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Footsteps of Paul Cruise – July 2015

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This Footsteps of Paul cruise is July 29-August 6 with an optional extension through August 9. It will visit Corinth, Cencherea, Athens, Syros, Patmos, Tinos, Chios, Ephesus, Pergamom, Sardis, Philadelphia & Laodicia.

This 9-day, Footsteps of Paul cruise and tour has stunning stops at the Apostle John’s island of Patmos and the best of the seven churches of Revelation in Turkey. The cruise is a 7-day, luxury cruise on a small, 50-passenger ship that allows us to go into the smallest ports without the hindrance of long lines and waiting.  We will have our own swim platforms, kayaks, bicycles and meeting space.  The trip is ideal for fellowship and teaching.  We begin the trip in Paul’s Corinth and Athens and then set sail for Asia Minor. If you have more time, you can continue on a 4-day extension to Berea, Phillipi and Thessaloniki.  For the 9-day Footsteps of Paul cruise core trip you will receive teachings at Athens, Corinth, Cencherea, Patmos, Ephesus, Pergamon, Heriapolis, Collasae, Philadelphia, Laodicea, Sardis, Chios Syros and Tinos.  Wow! Here’s a taste of what we’ve been planning:

 

Day Itinerary at a Glance
July 29 Depart home cities
July 30 Corinth and Cenchera with Paul’s ports
July 31 Athens, Mars Hill, the Acropolis and Parthenon, Plaka, Constitution Square, Marina Zea
August 1 Greek Island of Chios, for relaxation
August 2 Seven Church site of Pergamum, Red Court and the Asklepion
August 3 Ephesus, Collasae, Heriapolis, Laodicea, Sardis
August 4 Island of Patmos
August 5 Greeks Islands of Tinos and Syros (Santa Claus)
August 6 Marina Zea and flights home (those not doing extension)
Extension (August 6–9)
August 6 Kalambaka, Meteroa, Berea
August 7 Phillipi and Kavalla
August 8 Thessaloniki
August 9 Home bound

*See next tab for FULL ITINERARY

 

