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The Grand Odyssey

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Athens to Malaga

130 days

1-night hotel stay in Kandy

1-night hotel stay in Marrakesh

2-night hotel stay in Luxor

3-night hotel stay in Athens

2-night hotel stay in Cairo

2-night hotel stay in Delhi

1-night hotel stay in Negombo

from $22,750 pp

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AEG181209D

  • calendar
    130 days
  • flag
    22 countries
  • hotel
    12 hotel nights
  • shore-expirience
    56 shore excursions
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Combine five of our winter voyages and cruise from Athens to Malaga into one incredible four-month journey as you explore some of the most outstanding, must-see destinations in the world, from the Mediterranean to Asia, Africa and back to Europe. Enjoy Christmas and New Year’s Eve celebrations on board, delicious cuisine, comfortable cabins and friendly service every step of the way. This once-in-a-lifetime experience is truly one of the great journeys to be found on the globe.

Guests using Voyages to Antiquity's air program will have an overnight hotel stay post-cruise before their flight home. Please call for details.

Please note: all activities, guest lecture topics and other day-by-day events listed as taking place on-board Aegean Odyssey are subject to change and may be rescheduled or cancelled at any time.

Date
Port
Depart
Arrive
Dec 05
Wed
Departure
    Departure
    Depart North America.
    Dec 06
    Thu
    Athens
    • Arts & culture
    • Signature Voyage
    • Unesco
    Athens, Greece
    Arrive in Athens and transfer to hotel.
    overnight hotel
    Dec 07
    Fri
    Athens
    • Arts & culture
    • Signature Voyage
    • Unesco
    Athens, Greece
    Discover the amazing history of the Greek capital on a choice of tours, taking in the awe-inspiring temples and museum of the Acropolis, or Byzantine Athens.
    overnight hotel
    Dec 08
    Sat
    Athens
    • Arts & culture
    • Signature Voyage
    • Unesco
    Athens, Greece
    Visit the city of Agamemnon – Mycenae – and marvel at the great theatre of Epidaurus, with acoustics so good that it is said you can hear a pin drop from the highest tier.
    overnight hotel
    Dec 09
    Sun
    Piraeus
    • Arts & culture
    • Signature Voyage
    • Unesco
    Piraeus, Greece
    Enjoy an optional morning tour of the impressive National Archaeological Museum and transfer to the port of Piraeus to embark Aegean Odyssey.
    7.00pm
    Dec 10
    Mon
    At sea
    • Sea Days
    At sea
    Cruising the Mediterranean Sea. David Crilly kick-starts our lecture programme as he goes in search of the real Cleopatra, Campbell Price delves deep into the topic of ‘ancient Egypt’ and how this idea was created, while Thomas Fraser discusses the modern Middle East.
    Dec 11
    Tue
    At sea
    • Sea Days
    At sea
    For those who love to sing, sign-up for the Aegean Odyssey choir club. Other activities include the first of many creative workshops led by Alan O’Cain and an introductory craft class with Clare Coventry.
    Dec 12
    Wed
    Suez Canal
      Suez Canal, Egypt
      Appreciate the mighty engineering achievement of the Suez Canal with a contextual commentary from the Bridge. Aegean Odyssey is expected to enter the canal in the early hours of Wednesday morning and exit in the mid-afternoon.
      Dec 13
      Thu
      Cairo
      • Soft adventure
      • Arts & culture
      Cairo, Egypt
      Disembark Aegean Odyssey for a two-night overland tour to Cairo and its environs, beginning with the Egyptian Museum, home to the glittering funerary treasure of the boy-pharaoh Tutankhamun. Lunch and dinner are included.
      overnight hotel
      Dec 14
      Fri
      Cairo
      • Soft adventure
      • Arts & culture
      Cairo, Egypt
      The Old Kingdom capital of Memphis and the necropolis of Sakkara, famed for its ‘Step Pyramid’, make for a fascinating visit. Enjoy lunch and a free afternoon. A splendid Nile dinner cruise follows.
      overnight hotel
      Dec 15
      Sat
      Cairo
      • Soft adventure
      • Arts & culture
      Cairo, Egypt
      A short drive to Giza and the iconic Sphinx and Pyramids, last surviving wonder of the ancient world. Enjoy lunch before we drive back to rejoin Aegean Odyssey.
      overnight
      Dec 16
      Sun
      Suez Canal
        Suez Canal, Egypt
        A full day excursion introduces two of the oldest Christian monasteries in the world, St Anthony’s and St Paul’s.
        8.00pm
        Dec 17
        Mon
        At sea
        • Sea Days
        At sea
        Cruising the Red Sea. David Price-Williams examines the archaeology of Petra during his talk and today also marks the choir club launch with carol concert rehearsals starting.
        Dec 18
        Tue
        Aqaba
          Aqaba, Jordan
          Jordan’s southern port is the gateway to Petra, acclaimed as one of the ‘New Seven Wonders of the World’. This ancient, mountain-cut city of temples and tombs, streets and theatres is indeed spectacular, and visitors never forget their first sight of the Treasury.
          overnight
          7.00am
          Dec 19
          Wed
          Aqaba
            Aqaba, Jordan
            An optional excursion invites you to follow in the camel tracks of TE Lawrence in Wadi Rum, a desert landscape so otherworldly that in has often stood in for Mars in Hollywood films.
