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Seabourn Cruises Istanbul to Athens: June 7 – June 28, 2014

Istanbul – Limnos – Volos – Cesme – Bodrum – Santorini – Paros – Athens – Monemvasia – Katakolo – Parga – Dubvronik – Hvar – Ravenna – Venice – Sibenik – Kotor – Corfu – Kefalonia – Gythio – Rethmyno – Athens

Cruise Company: Seabourn Cruises
Ship Name: Seabourn Odyssey
Duration: 21 Days / 20 Nights
Travel Dates: 07 Jun 2014 - 28 Jun 2014
Cruise Code: Seabourn


 DatePort Click to ExpandArrivalDeparture
 
Jun 7 – Sat Istanbul – Turkey   16:00
If True Greece has arranged for your pre-cruise experience at a luxury Istanbul hotel, before meeting your private car transfer to board your cruise, enjoy a guided tour of the incredible city of Istanbul.

Standing firmly over two continents, Istanbul is the personification of a true “cosmopolitan” city. Your TrueTurkey guide will show you this multi-cultural and historic city through the eyes of a local. Depending on the day of your Istanbul tour you will have the opportunity to visit the Blue Mosque and its superb inner courtyard, the Hippodrome originally built by the Roman Emperor Septimus Severus in 203 AD, the magnificent Byzantine church of St. Sophia, the Underground Cistern built during the reign of Constantine I, the Topkapi Palace where the Ottoman Sultans presided over their vast empire and the Grand Bazaar where almost 5,000 shops are spread out in a giant maze of small streets and passages that are arranged according to their trade. By the end of this fascinating day you will feel like a citizen of this “international” city.

Following your tour, board your cruise ship at Istanbul’s main port and begin your journey of the Eastern Mediterranean. We wish you an exceptional cruise experience!
 
Jun 8 – Sun Limnos – Greece 10:00 17:00
According to ancient mythology, Hephaestus (Vulcan), the god of fire and volcanoes, was cast off from Mount Olympus, landing on Limnos. The people of the island took care of him and in return the god taught them his art of blacksmith. It was in Limnos that he built his palace and forges under a volcano.

Limnos is a beautiful island located in the northern Aegean Sea that offers a quiet and more off-the-beaten path Greek island experience. Since Limnos did not experience the same tourist boom as other Greek islands in the 70s and 80s, it has remained very much ‘untouched’ by mass tourism – leaving it a refreshing destination to discover. Limnos offers its visitors a surprisingly diverse landscape of bays, gulfs, sandy beaches, and fishing harbors, combined with rocky points, a rustic interior with several lakes, and pink flamingos!
 
Jun 9 – Mon Volos - Greece 08:00 17:00
We are working on providing a description of this particular port of call - please check back later.
 
Jun 10 – Tue Cesme – Turkey 08:00 18:00
Cesme means ‘fountain’ or ‘spring’ in Turkish and is a popular beach town surrounded by blue seas, along the beautiful Mediterranean Riviera. This coastal town in the Aegean Region has become one of Turkey’s prominent centers of international travel and tourism; it is a well-regarded location of wealthy Izmirian country homes as well as a retreat for the Istanbul elite.
 
Jun 11 – Wed Bodrum - Turkey 08:00 18:00
Tucked into a peninsula of the same name, Bodrum is a port town in the south-western Aegean Region of Turkey. It is an international center of tourism and yachting, renowned as a vacation paradise with a mix of sandy coasts, secluded bays, evergreen forests and rocky cliffs. As you approach the port, you will be welcomed by the white-washed houses that fan down a gentle slope to its superb enclosed harbor. Birth place of Herodotus (also known as “the father of written history”), Bodrum is the Turkish name for the ancient city of Halicarnassus, and the first town in Turkey to experience a tourist boom.

