoy an evening snack and cocktail, available in the Lido and Rendezvous bars. A limited room service menu is available. Special Diets: Please advise us at the time of booking of any special dietary requirements. The ship can usually meet most general requests such as those made with an air carrier; however, this cannot always be guaranteed. Services: Library; outdoor pool; spa; health center, saunas, massage and beauty treatment rooms and early morning yoga on the Lido Deck; elevators; beauty salon; medical center; laundry and pressing services (order form and laundry bag is provided in cabin); lecture theater and cinema and on board shop. Internet: The Internet center (open 24 hours and a charge of $18 for 4 non-consecutive hours is applied, wireless available in reception area). PLEASE NOTE: Due to the nature of satellite connectivity on board a ship, the internet connection is slow, erractic and may be unavailable at times.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes

 Armada Hotel
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: The 4-star Armada Hotel is located in the historic peninsula of Istanbul, with views of two of the great masterpieces of world architecture; the Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque. The hotel offers modern comfort and convenience discreetly incorporated into the Turkish-inspired architecture, and period engravings throughout the hotel provide an insight into Istanbul's by-gone eras. The name of the Armada Hotel is a tribute to the memory of the renowned Ottoman Admiral Hayrettin Pasha Barbarossa. Located in the heart of the Old City, the hotel is within walking distance of museums, churches and other major attractions.
  Contact info: Ahirkapi Street 24
Sultanahmet
Istanbul,  34122 Turkey
phone: +90 212 455 44 55
web: www.armadahotel.com.tr
  Room amenities: Each room has a mini bar, hair dryer, bathrobes, telephone, LCD television, safe box, free wireless Internet, 24-hour room service and air conditioning.
  Facility amenities: The hotel offers two restaurants, a bar, lounge, meeting rooms, business center with computers and printers, library, free WIFI Internet access throughout the hotel, laundry service and air conditioning. The rooftop restaurants offer magnificent views of the area.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after: N/A Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services if you would like assistance making hotel reservations for additional non-program nights. 1-800-241-1404
  Check out time: 12:00 PM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Athens, Greece. Meet at 6:00 PM in the hotel lobby. You will be staying at Metropolitan Hotel that night.
  End of Program:
Istanbul, Turkey. The program will end after breakfast on the last day. You will be staying at Armada Hotel the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. The Voyages to Antiquity Guest Registration Form is required.
  Parking availability:
N/A
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
To Start of Program
  Location:  Athens
  Transportation to site: Take a taxi from exit 3 of the arrivals level at the airport. Cost is approx. 35-40 Euros (approx. $45-52), after midnight the cost increases to 60 Euros (approx. $78). Alternatively, take the airport bus X95 which departs from between Exits 4 and 5 at the arrivals level. The bus costs 5 Euro and leaves every 10 to 15 minutes for Syntagma Square – from here it is a short taxi ride to the hotel (approx. 8 Euro).
  From End of Program
  Location:  Istanbul
  Nearest city or town:  In town
  Nearest airport:  Atatürk International Airport
  Transportation from site: The Armada Hotel is located about 10 miles from the airport. Taxi ride to the airport from the hotel costs approximately 45 Turkish Liras (approx. $30) and takes approximately 30 minutes. Alternatively, to book a private transfer ($65), please contact info@baltactours.com.
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: Departures
(Monday, August 18)
   
 In Transit: Depart US/Canada on international overnight flight.

Day 2: Welcome
(Tuesday, August 19)
   
 Morning: Arrival in Athens International Airport (ATH). Meet group outside of customs. Transfer to hotel.
 Afternoon: Settle in at the hotel. We gather in the hotel lobby at 6:00 PM for a welcome orientation to the program.
 Dinner: Dinner in the hotel dining room.
   