Day Description
July 29 Depart your home cities.
July 30 This morning we arrive Athens, Greece. We drive into Corinth and see the the Corinth Canal, an engineering wonder. We then visit the towering Acropolis of Corinth, the city where Paul preached and founded the Gentile church in 50 A.D. Paul wrote at least four of his letters to the Corinthians here (although, it is believed that two of them have been lost). We will see the remains of the first-century church where Paul spent time with Priscilla and Aquila and where he was on trial at the Bema and then transfer to our hotel, which is adjacent to the old city and is known as the “Plaka”. Late this afternoon, you can join us for a walk through the cobblestone streets of the old city. We have an early dinner together overlooking the Acropolis.
July 31 A momentous teaching will be done today at Mars Hill at the lower part of the Parthenon and Acropolis.  This is the exact spot where Paul preached the truth to the Gentiles.  We will also have a tour of the city of Athens, see the Tomb of the known Soldier and see the first Olympic stadium.  We will drive by Constitution Square and also see the Temple of Zeus.  Those with extra energy may choose to climb or take the funicular to the highest point of Athens – a unique church high above the marina that the Apostle Paul used for his visits to Athens.  At the end of our tour, we begin our journey aboard ship where we will partake of a welcome dinner as we set sail and then join in praise and worship from the deck.
August 1 We will have a fun and relaxing day today on the Greek island of Chios. Paul briefly visited the island just passing through on his 3rd journey from Troas to Caesarea.  The island is also only 12 miles from the church of Revelation in Smyrna.  Interestingly, per historian Josephus, it was Herod who spent a great amount of time on the island on his way to Agrippa.  Today, we will be able to kayak, bicycle, snorkel and swim.  The island is very slow-paced and our time here can be very peaceful.  It will be a great day to rest-up from long flights.  We will enjoy a lunch of fish today at a local seaside restaurant on the island, today.
August 2 e arrive at Dikili, Turkey. This very westernized city is near the church site of Pergamum. As our first visit to one of the seven churches of Revelation, we will see the Acropolis and the site of Satan’s seat, according to Jesus. We will enjoy a lively teaching in the impressive theatre that has commanding views of what once was a harbor. We will also have time to see Red Court and Asklepion archeological sites.  For those wanting a truly authentic, Turkish bath, today will provide that opportunity. The Turks use the bath to wash-away the past when life changes, as well as to celebrate marriages, births, etc.  We set sail this evening.
August 3 We arrive at the port of Kusadasi this morning. The day includes a full tour of Ephesus, the most well-preserved archeological sites of the seven churches of Revelation. Revelation 2:1:” Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks……” Our tour of Ephesus will be a highlight of our trip.  We continue on to see two more of the seven churches of Revelation today, with the second most well-preserved….Revelation 3:14-16:” To the angel of the church in Laodicea write, “These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the rule of God’s creation.  I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot.  I wish you were either one of the other.  So, because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I am about to spit you out of my mouth.”  You will see the unfolding of God’s mysteries right before you as you see the massive thermal buildups from centuries of hot water bursting from the earth and you will see the extensive aqueducts carrying cold water from the mountain right to the site, creating lukewarm water.  This will be a long day of touring and we will have a great break for lunch.  We will be seeing Biblically-historic Collasse and Hierapolis along the way.
August 4 We arrive on the island of Patmos today. We have a special tour that takes us to the cave where John received the Book of Revelation. We have a teaching outdoors under the olive trees overlooking the beautiful port. Then, we get to enter into the monastery and see some of the oldest Biblical manuscripts, including major pieces of the Purple Codex. Iconography was an important part of teaching the Gospel during the past centuries so we will see lovely Biblical pictures and stories in various places on the island. You will have time to enjoy a coffee or ice cream at one of the quaint, outdoor cafes and still have plenty of time to return to the ship for dinner, and possibly come back to the island for a walk around the waterfront. Rental bicycles are available for those who’d like to go for a ride around the bay, getting closer to the locals and seeing more island life.
August 5 This morning, we awake alongside the quaint, Greek Island of Tinos. You will see numerous local fishermen preparing the day’s catch. Historically, the island was one of the first to submit to King Xerxes during his expedition against the Greeks.  We will luncheon on the marina promenade before we sail on. Our next stop is the Venetian island of Syros, where we’ll have the opportunity to enjoy the beach, visit the numerous lovely mansions or stop at the museums – one of which is the home of famous artwork, including that of El Greco.  Syros has a church dedicated to the 4th– Century saint, St. Nicholas, a.k.a. Santa Claus.  Late this afternoon, we begin our teachings on the importance of Greece in spreading the Gospel and their own, legendary, Alexander the Great. Our evening at sea will include praise and worship on our private deck.
August 6 This morning we come into Marina Zea, where we will be able to see dock foundations that date back to the 5th Century B.C. Marina Zea is a lovely and lively, upscale marina and it is from here that flights home will depart or the optional extension will begin (see below)
Extension (August 6-9)
August 6 We say farewell to those flying home today and we travel on to Kalambaka and visit the monastery of Meteora.  This monastery was made famous by the James Bond, 007 movie, where even today, monks enjoy their hermit lifestyle.  After lunch, we drive to Berea where we visit the steps of the ancient synagogue location where Paul taught.  We will study the Berean church of Acts 20 and 17, learn about Timothy and Silas and their time there and then see frescos of a 12th-Century church.  At one time, the community of Berea had over 100 early church sites. Our evening will be spent at a hotel near the unique monasteries.
August 7 Today, we travel to the lovely port town of Kavala, on the Mediterranean.  This is ancient Neapolis where Paul, Silas and Timothy landed.  It is also here that Lydia became the first European convert to Christianity.  We will see the cistern of Philippi where Paul was imprisoned, and enjoy a lively study together at the site of the prison itself.  Our hotel for the next two nights will be in the city of Thessalonika.
August 8 There will be an opportunity to sleep late this morning and enjoy the neighborhood around the hotel.  Our day will be spent visiting the ramparts of the city and the agora, followed by a nice, farewell dinner this evening.
August 9 We transfer today to the airport for our flight to our home cities.

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