            2.00pm
            Dec 20
            Thu
            Safaga (Luxor)
              Safaga (Luxor), Egypt
              Disembark Aegean Odyssey for another overland tour, to Luxor followed by lunch, and visit the majestic temple of Karnak in the afternoon.
              overnight hotel
              7.00am
              Dec 21
              Fri
              Safaga (Luxor)
                Safaga (Luxor), Egypt
                The sun-baked UNESCO Valley of the Kings, with its richly frescoed royal tombs, plus lunch makes for an enthralling morning. Dinner at your hotel and a show in the evening.
                overnight hotel
                Dec 22
                Sat
                Luxor
                  Luxor, Egypt
                  Morning drive from Luxor to Safaga to rejoin Aegean Odyssey for lunch on board.
                  8.00pm
                  Dec 23
                  Sun
                  At sea
                  • Sea Days
                  At sea
                  Cruising the Red Sea. David Price-Williams discusses the ancient trade in Frankincense and the history of the miracle-working Saint Nicholas. Alan O’Cain gives an engaging talk about Dogs in Art.
                  Dec 24
                  Mon
                  At sea
                  • Sea Days
                  At sea
                  Quizzes and films will take place throughout the day, while Clare and Marianne lead the evening ‘Carols by Electric Candelabras’ service, accompanied by mulled wine.
                  Dec 25
                  Tue
                  At sea
                  • Sea Days
                  At sea
                  We aim to give you a Christmas Day you will never forget. Enjoy a champagne breakfast, buffet lunch and formal dinner preceded by the Captain’s festive cocktail party. Other activities include a morning church service, Christmas-themed quiz and the Christmas Passenger Choir Concert.
                  Dec 26
                  Wed
                  At sea
                  • Sea Days
                  At sea
                  Cruising the Red Sea on Boxing Day. Thomas Fraser looks ahead to India whilst discussing the civilisations of the Indus Valley, Nile and Tigris-Euphrates. David Price-Williams wraps up our exploration of Egypt with a talk which looks into the fall of Assyria.
                  Dec 27
                  Thu
                  At sea
                  • Sea Days
                  At sea
                  David Crilly gets us ready for Oman by means of exploring the ancient oral traditions of storytelling at the core of Bedouin folk music.
                  Dec 28
                  Fri
                  Salalah
                    Salalah, Oman
                    Visit the town of Sumharam and the Tomb of Job for a morning sightseeing tour. In the afternoon take an optional tour to discover the Sultanate heritage.
                    10.00pm
                    8.00am
                    Dec 29
                    Sat
                    At sea
                    • Sea Days
                    At sea
                    The Daily Journal on board Aegean Odyssey details a comprehensive list of activities, should you be undecided how to spend these laid-back days at sea.
                    Dec 30
                    Sun
                    At sea
                    • Sea Days
                    At sea
                    Cruising the Arabian Sea.
                    Dec 31
                    Mon
                    Muscat
                      Muscat, Oman
                      A visit to the Sultan's Palace, and the famous 16-century Portuguese twin forts. Optional afternoon tour. As midnight approaches, grab a glass of Champagne and count down the seconds to New Year whilst the Captain speaks to you from the Bridge.
                      10.00pm
                      8.00am
                      Jan 01
                      Tue
                      At sea
                      • Sea Days
                      At sea
                      Cruising the Arabian Sea. David Crilly talks about the language and mystery of Indian classical music.
                      Jan 02
                      Wed
                      At sea
                      • Sea Days
                      At sea
                      Andrew Bunten talks about the charismatic land mammals that can be found across the astonishing sub-continent of India.
                      Jan 03
                      Thu
                      Porbandar
                      • Arts & culture
                      Porbandar, India
                      We explore the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi in the most characterful way – by tuk-tuk!
                      8.00pm
                      8.00am
                      Jan 04
                      Fri
                      At sea
                      • Sea Days
                      At sea
                      Another day at sea, full of quizzes, films and a moving classical concert.
                      Jan 05
                      Sat
                      Delhi
                      • Arts & culture
                      • Architecture
                      Delhi, India
                      Enjoy an included morning sightseeing tour of Mumbai, featuring the residence of Mahatma Gandhi and the 262-foot-high Gateway of India. Then take an afternoon flight to Delhi for an overnight hotel stay.
