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Presents: Proposed Combined Classics Tour Italy / Greece / Turkey July 2013 YOUR ITINERARY Meals indicated as: (B) = Breakfast (L) = Lunch (D) = Dinner Saturday 13th July 2013 12:10pm 7:00pm Depart Auckland International Airport on Singapore Airlines Flight SQ 286 Arrive Singapore International Airport in transit Sunday 14th July 2013 (D) 01:05am Depart Singapore International Airport on Flight SQ 366 07:45am Arrive Rome International Airport On arrival at Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci Airport we will be met and transferred to our hotel in central Rome by touring coach. Hotel check-in is in the early afternoon, so we will have your bags safely stored at the hotel and spend the morning visiting the Colosseum and surroundings. The most famous monument in Ancient Rome, the Colosseum is considered one of the greatest feats of Roman architecture and engineering, seating up to 60,000 citizens. Venturing inside its walls enables students to understand the complex political history behind the ancient remains and can demonstrate the use and abuse of Roman power. An expert, local guide will bring to life the importance of this monument to Imperial Roman power and cruelty for the everyday Roman citizen. We will return to the hotel for a relaxing afternoon, followed by dinner at the hotel and an early night. Overnight Hotel Fiamma Monday 15th July 2013 (B, D) Rome 09:00am Our guide will join us for a walking tour of Rome. We will visit the Roman Forum, the Arch of Titus and the Arch of Constantine One of the best preserved of all the ancient Roman buildings, the Pantheon was once described by Michelangelo as being of “angelic and not human design”. Originally designed as a temple to the ancient Roman Gods, it was later consecrated as a Catholic church. The large oculus embedded in its huge domed roof permits the only natural light into the building, and it symbolises the union between earth and sky that allows prayer to ascend to the heavens unimpeded. According to tradition, the site of the Roman Forum is believed to have played a part in Rome’s history and is included in the stories about Romulus from as early as the 7th century BC and, later, becoming the centre of political and economic activity during the Republic’s supremacy. The Roman Forum answers many questions relating to Roman life at the height of the Empire’s power and throughout its subsequent decline, helping your students to understand more about the social and political implications of living in the Capitol. This evening we will enjoy an authentic Italian Dinner Overnight Hotel Fiamma Tuesday 16th July 2013 (B, D) Rome 09:00am Our guide will join us for a tour of the Vatican Museums. Our visit will include the Sistine Chapel and Basilica of St. Peter. The collections in the Vatican Museums include works by some of the world’s finest artists accumulated from around the world by numerous papal leaders. The highlight for most visitors is the Sistine Chapel painted by Michelangelo and commissioned by Pope Julius II della Rovere. The work was completed between 1508 and 1512 and although Michelangelo is reported to have resented the commission, the ceiling and the Last Judgment are two of his finest works. Also available to visit on the tour is the Hall of Maps, Raphael’s rooms and other timeless masterpieces by Da Vinci, Caravaggio and Titian. This afternoon, continue our exploration of Rome, including, of course, the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps. Overnight Hotel Fiamma Wednesday 17th July 2013 (B, D) Ancient Ostia and Hadrian’s Villa Today we travel by metro and regional train to Ancient Ostia. The beautifully preserved ruins of ‘Ostia Antica’ were founded in the 4th century BC and once inhabited by over 100,000 people. Structures included taverns, baths, apartments, groceries and theatres – and their intact state so strikingly exceeds that of the Roman Forum, Imperial Forum and Pompeii, that it seems a misnomer to call them ‘ruins’. Walk the main street, the Decumanus Maximus, while your tour guide brings the stones around you to life. The Roman statues that line the walkways are in such perfect condition you’ll feel as though you are walking amongst the ancient Romans themselves! You’ll even be enticed to take a dip in the Baths of Neptune, which are crowned by an impressively intact mosaic of the sea god being drawn by a four horse chariot. And if you are a theatre fan, you shouldn’t miss Ancient Ostia’s amphitheatre – whose structure is still so stable that you will be able to take your place in the stands as 3,500 ancient Roman spectators once did back in 12BC when it was first constructed. Among Ostica Antica’s many stunning sites that we’ll visit there is also the communal forica – or toilettes. Each apartment building has at least one for use by the tenants – and there is one particularly striking example – where a marble bench lined with twenty wellspaced holes lines four walls of a large, open room. Have a seat on one of the holes – and suddenly the more daily and human aspects of ancient Roman life become strikingly apparent. After our lunch break, we are collected by our touring coach for a visit to Tivoli and Hadrian’s villa. East of Rome, at the foot of the Tiburtini hills, source the famous spa town of Bagni di Tivoli – are dominated vast quarries of travertine marble. We visit the ruins of Villa Adriana, a hint at the grandeur and beauty of this Villa built by Emperor Hadrian to remind him of the monuments and sites he had admired during his travels in the East. For dinner tonight our last night in Rome we will enjoy traditional Italian Pizza. Overnight Hotel Fiamma Thursday 18th July 2013 (B, D) Rome to Naples via Cassino 08:30am Depart by touring coach. We