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23192
Greece

Greece in the Off-Season: Exploring the Peloponnese

Study with local experts to uncover the fascinating history of ancient Greece as you learn about Greek mythology and cultural landmarks during the quieter winter months.
Rating (4.67)
Program No. 23192RJ
Length
11 days
Starts at
4,799
Special Offer
Click on Dates & Prices below to see special offer details.
Flights start at
FREE
Greece

Greece in the Off-Season: Exploring the Peloponnese

Study with local experts to uncover the fascinating history of ancient Greece as you learn about Greek mythology and cultural landmarks during the quieter winter months.
Length
11 days
Starts at
4,799
Special Offer
Click on Dates & Prices below to see special offer details.
Flights start at
FREE
Program No. 23192 RJ
Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
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Prices displayed below are based on per person,doubleoccupancy.

DATES & PRICES

Ship Outside
Accommodation Details

A cabin with a window or porthole to view the outside.

Mar 22 - Apr 1, 2022
Ship Outside 4,799
Special Offer

OFFER EXTENDED: Enroll by Dec. 31, 2021 for free air from select cities! Ask about low-cost air from other cities!

Nov 1 - Nov 11, 2022
Ship Outside 4,799
Special Offer

OFFER EXTENDED: Enroll by Dec. 31, 2021 for free air from select cities! Ask about low-cost air from other cities!

DATES & PRICES

Ship Outside
Accommodation Details

A cabin with a window or porthole to view the outside.

Mar 22 - Apr 1, 2022
Ship Outside 6,999
Special Offer

OFFER EXTENDED: Enroll by Dec. 31, 2021 for free air from select cities! Ask about low-cost air from other cities!

Nov 1 - Nov 11, 2022
Ship Outside 6,999
Special Offer

OFFER EXTENDED: Enroll by Dec. 31, 2021 for free air from select cities! Ask about low-cost air from other cities!

At a Glance

During its height in the Middle Ages, the Byzantine Empire was the most powerful economic, cultural and military force in all of Europe, with a strong focus in science, art, music and literature. Along with top-notch instructors, trace the history of Byzantium around the Peloponnese as you explore ancient ruins and incredible artifacts just like a local. Study the roots of Greek mythology at the Temple of Hera and explore one of the most important natural wonders in all of Greece—the Caves of Diros—while the tourists have all gone home. As you cruise around the peninsula, learn about the framework laid by ancient Greeks to create the mighty Byzantine Empire and the modern-day nation of Greece we know today.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to two miles per day; uneven and inclined terrain including hills, stairs without railings, and cobblestone streets. Getting on/off motorcoach and climbing in/out of tender.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Explore ancient Epidaurus and learn about this healing sanctuary known throughout Greece and the rumored birthplace of Apollo’s son, Asclepius.
  • Learn the story behind the early Olympic Games as you discover Ancient Olympia and the ruins of the gymnasium where the first athletes trained.
  • Enjoy two nights in Athens with our local experts before you board the ship and explore ancient Greek ruins including the Acropolis and the Parthenon.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
It's All Greek to Me
by Charlotte Higgins
With timelines, a who's who, charts and maps, this handy little primer is a thoroughly entertaining introduction to everything Greek, from poetry and drama to philosophy, history and culture.
Greece, Land of Light
by Nicholas Gage, Barry Brukoff
Brukoff's dramatic color photographs are paired with incisive commentary by award-winning author Nicholas Gage for this striking portrait of the people, land and history of Greece and the islands
Ancient Greece: Art, Architecture, and History
by Marina Belozerskaya, Kenneth Lapatin
This lyrical novel captures the humanity, quirks and loves of village life in the Greek islands. A satire of war, this charming and richly-colored novel is set on Cephalonia during the Italian occupation in the 1940s.
The King Must Die
by Mary Renault
The first in Mary Renault's trilogy of well-researched page-turners features the tale of Theseus, slayer of the Minotaur and the king of Athens. Known for her exhaustive research, Renault is an acknowledged master of historical fiction.
The Most Beautiful Villages of Greece
by Mark Ottaway
Organized geographically, this handsome oversize picture book is an illustrated portrait of Greece with hundreds of color photographs accompanying lively essays
Corelli's Mandolin
by Louis De Bernieres
This lyrical novel captures the humanity, quirks and loves of village life in the Greek islands. A satire of war, this charming and richly-colored novel is set on Cephalonia during the Italian occupation in the 1940s.
The Complete World of Greek Mythology
by Richard Buxton
Cahill brings to life ancient Greek society and civilization through the lives and words of politicians, playwrights, a poet, a philosopher and an artist in this eloquent and absorbing tribute.
Eyewitness Guide Greek Islands
by Eyewitness Guides
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.
Greece, A Traveler's Literary Companion
by Artemis Leontis (Editor)
In this terrific anthology, 24 modern Greek writers offer a flavor of their nation, its culture and people, beautiful landscapes and rich history.
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11 days
10 nights
25 meals
9 B 8 L 8 D
DAY
1
In Transit to Program
In Flight
DAY
2
Arrive, Check-In, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Athens
D
Divani Palace Acropolis

Activity note: Hotel check-in from 3:00 p.m.