                      overnight hotel
                      6.00am
                      Jan 06
                      Sun
                      Delhi
                      • Arts & culture
                      • Architecture
                      Delhi, India
                      After breakfast at your hotel, take an express train to Agra and enjoy guided tours of the UNESCO Red Fort of Agra, founded by Emperor Akbar in 1565, and the spectacular Taj Mahal.
                      overnight hotel
                      Jan 07
                      Mon
                      Mumbai
                      • Arts & culture
                      Mumbai, India
                      A morning sightseeing tour of Delhi, featuring the UNESCO World Heritage Qutub Minar, India Gate and the Raj Ghat, where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated. Then take an afternoon flight back to Mumbai to rejoin Aegean Odyssey.
                      10.00pm
                      Jan 08
                      Tue
                      At sea
                      • Sea Days
                      At sea
                      Cruising the Arabian Sea. Peter Cattermole looks at the geography of India and Sri Lanka, and then Judith Brown examines Mahatma Gandhi’s core beliefs, including his practice of non-violent resistance.
                      Jan 09
                      Wed
                      Marmagao
                      • Arts & culture
                      • Unesco
                      • Religious
                      Marmagao, India
                      Tour Old Goa and the historic villas of the Portuguese era, or take a tour through small towns and villages to Hindu temples and the Sahakari Plantation.
                      8.00pm
                      8.00am
                      Jan 10
                      Thu
                      At sea
                      • Sea Days
                      At sea
                      As Aegean Odyssey cruises the Malabar coastline, Ernie Rea talks about the inspiration for the Oscar winning movie “Slumdog Millionaire”, then later in the day Stephen Carr-Smith begins a series of presentations on the British in India.
                      Jan 11
                      Fri
                      Cochin
                      • Arts & culture
                      Cochin, India
                      Enjoy a morning tour of Cochin's highlights, including the oldest church in India. An optional afternoon tour is also available, or a full day optional tour to one of India's most beautiful regions, Kerala.
                      8.00pm
                      8.00am
                      Jan 12
                      Sat
                      At sea
                      • Sea Days
                      At sea
                      Another day at sea to enjoy Aegean Odyssey’s facilities. Visit the Athena Spa perhaps, or sit back for a lazy morning on the Lido Deck, with a good book from our well-stocked library.
                      Jan 13
                      Sun
                      Uligamu
                        Uligamu, Maldives
                        Head ashore on the stunning tropical island of Uligamu, where you will have plenty of time to relax on the white sands or swim in the quiet, tranquil waters which are surrounded by coral reefs and tropical fish, before returning to the ship for a barbeque party on deck.
                        3.00pm
                        8.00am
                        Jan 14
                        Mon
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Our on-board speaker programme continues with Judith Brown talking on ‘Nehru’s India and Beyond’ and Andrew Bunten presenting ‘Tiger, Tiger – Land Mammals of the Indian Subcontinent’.
                        Jan 15
                        Tue
                        Colombo
                        • Wildlife
                        • Arts & culture
                        Colombo, Sri Lanka
                        Included full-day visit to Galle, a colourful town that is shrouded in the scent of spices and littered with decaying Dutch-colonial buildings. Also delight in the coastal town of Koggala, for a chance to view the local fishermen who stand on stilts planted in the coral reef.
                        overnight
                        8.00am
                        Jan 16
                        Wed
                        Colombo
                        • Wildlife
                        • Arts & culture
                        Colombo, Sri Lanka
                        Take a morning tour of Colombo's city highlights, including Kelaniya (Kalyana) Temple and the National Museum of Sri Lanka, housing a vast collection of books, more than 4,000 archaic palm leaf manuscripts and rock sculptures from ancient cities.
                        6.00pm
                        Jan 17
                        Thu
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Peter Cattermole’s fascinating geographical talks continue as he discusses the Indian Ocean and Ernie Rea asks why hair is so important to people of religion, whether it be dreadlocks, turbans, side-locks or beards.
                        Jan 18
                        Fri
                        Trincomalee
                        • Arts & culture
                        • Architecture
                        Trincomalee, Sri Lanka
