Combine a generous dose of amazing food plus eye-opening local culture plus chilled out beach life & you get the Mediterranean Trail! Make pizza with the Italians, see the glory of Imperial Rome, sip authentic prosecco overlooking the Bay of Naples & catch a glimpse of the mighty Mt Vesuvius. Then go on to explore mythical Athens. But it doesn’t stop there - also get a taste of 4 gorgeous Greek Islands. A true blend of culture & fun, live it up in the Med – utter bliss!
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Itinerary + Inclusions & ME Time Optionals
ME Time Optionals
ME Time optionals will take your trip to a whole new level with unforgettable experiences unique to the places you visit. See more, do more, live more & go home completely regret-free. Costs for these aren’t included in your tour cost & are payable to your Trip Manager in local currency.
On our trips we don't just take you to the destinations, we make sure you get under the skin of every place you visit. From amazing food & accommodation, to exclusive access to incredible experiences, with Contiki you'll get unbeatable value & a completely unique travel experience.
Check-in to your hotel, drop off your stuff and head out into the streets of Italy to get a sneak peek at vibrant Rome. Get to know your travel buddies and Tour Manager over dinner.
Stylish Rome oozes energy and overflows with relics from another age. Get into the thriving atmosphere of this living timeline as your Tour Manager shows you the Colosseum, the Pantheon, Piazza Venezia and Piazza Navona. Honour tradition at the Trevi Fountain and throw a coin in the fountain’s waters (it’s meant to improve your chances of returning to Rome!). Maybe hang out with your new friends at the Spanish Steps, sit back and people watch.
- See the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, Piazza Venezia, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon & Piazza Navona
Get into the thriving atmosphere of this living timeline as your Tour Manager shows you the Colosseum, the Pantheon, Piazza Venezia and Piazza Navona. Honour tradition at the Trevi Fountain and throw a coin in the fountain’s waters (it’s meant to improve your chances of returning to Rome!).
Then make the most of our Local Guide’s inside knowledge and uncover the remains of an ancient empire with a fantastic optional tour of the Roman Forum and Colosseum. Then check-out the smallest country in the world and home to the Pope, the Vatican City.
In your free time, live the local lifestyle by indulging in a long lunch on a paved piazza or knock back a shot of espresso at the bar, like the Romans do. Before you hit the shops, let your Tour Manager point you in the right direction with some tips on the best buys. Later dive into Rome’s night action with your buddies and start your travels off with a night to remember.
- Rome of the Emperors and Gladiators including the Colosseum Euro 26.00
- Italian Cooking Class 48.00 Euro
This morning there’s included entry and our Local Guide to show you St Peter’s Basilica and Michelangelo’s masterpiece, the Sistine Chapel. Take off into the city and absorb the atmosphere, as vespas flash past timeworn monuments that are surrounded by fountains, pizzerias, cafes and bars.
Head past Naples, home of the pizza, and catch a glimpse of Mt Vesuvius. Plunge into Pompeii’s well-preserved past in an interesting optional excursion and retrace ancient history with our expert Local Guide.
Next up: the knock-out location of Sorrento. Set on sheer slopes, Sorrento doles up sweeping views over the Bay of Naples. Tonight there’s an optional dinner, where you’ll feast on traditional Mediterranean fare, complete with views of Mt Vesuvius from the cliff-top terrace.
- Locally guided tour of the Sistine Chapel, St. Peter's Basilica & the art of the Vatican Museums
- See St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican City
- See Mt. Vesuvius
- Pompeii Guided Walking Tour Euro 22.00
- Bay of Naples Feast Euro 37.00
This morning, it’s a boat ride to the main marina of the island of Capri, famous for its stunning caves and surrounding rock formations.
Get out on the water of the Bay of Naples in an optional cruise around Capri in our very own traditional wooden motorboat. See the world-famous Green and White Grottos and choose to get up closer to the world-famous Blue Grotto, with its intense blue glow, on a separate boat ride into the cave.
With plenty of swim stops on the cruise around the island, cool off in the Mediterranean and then use your free time to explore even more of the island. Soak up the views and head off with some friends into the cute, white-washed villages where you can try out the region’s sweet lemon liqueur, limoncello.
