Departure from Piraeus port: Monday at 11H30.
|MYKONOS||18H00||23H00||Mykonos is a Greek island, part of the Cyclades, lying between Tinos, Syros, Paros and Naxos. Mykonos nickname is "The Island of the Winds". Herodotus mentions that Carians were the original inhabitants of the island. Ionians from Athens seem to have followed next in the early 11th century BC. There were many people living on the neighboring island of Delos, only 2 Km (1,2 miles) from Mykonos. In Greek mythology, Mykonos was named after its first ruler, Mykonos, the son or grandson of the god Apollo and local hero. The island is also said to have been the location of a great battle between Zeus and Titans, and where Hercules killed the invincible giants having lured them from the protection of Mount Olympus.|
|07H30||13H00||Kusadasi is a resort town on Turkey’s Aegean coast, located 95 Km south of Izmir. The name Cusadasi comes from the Turkish words kus (Bird) and ada (island). It was known as Ephesus Neopolis during the Byzantine era. In antiquity it was overshadowed by Ephesus, until Ephesus harbor silted up. From the 7th century BC onwards the coast as ruled by Lydians, then from 546 BC the Persians, and from 334 BC, along with all of Anatolia, the coast was conquered by Alexander the Great. From that point on the coastal cities in Anatolia became a centre of Hellenistic culture. In 2nd century BC, the Roman Empire took possession of the coast and made Cusadasi their provincial capital. During the Turkish War of Independence, Kusadasi was occupied from 14 May 1919 till 24 May 1922, first by Italian troops, and then by Greek troops. The Turkish forces eventually gained control of the city on September 7, 1922.
Ephesus Tour from Kusadasi is daily available. The Tour covers visiting the highlights of Ephesus Ancient City (the best preserved Greco-Roman city in the world), ruins of the Temple of Artemis ( one of the seven ancient wonders of the world) and the House of Virgin Mary (where she is said to have spent her last days).
|PATMOS||17H45||21H30||Patmos is a small Greek island in the Aegean Sea, most famous for being the location of the Vision given to the disciple JOHN in the Book of Revelation in the New Testament, and where the book was written. For this reason, Patmos is a destination for Christian pilgrimage. Visitors can see the Cave where John is said to have received his Revelation (the Cave of the Apocalypse), and several Monasteries in the island are dedicated to Saint John.
During the 3rd century BC, in the Hellenistic period, the settlement of Patmos acquired the form of an Acropolis with an improved defense through a fortification wall and towers.
According to a legend in Greek Mythology, Patmos came into existence thanks to the divine intervention of the Goddess and Huntress of deer Artemis, daughter of Leto. The myth tells how Patmos existed as an island at the bottom of the sea (sunken island). Artemis gained her brother Apollo’s help to persuade Zeus to allow the island to arise from the sea. Finally, Zeus agreed and the island emerged from the water.
|RHODES||07H00||18H00||Rhodes is the largest of the Greek Dodecanese islands. It is located southeast of Athens and just off the Anatolian coast of Turkey. Rhodes nickname is "The Island of the Knights", named after the knights of Saint John of Jerusalem, who once conquered the land. Historically, Rhodes was famous worldwide for its Colossus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient word. Its Old Town has been already declared a World Heritage Site. The island was inhabited in the Neolithic period. In the 16th century BC, the Minoans came to Rhodes. In the 15th century BC, Mycenaean Greeks invaded. In the 8th century BC, the island’s settlements started to form. In the 5th century BC, the Persians invaded and overran the island, but they were in turn defeated by forces from Athens. finally, Rhodes became a part of the growing Empire of Alexander the Great in the 332 BC, after he defeated seriously the Persians.
Today, the island of Rhodes is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe. The name of the U.S state of Rhode Island is thought to be based on this island.
|07H00||12H00||Heraklion is the largest city and the administrative capital of the island of Crete. Heraklion is close to the ruins of the palace of Knossos, which in Minoan times, was the largest Centre of population on Crete (period 3500 – 2100 BC). The actual city of Heraklion was founded in 824 by the Arabs, whose had taken over the island from the Eastern Roman Empire. In 960, Byzantine forces landed in Crete and attacked the city. After a prolonged siege, the city fell in March 961 and remained under Byzantine control for the next 243 years. In 1204, the city of Heraklion was bought by the Republic of Venise as a part of a complicated political deal. During the Cretan War (1645 – 1669), the Ottomans besieged the city for 21 years. In 1898, the Autonomous Cretan State was created under Ottoman Suzerainty, with the Prince George as its High Commissioner. In 1913, Heraklion was, with the rest of Crete, incorporated into the Kingdom of Greece.
Today, coming to Heraklion for the first time, the visitor may be some what surprised by the changes that are taking place in Crete’s capital city. Heraklion is celebrating its rich history and moving onwards to a future full of potential.
|SANTORINI||16H30||21H30||Santorini, officially THIRA, is a Greek island in the southern Aegean Sea. It is the remnant of a Volcanic Caldera. The island was the site of one of the largest Volcanic eruptions in recorded history, which occurred about 3600 years ago. The name Santorini is a contraction of the name Santa Irini. Before then, it was known as "Kallisti" which in Greek means the most beautiful one. Herodotus reports that they called the island KALLISTI and lived on it for eight generations. In the 9th century BC, the main Hellenic city was found in a 396 m above sea level. They had named the city and the island after their leader, Theras. Today, that city is referred to as Ancient THIRA. Since the 15th century, Santorini was periodically conquered by the Venetians, the Ottomans and the Russians. The island Santorini became definitively part of the independent kingdom of Greece in 1832. The name THIRA was revived in the 19th century as official name of the island and its main city, but the colloquial name SANTORINI is still in popular use.
The power of this volcanic island creates an energy that overwhelms the senses. A volcano embraced by the Aegean, this island -phenomenon in the Cyclades gives its visitors a mythical experience. Is the island immortalized by the poets and printers, thanks to its celebrated light, multi-coloured cliffs and picture-perfect sunsets. Santorini is already recognized as one of the most beautiful islands in the world, and one of the most popular destinations in Greece.
The Pan-Hellenic sanctuary of Delphi, where the oracle of Apollo spoke, was the site of the omphalos, the navel of the world. Blending harmoniously with the superb landscape and charged with sacred meaning, Delphi in the 6th century BC, was indeed the religious Centre and symbol of unity of the ancient Greek world.
The area was inhabited in the 2nd millennium BC. The development of the sanctuary and oracle began in the 8th century BC, and their religious and pollical influence over the whole of Greece increased in the 6th century BC. Delphi as the center of the world (omphalos) in the eyes of the ancients Greeks: according to myth, it was the meeting point of two eagles released by Zeus, one to the East and one to the West.
The Archaeological Site of Delphi is recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, since the year 1987.