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Home Cruises Istanbul to Athens (Piraeus) Silver Spirit 2022-05-30

Istanbul to Athens (Piraeus) - SL220530S09 Silver Spirit departing 30 May 2022

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Silver Spirit
Ship
Cruise Line
Embark
30 May 2022
Duration
9 Nights
From / To
Istanbul / Athens (Piraeus)
Ports of call
Istanbul - Kusadasi - Patmos - Rhodes - Rhodes
Rating

Suite from £5,035pp

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Itinerary

Show sea days

Date Date
Location Location
 
In In
Out Out
Date 30/05/2022
Location Istanbul
In
Out 18:00

A chaotic, colossal collision of east and west – start your day in Europe and end it in Asia, all without breaking a sweat. Sprawling across two continents, the city has been toed, froed and yanked between countless civilisations over its history, leaving a multi-layered, majestic tapestry of culture to untangle. An army of narrow minarets puncture the skyline, while the soaring towers of palaces and labyrinths of bazaars – where bargains are the reward for brave hagglers – fill up this dynamic city of 15 million people. View less

With a rich portfolio of Byzantine and Ottoman architecture, Istanbul enjoys one of the world’s most dynamic skylines and has an intense, infectious energy. The vast Aya Sofya is the starting point for exploring this huge city’s deep wealth of cultural treasures. Built in the 6th century as a Greek Orthodox church, it was later transformed into an Ottoman imperial mosque – and latterly a museum. Cast your eyes up to take in the full scale of the colossal dome, one of the world’s largest, which floats on a magnificent bed of light. See the Blue Mosque, with its glorious blue İznik tiles, or head to the Galata Tower which was once the tallest structure in Istanbul, and is ideal for a panoramic view of the city. Grab handfuls of dates and spices, shop for jewellery and patterned fabrics as you’re swallowed whole by the Grand Bazaar – one of the world’s biggest and busiest covered indoor markets. To understand Istanbul is to visit its kahvehans. Few rituals are taken as seriously as Turkish coffee – prepared to be incredibly strong. Sweeten the aftertaste with Turkish delight, or baklava – try the smooth pistachio version called kuru baklava.

Date 31/05/2022
Location At Sea
In
Out
Date 01/06/2022
Location Kusadasi
In 08:00
Out 23:00

Since the late 1970s, Kusadasi has grown from a fishing village into a sprawling tourist center, serving thousands of visitors who flock here to visit the nearby ruins of Ephesus. Despite an incredible building boom and an influx of shops, Kusadasi has managed to retain much of its original charm.
The major attraction remains the archaeological site of ancient Ephesus, considered to be the most important one in all of Turkey. The history of this ancient city dates as far back as the 10th century BC. Many of the remarkable structures seen today are the result of an extraordinary excavation and restoration program. As you walk along the white marble road, grooved by ancient chariot wheels, the two-story Library of Celsus presents a striking sight. In addition, there are temples, houses of noblemen and community buildings lining the ancient streets. Nestled into the mountainside is the 25,000-seat amphitheater, still used today for performances during the Festival of Culture and Art.

Date 02/06/2022
Location Patmos
In 08:00
Out 18:00

The Holy Isle of Patmos, one of the smaller Dodecanese Islands, occupies a narrow strip of land with numerous rocky hills and scant vegetation. The interior is sparsely populated with mostly shepherds and fishermen. In contrast, the waterfront areas see plenty of tourists during the summer months.

There are only two main villages, Chora and Scala; whitewashed houses face Scala harbor or are scattered over the hillsides. The island’s mild, healthy climate, year-round sunshine, delightful coves and numerous chapels combine to form a picture of unique beauty. The history of Patmos can be traced to Dorian and Ionian settlers who established a sanctuary to worship the goddess Artemis.

Date 03/06/2022
Location Rhodes
In 08:00
Out

Located only seven miles from the Turkish coast, Rhodes is one of Greece’s favored vacation centers. In ancient times, the entrance to its harbor featured a celebrated landmark, the Colossus of Rhodes. The 105-foot statue rose from a 35-foot stone base and was considered one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Rhodes was an important cultural center with a well-known School of Rhetoric attended by such historical figures as Cicero and Caesar. From a school for sculptors came the famous Laocoon group, which is now in the Vatican Museum. Rhodes’ most famous attractions originated with the Knights of St. John, who occupied parts of the island from 1308 to 1522. As their legacy they left a medieval town, dominated by the Palace of the Grand Masters and the Knights’ Hospital. The Old Town is encircled by one of the best-preserved walls in Europe. In addition to buildings that showcase the legacy of the Knights of St. John, there are plenty of shops and dining opportunities throughout the Old Town.