Until the 6th century BC, Bodrum (also known as Halicarnassus) is said to have either been a Dorian city or at least a member of the Dorian Confederation, including the Greek island of Kos, as well as cities on the island of Rhodes. Eventually, Halicarnassus became a Christian city as part of the Byzantine Empire, but by 1392 the city was annexed to the Ottoman Empire. Around this time, the Knights of St. John were engaged in fights with the Turks and by 1402 the Knights were granted right to settle and govern the city. The city would again be surrendered to the Ottomans by 1522 and renamed Bodrum. During WW1, the city of Bodrum was taken over by Italian forces, but in 1923 it was awarded to the new Turkish Republic.
 
Jun 12 – Thur Santorini – Greece 08:00 23:00
Santorini, world-renowned for its widely photographed, romantic sunsets and unique, volcanic natural environment, is arguably the most striking of the Greek islands. Its dramatic red and black sand beaches, narrow white-washed alleys, exquisite traditional and international cuisine, as well as its agricultural and wine-making tradition, make Santorini a truly spectacular island.

If you have included a True Greece tour or excursion today in Santorini, meet your guide or transfer agent upon arrival at the harbor and begin your exploration of this incredible island under the care of a True Greece affiliate.
 
Jun 13 – Fri Paros (Naoussa) – Greece 08:00 17:00
To Greeks – and those “in the know” – each Greek island is distinctive, even unique, but if there is one that seems to combine many of the elements that attract visitors to the Greek Islands it might be Paros. This impression begins the moment you approach the island by sea to be greeted by the white “cubic” buildings typical of the Cyclades. It will continue as you move around the island to experience its softly contoured hills, picturesque villages, natural environment, and the village life of the locals. It will be confirmed when you begin to explore the island with its archaeological and historical remains that testify to Greece’s age-old culture. And it will be satisfied when you settle on one of the lovely beaches or into a fine restaurant. Then you, too, will realize that, in Paros, you have found your ideal typical Greek island.

Naoussa, the second biggest town of the island is often still referred to as a traditional fishing village although here as well, an increasing growth of tourism has been accommodated by the locals.
Still Naoussa has kept quite a bit of its authenticity and original character. Visit for example the little port, surrounded by a wide choice of taverns and cafés and packed with traditional little fishing boats. If you prefer to hit the beaches, you are also in the right spot: Some of Paros’ most beautiful and popular beaches are located just around the village, for example "Kolimbithres", "Monastiri Beach" or "Santa Maria" to name a few. Most of them can be easily reached after a short water taxi ride or via foot paths.
Those who rather stay in town may want to visit one of its beautiful churches, for example its main church, Kimissis tis Theotokou (the Church of the Assumption of the Virgin), located on the highest spot of the village, or the Church of Agios Nikolaos (Saint Nicholas) which also houses a small Byzantine Museum exposing 13th century icons.
 
Jun 14 – Sat Athens – Greece 07:00 16:00
Disembark your cruise ship at Athens’ main port of Piraeus - Greece's largest port and gateway to the Mediterranean since 482 BC! If True Greece has arranged for a tour experience, meet your private driver upon arrival at the Piraeus cruise terminal and enjoy a True Greece guided tour of Athens and the Acropolis.

Together with your local True Greece guide, the highlights tour will expose you to this diverse city - birth place of modern democracy and cradle of western civilization. Follow your True Greece guide up the steps once taken by ancients like Socrates, Pericles and Plato, and gaze at the ‘sacred’ Acropolis, home to the magnificent and architecturally unique Parthenon. Allow your True Greece guide to bring the city of Athens and this exceptional experience to life, with a wealth of historical and cultural information. As part of your tour, you will also have the opportunity to visit significant and historically important sites, such as the Parliament Building, the Monument of the Unknown Soldier, the Columns of Olympian Zeus, and the Presidential Mansion.

If you have had the opportunity of exploring Athens and its historically significant monuments, it would be our pleasure to arrange a guided tour to one of the many famous sites, perhaps a tour of the major historical museums including the New Acropolis Museum and the National Archaeological Museum; or perhaps you’d prefer an excursion to the Temple of Zeus at Sounio. Whatever your preferences, we can fulfil exactly what you are looking for…and more!
 
