|Date||Port Click to Expand||Arrival||Departure|
| ||May 18 – Sat||Athens – Greece||18:00|
|Individual arrival in Athens ~ embarkation on SeaDream I. |
If True Greece has arranged for your pre-cruise experience at a luxury Athens hotel, before meeting your private car transfer to board your cruise at the port of Piraeus, 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.
Following your tour, board your cruise ship at Athens’ main port of Piraeus - Greece's largest port and gateway to the Mediterranean since 482 BC! We wish you an exceptional cruise experience!
| ||May 19 – Sun||Hydra – Greece||Morning||Evening|
|Hydra is a beautiful island located in the Saronic group of Greek islands, near the eastern foot of the Peloponnese. A fashionable destination among artists during the 60s, Hydra still maintains a cosmopolitan character. Its picturesque capital is full of red-tiled houses and stone-paved narrow alleys. A unique characteristic to this island is that motor vehicles are by law not allowed on the island (with the exception of garbage trucks!); water taxis, donkeys, and bicycles provide for transportation on the island. Although most people choose to simply walk everywhere. Hydra is full of many bays and natural harbors, and has a strong maritime culture. The island is also a popular yachting destination and home to the international Kamini Yacht Club.|
| ||May 20 – Sun||Santorini – Greece||Morning||Late Evening|
|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.
| ||May 21 – Mon||Paros (Parikia) – Greece||Morning||Late Evening|
|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 sail into the harbor of its main town, Parikia, to be greeted by the white “cubic” buildings typical of the Cyclades islands. 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. |
Parikia, Paros’ capital city, has outgrown its village roots but remains one of the most beautiful locales on Paros. You have a fine view of the village and the cosmopolitan waterfront when you arrive at Paros with a ferry boat, but the best comes when you start discovering the small town on foot. The setting is typical of a Cycladic island: narrow streets, white-washed houses, hundreds of pots with colorful flowers, and visitors and locals blending in perfectly with the activities of everyday life: dining, shopping, or simply wandering around the beautiful streets. Parikia, with its modern shops, bars, and tavernas, has become quite a cosmopolitan village but also has some parts that will take you back in time. One such place is the old quarter of the town with the 13th century Venetian castle, built with ancient material –claimed to be from a temple of Demeter present on the island in ancient times.
Today Parikia hosts some of the most beautiful and important old churches of the island. Those are Agios Konstantinos, a church of exceptional architecture; the Venetian Church of Christ; and the churches of Agia Ekaterini, Agia Anna, Evangelismos, and Agia Marina. They are all beautiful but definitely the most impressive one and famous all over the Greek Orthodox world is Panagia Ekatontapyliani. It is a cruciform domed basilica and unites three pre-existing paleochristian churches – Agios Nikolaos is the largest one with unique carved iconostasis and columns of Parian marble –in a unique group, with impressive domes built on layers of colorful limestone. You will want to walk around the marvelous courtyard; inspect the Byzantine font, a piece of great art in the Baptistry; see the beautiful interior; and visit – and this is something you should not miss - the Byzantine Museum of the church with many old icons.
| ||May 22 – Mon||Patmos – Greece||Morning||Late Evening|
|Patmos is considered by many to be the secret gem of the Aegean. Sheltered from the herds of mass tourism, Patmos features a variety of truly beautiful village settlements, scenic beaches, elegant restaurants and traditional tavernas. Chora, one of its main villages, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, while the unique scenery and tranquillity of the island has inspired Forbes Magazine to describe Patmos as the most idyllic place to live in Europe! |
If you have included a True Greece guided tour of the Cave of the Apocalypse and the Monastery of St. John, Hora you will meet with your private tour guide upon arrival at the port. Explore the island's historic Monastery that St. Christodoulos built in 1088 AD, and visit its impressive exhibition of ecclesiastical embroideries, pendants, ceremonial artifacts, rare manuscripts and beautiful icons. Continue your tour by following your True Greece guide through the magical maze like streets of Hora, where you will be able to enjoy the authentic beauty of the best preserved medieval settlements in the Aegean. After this small adventure make your way to the Cave of the Apocalypse, where St. John is said to have written the Book of Revelation. Whether you identify with the pious or the religiously indifferent you will definitely feel the mysticism and spirituality of this location.
| ||May 23 – Tue||Kusadasi – Turkey||Morning||Evening|
|Kusadasi – meaning “bird island” – is a lively resort town located on Turkey’s Aegean Coast. The area’s history dates back as far as 3000 B.C. and has been a center of art and culture of many civilizations since. Before becoming a popular vacation spot in the 1980’s, Kusadasi itself was a modest town with a population consisting mostly of farmers and fishermen, while today’s Kusadasi resembles a modern European city. |
Head out for some shopping into the maze of pedestrian roads in the old quarter, where you can find some traditional Turkish goods, like leather, carpets, jewellery, ceramics, etc. On the way there, just outside the port you will pass the The Öküz Mehmet Pasha caravanserai. Built in the early 17th century, it once served as a roadside inn for travelers to rest and recover from the day's journey. Alternatively, take a walk along the bay and visit the peninsula Guvercin Adası ("Pigeon Island") that hosts a castle and several beaches, including a private beach with a café facing the town and the port, and public beaches facing the open sea.
If you have included a private guided tour of Ephesus, you will meet with your guide and driver and head toward this breathtaking ancient site. Ephesus boasts a rich and vibrant history and has become famous for its incredible historical landmarks, such as the Library of Celsus, the magnificent ancient theater, and the famous Terrace Houses. Explore this wonderful archaeological site with the assistance of your guide and marvel at one of the best preserved cities of the Ancient world. Reaching its climax during the Roman period, when it was regarded as the second largest city in the world, it is here where St Paul stayed for nearly three years preaching his beliefs. Considered as one of the seven Churches of Asia by Saint John in the Book of Revelations, Ephesus was also the site of the Temple of Artemis, which was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient world.
| ||May 24 – Tue||Kepez – Turkey||Mid-Day||Evening|
|Kepez is a seaside town in the Province of Canakkale, Turkey. This port is an excellent jump-off point to the town of Canakkale, and sites of Troy and Gallipolli. In the 19th century, the area witnessed one of the worst wars of World War I in the nearby battlefields of Gallipoli. This area is also known for the ancient site of Troy, discovered in 1865-66 by archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann, and recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The area has been of great strategic and economic importance as the gateway to Istanbul and the Black Sea from the Mediterranean.|
| ||May 25 – Sat||Istanbul – Turkey||Morning|
|Arrival Istanbul ~ individual departure. |
If True Greece has arranged for your post-cruise experience, meet your private driver upon arrival at the cruise terminal who will transfer you to your luxury hotel in Istanbul.
If asked to name a city in the world that most evokes a sense of the exotic, of immense beauty, and of intrigue and mystery, many people would name Istanbul. Standing over two continents, three empires, several cultures, and thousands of years of history, it is a truly international city – one that seems to have long drawn people to project their own fantasies onto it. Arguably the greatest appeal of Istanbul is the unique combination of its rich history and historical structures with its cosmopolitan feel. While the city’s unique past will fascinate you and the various monuments will evoke a genuine sense of awe, perfectly combined with an oriental feel in many areas of the city. In Istanbul, there is no doubt that you are in a fabulous city like no other on this planet.
If you did not have the opportunity to enjoy our True Greece guided tour of Istanbul, this is the perfect time to have us make these arrangements for you. As a guest of True Greece, we can fulfil exactly the experience that you are looking for during your stay in Istanbul!
Cruises are subject to availability. Itineraries and times are subject to change. Click on ports for detailed information.