Journeys of Paul – Turkey, Greece, Italy (Cruise Plus Italy Land Program)
This is a sample itinerary that can be adapted to suit your group’s preferences.
Day 1: DEPART
Depart from your home for flight to Athens.
Day 2: ARRIVAL ATHENS – EMBARKATION
Arrive in Athens. Meet and greet at the airport. Drive to Piraeus Port and embark on your cruise ship, enjoying the fellowship of other Christians and excellent teaching.
Day 3: THESSALONIKI – VERIA
Thessaloniki-Visit the Walls, The House of Jason where Paul lived and the Agora where he preached. Continue to Veria-ancient Beroea- to the memorial commemorating Paul’s preaching to the local Jews in 54 AD
Day 4: KAVALA – PHILIPPI
Kavala (ancient Neapolis), the site where Paul, Timothy and Silas landed on the coast of Thrace. From there, visit Philippi where Paul lived, preached and was imprisoned and the Baptistery of Lydia, where the first baptism on European soil took place.
Day 5: ISTANBUL
In the morning we arrive in Istanbul, one of the world’s greatest historic cities. Formerly Byzantium, the center of the Eastern Roman Empire, this city is built on seven green hills and situated astride two continents. East meets West in every way. We visit the Sultan Ahmed (Blue) Mosque with its six minarets, and St. Sofia, converted to a mosque from a Christian basilica after the fall of Constantinople in 1453.
Day 6: DIKILI – PERGAMONA
Tour from Dikili (our port) to Pergamon, the great city of Bergama and a city of the Book of Revelation. It is one of the best-preserved ancient sites in Turkey.
Day 7: KUSADASI – EPHESUS – MILETUS
Arrive at Kusadasi. Visit Ephesus, the most impressive archeological site in Turkey, including the Great Amphitheater where Paul spoke to the Ephesians. An afternoon tour to Miletus, where Paul delivered his touching farewell address the elders of Ephesus and predicted his death, for those wishing to visit the place.
Day 8: PATMOS
Patmos, the “Holy Island” for the Christian faith. This is the place where the apocalyptic Revelation of John was written during his exile from the Roman Empire. We visit the cave and the monastery of St. John.
Day 9: DISEMBARKATION – ATHENS – CORINTH
Disembark the cruise ship and begin the tour of Athens. Visit among other masterpieces of the “Golden Age” the Acropolis, the agora and the Mars Hill where Paul taught. Continue to ancient Corinth. Visit the ruins of the ancient city where Paul worked. See the remains of first-century shops, the agora where Paul was on trial at the Bema, the Fountain of Peirene, Temple of Apollo and visit the museum. Drive to Patras port to embark the ferry to Bari, Italy.
Day 10: POMPEII – ROME
Disembark the ferry ship and begin the tour of Pompeii, where you will visit the spectacular ruins that were covered by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 A.D. The city remained buried and undiscovered for almost 1500 years until excavation began in 1748. These excavations continue today, providing insight into life during the Roman Empire. Drive to Rome for overnight.
Day 11: IMPERIAL ROME
This morning you will discover Imperial Rome. Paul wrote to the Christians of Rome and he eventually went there where his ministry continued, although he was technically a prisoner. You will experience the glory of Imperial Rome when you visit the Coliseum, famous as a place of spectacle and death. Gladiators died here as thousands looked on. See the Circus Maximus, built during the reign of Nero. This huge stadium was able to seat 250,000 spectators for chariot races and other spectacles. See the Roman Forum, an ancient meeting place, market place, religious and political centre. View the Arch of Titus that commemorates Titus’ conquest of Judea. You’ll visit the Mamertina Prison, where it is believed that both Peter and Paul were imprisoned.
Day 12: CHRISTIAN ROME
You’ll discover the Vatican Museum, home to many of the world’s masterpieces. Enter the Sistine Chapel and view Michelangelo’s frescoes, which have been restored to their full, colourful glory. Tour St. Peter’s Basilica where Michelangelo’s “Pieta” – the only work signed by the master – will be just one of many highlights. Travel along the famous Apian Way. Walk through the Catacombs of San Sebastiano. Visit Tre Fontane, where Apostle Paul was beheaded. Walk through Via Del Corso, Piazza de Spagnia, and enjoy the Trevi Fountain, Pantheon and Piazza Navona.
Day 13: DEPARTURE
Return flight from Rome back to your home country.