Jun 15 – Sun Monemvasia – Greece 08:00 17:00
Monemvasia is a wonderful and picturesque medieval town along the eastern coast of the Peloponnese. In Greek, Monemvasia is ‘mone’ meaning ‘single’, and ‘embassia’ meaning ‘entrance’, and during Byzantine times, was a prominent fortress-town and rest-stop for ships between Istanbul and Italy. As a rest-stop, aristocrats and high ranking church officials would load up here on Greek products like olive-oil and wine before heading West. Before becoming part of modern Greece, Monemvasia passed through Byzantine, Vatican, Frank, Venetian, and Ottoman hands – each whom have influenced this town in a different way.

Wander through the narrow zig-zag streets, and let yourself be taken back in time. As you wander through the ruins of this fortified town, you will come across ancient walls, the residence of the Venetian Governor, guardhouses, towers, and large water cisterns. Be sure to explore the charming 12th century Church of Agia Sofia as it is the main monument of Monemvasia. After your exploration, head to ‘Nea’ or ‘New’ Monemvasia which is today’s modern tourist center, offering many facilities for visitors.
 
Jun 16 – Mon Katakolo – Greece 08:00 18:00
Katakolo is a picturesque port town located outside of Ancient Olympia. Enjoy a morning stroll through the local shops, perhaps a coffee at one of the many cafes or a light snack at one of the traditional tavernas.

If you have included a True Greece guided tour of Ancient Olympia, meet your driver and local True Greece guide to explore and learn more about this incredible ancient site. Located on the western coast of southern Greece in the Peloponnesus, Olympia is the birthplace of the Olympic Games. First held in 776 BC, it is the place where the Olympic flame is still lit each and every Games, at the altar of the goddess Hera. Together with your local True Greece guide, you will have the opportunity to explore this ancient site, including the ruins of the great Temple of Zeus, which once housed the great Statue of Zeus - one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World!
 
Jun 17 – Tue Parga – Greece 08:00 17:00
Parga is a picturesque resort town situated on the northwestern coast of Greece between Preveza and Igoumenitsa. Amphitheatrically built, it uniquely combines mountain and sea. The village of Parga, once known as Hypargos was founded in the early 13th century and originally built on top of the mountain "Pezovolo". In 1360, in order to protect the city from the Albanians, the Pargians transferred it to its present location.

Although located on the mainland, its beautiful scenery, the relaxed resort atmosphere and the stunning beaches around Parga will make you feel as if you were on one of the Greek islands.

When visiting Parga for a day, perhaps you are interested in exploring the old Venetian Castle. The castle is built on a hill overlooking the town and offering magnificent views of the area. It was initially built in the 11th century by the locals to protect the area from pirates and the Turks but was destroyed and rebuilt multiple times in the following centuries. Today, one can still discover some interesting details around the castle, such as the Lion of Venice in the entrance, emblems of Ali Pasha, two-headed eagles, some inscriptions and a secret path to the sea. There is a cafe inside the castle offering drinks and snacks, as well as a gift shop for some souvenirs.
 
Jun 18 – Wed Dubrovnik – Croatia 10:00 23:00
A Croatian seaport city on the Adriatic coast, Dubrovnik is one of the most prominent destinations on the Adriatic. The Republic of Ragusa, as Dubrovnik was called in the Middle Ages, joined the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 1979; it was a Maritime Republic (together with Amalfi, Pisa, Genoa, Venice and other Italian cities), and became the only eastern Adriatic city-state to rival Venice. The city has always been based on maritime trade, and it achieved and prospered a high level of development, particularly during the 15th and 16th centuries.

Dubrovnik offers its visitors many incredible old buildings, such as the Arboretum Trsteno, the oldest arboretum in the world, which dates back to before 1492. Also, the third oldest European pharmacy is located in the city, which dates back to 1317 (still in operation today)! In Dubrovnik’s bay there is a 72-hectare wooded island of Lokrum, where according to legend, Richard the Lionheart was cast ashore after being shipwrecked in 1192 - this island includes a fortress, botanical garden, monastery and naturist beach. Some excellent beaches to consider while in Dubrovnik are Banje, Dubrovnik's main public beach, home to the East-West Beach Club, or Copacabana Beach, a stony beach on the Lapad peninsula, named after the popular beach in Rio de Janeiro.
 
