Aristotle

Cultural

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ITINERARY
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Day 1:(Saturday) Arrival Athens
Arrival at Athens International Airport “Eleftherios Venizelos”. The class will be met by our local representative.  He will assist with our transfer to downtown Athens enjoying a panoramic bus tour. Group welcome lunch at a local restaurant in Plaka, the oldest and most picturesque district of Athens before we check-in after 2:00 p.m. at the hotel. Students will have the remainder of the day to rest, recover from jet-lag. Dinner & overnight at hotel in Athens.

Day 2:(Sunday) Athens city tour
In the morning meet with our local English-speaking government licensed guide in the lobby of the hotel. Students will climb to the Acropolis with our guide to visit the Parthenon and Erechtheion. The panoramic orientation bus city tour will show the highlights of modern Athens such as: Syntagma (Constitution) Square, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, the Parliament House, the Academy, the University, the National Library. We will also stop at the Panathenaic Stadium, view the Temple of Olympian Zeus and Hadrian’s Arch. Group lunch outdoors at a typical tavern in Plaka. In the afternoon, guided visit to the Acropolis Museum, followed by class lecture by your instructor.Personal time to visit and explore the area

SAILING THE BLUE AEGEAN SEA

Day 3: (Monday): Athens – Piraeus/Lavrion - 5/day/4 night Aegean Cruise to the Greek Islands & Turkey – Mykonos, Greece
At 9:00 a.m. escorted transfer to the port of Piraeus/Lavrion for embarkation on our cruise-ship. Sail at 11:30 a.m. and enjoy lunch on board. At 6:00 p.m. arrive at Mykonos, the “pearl of the Aegean Sea”. We take the shuttle bus from Tourlos port to downtown. The island combines the traditional white-washed beauty of a typical Cycladic island with a modern international jet-setting atmosphere. We will explore its circuitous streets and its flower-bedecked alleyways to visit its famous sites i.e. the sculpture Church of Paraportiani, the waterfront of Alefkandra better known as «Little Venice» and its well-known Windmills. Return to the cruise-ship by shuttle bus and sail for Kusadasi, Turkey at 11:00 p.m.  Dinner provided on board.
 
Day 4: (Tuesday): Kusadasi / Ephesus, Turkey – Patmos, Greece
At 7:00 a.m. our cruise-ship docks at Kusadasi, starting point for our excursion to the ancient city of Ephesus. Students will be offered a guided tour of the spectacular ruins. Walk through history along marble streets lined with wonderful public buildings, among them the Temple of Hadrian, the Baths of Scholastica, the Library of Celsus, and the grand Theatre. In this city, the marvelous Temple of Artemis (Diana) of the Ephesians was built, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.Research presentations by class members at site.
Return to the cruise-ship for lunch on board. Sail for Patmos at 1:00 p.m.
Class meeting on board prior to arrival at Patmos with set-aside time to work on journals.
At 4:00 p.m. arrival at the rocky island of Patmos, where the exiled Apostle John wrote the Book of Revelation in the New Testament. Disembarkation will be by tender-boats. Class members will be driven up to the Greek Byzantine Orthodox Monastery St. John the Evangelist, which offers a spectacular view of the island. We also visit the Grotto of the Apocalypse where, to Christian believers, St. John saw the future of humanity. Return to the cruise-ship and sail for Rhodes at 9:00 p.m. Dinner provided on board.

Day 5 (Wednesday): Rhodes with morning visit to the acropolis of Lindos
Arrive in Rhodes at 7:00 a.m., an island which has been inhabited for more than 2,400 years.  The Knights of St John, a Crusading Order, made it their stronghold in 1309 and built their citadel over ancient remains. The new town lies beyond the original walls of the town.  Here, in classical times stood, it is said, the Colossus of Rhodes, considered one of the Seven Wonders of the World.  There will be a morning half-day excursion to the Temple of Athena on the majestic rocky Acropolis of Lindos, with the blue Aegean Sea beneath it and the sophisticated, whitewashed artists' colony at its foot. Return to the cruise-ship for lunch and enjoy afternoon free in Rhodes old town. Sail for Heraklion, Crete at 6:00 p.m. Dinner provided on board.