If you have time, explore Sorrento’s web of narrow streets or the Villa Communale Park, which has stunning views of Mt. Vesuvius.
- Day trip by boat to the Isle of Capri
- Capri Cruise Euro 25.00
- Bay of Naples Feast Euro 37.00
Today is your chance to really go all out Italiano! We'll start of with a true Neopolitan experience - some wine tasting & local mozzarella making lesson from those that know it best - the locals! We'll head to one of our favourite hidden spots, where you'll get in the know from these local experts who have been wine making & preparing delicious Italian mozzarella the true authentic way for generations. You'll get to sample the flavours that really show you why nothing beats the real deal!
This afternoon, there's the option of checking out the beautiful Italian haven, the Amalfi Coast on our optional trip. Famous for its beach, colourful houses & the rich & famous who flock to Positano & the Amalfi during the summer, these places are packed with cool locals, travellers & sun seekers alike are a photography lovers dream. Take to the streets for some shopping or pull up a lounger & hit the beach for sunbaking, swimming & people watching the gorgeous Italians. Tonight, enjoy Sorrento.
- Italian food & wine experience
- Visit the Amalfi Coast 27.00 Euro
Today is perfect for relaxing and taking in the views! There’s time to chill out on the coach, crossing through the stunning rugged landscapes of southern Italy, before boarding the overnight ferry to Greece. Check out the amazing 360 degree views from the deck!
- Scenic drive along the coast
From Patras, cross the impressive man-made Corinth Canal. Athens is next, a city crammed with myth and ancient wonders, and busy with modern, urban soul.
This morning take a step back in time in Europe’s oldest city to the birthplace of democracy. Get the run down on the Parthenon and the Acropolis from our Local Guide, as you wander around the marble columns perched above the city sprawl. Then we check out the first modern Olympic Stadium from the 1896 Games.
Spend the day exploring mythical Athens, a city crammed with ancient wonders yet busy with modern, urban soul.
Wrap up the day on the shady slopes beneath the Acropolis and jump start your trip with an optional dinner in the rustic district of Plaka, where traditional tavernas spill out onto the pavements. Finish up with a night out in Athens’ up-and-coming district of Psiri, buzzing with trendy bars and clubs.
- Learn about the birthplace of modern society on a guided tour of Athens & the Acropolis
- See the first modern Olympic Stadium
- A Traditional Athens Affair Euro 43.00
Board the ship and enjoy the facilities, great ocean views and good company as we cruise to Turkey’s largest city. While we cut through the water you’ll get to enjoy meals while getting to know everyone. Tomorrow when we arrive at Istanbul you can expect mosques, beautiful palaces, delicious spices, wonderful smells and a bustling city filled with over 13 million people. It will be an awesome eye opening experience.
Today, we wake up in Istanbul! With a day here, there’s plenty of time to get a real feel for this cultural melting pot.
Begin with an optional tour of Istanbul and get an insider’s angle on the city with our Local Guide, who’ll show off the city’s core sites. Cross the Galata Bridge for stunning views, check out Emperor Constantine’s Hagia Sophia and then eat at the magnificent Topkapi Palace, former home of the sultans.
Our Rep shows you one of the city’s major draw cards, the stunning Blue Mosque. It’s an amazing building with a series of domes and minarets dominating the skyline, complete with a breathtaking interior of tens of thousands of blue tiles.
After that, we head right into the heart of the city and plunge into several kilometres of shops at the Grand Baazar. It’s an unforgettable shopping experience, where tacky trinkets and authentic treasures are sold side by side. With carpets, jewellery, spices, music, electronics and more, the place is buzzing, so make sure you’ve got your haggling hat on.
Otherwise, live a bit of Istanbul’s daily life. Try your hand at backgammon in a sidewalk café and watch the crowds go by as you sip on Turkish coffee. Chill out in a tea garden, or take to the time-honoured tradition of the hammam (steam bath house) and get scrubbed down on heated marble stones.
Tonight, head to Greece’s stunning islands as you sail between two continents - Europe and Asia - on the world’s narrowest navigated straight.