                        A choice of tours are available today: take a city tour of Trincomalee, which has attracted many sea farers throughout the ages, from Marco Polo and Ptolemy, to the traders of ancient China and East Asia; or visit the UNESCO site of Royal Polonnaruwa, one of the best-preserved archaeological cities on the island.
                        4.00pm
                        8.00am
                        Jan 19
                        Sat
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Our craft classes and entertainment in the form of daily quizzes continue, alongside moving poetry readings and classical recitals from our resident musicians.
                        Jan 20
                        Sun
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Our speaker programme promises to keep your mind engaged as we cruise the Indian Ocean, while our evening entertainment throughout the voyage is upbeat and there’s always something going on for those that seek it.
                        Jan 21
                        Mon
                        Port Blair
                        • Arts & culture
                        Port Blair, Andaman Islands
                        Take a morning city tour of Port Blair that includes the Andaman's most historic monuments and museums.
                        7.00pm
                        8.00am
                        Jan 22
                        Tue
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Stephen Carr-Smith explores how Gandhi, Nehru and Jinnah all sought Indian independence in different ways; and Ernie Rea tells the story of Sir Stanford Raffles and Lee Kwan Yew.
                        Jan 23
                        Wed
                        Phuket
                        • Natural Wonders
                        • Beach
                        Phuket, Thailand
                        Take a fabulous full-day boat trip to the soaring cliffs, powdery sands and crystal-clear waters of the Phi Phi Islands, or Phang Nga, aka James Bond island.
                        8.00pm
                        8.00am
                        Jan 24
                        Thu
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        A day at sea as Aegean Odyssey cruises the Strait of Malacca and a chance to excel in a craft class. Themed quizzes continue in the Charleston Lounge and topical discussions happen in the Ambassador Lounge.
                        Jan 25
                        Fri
                        Port Kelang
                        • Architecture
                        Port Kelang, Malaysia
                        Experience a world of beautiful mosques, grand museums, historic memorials and local marketplaces in Kuala Lumpur.
                        8.00pm
                        8.00am
                        Jan 26
                        Sat
                        Singapore
                        • Wildlife
                        • Arts & culture
                        • Unesco
                        Singapore, Singapore
                        Delve into the spirit of Singapore on a morning sightseeing tour of the city, or take an optional excursion to the Gardens by the Bay, a true horticultural wonderland covering over 100 hectares.
                        7.00pm
                        8.00am
                        Jan 27
                        Sun
                        Malacca
                        • Arts & culture
                        • Unesco
                        • River
                        Malacca, Malaysia
                        Discover the history of Malacca, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that is alive with atmosphere, from its garishly decorated trishaws to bustling food market.
                        8.00pmhotel
                        8.00am
                        Jan 28
                        Mon
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Cruising the Strait of Malacca. The next enrichment programme is outlined today and the rest of Aegean Odyssey’s facilities are available.
                        Jan 29
                        Tue
                        Penang
                        • Arts & culture
                        • Religious
                        Penang, Malaysia
                        Visit the colourful capital of the Malaysian island of Penang, George Town, known for its mix of British Colonial buildings, mosques and Chinese shophouses.
                        2.00pm
                        8.00am
                        Jan 30
                        Wed
                        Phuket
                        • Natural Wonders
                        • Beach
                        Phuket, Thailand
                        Free time at leisure, or another chance to admire Phang Nga, aka James Bond island, or take a full-day boat trip to the soaring cliffs, powdery sands and crystal-clear waters of the Phi Phi Islands.
                        6.00pm
                        8.00am
                        Jan 31
                        Thu
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Cruising the Andaman Sea. Over these two days quizzes continue in the Charleston Lounge; poetry readings can be enjoyed in the evening; the book club will convene and our instrumental trio will be putting on a special concert.
                        Feb 01
                        Fri