Accommodations: Metropolitan Hotel
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 3: Athens, Greece
(Wednesday, August 20)

Note: Heavy walking for one or more hours over uneven terrain, with multiple uphill segments.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: We will explore the long anticipated $200-million, 226,000-square-foot Acropolis Museum. In the dramatic Gallery of the Slopes of the Acropolis, ascending floors of glass literally “float” you above the excavations for an extraordinary perspective of the layers of Greek history that lie below.
 Lunch: Lunch at a restaurant in Plaka.
 Afternoon: A guided excursion through the ancient citadel of Athens, the Acropolis. Built during Athens' Golden Age between 447-438BC under the orders of the great statesman Pericles, the Acropolis represents the magnificent achievements of Athenian culture during this remarkable era.
 Dinner: Dinner in the hotel dining room.
   
Accommodations: Metropolitan Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Athens, Greece / Embark the Aegean Odyssey
(Thursday, August 21)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast in the hotel dining room.
 Morning: Enjoy neo-classical architecture while meandering the labyrinthine streets of Plaka -- a picturesque neighborhood of Athens -- during this morning's guided walk.
 Lunch: Explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: We transfer to Piraeus where we will embark the Aegean Odyssey. Late afternoon Road Scholar orientation to the ship in the "Observation Lounge."
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Evening sailing for Nauplia. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5: Nauplia, Greece
(Friday, August 22)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: Anchor off the port of Nauplia in time for breakfast. From the pier, enjoy an hour-long scenic drive across the Peloponnesian peninsula to the Isthmus of Corinth to survey the ruins of this ancient and historic city. From Corinth, journey to the city of Mycenae, reputedly the capital of Agamemnon and the "well-built citadel" of Homer's Iliad.
 Lunch: Road Scholar lunch at a local restaurant in Mycenae.
 Afternoon: After lunch, explore the elegant town of Nauplia during a brief walking excursion. Next, discover Epidaurus -- sacred to Asclepios, the god of medicine -- and once the most acclaimed healing center of the classical world. Visit its theatre, one of the best preserved of all ancient Greek theatres.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Early evening departure for Rethimnon. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Rethimnon, Crete / Knossos
(Saturday, August 23)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: The morning is dedicated to the Minoan site of Knossos. The heyday of Minoan civilization (2000-1600BC) was marked by the construction of great palaces, the best known of which is Knossos. Excavations were begun in 1899 by the British archaeologist Sir Arthur Evans, who controversially "restored" the palace with his own eccentric ideas of Minoan interior design.
 Lunch: Lunch on board or explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: A free afternoon to join your Group Leader on a walking excursion of Rethimnon’s Old Town -- one of the best-preserved Renaissance cities in the Mediterranean with fine Venetian and Ottoman architecture.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Evening departure for Santorini. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Santorini, Greece
(Sunday, August 24)

