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Eastern Mediterranean Crossing: the Holy Land, Greek Islands, Cyprus, Turkey, Egypt & the Suez Canal - 2021

Amman • 12-night expedition cruise with Sharm El Sheik/Suez Canal, Ashdod, Haifa, Limassol, Rhodes, Kusadasi, Mykonos, Santorini, Piraeus • Athens
  • CRUISE ON THE OCEAN EXPLORER, AN AGILE AND STATE-OF-THE-ART EXPEDITION VESSEL THAT CAN NAVIGATE TO PLACES LARGER SHIPS CAN’T
  • JOIN OBSERVANT JEWISH PEOPLE AT JERUSALEM’S SACRED WESTERN WALL
  • TOUR THE UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE OF PETRA, JORDAN — A MAGNIFICENT DESERT SETTLEMENT MIRACULOUSLY CARVED OUT OF ROSE-RED SANDSTONE
  • CRUISE THIS LEGENDARY WATERWAY — A MASSIVE ENGINEERING FEAT — OVER TWO RELAXING DAYS, WITH SPLENDID VIEWS OF EGYPT AND THE SINAI
  • ENJOY A RELAXING RESORT STAY ALONG THE DEAD SEA, WITH PLENTY OF TIME TO SWIM IN ITS CURATIVE SALT WATERS
DATES & PRICES
STARTING FROM
$7,699
  • $452
    PER DAY
  • 17
    DAYS
  • 29
    TOURS
TRIP WITH AIR
18 DAYS FROM $8,348
Luxury
Extend Your journey (2 available)
Jordan & the Dead Sea

4 DAYS FROM $1,299

Istanbul, Turkey

4 DAYS FROM $1,699

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Tours & Shopping

LEARN more. EXPLORE more. DREAM more.
Enrich your vacation with Vantage's collection of deluxe optional tours, designed exclusively for our guests. You’ll discover a world beyond the landmarks and gain immeasurable insight into the culture and people of your destination. So join us … and make the most of your journey!

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Two Nights in Cairo

  • Approximate Cost: $799 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 2 nights/days
  • Location: Cairo, Egypt
  • When: 2-day tour

Discover Cairo on this special optional overnight excursion! You’ll fly from Sharm El Sheikh to Cairo and enjoy two nights at the Renaissance Cairo Mirage City Hotel, a luxury property in Cairo’s Heliopolis district. Enjoy an excursion to the Giza Plateau, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the southwest outskirts of Cairo, to see Egypt’s iconic Pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx. You’ll also enjoy a guided visit to the Grand Egyptian Museum, Egypt’s $1 billion undertaking that will become the world’s largest museum devoted to a single civilization. You’ll also visit Cairo’s Old Town, including the famous Khan el-Khalili bazaar, a major souk in the historic center of Islamic Cairo, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Away from your explorations, the hotel offers fabulous amenities, including indulgent bedding, innovative cuisine in multiple restaurants, a bar/lounge, pool, and gym. You’ll transfer to Port Said on the afternoon of your second day of the excursion and reboard the Ocean Explorer.

Day 1: Discover the Giza Plateau
Enjoy a morning excursion to the Giza Plateau, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the southwest outskirts of Cairo, to see Egypt’s iconic Pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx. Lunch is in a local restaurant before a guided visit to the Grand Egyptian Museum, Egypt’s $1 billion undertaking that will become the world’s largest museum devoted to a single civilization. Enjoy an afternoon at leisure with dinner on your own. Away from your explorations, the hotel offers fabulous amenities, including indulgent bedding, innovative cuisine in multiple restaurants, a bar/lounge, pool, and gym.

Day 2: Shop the Khan el-Khalili bazaar
Enjoy breakfast in the hotel before a morning visit to Cairo’s Old Town, including the famous Khan el-Khalili bazaar, a major souk in the historic center of Islamic Cairo, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Enjoy free time for lunch on your own, then you’ll transfer to Port Said and reboard the Ocean Explorer.


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Lindos & Monte Smith

  • Approximate Cost: $65 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 4 hours
  • Location: Rhodes, Greece
  • When: Afternoon tour
A beautiful 30-mile drive along the east coast of Rhodes will take you past picturesque little villages, with many glimpses of the sea and a splendid landscape of orange and lemon groves, vineyards, and gnarled olive trees. Lindos was an ancient Doric town that rose to power hundreds of years before the birth of Christ — when the population was twenty times as great as it is today. In medieval times, it was the island’s second most important center, after the town of Rhodes itself. It is no source of wonder that the ancient Greeks, the Byzantines, and the Knights of St. John all made good use of the stupendous Acropolis, which dominates the little town and the curving bay down below.

You will walk up to the summit to discover the magnificent remains of past civilizations. Located here you will find the Doric Temple of Athena Lindia, a double-winged portico, Byzantine church, and the fortifications of the Knights, including the remains of the Governor’s quarters. The view is truly panoramic and at the very foot of the Acropolis is St. Paul’s Bay, where the Apostle is said to have sought shelter during a storm. Below the Acropolis are the clustered, old whitewashed houses and narrow streets of the delightful village. A haunt of artists and writers for many years, it also contains many tiny shops brimming with attractive souvenirs. As the tour comes to an end, you’ll follow the same scenic route for a final glimpse of the surrounding beauty. On your return transfer, you’ll stop to snap photos at Monte Smith, site of the ancient Rhodes acropolis.