Jun 19 – Thu Hvar – Croatia 08:00 16:00
We are working on providing a description of this particular port of call - please check back later.
 
Jun 20 – Fri Ravenna - Italy 08:00 18:00
We are working on providing a description of this particular port of call - please check back later.
 
Jun 21 – Sat Venice - Italy 07:00 16:00
Described by many as one of the most beautiful cities in the world, Venice, or Venezia in Italian, has been an important port city throughout history. Founded in the early 400s A.D., this city has been renowned for its beauty, architecture, musical and artistic culture, and of course its strategic maritime power during the Middle Ages and Renaissance. Stretched across 117 small islands in the Venetian Lagoon along the Adriatic Sea, Venice was a wealthy city throughout most of its history; while tourism has been a major sector of its industry since the 18th century. Venice continues to impress its visitors as one of the most visited destinations in Italy, if not the entire Mediterranean!
 
Jun 22 – Sun Sibenik - Croatia 10:00 18:00
The city of Sibenik is located on the Croatian coast some 80 km north of the more famous town of Split. As it is positioned in the deep bay, it is one of the most naturally protected harbors on the Adriatic coast. Although Sibenik is less known than Dubrovnik and Split, it has its own personality and some great things to see and enjoy. The atmosphere in Sibenik is youthful and lively. Narrow streets lead to attractive squares where modern and stylish shop windows unite with the fine architecture of vanished centuries.

One of the things not to be missed is Sibenik’s cathedral –Sveti Jakov. Built back in 1434, it is an important Croatian Renaissance building and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The cathedral lies just underneath the fortress walls of the town in the old area of Sibenik. Other places of interest in Sibenik include the town hall, the churches of St. Barbara and St. Fran as well as many small town palaces, fortresses and other churches all spread throughout the city.
 
Jun 23 – Mon Kotor - Montenegro 08:00 15:00
Located in a secluded part of the Gulf of Kotor, Kotor is an old Mediterranean port on the coast of Montenegro. As one of the best preserved medieval towns in the Adriatic, surrounded by impressive city walls built by the Republic of Venice, Kotor has been honored with being title a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built in the shadow of the impressive St. John’s Hill, as one approaches the shores of Kotor, they can’t help but be in awe of the incredible natural landscape and of course of the picturesque city itself – it is immediately obvious that you have come to one of the world’s most beautiful bays.
 
Jun 24 – Tue Corfu - Greece 08:00 23:00
Corfu lies at the entrance of the Adriatic Sea, between Italy and Greece in the Ionian Sea and is the second largest of the Ionian Islands. It is a very mountainous island with incredible landscapes, dense vegetation, golden brown sandy beaches, traditional villages, Byzantine churches, several museums, striking Venetian fortresses and one of Greece’s most beautiful main towns. Corfu town is the largest town in all of the Ionian Islands and is perhaps one of the most interesting cities in Greece. Built during the island’s Venetian rule, Corfu town stands between two fortresses and its architecture has been influenced by all the major civilizations that occupied the island, such as the Sicilians, Venetians, French and British.
 
Jun 25 – Wed Kefalonia - Greece 08:00 17:00
We are working on providing a description of this particular port of call - please check back later.
 
Jun 26 – Thu Gythio - Greece 08:00 17:00
The town of Gythio is located in southern Peloponnese on the Laconian Gulf. It is protected in the north by the Taygetos mountain range whose highest peak "Profitis Ilias" with its 2.407 m is also the highest mountain in the entire Peloponnese.

Gythio is a picturesque, lively little town. As nothing remarkable is left from the town’s ancient past – only a small Roman theatre survived an earthquake that struck the city in the 4th century – visitors today simply enjoy the present life atmosphere. Most of Gythio’s houses are two- or three-storey neo-classical mansions built along narrow streets and staiways. There is also a long sea-side promenade with a variety of taverns and cafes from where you can watch the colourful fishing boats in the harbour and the sea.
 
Jun 27 – Fri Rethymno - Greece 08:00 18:00
We are working on providing a description of this particular port of call - please check back later.
 