- Visit the city of Istanbul - Grand Bazaar and Blue Mosque
- Ottoman Empire & Byzantine Legacy Tour Euro 109.00
Then its on to the Aegean paradise of Mykonos - the island of white-washed houses, windmills and blue domed churches. Get ready for 24 hours on Mykonos! We'll head on land & make our way to the hotel for the evening. Enjoy the sunset over “Little Venice” and soak up the atmosphere at this idealic location.
Grab yourself some delicious Greek cuisine at one of the cute little restaurants that dot the area & sit back & soak up the atmosphere of Mykonos town.
With a full free day, hang out on this island with its azure seas, golden beaches, and young, vibrant party culture - it's not hard to see why it's one of the most famous islands in Greece. You could opt to head to Paradise Beach, world renowned for its warm water & party vibe. Grab a sun lounger & a cocktail & rotate between sunbathing & swimming for a blissful experience. before returning to the ship this evening for dinner & entertainment.
- Visit Mykonos town & see the traditional Cycladic-style houses
- See the famous windmills
Fit in some last minute shopping in Turkey before boarding your cruise ship and setting sail to Rhodes in the Greek Islands.
On the way you’ll make at stop on Patmos, with its sacred spots and wild countryside. Get into the spirit of the island with an optional excursion that takes you to Patmos’ UNESCO World Heritage sites: the 11th century Monastery of the Apocalypse and to the Grotto of St. John – the hilltop cave where John the Apostle lived for many years.
Rhodes is one of the most beautiful & popular Greek Islands. It’s medieval castles, amazing sea views & pristine clean beaches make it a fantastic place to chill out.
After dinner with the group, head out into Rhodes for a taste of local life in this gorgeous World Heritage-listed Old Town.
There are lots of fantastic & varied places for a slice of Rhodes by night – it’s all action here. Head to Orfanidoy Street & the Old Town for a look – from clubs to bars, to beach bars – there’s something to suit every taste.
- See the fortified town of Rhodes
- Religious Visit to St. John’s Monastery – Grotto of Apocalypse Euro 49.00
Today we set sail to the resort town of Kusadasi and shop in the town’s colourful bazaar. This gorgeous city, which sits beside the Guvercin Ada peninsula, thrives over the summer. You’ll get to rummage through the Grand Bazaar and go local bargaining for leather goods, jewellery and or local crafts. Otherwise meet up with the our Local Guide for a ME Time optional to ancient Ephesus, a stunningly preserved city that Mark Antony and Cleopatra once visited.
- Visit Kusadasi's local bazaar
- Ancient Ephesus through the ages – Hellenistic and Roman Euro 60.00
Today we start the day off with a visit to the biggest of the Greek Islands, Crete.
Choose an optional excursion to the Palace of Knossos where our Local Guide will tell you the story of this 4000 year old mythical Minoan Palace, where the minotaur (half-man/half-bull) was slain.
Next up: Santorini. This island will make your jaw drop with its stunning natural beauty – the result of a massive volcanic eruption. From the water look up at the iconic blue–domed, whitewashed churches.
Once we’re back on land, head up the cliff and the twisting stone steps, save your breath on a donkey ride or take it easy in the cable car for views of neighbouring volcanic islands.
Your Rep will fill you in on Fira – dramatically perched on the edge of the crater - as the group explores its narrow streets. Get tips on the best places to pick up a piece of Santorini’s famous jewellery and where to try out the delicious local speciality, domatoktedes (fried tomato balls).
Otherwise head to one of the distinctive black or red sand beaches, and soak up the breathtaking scenery. You could jump on an optional boat ride out to the active volcanic island of Nea Kamini. Cruise past lava formations and get up close to the active crater.
- Visit Heraklion town
- Visit the main town of Fira
- See the spectacular volcanic islands surrounding Santorini
- Minoan Palace of Knossos – 1st European Civilization Euro 53.00
- Cruise to Islands and Volcanoes Euro 57.00
- Santorini - Spectacular Oia Village Euro 57.00
Disembark after breakfast and transfer into central Athens where the trip ends once you arrive.
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