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House of the Virgin Mary and St. John’s Basilica

  • Approximate Cost: $79 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 3 hours
  • Location: Ephesus, Turkey
  • When: Afternoon tour
Discover ancient Greek remnants in modern-day Turkey on this optional tour. A motorcoach transfer will deliver you to the Basilica of St. John in Ephesus for explorations. The Basilica of St. John (St. Jean Aniti) was a great church in Ephesus constructed by Emperor Justinian in the 6th century. It stands over the believed burial site of St. John, who is identified as the apostle, evangelist (author of the Fourth Gospel) and prophet (author of the Book of Revelation). The basilica is located on the slopes of Ayasoluk Hill near the center of Selçuk, just below the fortress and about 3.5 km (2 miles) from Ephesus.

Next, continue by coach to the House of the Virgin Mary, a Catholic museum and shrine located on the top of Mount Koressos. The House of the Virgin (Meryemana in Turkish), located in a nature park between Ephesus and Selçuk, is believed to be the last residence of the Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus. The peaceful site is sacred to both Christians and Muslims, and is visited by many tourists and pilgrims.

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Island of Delos

  • Approximate Cost: $95 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 4 hours
  • Location: Ephesus, Turkey
  • When: Afternoon tour
After a 15-minute coach transfer and a short walk, guests will board the local ferry for a 40-minute sailing to Delos; the island of light, and the mythical birthplace of the God Apollo and Goddess Artemis. In Greek, Delos means "what appears," and according to mythology, the island appeared amid the waves, so that Leto would have a place to give birth to Apollo and Artemis.

The island is a piece of land covered with ruins, fallen columns, sections of the famous mosaics which once adorned the houses of the rich, a stadium and tiers of seats from a theater. Among these ruins, five marble lions stand in a row. Other interesting monuments spread over a wide area are the Agora, the treasures of the various cities, the Sanctuary of Apollo, the theater, the Sanctuary of the Foreign Gods and the Sacred Mount Cynthus. On your return to Mykonos, time permitting, you can either stroll on your own in the picturesque narrow streets of Chora or return to the ferry to take you back to Mykonos.

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Santo Winery & Prehistoric Museum

  • Approximate Cost: $119 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 4 hours
  • Location: Santorini, Greece
  • When: Afternoon tour

Santorini’s wines aren’t to be missed, and this optional excursion to Santo Winery introduces you to the unique methodology used to make Greek wines. From pruning to harvesting, everything is done by hand at Santo winery, and during a presentation and tasting, you’ll learn about the “koulouri” way of pruning the grapes, as well as how they’re grown in unique volcanic soil. Afterward, you’ll transfer to the Museum of Prehistoric Thira, which houses finds from the excavations at Akrotiri, including wall paintings, bronze artifacts, pottery, jewelry, and the recent discovery of a gold ibex.  


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Cape Sounion Tour

  • Approximate Cost: $49 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 4 hours
  • Location: Athens, Greece
  • When: Afternoon tour

Cape Sounion is one of the most famous and picturesque places in Attica. Bordered by the sea on three sides, its sharply indented coastline is fringed with beautiful beaches. Today, you will see some of the marvelous vistas Attica offers overlooking the sea. Departing from the hotel, you will drive along the scenic west coast of the Attica Peninsula, affording you fine views of the Saronic Gulf, and the fertile countryside inland. The island of Aegina will be on your right as you pass Voula, Lagonissi, and other resorts on your way to the southeasternmost tip of the land mass of Europe — Cape Sounion. Here on top of the cliff, which King Aegeus threw himself into the sea that now bears his name, stand the 17 remaining Doric columns of the 5th-century BC Temple of Poseidon. Built in Pentelic marble, the columns have retained much of their original gleaming white appearance. Many visitors, both illustrious and ordinary, have carved their names on the pillars since the 18th century. Lord Byron proudly carved his signature, but you are discouraged from leaving your mark! The breathtaking panorama from this lofty spot is superb with the deep blue Aegean Sea studded with the islands before you.


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Archaeological and New Acropolis Museums

  • Approximate Cost: $69 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 3 hours
  • Location: Athens, Greece
  • When: Morning tour

Travel back in time at the National Archaeological Museum, the largest archaeological museum in Greece and one of the most important museums in the world devoted to ancient Greek art. It was founded at the end of the 19th century to house and protect antiquities from all over Greece, preserving their historical, cultural, and artistic value.

Continue with a visit to the newly redesigned Acropolis Museum, which has been ranked as one of the top museums in the world. You’ll view all of the original surviving masterpieces from the temples of the Acropolis; excavations are also visible under glass floors and walkways. The museum was designed by the renowned Swiss architect Bernard Tschumi and the notable Greek architect Michalis Photiadis.


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Bosphorus Cruise: Between Two Continents

  • Approximate Cost: $85 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 4 hours
  • Location: Istanbul, Turkey
  • When: Afternoon tour (Extension)

Enjoy a scenic cruise down the Bosphorus, a strait connecting the Marmara Sea and the Black Sea. One of the most exquisite places in the world, this naturally formed passage was very much esteemed by sultans and pashas, who built their kiosks and residences along the water. As the wearing effects of time caused wooden buildings to demolish, they have been replaced with new ones. In place of the Besiktas Palaces, there appeared the Dolmabahçe Palace. Beylerbeyi Palace was rebuilt, while stone buildings were erected to complete its final outlook.

With its architecture matching its natural delights, the Bosphorus has reached an incomparable beauty. The buildings embroidering the shores of free-flowing waters, embraced by a green background, offer a view of unceasing delight. This wonderful cruise will provide unforgettable memories as you see the magnificent waterfront houses and palaces close up.


Please Note: All prices are per person and subject to change. All optional tours are offered by Vantage Deluxe World Travel. Descriptions and scheduling are subject to change. Minimum tour participation is required to operate optional tours. Optional tours cancelled by passengers within 48 hours of the excursion are non-refundable.

Tours & Shopping

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