Jun 28 – Sat Athens - Greece 07:00  
Arrival Athens ~ individual departure.

Disembark your cruise ship at Athens’ main port of Piraeus - Greece's largest port and gateway to the Mediterranean since 482 BC! If True Greece has arranged for your post-cruise experience, upon arrival at the Piraeus cruise terminal meet your private driver who will transfer you to your luxury hotel in Athens; then enjoy a True Greece guided tour of Athens and the Acropolis.

Together with your local True Greece guide, the highlights tour will expose you to this diverse city - birth place of modern democracy and cradle of western civilization. Follow your True Greece guide up the steps once taken by ancients like Socrates, Pericles and Plato, and gaze at the ‘sacred’ Acropolis, home to the magnificent and architecturally unique Parthenon. Allow your True Greece guide to bring the city of Athens and this exceptional experience to life, with a wealth of historical and cultural information. As part of your tour, you will also have the opportunity to visit significant and historically important sites, such as the Parliament Building, the Monument of the Unknown Soldier, the Columns of Olympian Zeus, and the Presidential Mansion.

If you have already had the opportunity of exploring Athens and its historically significant monuments, it would be our pleasure to arrange a guided tour to one of the many famous ancient sites outside of the city – perhaps Ancient Delphi or the Temple of Zeus at Sounio. Whatever your preferences, we can fulfil exactly what you are looking for…and more!

 

Cruises are subject to availability. Itineraries and times are subject to change. Click on ports for detailed information.

Ships' Registry: Bahamas



Since each individual’s accommodation preferences differ and cruise fares constantly change based on availability, to learn more about this cruise please contact a True Greece Concierge to begin planning a cruise trip customized to your needs.


The below True Greece Private Guided Tours and Activities are available at an additional cost. For more information, please contact a True Greece Concierge

Istanbul

  • Istanbul Tour

    Standing firmly over two continents, Istanbul is the personification of a true “cosmopolitan” city. Your TrueTurkey guide will show you this multi-cultural and historic city through the eyes of a local. Depending on the day of your Istanbul tour you will have the opportunity to visit the Blue Mosque and its superb inner courtyard, the Hippodrome originally built by the Roman Emperor Septimus Severus in 203 AD, the magnificent Byzantine church of St. Sophia, the Underground Cistern built during the reign of Constantine I, the Topkapi Palace where the Ottoman Sultans presided over their vast empire and the Grand Bazaar where almost 5,000 shops are spread out in a giant maze of small streets and passages that are arranged according to their trade. By the end of this fascinating day you will feel like a citizen of this “international” city.


Santorini
    
  • True Greece Authentic Santorini Cooking Lesson

    With more than 300 days of sunshine over its rich volcanic soil, Santorini yields a bounty of unusual indigenous herbs and vegetables, such as white eggplant, capers and caper leaves, fava (small yellow peas), and exquisite baby tomatoes, which are all grown virtually without water. You will be welcomed to one of the best restaurants on Santorini with fresh juice, coffee and traditional Greek cookies. While sampling different wines and some local Cycladic side dishes, you will talk about the cuisine of the Cycladic Islands and particularly that of Santorini. Having an introduction to the various grape varieties grown on the island, you will begin your gastronomic experience. You will learn how to prepare an entire Greek menu: an appetizer, a salad, a main course, and a dessert. After a short, but much anticipated wait you will be able to enjoy the fruit of your labor accompanied by a bottle of delicious wine from Santorini. This gastronomic experience will last approximately 5 hours (including lunch), and will surely provide you with plenty of culinary ideas to surprise everyone back home.

  • True Greece Semi-Private Santorini Sailing Trip

    Step aboard a luxurious catamaran and embark on your unforgettable semi private Santorini sailing trip. Acquaint yourself with your fellow travelers and embark on an experience that won't be "just another boat ride!"  Starting from the south side of Santorini you will sail past the spectacular White & Red beaches, the Venetian lighthouse and visit remote locations around the island where you will be able to swim and snorkel in the clear waters. Anchored in a private bay inside the caldera you will enjoy a freshly prepared traditional seafood and steak barbeque served with many Greek appetizers and salads. This spectacular sailing trip runs for approximately five hours and will definitely be one of the highlights of your TrueGreece experience.