Date 04/06/2022
Location Rhodes
In
Out 14:00

Located only seven miles from the Turkish coast, Rhodes is one of Greece’s favored vacation centers. In ancient times, the entrance to its harbor featured a celebrated landmark, the Colossus of Rhodes. The 105-foot statue rose from a 35-foot stone base and was considered one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Rhodes was an important cultural center with a well-known School of Rhetoric attended by such historical figures as Cicero and Caesar. From a school for sculptors came the famous Laocoon group, which is now in the Vatican Museum. Rhodes’ most famous attractions originated with the Knights of St. John, who occupied parts of the island from 1308 to 1522. As their legacy they left a medieval town, dominated by the Palace of the Grand Masters and the Knights’ Hospital. The Old Town is encircled by one of the best-preserved walls in Europe. In addition to buildings that showcase the legacy of the Knights of St. John, there are plenty of shops and dining opportunities throughout the Old Town.

Date 05/06/2022
Location Crete
In 08:00
Out 18:00

Enter Souda Bay to land on Greece’s largest island, and explore the sun-soaked charms of this fascinating land of legends, landscapes and luxuries. Packed with beautiful beaches and rich maritime history, Souda Bay’s huge natural harbour is a spectacular entrance, opening up the treasures of Crete’s many well-stocked museums, rich archaeological sites, and charming Venetian fishing towns. View less

The massive natural harbour of Souda Bay also makes the site an interesting spot for military history – with a huge NATO base here, as well as the Souda Bay War Cemetery, which honours Allied soldiers of World War II. Soak up some Mediterranean sunshine by heading straight to one of the luxurious white sand beaches – where you can recline to a soundtrack of fizzing waves, and dine with sparkling sea views stretching out before you. Explore olive groves producing golden oil, and savour the deep, fruity flavours. The island’s renowned wineries, also invite you to sample lovingly-crafted Vilana grape wines. Rethymnon’s old town and star-shaped, seafront fortress are impressive sites to explore, or you can head to Akrotiri to discover the Arkadi Monastery’s role in the Cretan resistance – and visit the site where the Greek flag was hoisted high into the sky by rebels in 1897. Crete retains its independent spirit but has gathered countless influences over its history. The island’s most beautiful Venetian port – Chania – is close by, and its picturesque old town and collage of historical influences are a highlight of any trip.

Date 06/06/2022
Location Nauplion
In 08:00
Out 18:00

The former capital of Greece is a popular town on the eastern coast of the Peloponnese. Stately, medieval architecture recalls its Venetian occupation in the 15th century. The most dominant structure from this time is the crenellated Palamidi Fortress towering high above the town.
The lively port and resort town spreads around a scenic harbor. Its center is crisscrossed by narrow streets, which are best negotiated on foot. Several monuments remain from the towns’ Turkish past, including a mosque and the parliament building. Relics from ancient sites are on display in the Archaeological Museum. Those who are interested in handicrafts and traditional costumes may enjoy a visit to the Folk Art Museum.
Enjoy exploring along the waterfront and around the main square of the Old Town. Open-air cafés and restaurants invite you for a break to enjoy a light snack or a seafood lunch while taking in the local atmosphere.

Date 07/06/2022
Location Santorini
In 08:00
Out 18:00

Of all the Cyclades Islands, Santorini is often considered the most dramatic. Once an active volcano, in approximately 1620 BC, the volcano erupted with such force that the center of the island literally exploded, leaving a submerged crater. The island’s small villages were preserved in the ashes giving a fascinating view of everyday life from 3,600 years ago.

Santorini’s landscape offsets its simple buildings, which shine in the brilliant sunlight. The rich volcanic soil is ideal for grapes and the local vines produce a crop known for its “special volcanic taste.”

Date 08/06/2022
Location Athens (Piraeus)
In 07:00
Out

A city of legend, civilisation and enduring culture, Athens is a majestic and magical urban sprawl. Extraordinary elegance and grace combine with grit and graft in Greece’s capital, where highways encase ruins from antiquity, and gleaming museums and galleries stand beside concrete sprayed with edgy street art. These contrasts enhance and elevate the wonders of this 2,500-year-old city, however, which can count notable contributions to philosophy, drama and democracy, among its global legacy. Piraeus’ giant port and naval base welcome you to the edge of the Athens’ urban area.

From there it’s a simple jaunt to the centre. The majestic ancient citadel of the Acropolis dominates an elevated platform and is a constant presence as you explore the city. The wonderful remains of the columned temple of the Parthenon – which date back to the 5th century BC – stand here, representing the pinnacle of classical architecture. The nearby Acropolis Museum adds context to your visit and frames the broad views from its giant glass windows. Or rise up Mount Lycabettus, to be rewarded with perhaps Athens’ best panorama of the Acropolis sitting high over the city on its grand stage. See the marble horseshoe of the Old Olympic Stadium, where the first modern Olympics were held in 1896, for more of the city’s enduring legacy. Elsewhere, golden beaches and temples stretch out along the coastline, should you wish to explore a little further afield. Coffee is an art form to the Greeks, and it’s an unwritten rule that coffee time must never be rushed. So prepare to settle down for a couple of hours and lose yourself in a good chat. Feeling hungry – try traditional souvlaki made with sauces handed from generation to generation.

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Please call 01246 819 819 to book this cruise