Rome, Sicily & Greece

Rome, Sicily & Greece
Wander around the Piazza Navona in Rome to see the Fountain of Four Rivers, visit Sicily’s Cathedral of Monreale with its golden mosaic-covered walls and ceilings, and see the blending of ancient ruins and modern architecture in sprawling Athens.
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Day 1 Start tour
Day 2 Ciao Rome
Meet your tour director and check into hotel
Rome city walk
Spanish StepsTrevi FountainPantheonPiazza Navona
Details: Rome city walk
Baroque-en hearted? Revive your spirits with a walk past Rome's most beautiful and unusual Baroque fountains. At the foot of the Spanish Steps, elegant cafes once favoured by visiting Brits and Americans surround the central fountain. The water pressure here was so low that the artist had to sink the fountain into the ground to get any water going through it, so he went ahead and designed the fountain to look like a sinking ship. There's no shortage of water pressure at the nearby Trevi Fountain, a Baroque extravagance designed by master sculptor Bernini. At the Pantheon, you'll see the largest concrete dome ever constructed. An oculus, or hole, in the dome lets sunlight into the beautiful temple, dedicated to all the gods.
Day 3 Imperial Rome
Ancient Rome guided walking sightseeing tour with Whisper headsets
Colosseum visitForum Romanum visitPiazza Venezia
Authentic trattoria dinner
Details: Ancient Rome guided walking sightseeing tour with Whisper headsets
The ultimate symbol of Ancient Rome, the Colosseum still dominates the modern city. Tour the amphitheatre with your local licensed guide. Built by the emperor Vespasian in A.D. 72, the structure held almost 50,000 spectators but was so well organized that the entire place could be emptied within 15 minutes. Inside, the spectacles varied from gladiator battles to immense naval contests to wild beast shows, in which thousands of exotic animals like giraffes and ostriches were popped into the stadium through trap doors and left to fight Roman hunters. See the system beneath the floor that operated the trap doors and housed the animals, then continue on to the relative calm of the Forum. Ancient Rome’s commercial, religious and political center, the Forum held markets, temples and the Senate House. Near the Rostra, or speaker’s platform, you can still see game boards scratched into the marble by bored politicians--anyone up for a game of tic tac toe?
Day 4 Rome--Palermo
Vatican City guided walking sightseeing tour with Whisper headsets
Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel visitSt. Peter’s Basilica visit
Overnight ferry from Rome to Palermo
Details: Vatican City guided walking sightseeing tour with Whisper headsets
Tour St. Peter’s Basilica with a licensed local guide and whisper headset so you don't miss a word. Outside the church, four rows of columns radiate out like welcoming arms; inside, the church seems enormous enough to embrace the entire world. The dome, partially designed by Michelangelo, rises 452 feet above the ground. Michelangelo’s mark is everywhere here, from the costumes worn by the Swiss Guards to his exquisite “Pietà” sculpture (the only sculpture he ever signed) to the amazing frescoes of the Sistine Chapel. Because he considered himself a sculptor and not a painter, Michelangelo hated working on these paintings, now considered masterpieces.
Day 5 Palermo--Agrigento
Palermo guided sightseeing tour
Quattro CantiPalermo CathedralTeatro MassimoLa MartoranaMonreale visitMonreale Cathedral
Travel to Agrigento
Details: Palermo guided sightseeing tour
Explore the chaotic and vibrant capital of Sicily, where a mix of Italian, Arab, French, and Phoenician influences -- to name only a few -- has created a culture unique in all of Italy. Islamic filigreed windows throw intricate shadows on 17th-century Baroque cupolas; gold and marble mosaics sparkle in churches while leafy palm trees ruffle in ocean breezes outside. With a licensed local guide, start your tour of this energetic city at the Baroque Quattro Canti ("four corners"), Palermo's central intersection. Head to the Norman Palace, once home to the finest and most learned court in Europe. (Notice the halos on the statues -- they were added to the original Moorish statues when the Christian Normans arrived in 1072 and took over the building.) Step inside La Martorana, one of the few buildings remaining from the Middle Ages, for a peek at its glittering gold Byzantine mosaics. And don't miss the rows of pastry shops selling marzipan, a Sicilian specialty; the sweet almond-paste candy is sculpted and dyed to resemble realistic fruits, vegetables -- even shellfish!