Note: Some walking is required between the cable car station and motorcoach – approximately 15 minutes. During summer there can be a wait for cable cars. Sequence of places visited may vary.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: One of the Aegean’s most spectacular sights, the cliffs of Santorini rise from a great half-moon caldera -- all that is left of the formerly circular island once called Strongyle. Visit the exquisite village of Oia with its whitewashed houses, blue-domed churches and tavernas carved into the cliffs. Wealthy sea captains built the pastel-colored mansions that now are home to cafés, boutiques and art galleries. From every direction the views are breathtaking. From Oia, travel to the southern end of the island to explore the excavations of Akrotiri. Here, in 1600BC, this Minoan settlement prospered -- an affluent society that farmed, built two-story homes and decorated them with frescoes.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local taverna in Pyrgos.
 Afternoon: After lunch, wander the colorful streets of Firá. Enjoy a panoramic ride to port via cable car.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Sunset departure for Delos. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Delos, Greece / Mykonos, Greece
(Monday, August 25)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: Delos is one of the most interesting archaeological sites in Greece and was the paramount religious sanctuary of the ancient Greek world. This morning's excursion explores the island's temples, buildings and of course, its famous lions.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: After lunch you will explore the nearby cosmopolitan island of Mykonos. Enjoy a guided walk with your Road Scholar Group Leader followed by free time.
 Dinner: Dinner on board or explore local fare on your own.
 Evening: Late departure for Izmir. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Izmir, Turkey / Ephesus
(Tuesday, August 26)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: At sea. Attend a talk by your Road Scholar Group Leader. Aegean Odyssey arrives in Izmir at lunchtime. Founded around 3000 BC, the port of Izmir has been a major trading center since the 3rd century AD.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: Upon arrival in Izmir, we will transfer south to arrive at the ancient city of Ephesus, one of the largest and best preserved ancient cities in the world. The cosmopolitan city of Ephesus was, in its heyday, on par with Athens and Rome. We will also visit the newly excavated Terrace Houses in Ephesus, where the rich and the ruling class once lived in comfortable homes decorated with wonderful works of art and complete with running water. From Ephesus, journey to Didyma to see the impressive Temple of Apollo which is larger than a football field and has 128 finely decorated columns. This temple was once connected to his twin’s in Miletus via a Sacred Way lined with lions, sphinxes and statues. For those interested, time will allow for a visit to Kemeralti, a bustling 18th century bazaar, located in Izmir.
 Dinner: Dinner on board or explore local fare on your own.
 Evening: Overnight in Izmir. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 10: Izmir, Turkey / Pergamon
(Wednesday, August 27)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: This morning's field trip is to the Hellenistic ruins of Pergamon. Founded by the Greeks in the 8th century BC, Pergamon once rivaled Athens and Alexandria as a center of culture and learning. Here you will see the remains of the Altar of Zeus, the Temples of Dionysus and Trajan, and the impressive Greek theater.
 Lunch: Road Scholar lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Next, explore what may be the world's first full-service health clinic: the Asklepion. Pergamon's rehabilitation center is named after the god of health, and was a site of pilgrimage for centuries, entered by a sacred road lined with columns. A sacred spring fed pools that were the basis for various water therapies. The Asklepion had latrines, a library, a theater, and treatments that included honey cures, a psychotherapy tunnel, and dream interpretation.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Evening departure for Çanakkale. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Çanakkale, Turkey
(Thursday, August 28)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: Çanakkale is on the shore of the Dardenelles (the ancient Hellespont). From here we will depart in the morning for the ancient site of Troy. The excavations started by Heinrich Schliemann in 1870 have revealed nine separate settlements on this site dating from 4000BC to 300AD. Alternatively, take a ferry to Gallipoli, the scene of one of the most tragic and bloody campaigns of World War I. Over 500,000 Allied and Turkish troops died in the battle. Today several museums, monuments and cemeteries mark their sacrifice.
 Lunch: Lunch on board or explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: Free time to explore the city of Çanakkale on your own or to relax on board.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Attend a shipboard guest lecture. Tonight the ship will cruise the Sea of Marmara through the Bosphorus Strait en route to the Black Sea.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12: Nessebur, Bulgaria
(Friday, August 29)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: At sea. Enjoy the Observation Deck if the weather is nice, or dive into a good book from the ship's library. Attend a talk by your Road Scholar Group Leader.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: In Nessebur, explore the sites of this beautiful old town including the Byzantine-style Church of Christ Pantokrator, the 5th-century Old Metropolitan Church, and the Archaeological Museum. Following the field trip, there will be some free time to meander through the town's quaint maze of cobblestone streets.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13: Constanta, Romania
(Saturday, August 30)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: The expansive history of this metropolis from antiquity can be traced back for over 2500 years, and legend says that Jason and the Argonauts visited the city, then known as Tomis, after finding the Golden Fleece.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: At sea. Find your way to one of the ship's lounges for a conversation with fellow travelers.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 14: Odessa, Ukraine
(Sunday, August 31)

Note: Please dress respectfully entering the cathedral. Women are asked to cover heads. No shorts for men. Photos and video are not allowed inside the Cathedral.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: This morning's excursion in Odessa will begin at Catherine Square and take you along Prymorsky Boulevard starting from the Potemkin Steps and the monument to the Duke de Richelieu - the town’s first mayor - who wanted to make the city as beautiful as his native Paris. Enjoy a guided visit inside the stunning Opera House followed by a short drive to City Garden and a stop at the Preobrazhensky - or 'Transfiguration' - Cathedral.
 Lunch: Lunch on board or explore local fare on your own.
 Afternoon: Free afternoon for independent exploration.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Evening departure for Istanbul. Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 15: At Sea
(Monday, September 1)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: At sea. A chance to relax on deck or to enjoy the ship's wonderful amenities.
 Lunch: Lunch on board.
 Afternoon: At sea. Join friends on deck to trade travel stories, reflect on all you have experienced on this adventure, and make plans for your next destination.
 Dinner: Dinner on board.
 Evening: Attend a shipboard guest lecture.
   