Day 6 (Thursday): Heraklion, Crete - Santorini
Breakfast on board before we arrive at 7:00 a.m. at Heraklion, Crete where our study-tour takes us to visit the Minoan Palace of Knossos, first European civilization and legendary home of the Minotaur (half bull and half man). Return to the cruise-ship and sail for Santorini at 11:30 a.m.
Arrive Santorini at 4:30 p.m. and disembark by tender-boats (sea & weather permitting). Take the cable-car up to the white-washed town of Fira; perched high on the rim of the ancient volcano, the eruption of which literally buried a flourishing Bronze Age town which has now been excavated at Akrotiri. Free time to explore this magnificent island! Dinner and sail for Piraeus/Lavrion at 9:30 p.m.Time on board to catch up on journal ke.eping & conferences with instructor as needed

GREEK MAINLAND STUDY TOUR BEGINS… 

Day 7 (Friday): Piraeus/Lavrion – Corinth Canal - Epidaurus - Tolon
At 6:00 a.m. our cruise-ship docks at Piraeus/Lavrion. At 7:45 a.m. disembarkation after breakfast, meet with our guide and class members will board our motor-coach for the drive along the coastal road of the Saronic Gulf to the Corinth Canal, a four miles narrow cut of land, connecting the waters of the Saronic with the Corinthian Gulf.  After lunch in local restaurant, we drive to the Agora Art Gallery to have a pottery class.
Proceed to Epidaurus: the Sanctuary of Asclepius, ancient god of healing. Here we will find the best-preserved ancient theater in all of Greece, famous for the harmony of its design and the perfection of its remarkable acoustics, easily accommodating 12,000 people.  At the end of site visit, drive to Tolon for check-in, dinner & overnight at hotel.

Day 8 (Saturday): Tolon - Nafplion - Mycenae - Olympia
Depart to Nafplion (brief stop), the first capital of modern Greece, to see the beautiful harbor and magnificent fortifications built by the Italians during their control of Greece. The next stop will be Mycenae to visit the remains of the prehistoric citadel fortified with the Cyclopean Walls, the Lionesses' Gate, the remains of the Mycenaean Palace and the Tomb of King Agamemnon.  Research presentations at the site.  After lunch at a local restaurant in Mycenae, we head up for Olympia. Dinner provided at the hotel.

Day 9 (Sunday): Olympia
Today we have a full day in Ancient Olympia, the birthplace of the Olympic Games which were begun in 776 BC and were held at intervals of four years.  The site was also the most important Sanctuary of Zeus. The starting line is still visibly etched on the marble in the stadium. Class members are invited to run the course in memory of competition held in ancient Greece. Listen to a lecture on the importance of this site to the ancient Greeks and its significance to the re-introduction of the modern Olympic Games by Pierre de Coubertin. Visit the Archaeological Museum which is one of the finest of its kind. Attention will be paid to the marble statue of Hermes Carrying an Infant by Praxiteles, to the pediment and metopes from the Temple of Zeus and the statue of Nike. Students will have a cooking class followed by a nice buffet lunch at a local open air restaurant. Class meeting at Olympia in the afternoon followed by dinner at hotel.

Day 10 (Monday): Olympia - Delphi
Check-out from the hotel and drive to Delphi. Upon arrival, class will visit the Archaeological site. We proceed onto the Sacred Way to the Athenian Treasury, the Stoas (arcades), the Temple of Apollo, the Theater and the remains of the Stadium. Visit the remains of the gymnasium and the Temple of Athena Pronoia with the famous 4th century BC Tholos. Research presentations offered.  After the visit, we will be transferred to the hotel for dinner.

Day 11 (Tuesday): Delphi – Athens
In the morning we visit the amazing Archaeological Museum in Delphi. Group lunch will be held at a local restaurant with panoramic view over the olive grove valley of Amphissa. Then, return journey to Athens. Check-in at the hotel and settle in your rooms. Enjoy personal time in Athens for browsing. Dinner on your own.

Day 12 (Wednesday): Athens - Sounion
This morning we depart from the hotel for our morning excursion to Sounion to visit Temple of Poseidon. (Review of myth pertaining to the return of Theseus from Crete). Return to Athens and enjoy lunch in local restaurant. Transfer for a private classical performance of “Ruins of Passion” (This play is based on the tragic life of Iphigenia, daughter of the King Agamemnon and Queen Clytemnestra of Mycenae). Performance will be followed by an Ancient Greek mask workshop. Return back to the hotel and have free time in Athens to search for last minute gifts, souvenirs, etc. Dinner on your own.

Day 13 (Thursday): Athens departure
After check-out from the hotel, meet with your escort and transfer by motor coach to Athens International Airport “Eleftherios Venizelos” for your departure flight.

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