Details: Agrigento guided sightseeing tour
Legend claims that Daedalus, the creator of the original labyrinth, founded the ancient Greek city of Agrigento. Today it’s a maze of amazing ruins. The Valley of the Temples holds the remains of the largest Doric temple in the world as well as the impressive Temple of Concord, a picture-book example of a perfect Greek temple. (Its conversion to a Christian church in the sixth century helps explain its preservation; anti-Paganism teamed up with several earthquakes to topple most of the surrounding structures.)
Day 6 Agrigento--Taormina
Travel to Taormina
Piazza Armerina visit
Siracusa guided sightseeing tour
Ortigia Peninsula visitHieron II's AltarRoman amphitheatreEar of DionysiusLatomia IntagliatellaGreek TheatreLatomia del ParadisoCordari CaveGrotticelli Necropoliarchaeological site visit
Details: Siracusa guided sightseeing tour
Sicily’s ancient military capital has grown into one of Italy’s most charming destinations. Its main square, on the connected island of Ortygia, combines the typical Sicilian mix of Greek, Arab, and Baroque -- the 17th-century cathedral facade is woven into the columns of an ancient temple and once served as a mosque. Syracuse’s ancient Greek theater and archaeological museum display the city’s past treasures, while “The Garden of Paradise,” a grove of citrus trees thriving on the site of an ancient quarry, reminds visitors to enjoy the city’s current splendors. But don't get too caught up in your rapture -- the nearby "Ear of Dionysius" cave, once a jail, was probably named for its S-curve shape, but its echoing acoustics led to rumors that the tyrant Dionysius could eavesdrop on anyone imprisoned there.
Day 7 Taormina landmarks
Taormina guided sightseeing tour
Palazzo CorvaiaBotanical GardensGreek theater visit
Details: Taormina guided sightseeing tour
An earthly paradise. From the ancient Greek theater on a Taormina hilltop, your eye wanders over the violet outline of Mount Etna dominating the skyline, through the almond and lemon groves releasing the fragrance of blossoms and marzipan and lemonade, across bright fishing boats bobbing on the ocean's blue waves to the distant misty view of the Italian mainland hovering above the water. With a licensed local guide, explore the views and history that have enchanted so many, from the ancient Greeks to the Romans to the Moors to the Normans to the Spanish to Francis Ford Coppola, who filmed scenes for "The Godfather" nearby.
Day 8 Taormina--Patras
Travel to the port
Overnight ferry to Patras
Day 9 Patras--Athens
Travel to Athens via Delphi
Delphi guided sightseeing tour
Visit Delphi siteTemple of Apollo
Details: Delphi guided sightseeing tour
Prophet from the past. Explore the impressive ruins at Delphi, which the Greeks considered the center of the world. Within the depths of the Temple of Apollo, a priestess would inhale intoxicating vapors that used to rise from the earth and, thus inspired, deliver the prophecies of Apollo. Modern visitors might find more inspiration in the view from Mount Parnassus, over 8000 feet high.
Day 10 Athens landmarks
Athens guided sightseeing tour
ParthenonVisit AcropolisTemple of Athena NikeOmonoia SquareSyntagma Square2004 Olympic site
Athens city walk
Plaka districtTemple of Olympian ZeusHadrian’s Arch
Greek dinner in Plaka
Details: Athens guided sightseeing tour
Not just another crowded dusty city, Athens has developed from the birthplace of democracy to a bustling modern metropolis. With a local licensed guide, start your time travel at the ancient hot spots of the first Olympic site and the sprawling Acropolis, classical Athens’ religious and civic center. The awe-inspiring Parthenon -- a temple dedicated to Athens’ patron saint Athena -- is the obvious centerpiece, but take time to examine the building next door, where sculpted women hold up the roof with their heads, and the amazing view of modern Athens below. Jump back to the present in Syntagma Square, the center of the modern city, to see the Parliament building and the British-style changing of the guards ceremony. (There’s a rather un-British flair to it, however -- the Greek guards wear white skirts, head scarves, and shoes and knee bands adorned with pom-poms.) Continue to Omonia Square, Athens' other main meeting point, to relax by the splashing central fountain ringed with palm trees.