  • True Greece Akrotiri Tour

    Due to its unique morphology and distinctive history, Santorini is regarded by some as the lost island of “Atlantis.” Perched elegantly on the cliffs overseeing the Aegean Sea, the towns of Santorini offer a diverse variety of activities and sights. Coordinate with your TrueGreece guide and shape your tour in order to fully appreciate this stunning island. Whether you choose to visit the Prehistoric Museum in Fira, a traditional winery in Oia or the Byzantine church of Panagia Episkopi, by the end of the day you will leave you with a sense that you have discovered the lost island of “Atlantis.”

  • True Greece Santorini Winery Experience

    Since ancient times the rich volcanic soil and distinctive microclimate of Santorini has been ideal for the cultivation of vineyards and the production of wine. Explore a local winery and observe the unique way in which the vineyards are pruned and the wine produced. After this brief introduction to the rich wine making tradition of Santorini take part in a wine tasting where you will have the pleasure of sampling several local varieties complimented by an assortment of traditional Cycladic appetizers and spoon deserts.
        
  • Santorini Wine Roads Tour

    Discover the secrets of wine making, on the unique volcanic island of Santorini. Stroll through vineyards that manage to grow on a rainless and infertile land, to produce some of the most distinctive wine varieties in the world. With the assistance of your sommelier explore wineries where thousand year old traditions meet harmoniously with technological and scientific advancement in the field of wine making. Visit three well known wine estates and sample 15 different types and styles of wine under the guidance of an experienced sommelier. Complement this unique experience with an assortment of Greek cheeses and olives that will bring the flavors of Santorini to life.

  • True Greece Santorini Private Greek Food and Wine Tasting

    Discover the secrets of wine making, on the unique volcanic island of Santorini. Stroll through vineyards that manage to grow on a rainless and infertile land, to produce some of the most distinctive wine varieties in the world. With the assistance of your sommelier explore wineries where thousand year old traditions meet harmoniously with technological and scientific advancement in the field of wine making. Visit two well known wine estates and sample 12 different types and styles of wine under the guidance of an experienced sommelier. Complement this "wine flight" experience with a delicious meal at a traditional taverna, where you will also sample local wine.


Corfu
    
  • True Greece Corfu Tour

    WInfluenced by all of the major civilizations that occupied the island, such as the Sicilians, Venetians, French, and British, Corfu can only be described as diverse. Follow your guide to the Achilleion, the home to some magnificent paintings and sculptures that was built by Empress Elizabeth of Austria.

    Explore the church of patron saint Spyridon which is regarded by the locals as the most important holy site of Corfu. Next visit the unique Museum of Asiatic Art that contains numerous exhibits from many Asian countries. End your day at Paleokastritsa to either visit the local Monastery of the Virgin Mary or to take in the wonderful view of the beach.

Athens            

  • True Greece Acropolis & Athens City Tour

    Meaning “peak of the city” in Greek, the Ancient Acropolis stands proudly above the city of Athens; birth place of modern democracy and the cradle of western civilization. Follow your True Greece guide up the steps once taken by ancients like Socrates, Pericles and Plato, and gaze at the “sacred” Acropolis, home to the magnificent and architecturally unique Parthenon. Allow your True Greece guide to bring the city of Athens and this exceptional experience to life, with a wealth of historical and cultural information. Visit significant and historically important sites, such as the Parliament Building, the Monument of the Unknown Soldier, the Columns of Olympian Zeus, and the Presidential Mansion.


Let our True Greece Concierges do what they do best ~ take care of you!

Our Concierges are experts in creating a travel experience that is exactly what you’re looking for. Take advantage of our expert knowledge and work together with one of our Concierges to plan your pre/post cruise experience or perhaps even extend your travel experience to include a True Greece customized trip or a True Turkey customized trip add-on. Experience our renowned ‘on-the-ground’ service and allow us the opportunity to create an authentic and memorable experience for you.
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