Accommodations: Aegean Odyssey
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 16: Disembark / Istanbul, Turkey
(Tuesday, September 2)

Note: The excursions in Istanbul involve significant walking. As we will be visiting religious sites, please no shorts or sleeveless shirts. Ladies may be asked to cover their heads.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast on board.
 Morning: This morning we disembark the MV Aegean Odyssey and begin the first of our three-day exploration of the city of Istanbul. We start at the amazing church of Hagia Sophia. Possibly the most important architectural monument in the city, Hagia Sophia has stood gracefully since 537 AD. Next enjoy a field trip to the Hippodrome, the civic center of ancient Constantinople, where chariot races were run between the four teams of Blues, Greens, Whites and Reds. Then visit the 17th century Blue Mosque, world renowned for its exquisite Iznik tiles surrounding the interior of this wonderful mosque.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Explore the beautiful Underground Cisterns, built by the illustrious Byzantine Emperor Justinian in 532 AD to store water underground. Visit the award winning Archeology Museum to examine an outstanding collection of artifacts spanning across millennia including the magnificent Sarcophagus of Alexander the Great.
 Dinner: Dinner at the hotel.
   
Accommodations: Armada Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 17: Istanbul, Turkey
(Wednesday, September 3)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Explore the opulent Topkapi Palace including the Imperial Harem. The Topkapi Palace was the seat of the Ottoman Sultans for 400 years and a great testimony to the wealth and power of the Ottoman Empire.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: In the afternoon visit the Chora Church/Kariye Museum to behold its exquisite mosaics and frescoes dating from the 14th century, a period of Byzantine reawakening in the arts.
 Dinner: Explore local fare on your own.
   
Accommodations: Armada Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 18: Istanbul, Turkey
(Thursday, September 4)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: We embark on a private cruise on the Bosphorus to explore the stunning palaces, mansions, and fortresses dotted along the Asian and European shores of this marvelous strait. Next, we visit the Rustem Pasha Mosque, built by the famous architect Sinan, a small but gem-like mosque demonstrating the most stunning examples of 16th century Iznik tiles.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: On to the Spice Bazaar, where exotic aromas immediately capture its visitors. We then continue on to the Grand Bazaar to discover its maze-like streets and alleys boasting over 4,000 shops!
 Dinner: Farewell dinner at a local restaurant.
   
Accommodations: Armada Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 19: Departures
(Friday, September 5)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Transfers to Istanbul's Ataturk Airport (IST).
   
Meals Included: Breakfast

Free Time Opportunities
 
  Çanakkale Mirrored Bazaar
This charming Bazaar was built in 1889 by Ilia Halyo in 1889 during the reign of Sultan Abdülhamit and is a copy of the Egyptian Bazaar in Istanbul. It is believed to have been destroyed by shells deployed from the British Battleship "Queen Elizabeth" during WW1. It was restored in 2007 and is brimming with shops peddling locally manufactured goods.
  Çanakkale Archeological Museum
The Museum has artifacts from ancient sites around Çanakkale, including Troy, Assos and Dardanos. It is located about 1 ½ miles from the port in the city center.
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


1453, The Holy War For Constantinople and the Clash of Islam and the West


Author: Roger Crowley


Description: In this well-paced history, Crowley recounts the dramatic events leading up to and surrounding the fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Turks.



A Traveller's History of Turkey


Author: Richard Stoneman


Description: An accessible, well-written overview of Turkish history from the Paleolithic to the present.