Details: Acropolis Museum visit
Experience an up close look at the history, art and culture of ancient Greece from the foot of the Acropolis. Walk through this magnificent museum to see examples of Greek art and culture from the Archaic period all the way through the 7th century AD. Learn more about the world famous Acropolis, the Parthenon and the history that surrounds them.
Details: Athens city walk
You’re never more than a few steps away from the past in Athens. Accompany your Tour Director to the Plaka, the historic district that borders the Acropolis. In its twisting narrow streets you’ll catch glimpses of an older city, from wrought-iron balconies bursting with geraniums to traditional Greek dancing in basement tavernas. Continue on to the Temple of Olympian Zeus, begun in the 6th century B.C. and finished in A.D. 132 by the emperor Hadrian. Its enormous columns provide a sense of the scale of the original temple. Nearby, the elaborate Hadrian’s Arch separated the ancient and imperial sections of the city.
Day 11 End tour

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    Day 11 Start cruise extension (tour must depart North America on Fridays to do extension)
    Details: Cruise for four days on the Aegean
    Head to six of the most beautiful coastal destinations in the world on this four-day Aegean cruise. Your first stop is Mykonos, where bright white houses contrast with Crayola-colored boats and the international jet set relaxes all day long on the beach. Continue on to Samos, best known for its beautiful beaches and lush greenery. Then continue to Patmos for gold-leafed Byzantine icons at the Monastery of St. John. Rhodes is next, with whitewashed medieval buildings and spectacular views. Cruise on to Heraklion, the capital of Crete and a former Minoan seaport, for an unparalleled collection of Minoan archaeological artifacts. End your jaunt at Santorini, where villages cling to the edge of a volcano and exotic black sand beaches stretch into the sea. Cruise excursions are provided by the liner and can be purchased during the voyage. Please note that the itinerary is subject to change and the island stops may vary, more commonly in July and August.
    Details: Your cruise includes three shore excursions of your choice.
    Enjoy the convenience of an all-inclusive cruise. Drinks, meals and shore excursions are included on your Aegean cruise.
    Day 12 Aegean cruise
    Day 13 Aegean cruise
    Day 14 Aegean cruise
    Day 15 Cape Sounion
    Arrive in Athens
    Details: Cape Sounion guided excursion
    Contemplate the sea god Poseidon from his temple perched high atop the hill of Cape Sounion, the southern-most tip of Central Greece. Stand among the tall, marble pillars rising up from the slippery slabs of rock and look out over the calm blue Aegean Sea. The Temple of Poseidon, built around the same time as the Parthenon (between 450-440 BC), is a refreshing point of calm after the chaos of modern Athens.
    Day 16 End tour
    Map of Rome, Sicily & Greece Educational Tour
    Tour Includes:
    • Round-trip airfare
    • 8 overnight stays in hotels with private bathrooms
    • 2 overnight stays in cabins on ferries
    • 4 overnight stays in cabins on cruise ship on extension
    • Aegean Cruise on extension
    • Full European breakfast daily
    • Dinner daily
    • Full-time services of a professional Tour Director
    • Guided sightseeing tours and city walks as per itinerary
    • Visits to select attractions as per itinerary
    • Guided sightseeing tours with high-tech headset as per itinerary
    • Tour Diary™
    • Note: On arrival day only dinner is provided; on departure day, only breakfast is provided
    • Lunch on cruise ship on extension
    • Tips to cruise staff on extension
    • Note: Tour cost does not include airline-imposed baggage fees, or fees for any required passport or visa. Please visit our Fees FAQ page for a full list of items that may not be included in the cost of your tour.

    We are better able to assist you with a quote for your selected departure date and city over the phone. Please call 1.888.310.7120 to price this tour with your requested options.

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    3784.00 total fee
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