Afternoon: Attend an Orientation meeting. Your Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer questions. Program activities, schedules, personnel, and indicated distances or times may change due to local circumstances/conditions. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible.Please also note that your departure is part of our Adventures Afloat programs. All routes and excursions are subject to change – weather and sea conditions may affect the itinerary. Sea conditions affect the progress of the ship, making it run late and sometimes miss ports because it is not safe to dock. Because of this, the cruise itinerary should always be regarded as provisional. The operators reserve the right to change the content of excursions without prior notice. Thank you for your understanding. This is a Road Scholar Adventures Afloat program. In addition to lectures and field trips exclusively for our Road Scholar group, you are invited to take advantage of activities and events aboard ship that are separate from the Road Scholar program.

Dinner: In the hotel restaurant, we will enjoy a meal of Greek cuisine served family style. Wine, coffee, and water included; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: At leisure. Continue getting to know your fellow Road Scholars, settle in, and get a good night’s rest for the day ahead.

DAY
3
Acropolis, Free Time
Athens
B,L
Divani Palace Acropolis

Activity note: Getting on/off a motorcoach. Driving under 1/2 hour. Walking about 2 miles including uphill along a winding trail with many well-worn steps to reach the Acropolis, no handrails; uneven and rocky at the top; standing up to 2 hours. Walking and standing for more than 1 hour at the Acropolis Museum. Popular sites may be crowded at certain periods.

Breakfast: In the hotel restaurant, our breakfast buffet offers a daily selection of breads, cheeses, cold-cuts, yogurt, fruit, cereals, juice, milk, coffee, tea, and water.

Morning: We’ll begin our exploration of Athens with a field trip to its most iconic site, the Acropolis, and begin our climb to the top. Here we will see a number of temples, the most famous of which is the Parthenon, dedicated to the city's patroness, the goddess Athena. We will also visit the new Acropolis Museum, completed in 2007, down the hill. Its impressive galleries exhibit items from the permanent collection from great works of sculptural art to objects of everyday life.

Lunch: At a local restaurant, we will have a family-style meal with dishes shared at the table plus wine or beer, coffee, and water; other beverages available for purchase.

Afternoon: Free time. Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities, which can be found in the first Information Packet. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Dinner: On your own to explore local cuisine.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
4
Archaeological Museum & Embark Ship
Itea
B,L,D
MY Callisto

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach. Driving under 1/2 hour. Walking up to 2 miles over some inclined terrain on uneven ground; some stairs with no railings; standing in the museum. Overnight in port.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: We will check out of the hotel with our luggage and transfer via motorcoach to the National Archaeological Museum of Athens. It is the largest museum in Greece, housing more than 11,000 exhibited Greek artifacts. The museum traces the development of human creativity and civilization from pre-history to late antiquity. We will explore with an expert to see an impressive array of archaeological and artistic treasures.

Lunch: At a local restaurant, we will have a plated lunch with wine and water included; other beverages available for purchase.

Afternoon: We will transfer to Marina Zea and board our elegant motor cruiser in the late afternoon. After completing embarkation procedures and getting our cabins, we’ll take some time to freshen up. We will then gather for a welcome drink to meet members of the crew and our fellow passengers. We will join in the ship’s safety drill. Our first port is Ithea.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Evening: At leisure. On some evenings, the ship offers music or movies. We will transit the Corinth Canal, one of the oldest man-made canals in the world, that joins the Ionian Sea to the Aegean and cruise to Itea.

DAY
5
Itea & Delphi, Free Time
At Sea
B,L,D
MY Callisto

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach. Driving under 1/2 hour. Overnight in port. All routes and excursions are subject to change – weather and sea conditions may affect the itinerary.

Breakfast: Aboard the ship, our breakfast buffet offers a daily selection of breads,cheeses, cold-cuts, yogurt, fruit, cereals, juice, milk, coffee, tea and water.

Morning: We will head to Delphi, one of the ancient world's most important sites. The ruins complex is located on the side of a mountain amidst stunning natural beauty. This site was known to host the most important oracle in the ancient world, as well as a place to worship Apollo. We’ll then visit the adjoining museum before heading back to the ship.