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        For those who wish to be pampered, the Athena Spa offers a range of treatments and special offers are listed in your Daily Journal.
                        Feb 02
                        Sat
                        Yangon
                        • Arts & culture
                        • Less Visited
                        • Religious
                        • River Port
                        Yangon, Burma
                        Today you will sail up the Yangon River to berth in the port of Yangon (Rangoon), the former capital of Burma – a suitably spectacular way to arrive in one of the most mysterious, beautiful and deeply spiritual countries in the world. Then enjoy a visit to the Shwedagon Pagoda.
                        overnight
                        2.00pm
                        Feb 03
                        Sun
                        Yangon
                        • Arts & culture
                        • Less Visited
                        • Religious
                        • River Port
                        Yangon, Burma
                        Take an included guided tour of the National Museum of Myanmar, then explore Bogyoke Market, formerly named Scott’s Market. Alternatively, enjoy one of two extremely special optional excursions unlike anything else you will experience during your cruise: an air tour to either Bagan or Mandalay.
                        overnight
                        Feb 04
                        Mon
                        Yangon
                        • Arts & culture
                        • Less Visited
                        • Religious
                        • River Port
                        Yangon, Burma
                        With the morning free, enjoy a stroll around the city at leisure, before an afternoon departure and another stunning river cruise down the Yangon river.
                        2.00pm
                        Feb 05
                        Tue
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Cruising the Andaman Sea. In honour of the Chinese New Year, Olivia Cox gives a personal reflection on the charms and challenges of expatriate-living in Beijing, the fast-developing capital of China.
                        Feb 06
                        Wed
                        Port Blair
                        • Arts & culture
                        Port Blair, Andaman Islands
                        Take an included boat trip to colonial Ross Island.
                        8.00pm
                        8.00am
                        Feb 07
                        Thu
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Cruising the Indian Ocean. Book club and film discussions take place, daily quizzes continue, our resident musicians entertain you and cocktail parties can be enjoyed.
                        Feb 08
                        Fri
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Ahead of our arrival into spiritual Sri Lanka, more fascinating talks will be on offer as part our enrichment programme.
                        Feb 09
                        Sat
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Sandy Primrose talks on botany, Bob Taylor on literature and Nigel Cox on Southeast Asian colonial history. There’s also plenty of amenities to enjoy aboard Aegean Odyssey.
                        Feb 10
                        Sun
                        Kandy
                        • Unesco
                        • Flora and Fauna
                        Kandy, Sri Lanka
                        Watch Asian elephants bathe and play at the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, then after lunch overlooking the river, visit a spice garden followed by sacred Kandy, location of the temple containing a tooth of the Buddha, before being taken to your hotel for the night.
                        overnight hotel
                        7.00am
                        Feb 11
                        Mon
                        Kandy
                        • Unesco
                        • Flora and Fauna
                        Kandy, Sri Lanka
                        Enjoy a leisurely drive past Lake Kandy to a bazaar offering an array of locally made handicrafts. Then continue to the Royal Botanic Gardens of Peradeniya, which are renowned for their exquisite orchids. Dinner will be served at your second hotel, on the waterfront.
                        overnight
                        Feb 12
                        Tue
                        Colombo
                        • Wildlife
                        • Arts & culture
                        Colombo, Sri Lanka
                        The final morning in Sri Lanka is free for you to relax or explore as you wish. Lunch will be at the hotel before your return to Aegean Odyssey in Colombo.
                        10.00pm
                        Feb 13
                        Wed
                        At sea
                        • Sea Days
                        At sea
                        Cruising the Indian Ocean. New guest Speakers will give you an overview of their topics, the book club will be detailed, and Jessie Linden will tell you all about the craft classes available.
                        Feb 14
                        Thu
                        Uligamu
                          Uligamu, Maldives
