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St Paul - 8 Days
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Footsteps of St. Paul
a journey to Greece and the Greek Islands

 

Proposed Itinerary
 

Day 1 - Depart to Athens
Evening departure from your home town, for the overnight flights to Greece. Dinner and breakfast will be served on board.

Day 2 - Arrive Greece
Arrive in Athens and connect flight to Thessaloniki. You will be met and transferred to your hotel. Time to relax dinner and overnight.

Day 3 - Phillippi, Kavala, Thessaloniki
Visit Philippi where St. Paul delivered his first sermon in Europe, sowing the seeds of Christianity. "And from there (we went) to Philippi, which is the leading city of the district of Macedonia and a Roman Colony. We remained in this city some days..." Acts 16:12-18 Here St. Paul baptized a certain woman named Lydia, the first Christian convert in Europe. The Roman forum, completely excavated, is from after St. Paul's time. Among the ruins, located on the rocky ledge above the town's main road is the prison where St. Paul and Silas were thrown. Continue into the modern port city of Kavala, ancient Neapolis, where St. Paul accompanied by Silas, Luke and Timothy, first set foot in Europe. Dinner and overnight in Thessaloniki.

Day 4 - Thessaloniki, Meteora
Thessaloniki city-tour. St. 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 Egnatia, once a strategic artery of the Roman Empire. Depart for Kalambaka, Meteora Monasteries. Dinner and overnight in Kalambaka.

Day 5 - Kalambaka - Delphi
Visit Meteora Monasteries. Among striking scenery, perched on top of huge rocks, that seem to be suspended in mid-air, stand ageless monasteries where you can see exquisite specimens of Byzantine art. Continue to Delphi.

Day 6 - Delphi - Athens
Visit Delphi, the center of the ancient world (navel) of the earth, whose prestige extended far beyond the boundaries of the Hellenic world. On the slopes of Mount Parnassus, in a landscape of unparalleled beauty and majesty, lie the ruins of the Sanctuary of Apollo Phthios. Visit the site and the museum and continue to Athens.“ Men of Athens, I perceive that in every way you are religious. For as I passed along and observed the objects of your worship, I found also an altar with this inscription “ to an unknown God”. What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you…”. Athens, is one of the most glorious cities in the world and the cradle of western civilization as we know it today. Dinner and overnight at our hotel.

Day 7 - Excursion to Corinth
Today you will visit the Acropolis to see the ruins of the Parthenon, Erectheum and Propylae. For twenty five centuries, the panorama of this city is dominated by the rock of the Acropolis; see the ruins of the Parthenon, the Erectheum and the Propylae. Afterwards, ascend Mars Hill where St. Paul spoke to the ancient Athenians about the one and only God. From here we have an excellent view of the ancient agora; former center of the Athenian public life. Continue for a drive through the city to see the House of Parliament on Syntagma Square, the evzones in their picturesque uniforms guarding the Presidential Palace and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Also during the tour your will see the Library, the University, the Panathenaic Stadium where the first Olympics of the modern era were held, the temple of the Olympian Zeus and Adrian’s Arch. This afternoon continue the tour to Ancient Corinth. Here, under the shadow of the towering Acropolis, St. Paul preached and lived for two years. The vigorous and mostly Gentile Church he founded here in 50 AD caused him much grief and prompted him to write, at least, four letters to them. Visit the ruins of the ancient city where St. Paul worked with Aquila and Priscilla. See the remains of the first century shops, the agora where Paul's trial by Gallio took place, the Fountain of Peirene, Temple of Apollo and the Bema. Return to Athens for dinner and overnight.

Day 8 - Start of our 3-day Cruise Mykonos
Our first port-of-call is Mykonos; the whitewashed streets and windmills of this Cycladic island will simply enchant you. Mykonos combines in a unique way the luxuriant and sophisticated lifestyle with the simple and yet charming life of a Cycladic Island. Free time to stroll the winding narrow streets full of boutiques, visit tiny chapels and take pictures of the famous windmills. Or perhaps, just sit by the waterfront and enjoy the beautiful sunset!

Day 9
- Kusadasi (Ephesus & Mary's House) - Patmos

Kusadasi is a lively Turkish port and the gateway to the ancient city of Ephesus, one of the most impressive ruins of the Biblical world. Drive to Mt. Koressos located behind the ancient city of Ephesus, where you will visit the house where the Virgin Mary is believed to have spent her last days. There will be time for prayer and reflection before traveling back down hill to Ephesus where you will enjoy a guided walking tour through one of the most magnificent excavations in the world. See the Great Theatre where St. Paul preached, which is the largest theatre in antiquity having a capacity of 24,000 people. Just outside Ephesus, view the Basilica of St. John, which was erected over his grave in the 6th Century AD by the Emperor Justinian. Before returning to the ship, enjoy free time in Kusadasi. Continue our journey to the island of Patmos, where we will enjoy a short ride up to the village of Chora where the monastery of St. John located. Visit the courtyard, the church with it's outstanding frescoes and small museum which houses ancient books and manuscripts, mosaics, Icons, splendid medieval textiles and vestments as well as jewelry. Return to your motorcoach and continue on to the nearby Grotto of the Apocalypse where the apostle, St. John wrote the Book of Revelations during his exile by the Roman State. Return to the port of Scala and enjoy some free time in this quaint and picturesque harbor before boarding the ship.


Day 10 - Heraklion - Santorini

In the morning we will visit Heraklion and see the fantastic ruins of the Palace of Knossos. Discovered in 1899 and partially reconstructed, the elaborate Palace is believed to be the mythical Labyrinth of King Minos and the seat of ancients Minoan culture. It is in Heraklion where Paul met the owner and captain of the ship who warned him of continuing his journey to Rome. In the afternoon we will cruise on to the idyllic island of Santorini, the most breathtaking of all the Greek Islands. Accessible by cable-car or mule, the town of Thira reveals white-washed houses, narrow streets, open-air cafes and glittering boutiques that cling to steep cliffs. Return back to the ship.


Day 11 - Piraeus - USA (or Athens)
Today marks the end of our cruise. Upon arrival in the port you will be met by a tour escort and transfer by private motor coach to the airport for your return flights to USA.

 

Tour Features:

  • Round trip airfare from New York (Includes ALL Airport Taxes & Fuel Surcharges)
  • Hotel Accommodations in Superior-Tourist and/or First Class Hotel, twin-bedded rooms with private facilities
  • Cruise - Accommodations in Twin bedded, OUTSIDE Cabins with private facilities
  • Breakfast and dinner daily (all meals while on cruise.)
  • Wine with dinners
  • Transfers between airport, lodging and Cruise ship, with porterage at hotels and ship
  • Multi-lingual Tour Guides and Escorts
  • Sightseeing and Shore Excursions as specified in itinerary
  • Welcome Packet / Document Portfolio
  • Daily Mass and all spiritual activities coordinated

Pricing:
 

2017 Pilgrimage Dates
GR17 0331 March 31 - April 10, 2017 $4095
GR17 0519 May 19 - 29, 2017 $4395
GR17 0609 June 9 - 19, 2017 $4595
GR17 0630 June 30 - July 10, 2016 $4595
GR17 0915 September 15 - 25, 2017 $4295
GR17 1013 October 13 - 23, 2017 $4295
     

*Departures from other Cities are available

Special Add-on Fares available from your hometown.
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