Footsteps of Apostle Paul in Greece, Turkey & Cyprus
Arrive in Athens, where you will be met by our representative and transferred to your hotel for dinner and overnight.
Your journey in the mainland of Greece begins with a drive from Athens to Kalambaka, central Greece. Here you find scenery of unique and striking beauty: perched on top of huge granite pinnacles, you see the ageless Meteora Monasteries full of treasures of Christian art. Visit one of them and drive to your hotel in Kalambaka for dinner and overnight.
This morning you get a taste of the beautiful countryside of Central and Northern Greece as you drive from Kalambaka to Veria, where you visit the Bema of the Apostle Paul. Continue to Thessaloniki and get acquainted with the city of Jason and Paul. Dinner and overnight in Thessaloniki.
Follow the route of the Via Egnatia and visit the area of Amphipolis, like Paul and his companion, to see the famous funerary Lion of Amphipolis and the site of Philippi. There, you visit the Baptistery of Lydia near the river, where Paul baptized her. Lydia was the first convert of Paul on European soil, followed by the jailer. Also visit the ruins of the Forum of Philippi, the Christian Basilicas, the “Prison of Paul” and the Theater. Drive to Kavala (Neapolis), a picturesque city-port, and view the Byzantine Castle and the Roman Aqueduct. Return to Thessaloniki for dinner and overnight.
In the morning, drive to Thessaloniki and see the landmark of the city, the White Tower, as well as the Walls of the Byzantine Acropolis, the Roman Arch of Galerius and the Rotonda. Visit two of the city’s oldest and most admired Christian churches, the Basilicas of St. Demetrius and Aghia Sophia. Continue to Athens for dinner and overnight.
This morning you will board the cruise ship and sail to the world-famous island of Mykonos. The town is a small architectural miracle, with its gleaming white-washed buildings and windmills, and it is one of the most cosmopolitan places in the world.
In the morning you will arrive in Kusadasi, Turkey, and have the option to drive to Ephesus, where Paul spent three years during his ministry. The impressive remains of Ephesus include the Agora, the Theater, the Stadium, the Library of Celsius, the ruins of the Temple of Diana (one of the “Seven Wonders of the Ancient World”) and many more. Later you will sail for the island of Patmos, where you can choose to visit the Monastery of St. John, on one of the island’s highest points. From there, you will walk down to the Grotto of the Apocalypse, the site of the apocalyptic Revelations of St. John the Divine.
In the morning arrive in Heraklion, Crete, where you can visit the Minoan Palace of Knossos, home to king Minos and his legendary beast, the Minotaur. In the Archaeological Museum of Heraklion, you can find the unbelievable works of art (pieces of sculpture and pottery, jewelry, arms, frescoes) that have been found in a number of Minoan sites all over Crete. In the afternoon, arrive at the isle of Santorini, the most breathtaking of all the Greek islands. The exquisite whitewashed villages, including the town of Fira, or Thira, cling to volcanic cliffs accessible only by cable car or mule.
You arrive in Piraeus, Athens, early in the morning and disembark after breakfast. Today you will admire the architectural miracles of ancient Athens, as you follow your guide to the world-renowned Acropolis to see the Propylea, the Erectheum and the Parthenon. Visit Mars Hill where Paul delivered his speech on the “Unknown God”. View the Agora, the ancient center of the economic and public life of the city, where Paul preached to the skeptical Athenians. During the bus tour, you see Constitution Square with the House of Parliament and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, the Temple of Zeus, the Old Olympic Stadium and Neoclassical buildings of Athens like the National University, the National Library and the Academy. Then, you continue your trip to Ancient Corinth. This is the once glorious city near the Isthmus, where Paul met Aquilla and Priscilla and spent a year and a half preaching the Gospel. You also visit the Archaeological Museum, the Forum, the Temples, and the famous Bema where Paul stood before Gallio, accused by the Jews of Corinth. Then you drive to Cenchreae, the little harbor Paul sailed back to Asia from ending his second missionary journey. Back to Athens for dinner and overnight.
Take a flight from Athens to Cyprus this morning. Highlights of the Bitter Lemons Kerynia Tour include a visit to Bellapais Abbey (made famous in the novel "Bitter Lemons" by Lawrence Durrell) and exploring picturesque Kyrenia - home of the Kyrenia Castle Museum where you will see the oldest shipwreck ever brought out of the water. Cross the "Green Line" on a walking tour into Northern Cyprus and tour the grounds of St. Hilarion Castle.
Take this tour to the only divided capital city in the world - Nicosia, Cyprus. You will visit St. John's Cathedral, the Byzantine Museum, the Old Quarter of Laiki Yitonia and have plenty of time on your own to explore the city center before the tour departs for the village of Lefkara, famous for its handmade lace.
Take a flight home from Cyprus today.