Ancient Greece: Art, Architecture, and History


Author: Marina Belozerskaya, Kenneth Lapatin


Description: This lively illustrated guide covers the architecture, painting and sculpture of Ancient Greece from the third millennium to the end of the Hellenistic period. With 282 color and 28 black-and-white illustrations.



Black Sea


Author: Neal Ascherson


Description: In this skillful regional portrait, Ascherson weaves his own travels and impressions with a fascinating account of the Black Sea's history. From ancient mythology to modern politics, he admirably never loses sight of the sea itself.



Blue Guide Istanbul


Author: John Freely


Description: Freely's erudite, indispensable guide to the monuments, art and history of Istanbul.



Borderland, A Journey through the History of Ukraine


Author: Anna Reid


Description: Reid, the former Kiev correspondent for The Economist, combines first-person reports, interviews and history in this vivid portrait of the region and its people. With chapters on Kiev and Odessa



Byzantium, The Surprising Life of a Medieval Empire


Author: Judith Herrin


Description: Herrin captures the glory, accomplishments, personalities, cruelty and import of Byzantium from the foundation of Constantinople to its capture by the Ottoman Turks in 1453.



Eyewitness Guide Greek Islands


Author: Eyewitness Guides


Description: Color photography, excellent local maps and an island-by-island synopsis of attractions make this book the one to carry with you. Includes a chapter on Athens.



Istanbul, Memories and the City


Author: Orhan Pamuk


Description: Nobel Prize-winner Pamuk writes with dazzling grace of the city of his birth, a magical place of crumbling mansions and Ottoman riches.



Land of Lost Gods, The Search for Classical Greece


Author: Richard Stoneman


Description: A lively account of discovery. Quoting liberally from original texts, Stoneman tells the riveting stories of Greek adventurers and scholars, including Cyriac of Ancona's quest to record the appearance of the Parthenon, Jacques Spon's quarrel with Guillet de St-Georges about the topography of Athens and the deluded forgeries of the Abbe Fourmont.



Mediterranean Cruises Map


Author: Freytag & Berndt


Description: A double-sided, full-color map of the Mediterranean, including the Iberian Peninsula, the Black Sea, North Africa and the Levant, at a scale of 1:2,000,000.



Midnight in Europe


Author: Alan Furst


Description: A thrilling tale of espionage and romance set in pre-WWII Europe, featuring protagonist Cristian Ferrar, an expat Spaniard who assembles a team to arm rebels and fight fascism.



Odessa, Genius and Death in a City of Dreams


Author: Charles King


Description: King (Black Sea, The Moldovans) writes with verve not only of the history of this great port city but also of noteworthy personalities, including Alexander Pushkin, Isaac Babel and Nobel Prize-winning biologist Ilya Mechnikov.



St. Paul's Ephesus, Texts and Archaeology


Author: Jerome Murphy O'Connor


Description: Jerome Murphy-O'Connor transports us back to the ancient city of Ephesus during its heyday, including contemporary accounts from Roman to biblical times and featuring a guided walk through the city as a center of Paul's teachings.



The Colossus of Maroussi


Author: Henry Miller


Description: Miller captures the spirit and warmth of the resilient Greek people in this inspired tale of a wartime journey from Athens to Crete, Corfu and Delphi with his friend Lawrence Durrell.



The Last of the Wine


Author: Mary Renault


Description: Alexias, an Athenian soldier, grows to manhood under the influence of his friend Alkibiades and Socrates in this masterful historical novel set during the Peloponnesian War.



The Towers of Trebizond


Author: Rose MacAulay, Jan Morris (Introduction)


Description: Mixing high farce, archaeology, history and lively travel writing, Rose MacAulay's impossibly witty short novel is back in a new edition. Originally published in 1956, MacAulay follows the adventures of English missionaries traipsing across Turkey from Istanbul to Trabzon.



Yalta, The Price of Peace


Author: Serhii Plokhy


Description: Harvard historian Plokhy puts readers in the room with Churchill, Stalin and Roosevelt over those tumultuous eight days in February, 1945.





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