                          Head ashore on the stunning tropical island of Uligamu, where you will have plenty of time to relax on the white sands or swim in the quiet, tranquil waters which are surrounded by coral reefs and tropical fish, before returning to the ship for a barbeque party on deck.
                          8.00pm
                          noon
                          Feb 15
                          Fri
                          At sea
                          • Sea Days
                          At sea
                          Join your fellow passengers beside the pool for a very special “Crossing the Line Ceremony” to celebrate crossing the equator, including the chance to kiss the raw fish!
                          Feb 16
                          Sat
                          At sea
                          • Sea Days
                          At sea
                          Various events will be on offer during these days at sea. For example, John Ducker leads two wine-tasting events including handy guidance on wine and food matching.
                          Feb 17
                          Sun
                          At sea
                          • Sea Days
                          At sea
                          Jessie Linden’s craft classes will start during these days at sea, with the chance to learn how to make a silk necklace, or how to decorate a bag with handmade fabric flowers.
                          Feb 18
                          Mon
                          At sea
                          • Sea Days
                          At sea
                          During these days at sea the book club will focus on comparisons between “Atonement” by Ian McEwan’s and the 2017 film adaptation, which will also be shown.
                          Feb 19
                          Tue
                          Mahe
                          • Arts & culture
                          • Natural Wonders
                          • Flora and Fauna
                          Mahe, Seychelles
                          Enjoy an included tour of Mahé’s Wild South, an extraordinary treasure trove of flora that has evolved over centuries of splendid isolation. You will also see the bustling market and magical botanical garden of the island’s capital, Victoria.
                          overnight
                          7.00am
                          Feb 20
                          Wed
                          Mahe
                          • Arts & culture
                          • Natural Wonders
                          • Flora and Fauna
                          Mahe, Seychelles
                          Discover the reef barrier on an optional tour, beginning with views of the underwater world from a glass-bottomed boat as it drifts over the corals. Then enjoy some hand fish feeding and snorkelling within the marine park.
                          6.00pm
                          Feb 21
                          Thu
                          At sea
                          • Sea Days
                          At sea
                          Cruising the Indian Ocean, our resident musicians will perform for you, evening ensembles take place in the Ambassador Lounge, and mental stimulation continues in the form of daily quizzes.
                          Feb 22
                          Fri
                          At sea
                          • Sea Days
                          At sea
                          During these days at sea, our on-board lecture programme includes topics ranging from the 19th century Travellers Club of London to the story of the dodo and the species that exist on Mauritius today but are close to extinction.
                          Feb 23
                          Sat
                          At sea
                          • Sea Days
                          At sea
                          Craft classes continue with Jessie – including a two-part programme of painting on silk. The second book club with Olivia will also be launched before your arrival in Mauritius.
                          Feb 24
                          Sun
                          Port Louis
                            Port Louis, Mauritius
                            A choice of included tours are available today: Port Louis and Pamplemousses will take you to one of the oldest and most prestigious botanical gardens in the southern hemisphere, or alternatively, visit the magnificent Eureka Colonial House.
                            overnight
                            8.00am
                            Feb 25
                            Mon
                            Port Louis
                              Port Louis, Mauritius
                              Take a stroll along the cosmopolitan Caudan Waterfront or choose from two optional excursions: Casela Nature Park, or the long dormant volcano of Trou-aux-Cerfs, followed by a tasting of some traditional island Rhum at an historic distillery.
                              8.00pm
                              Feb 26
                              Tue
                              St. Denis
                              • Arts & culture
                              • Architecture
                              St. Denis, Reunion
                              Discover the breathtaking scenery of rugged Reunion, including a visit to a traditional geranium oil distillery. Or enjoy a panoramic tour of the capital, St Denis, on a choice of included excursions.