Lunch: Aboard the ship.

Afternoon: Free time aboard the ship.

Dinner: Aboard ship. Dinners are plated and include an appetizer, soup, main course, and dessert.

Evening: At leisure. We will arrive in Katakolon late this evening.

DAY
6
Katakolon & Olympia
Pylos
B,L,D
MY Callisto

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach. Total driving under 2.5 hours, approximately 92 miles. Overnight at Itea. All routes and excursions are subject to change – weather and sea conditions may affect the itinerary.

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: Enjoy a field trip to Olympia, one of the most famous sites of the ancient world. Active until the 3rd century CE, this area has been excavated since 1875. A highlight of Olympia is the stadium which has been restored to resemble the exciting times when it was in use. We’ll then visit the Archaeological Museum of Olympia which houses many pieces from the nearby Temple of Zeus, as well as numerous bronze objects and terracotta statues.

Lunch: At a local restaurant in Olympia.

Afternoon: We'll re-board the ship in the evening and head towards Pylos. Free time aboard the ship.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
7
Pylos, Free Time
At Sea
B,L,D
MY Callisto

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach. Driving under 1/2 hour. All routes and excursions are subject to change – weather and sea conditions may affect the itinerary.

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: With our Group Leader, we’ll head to the Palace of Nestor, mentioned in Homer’s Odyssey and Iliad, set atop a hill north of Plyos. Afterwards, we’ll return to the ship.

Lunch: Aboard the ship.

Afternoon: At leisure in the lovely sea-side town of Plyos, known for one of the most important naval battles in Greek history which led to the independence of Greece in 1829.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
8
Gythion, Free Time
At Sea
B,L,D
MY Callisto

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach. Driving under 1 hour. All routes and excursions are subject to change – weather and sea conditions may affect the itinerary.

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: We will arrive in Gythion early this morning, used by the Spartans as a port and naval base. After leaving the ship, we’ll drive through the Mani peninsula and Cape Tenaro to reach the breathtaking Dirou Caves, led by our Group Leader. Recently discovered in the 1960s, these caves are among the most important natural sites in Greece. We will end our field trip with a stroll through the lovely town of Areopolis before returning to the ship.

Lunch: Aboard the ship.

Afternoon: Free time as the ship cruises to Monemvasia.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
9
Monemvasia
Nafplion
B,L,D
MY Callisto

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach. Driving under 1/2 hour. Overnight in port. All routes and excursions are subject to change – weather and sea conditions may affect the itinerary.

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: Set out on a walking field trip with our Group Leader to explore the fortified town of Monemvasia, where beautifully preserved Venetian and Ottoman architecture is complemented by the beauty of the surrounding environment. Once connected to the mainland, an earthquake in the 4th century left Monemvasia as an island plateau rising 300 feet out of the Aegean. While here, we will learn about the island’s strategic location and its possession by various empires.

Lunch: Aboard the ship.

Afternoon: At sea, cruising towards Nafplion.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Evening: At leisure. This evening we will arrive in the charming town of Nafplion.

DAY
10
Nafplion, Mycenae, Free Time
Athens
B,L,D
MY Callisto

Activity note: Getting on/off motorcoach. Driving under 1/2 hour. All routes and excursions are subject to change – weather and sea conditions may affect the itinerary.

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: This morning we will drive through the countryside to Mycenae to visit the remains of this once-bustling city, called "rich in Gold" by Homer. Sites will include the Lion's Gate, Agamemnon Tomb, the palace, and museum. We’ll then venture to ancient Epidaurus with our Group Leader. It was here that, in ancient times, the venerated sanctuary of Aesculapius, the god of medicine, flourished. Its 4th-century theater is regarded as one of the best preserved theaters of the ancient Greek world and, due to its excellent acoustics, it is still in use for performances of ancient Greek drama during the summer festival of Epidaurus. During this visit, we will learn all about the birth of the ancient Greek drama, the feasts of Dionysus, as well as the healing process in the ancient medical sanctuaries dedicated to Aesculapius. We will then rejoin and board the ship in the afternoon.

Lunch: Aboard the ship.

Afternoon: At leisure. We will depart for Marina Zea.

Dinner: Aboard the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
11
Disembark in Athens, Program Concludes
In Flight
B

Activity note: Disembarkation around 8:00 a.m.

Breakfast: Aboard the ship.

Morning: We will disembark the ship early morning and transfer to the airport for your departing flights. This concludes our program. If you are returning home, safe travels. If you are staying on independently, have a wonderful time. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on another rewarding program in the future. Don’t forget to join our Facebook page and follow us on Instagram. Best wishes for all your journeys!






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