Travel To Greece

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Greece and Turkey Escape

> DAY 1: Athens

Arrival in Greece, the land of the mythical Gods and ancient civilization. At Athens International Airport you will be welcomed by your private driver and taken to your five-star hotel. Enjoy your afternoon and evening exploring the vibrant culture and nightlife of Modern Athens. Ask your Leisure Travel Consultant for their favorite Athens restaurants, cafes and entertainment.

> DAY 2: Athens - Half Day Athens Walking Tour

After breakfast, your licensed English speaking guide will meet you at your hotel lobby. Begin your tour at the new Acropolis Museum and then visit the Acropolis itself and its timeless temples of Parthenon, Erectheion and Athena Nike. A short climb up to the Hill of Philopappus brings you to the imposing Roman period funeral monument and extensive views of Athens and Piraeus. You then descend to the hill of the Pnyx, the area used in Classical Athens as the meeting place for the democratic assembly. You enter the historical Plaka area close to the Thiseion temple, dating back to the 5th century BC, meandering past the ancient Agora with the impressively restored Stoa of Attalus, Hadrian’s Library, and the picturesque Tower of the Winds. The route back leads up over the Areopagus, or Hill of Mars, directly below the Acropolis. Here, in 54 AD, Saint Paul preached his Sermon on an unknown God, as recorded in the Acts of the Apostles. Finally, you pass the Roman period Odeion of Herodes Atticus, which is still used as a summer venue for open-air concerts and theatrical performances.  Your tour will end at Syntagma Square where you can enjoy the changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.  (B)

> DAY 3:  Athens, Santorini

After breakfast, meet your private transfer to the Athens airport where you will board a flight to Santorini. Upon arrival you will be greeted and transferred to your luxury hotel. Enjoy your afternoon and evening at your leisure taking in the spectacular views of the caldera and the stunning colors of the sunset.  (B)

> DAY 4: Santorini

Explore the island at your leisure or enjoy an optional Semi-Private Sunset Catamaran Cruise.  The cruise begins from Vlihada Marina and sails past the red and white beaches, and on to Akrotiri and the ancient light house. The first stop will be at the volcano and the hot springs a quick swim. Next, you will proceed to a beautiful and secluded bay for a swim and snorkeling, while the onboard chef prepares your lunch of seafood and steak barbeque. Following lunch, continue sailing through the caldera past the islands of Thirassia and Aspronissi and back towards Vlihada. (B)

> DAY 5: Santorini

Enjoy your day at leisure.  Ask your Leisure Travel Consultant for their personal tips of favorite activities and excursions while in Santorini. (B)

> DAY 6: Santorini, Mykonos

After breakfast, meet your transfer in the hotel lobby and drive to the port of Santorini where you will board a hydrofoil for a three hour ride to Mykonos, an island famous for its whitewashed labyrinth streets and jet set atmosphere. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel and spend the rest of the day at leisure. (B)

> DAY 7: Mykonos

Explore the day at your leisure or enjoy an optional tour to the uninhabited island of Delos – The Sacred Island of Antiquity and the birthplace of Apollo. The entire island, all 5 square kilometers, is an archaeological monument. Remains of temples, holy places, houses, and settlements date back from the Neolithic to the Roman periods. There is no place in the world where one will not find photographs of the Lion Terrace, with its unique marble Lions. The indoor Archaeological Museum is one of the best in the country. In fact, the site is so full and rich with antiquities that multiple visits are quite common. (B)

> DAY 8: Mykonos

Enjoy your day at leisure.  Ask your Leisure Travel Consultant for their favorite beaches on the island of Mykonos. (B)

> DAY 9: Mykonos, Samos, Kusadasi-Izmir

After breakfast you will be transfered to the port and embark on your ferry to Samos. In Samos you will have time to explore the town or take an optional tour before continuing on to Kusadasi. Upon arrival in Turkey you will be transfered to your luxury hotel and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure. (B, D).

> DAY 10: Izmir/Kusadasi – Ephesus Tour

After breakfast depart for your private tour to the ancient city of Ephesus.  Ephesus is among the best-preserved ancient sites in the Mediterranean.  Your tour will begin at the Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Continue to the Library of Celsus, Temple of Hadrian, Theatre and Odeon. Following the archeological site, visit the House of the Virgin Mary. In the afternoon, return to your hotel for relaxation. (B, L, D)

> Day 11: Izmir/Kusadasi, Istanbul

Spend your monring relaxing at your hotel or taking your last swim in the Aegean. In the afternoon you will be transfered to Izmir Airport for your flight to Istanbul. Upon arraivel you will be met and transfered to your hotel. Enjoy the evening at your leisure in Istanbul. (B)

> DAY 12: Istanbul – Byzantine and Ottoman Relics Tour

After breakfast meet your private guide for your full day tour of Classical Istanbul.  Your tour will begin at the magnificent Hagia Sophia. This marvelous Byzantine basilica was built in the sixth century and today is sometimes called the Eighth Wonder of the World.  Continue to the Blue Mosque, one of the best examples of classical Turkish architecture. This 17th-century Ottoman mosque is famed for being the only in the world with six minarets.  You will visit the Hippodrome, the former centre of sporting and political activities in Constantinople. During the visit you will be able to see the Obelisk from Egypt, the Serpentine Column from Delphi and the fountain of Willhelm II. End your morning at the Grand Bazaar, which in addition to its historical importance, is a bazaar that will tempt you with its rich collection of precious handmade carpets, jewelry, leather and souvenirs. 

Following lunch you will proceed to the spectacular Topkapi Palace. The Palace was the imperial residence of the Ottoman Sultans from the 15th to the 19th century.  It holds a breathtaking position above the Sea of Marmara, the Bosphorus and the Golden Horn.  Your tour will include an insight into the spectacular architecture, an unparalleled collection of Chinese porcelain, Imperial costumes, holy relics, and the Imperial Treasury.  Your will end with a visit to the Suleymaniye Mosque.  This 16th century mosque is an example of one of the most magnificent of the imperial mosques in the city.  (B, L)

> DAY 13: Istanbul – Bosphorous Cruise

Start your day with a Bosphorous Cruise tour.  Your day will begin with a visit to the 17th century Egyptian Spice Bazaar which is full of the mystical aromas of various spices and colorful shops selling fruit, vegetables, flowers, and more.  Next you will board your Bosphorus Cruise boat.  The Bosphorus is the waterway separating the two continents of Europe and Asia. As you travel, you will enjoy extravagant baroque palaces of the Ottoman sultans: Dolmabahce and Beylerbeyi, the Besiktas commercial district, Rumeli Fortress, the Ortakoy area known for handicrafts and night life, and the famous Kizkulesi light house.  Enjoy the rest of your day at your leisure. (B)

> DAY 14: Departure

After breakfast, transfer to Ataturk Airport  in Istanbul to meet your flight home. (B)

Happy Travels! travelive™

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