break the journey at the town of Cassino. This town, is a battlefield of special significance to New Zealand. In the battle that lasted from 17th February to 23rd March 1944, the New Zealand forces suffered over 350 deaths and many more wounded before General Fryberg decided that the cost was too high and ordered his troops to withdraw. On arriving in Naples, we view one of the world's best collections of Greek and Roman antiquities in the National Archaeological Museum of Naples, or Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli. Many of the artefacts come from the nearby excavations at Pompeii and Herculaneum, well-preserved sites that were buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79AD. There's an impressive display of mosaics and frescoes. There's also an interesting section on prehistory and a huge display of coins. Overnight Hotel San Giorgio Friday 19th July 2013 (B, D) Pompeii and Naples We drive to the buried city of Pompeii to tour the ancient city and the Villa of the Mysteries. POMPEII is an ancient city at the foot of Mt Vesuvius. When the volcano erupted in 79AD the town was completely buried by stones and ash. It was discovered in the 17th century and when excavations began in 1748 they revealed a city frozen in time. Overnight Hotel San Giorgio Saturday 20th July 2013 (B) Naples to Bari and Greece We travel by touring coach to the ferry port at Bari, for the comfortable overnight ferry to Patras (Greece). We break the journey at Alberobello, in the region of Puglia in southern Italy, a strange and picturesque destination town, a UNESCO World Heritage site for its unusual districts of trulli, the characteristic, 14th century, white-washed conical-roofed houses of the area. Overnight Super Fast Ferry Sunday 21st July 2013 (D) Patras to Olympia On arrival in Patras, our specialist guide and touring coach will be waiting to transfer us to ancient Olympia where you will spend the afternoon exploring the ruins and visiting the small museum. Olympia Greece was the site of the ancient Olympic Games, which were celebrated every four years by the Greeks. Olympia was situated in a valley in Elis, in western Peloponnisos (Peloponnesus), through which runs the Alpheus River. It was not a town, but only a sanctuary with buildings associated with games and the worship of the gods. Olympia was a national shrine of the Greeks and contained many treasures of Greek art, such as temples, monuments, altars, theaters, statues, and votive offerings of brass and marble. Overnight Olympic Village Hotel Monday 22nd July 2013 (B, D) Olympia to Delphi The coach will cross the Gulf of Corinth on the new bridge between Rion and Antirion and drive into the mountains of central Greece to the village of Delphi. DELPHI was the ancient oracle of Apollo where people from all over Greece would travel to find out about their future. The pilgrims came with rich gifts in an effort to appease the gods and gain their favours. We will visit the Delphi Museum, the ancient site of Delphi and the Sanctuary of Apollo. Overnight Iniohos Hotel Tuesday 23rd July 2013 (B, D) Delphi via Mycenae & Corinth to Athens We cross the Gulf of Corinth and continue on to what was the rich and powerful ancient kingdom of MYCENAE , the centre of a civilisation that lasted eight centuries. Visit the archaeological site - the Lion Gate, the Cyclopean Walls, the Palace - and, the Tomb of Agamemnon. The king of Mycenae led the allied Greeks against Troy, in the Trojan wars. The defence walls of Mycenae were supposedly built by none other than the Cyclops – oneeyed giants. We continue to Athens past ancient Corinth and with a short stop at the remarkable Corinth Canal. Overnight Candia Hotel Wednesday 24th July 2013 (B, D) Athens The morning will be devoted to the Acropolis where we will visit the magnificent Parthenon and other temples, the museum, the theatre of Herodes Atticus and the agora. We will visit the national museum, followed by a walking tour which will take us to Syntagma square to see the Evzones (royal guards). We will make a short visit to the Syntagma metro station to view the artefacts discovered while the metro tunnels where being constructed. Continue to Zappeion, past Schlieman’s house, the temple of Olympian Zeus and the Panathenaic stadium. Tonight is a typical Athenian taverna dinner with bouzouki music and folk dancing. Overnight Candia Hotel Thursday 25th July 2013 (B, D) A relaxing morning is spent in Athens before a private coach will take us to the airport for the short flight to Istanbul. 1:55pm Depart Athens International Airport on Flight A3 992 to Istanbul 3:15pm Arrive Istanbul International Airport where we will be transferred into Istanbul’s “old Town”, Sultanahmet. We will have the afternoon to relax before enjoying an evening meal at our hotel. Overnight Erbil Hotel Friday 26th July 2013 (B, D) Istanbul Our hotel is very centrally located and therefore we will begin our walking tour of the old town with a visit to the Hippodrome – the ancient Roman chariot race track and will include the Blue Mosque and, Ayasofya and the fabulous Grand Bazaar. Tonight will be very special as we enjoy a farewell dinner at a traditional Turkish restaurant in the Old Town which will be a fitting end to a most amazing journey. Overnight Erbil Hotel Saturday 27th July 2013 (B) We have a leisurely morning in Istanbul before returning by coach to Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport for our flight home. 1:30pm Depart Istanbul International Airport on Singapore Airlines Flight SQ 391 Sunday 28th July 2013 05:00am Arrive Singapore International Airport in transit 08:45am Depart Singapore on Flight SQ 281 to Auckland 10:25pm Arrive home to Auckland **Arrangements End** ** A division of House of Travel Whangarei Limited.