Treasures of Athena
10- Day Tour
Louis Cruise Lines
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up to 2 years pays : $ 200
1 - Athens-
Saturday ( D)
Our local rep will meet you at Athens Airport & assist with your transfer to your hotel. Dinner is included at the hotel. Add an extra day in Athens ?
2 Athens- Private Touring (BLD) Sunday
Half-day private city sightseeing tour will introduce you to the most important sites, including the House of Parliament, Hadrians Arch, Acropolis with its outstanding monuments and museum. Lunch is included at a charming local restaurant .Afternoon walking tour of the Plaka. Dinner is included at the hotel.
3 - Monday - MYCENAE, EPIDAURUS & NAUPLIA (BD)
We set forth from Athens to tour classical Greece, passing Corinth and its steep-walled canal as we go. We stop at Mycenae, to visit among other things , the famous tomb of Agamemnon.
Mycenae : the center of ancient Mycenaean civilization (2800-1100 BC); the legendary home of the Atreides, is situated upon a small hill-top on the lower slopes of Euboea Mountain, between two of its peaks, on the road leading from the Argolic Gulf to the north (Corinth, Athens, etc.).
The site was inhabited since Neolithic times (about 4000 BC) but reached its peak during the Late Bronze Age (1350-1200 BC), giving its name to a civilization which spread throughout the Greek world.
During that period, the acropolis was surrounded by massive "cyclopean"
walls, which were built in three stages (ca.1350, 1250 and 1225 BC)
except on its SE flank where a steep ravine provided natural defense.
A palace was built on the summit of the hill while towards the Argolic plain lay the wall - painted "Cult Center", the main gate or "Lion Gate" and "Grave Circle A" which contained the treasures now displayed at the National Archaeological Museum of Athens. On the NE side, a tunnel leading to a subterranean fountain was built in "cyclopean" masonry in around 1225 B.C.
More tombs, "Grave Circle B", and large tholoi as well as houses were discovered outside the walls. Mycenae was occupied without interruption until 468 B.C. when it was conquered by the city of Argos and its population banished. It was reoccupied in the 3rd century B.C. for a relatively short period. It had been abandoned for some time when Pausanias visited the site during the 2nd century A.D.
to Epidaurus, site of the temple of Asclepius. On to Nauplion ( short
stop ) .
We drive through the central Peloponnese , pass by Tripolis and Megalopolis on our way to Olympia, where we spend the night .
4 - Tuesday - OLYMPIA (BD)
Tour this ancient site of the Olympic games. We visit the great Temple of Zeus, one of the Wonders of the Ancient World, and tour the museum. We drive through Rion, Antirion and Nafpaktos and along the Corinthian coast on our way to Delphi,where we overnight.
5- Wednesday - DELPHI
Tour Delphi, site of the famed oracle, at the foot of Mount Parnassus. During the Mycenaean period, the female deity of Earth was worshipped in the small settlement of Delphi. The development of the sanctuary and oracle though, began in the 8th century B.C. with the establishment of the cult of Apollo. Under the protection and administration of the Amphictyony, the sanctuary continued to be autonomous after the First Sacred War and, as a result, increased its panhellenic religious and political influence. The Pythian Games were re-organized, the sanctuary was enlarged and it was enriched with nice buildings, statues, and other offerings. In the 3rd century B.C. it came under the domination of the Aetolians and later, in 191 B.C., was conquered by the Romans. During the Roman occupation the site was sometimes plundered but was also favoured by some of the emperors. With the spread of Christianity, the sanctuary lost its religious meaning and was permanently closed down with a decree of emperor Theodosius the Great.
We tour the ruins of Delphi and its oracle, sacred to Apollo and Dionysus. In the afternoon, we drive via the lovely Kalambaka a small town situated at the foot of the astonishing complex of Meteora , we spend the night at Kalambaka .
6 - Thursday - ATHENS (BD)
We tour Meteora , perched at the top of huge rocks which seems to be suspended in mid-air , stand ageless Monasteries, where you can see exquisite specimens of Byzantine art , Meteora is from the biggest and most important group of monasteries in Greece after those in Mount Athos. We can locate the first traces of their history from 11th c. when the first hermits settled there. The rock monasteries have been characterized by Unesco as a unique phenomenon of cultural heritage and they form one of the most important stations of cultural map of Greece. On to Athens via Trikala , Lamia , Thermopylae , visit the Leonidas Monument , and Kammena Vourla. Arrive Athens in the evening where a comfortable bed and dinner await you at the hotel .
7 - Athens, Cruise*- Mykonos (BLD) Friday
Transfer to Piraeus for the embarkation on your 3 day cruise. Arrival at the jet-set island of Mykonos at 6:00 PM. You will have the evening to stroll the narrow streets to the sculpture- like church of Paraportiani, or along the waterfront to the famous windmills, perhaps stopping at a picturesque café for an ouzo. The ship departs at 11:00 PM.
8 -Kusadasi (Turkey), Patmos (BLD) Saturday
Arrive 7:00 AM. at Kusadasi, the popular Turkish port and gateway to the ancient city of Ephesus. Optional tour of Ephesus. Midday departure. In late afternoon, arrival at the Greek isle of Patmos. Here you can visit the Monastery of St. John where the book of Revelations was written.
9 - HERAKLION (CRETE) , SANTORINI (B) -
We drop anchor in the port of Heraklion at 7 a.m. You can explore on your own, or take an optional excursion to the 5000-year-old Minoan Palace at Knossos and the archaeological museum. We sail late morning for Santorini, where the lost civilization of Atlantis flourished. You'll have until 9 PM to explore on your own or join the ship's own optional tour.
10 Piraeus /ATHENS/DEPARTURE (B) Monday
Morning arrival in Piraeus. Transfer to the airport . Bon Voyage
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