As a pastor taking his first group to the Holy Land, I was so thankful to have the Travel with Friends team helping me every step of the way. They were amazing from the day that we picked the date to the day we returned. We loved the support staff, the guides, the accommodations and the travel arrangements. Highly recommended!
See the ministry of Paul the Apostle firsthand and take a relaxing cuise of the Aegean Sea on this all-inclusive tour!
- Airfare from group departure city
- All Transfers
- Baggage Handling
- Breakfast & Dinner Daily
- Entrance Fees to all Sites
- Itinerary as per Description
- Premium Accommodations
- Professional Tour Guides
- Transportation by Deluxe Motor Coach
Day 1 Depart USA
Relax and rest on your flight from the USA.
Day 2 Arrive in Greece
We arrive in Athens and check into the hotel. Enjoy a free day and dinner at the hotel. Rest and enjoy the city!
Day 3 Mykonos
We will board our cruise ship and sail this morning from Athens to the quaint isle of Mykonos, called the island of windmills. This is a stunningly picturesque Cycladic town with a maze of tiny streets and whitewashed steps, lanes, houses and churches, gathered around its harbor in the middle of a wide bay. Experience the waterfront lined with shops and cafes and then stroll the charming walkways. You may choose to explore on your own or add an optional Mykonos Walking Tour for $56, before returning to the ship for dinner and evening activities.
Day 4 Ephesus/ Patmos
This morning your cruise will be docking in Turkey. You will enjoy a tour of Ephesus (included), the city of the Bible and one of the largest restorations still in progress with miles of ancient treasures. Today you can still see the spectacular excavations of the major streets in this ancient city. This afternoon we will visit the Isle of Patmos, under statutory protection as a historic monument, you will take a tour to see the fortified monastery of St. John (included) and the cave claimed to be where John received the Revelation. This grotto is believed to mark the spot where John of Patmos received his visions that he recorded in the Book of the Apocalypse (Revelation).
Day 5 Crete/ Santorini
You will wake up to visit the island of Crete. Participating in the optional excursion, you can visit the Palace of Knossos and its famous “Labyrinth” which was the Centre of the Minoan civilization. Next you will visit the island of Santorini which is perhaps the most breathtaking of all the Greek islands. The town of Thera has white washed houses, narrow streets, and open air cafes that are accessible by cable-car or mules. There will be several optional tours offered in Santorini, including the Essence of Santorini and Akrotiri Village & Excavations, or you may choose to spend the day shopping and exploring on your own. Again we return to the ship for dinner and evening entertainment.
Day 6 Thessalonica/ Philippi
This morning you will disembark from the cruise ship and transfer to Athens airport for a short flight to Thessalonica. Thessalonians will come alive to us today. We will visit Philippi and Kavala. Kavala is Greece’s prettiest mainland port with a most elegant harbor. Paul landed here with his disciples, Timothy and Silas. Lucas the evangelist also came here from Troas. Imagine walking on the same sod as these men of the Bible! We will see the Roman Aqueduct and the ruins of the Acropolis in this beautifully located city, known since the 5th century as Kavala. Continue on to Philippi where Paul preached his first evangelical sermon and baptized the first Christians on European soil. We return to Thessalonica and visit St. Demetrius basilica, dedicated to a distinguished member of the Roman army and a martyred Christian convert before returning to the hotel for the night. Enjoy dinner & an overnight stay in Thessalonica.
Day 7 Thessalonica Harbor
We begin the day by following the massive battlement Byzantine wall to the citadel for a panoramic view of the city. The New Testament books of I & II Thessalonians will come alive to us today as we arrive in the delightful harbor city of Thessalonica. Continue to Kalambaka (Meteora) for dinner and overnight.
Day 8 Berea/ Meteora Monastery/ Thermopylae
On our tour today a stop will be made in Berea to view newly placed mosaics of Paul and plaque of scripture regarding the “more noble” church. We also visit King Phillip’s (Alexander’s father) tomb in Vergina, one of the most outstanding finds in all of Greece. This afternoon we see the world famous Byzantine monasteries that are perched precariously on summits of gray rock pinnacles of varied and beautiful shapes. From the mountains, our tour travels southward past Thermopylae which is primarily known for the battle that took place there in 480 BC, in which an outnumbered Greek force of seven thousand (including the famous 300 Spartans ) held off a substantially larger force of Persians. Overnight in Athens.
Day 9 Athens/ Corinth
Visit the Acropolis, the Parthenon, and Erectheum before viewing Athens atop Mars Hill where Paul stood and preached the truth to the Gentile nation. Additional sites that will be visited include the Agora (ancient market place and center of Athenian public life), the house of Parliament, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Olympic Stadium, and the Presidential Palace. We will leave Athens and drive southwest until we reach the Corinth Canal which connects the Aegean Sea with the Ionian Sea. You will enjoy dinner and an overnight stay in Athens.
Day 10 Return to USA
Relax and reflect on your flight home.
I had a most wonderful trip, accompanied by 15 new friends from South Dakota led by Pastor Rooney, 4-13 Feb 20. Because I was a VERY late add-on to their trip, I dealt with 4 people from Friends and each was OUTSTANDING. However, the STAR who deserves special note is Kelsie Vail, the Air Specialist: she was able to save me over $1,700.00 on my upgraded seating [disabled Vet with BAD back]. She was incredibly personable, professional, and simply "down-home" friendly, genuine, and nice!! The trip was a true "bucket-list" adventure, walking where Jesus walked, preached, and performed miracles [I was overwhelmed many times and want to visit Israel again!]. The sights were amazing; the bus was quite comfortable; and our Tour Leader ("Charlie") and bus drivers were extremely knowledgeable, experienced, and Safety-conscious. Truly the VERY BEST overseas tour I have ever taken! Thank you, Friends, and especially VP Mitch Jensen and Kelsie Vail for all the pre-trip information, help overcoming flight delay/change, and post-trip timely assistance. They will NOT let you down! Shalom!
The faces of Friends www.TravelWithFriends.com, BTR (Bill), Claudia and Charlie Dajani. An amazing experience that could only be possible with this team! From the first of booking our trip through to seeing us off at the ticket counter for our return trip back to the states. I absolutely recommend going to Israel and doing it with Friends travel. Charlie, you are amazing. Charlie’s extensive knowledge, humor, care of the group and individuals, mapping and juggling of sites to make it seamless and timely was a true treasure. Outstanding job!!!!! You all helped make this an experience to remember, share and HIGHLY recommend! ❤️