Day 1: Arrival in Athens, Greece
Welcome to Athens, upon arrival at the Athens International Airport, your Christian guide and driver will be waiting for you to transfer you to your hotel. Dinner and overnight in Athens
Day 2: Athens & Corinth Tour and Cruise embarkation onboard MSC Poesia
The Cruise portion of the tour begins today! Before you get onboard the majestic MSC Poesia, you will begin your day with a tour of Corinth. Corinth is the city that inspired many of Paul’s most familiar letters. See the Archaeological Museum, the Market Place, the Bema, and the Temples. Celebrate devotion in the midst of the ruins of the church of Corinth and see the pillars, steps, and public worship place where Paul preached. Enhance your understanding and love of I & II Corinthians. The ruins of this important cultural center are fascinating as you will walk along the stone path that the Apostle Paul walked.
You drive back for our tour of Athens. Visit among other masterpieces of the "Golden Age" the Acropolis, the Agora and the Mars Hill where Paul taught. See Constitution Square (Syntagma), the House of Parliament, the memorial to the Unknown Soldier and the University, the Academie, and the National Library. Drive down Herodes Atticus Street and see the Evzones in their picturesque uniforms and the Presidential Palace. On your way to the Acropolis, you will see the Panathenaic Stadium (where the first Olympic Games of the modern era were held in 1896), the Temple of Olympia Zeus, and Hadrian’s Arch. On the Acropolis mount, you will visit the architectural masterpieces of the Golden Age of Athens: The Propylee, the Temple of Athena Nike, the Erechtheion, and finally the Parthenon – the monument that “puts order in the mind” and “is harmony between material and spirit”.Upon the completion of the city tour, you will have some time for shopping before heading to the port of Piraeus for Embarkation.
Rhodes, the island of "roses", is the legendary home of the sun god Apollo. The old town (the largest inhabited medieval town of Europe) and its mighty fortifications (built by the crusaders of St. John) are the finest surviving example of defensive architecture. Your tour takes you to Lindos, which is guarded by medieval walls which were constructed by the Knights of St. John in the 14th century. Within, stands the ancient Acropolis of Lindos, 400 feet above the sea. From the Acropolis, you will indulge in a breathtaking view covering the great expanse of the Aegean Sea and St. Paul's Bay, where the Apostle cast harbor during his historic voyage to Ephesus.
Day 4: Haifa, Israel – Jerusalem & Bethlehem
Then Paul answered, “What are you doing, weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be imprisoned but even to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.”(Acts 21:13)
Travel to Bethlehem. View Shepherds' Field. Continue to Jerusalem where you will visit the Upper Room, the House of the High Priest Caiaphas, and the Western Wall. Visit the Mount of Olives and the Garden of Gethsemane. You'll walk along the Via Dolorosa to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Enter the Old City and visit the Pool of Bethesda. Worship together in the Garden Tomb.
Day 5: Haifa, Israel - Sea of Galilee
Begin your journey inland to the Sea of Galilee. You’ll stand on the Mount of the Beatitudes where Jesus gave His most well-known sermon (Matthew 5). At Tabgha, the traditional location for the calling of the disciples and the feeding of the 5000, you’ll visit the Church of the Fish and the Loaves (Luke 9). Visit the Chapel of the Primacy where three times Peter professed his devotion to the risen Christ (John 21). Travel to the shore town of Capernaum where Jesus called Peter, Andrew, James, John (Matt. 4), and later Matthew. Stop by the River Jordan where those who wish to be baptized may do so.
Today we are crossing the Mediterranean Sea from Israel to Greece, and to the Island of Crete. Enjoy a full day onboard taking advantage of the many activities offered! Room for teaching/devotion will be available during the day.
Day 7: Heraklion, Greece
Crete is the largest and the most rugged of the Greek islands. With your tour, you will discover Heraklion and the fantastic ruins of the Palace of Knossos. Discovered in 1899 and partially reconstructed, the elaborate Palace is believed to be the mythical Labyrinth of King Minos and the seat of ancient Minoan culture.
The reason I left you in Crete was that you might put in order what was left unfinished and appoint elders in every town, as I directed you. (Titus 1:5)
Paul landed on Crete at “Kaloi Limenes”, Fair Heavens, on his way to Rome on his last missionary journey. He stayed briefly and then continued to his journey. He left Titus on the island to organize the churches and appoint elders.
Today we are crossing the Mediterranean Sea from Greece to Italy in order to reach the port of Rome called Civitavecchia. Enjoy a full day onboard taking advantage of the many activities offered! Room for teaching/devotion will be available during the day.
Day 9: Disembarkation & Tour Imperial Rome
Tour Imperial & Christian Rome. Following your disembarkation, we continue to Rome. Your touring will start at the Legendary Coloseum famous as the place of spectacle and death. You will also see the Roman Forum which was a place where Romans would meet to discuss politics and religion as well as to shop. Circus Maximus also shows the glory of Imperial Rome, being a chariot racing stadium that could accommodate 150,000 spectators! You will continue to the Mamertine prison where Paul was imprisoned awaiting his final trial followed by a walking tour of the city.
Day 10: Tour Christian Rome
This morning you will depart your hotel, your first stop for morning devotion is going to be the Abbazia Tre Fontane ( Abbey of the three Fountains), a very important place for our faith, as this is the place where Paul was beheaded and died as a martyr of his faith. You leave Tre fontane and make a short stop at the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Then you will go to the Vatican for your tour visiting the Vatican Museum, home to many historical and artistic masterpieces. Enter the Sistine Chapel and admire Michelangelo's Frescoes wrapping all the walls around you. Conclude your tour with a visit to St. Peters Basilica, where you will find "Pieta," the only work of Michelangelo signed by him.
Day 11: Departure flight back home