                              2.00pm
                              8.00am
                              Feb 27
                              Wed
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              During these days at sea Chris Stringer will give his first talk, introducing seven million years of evolution, beginning with our divergence from the African apes to the emergence of the human race.
                              Feb 28
                              Thu
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Relax as Aegean Odyssey cruises the Indian Ocean towards South Africa. Your Daily Journal will always outline a range of activities available, from craft activities including decorating travel bags to the techniques of folk-art painting.
                              Mar 01
                              Fri
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              During one of your sea days wine-lovers will be able to compete for a bottle of bubbly as John Ducker hosts our on-board wine quiz, and Judy Ducker entertains with anecdotes concerning her life and career in the film and TV set department.
                              Mar 02
                              Sat
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Between Reunion and South Africa, Chris Walton begins a series of acclaimed lectures, while Steve Ragnall looks into the life and times of a true British eccentric and delivers a thought-provoking discussion on ‘The Birkenhead Drill’.
                              Mar 03
                              Sun
                              Richards Bay
                              • Wildlife
                              Richards Bay, South Africa
                              Visit the Hluhluwe Game Reserve for an included full day of incredible wildlife spotting and the chance to see a rare white rhino. An optional overnight safari to Leopard Mountain or Phinda Private Game Reserve is also available.
                              overnight
                              7.00am
                              Mar 04
                              Mon
                              Richards Bay
                              • Wildlife
                              Richards Bay, South Africa
                              Admire the remarkable landscapes of the KwaZulu-Natal province on your way to the beautiful iSimangaliso Wetland Park World Heritage Site, where you are guaranteed a close-up encounter with some of its famous concentration of hippos.
                              10.00pm
                              Mar 05
                              Tue
                              Durban
                              • Wildlife
                              • Arts & culture
                              • Flora and Fauna
                              • Scenic Area
                              Durban, South Africa
                              Visit the beautiful city of Pietermaritzburg, encompassing old world charm, country living and stunning Victorian architecture. Or take an optional half day trip to the unique Sharks Board, featuring a large variety of lifelike marine replicas, including a magnificent 892kg great white shark.
                              8.00pm
                              8.00am
                              Mar 06
                              Wed
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              A day at sea to relax and appreciate Aegean Odyssey’s amenities. Lectures will be delivered in the Ambassador Lounge and the book club will reconvene for another discussion, followed by a movie screening of a big screen adaptation.
                              Mar 07
                              Thu
                              Port Elizabeth
                              • Wildlife
                              • Arts & culture
                              • Flora and Fauna
                              Port Elizabeth, South Africa
                              Enjoy a full-day safari experience across some of the finest bushveld in South Africa’s Eastern Cape at one of two stunning malaria-free private game reserves, with the pre-book option of extending your stay overnight for some twilight game spotting and incredible night-sky views from your luxurious lodgings.
                              overnight
                              8.00am
                              Mar 08
                              Fri
                              Port Elizabeth
                              • Wildlife
                              • Arts & culture
                              • Flora and Fauna
                              Port Elizabeth, South Africa
                              Port Elizabeth shimmers on the Sunshine Coast as a popular beach-going destination and has plenty of historic sites to explore during an included half-day tour.
                              7.00pm
                              Mar 09
                              Sat
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              More quizzes, films and a moving classical concert. ‘Crafters’ will also be able to show off their newly acquired skills.
                              Mar 10
                              Sun
                              Cape Town
                              • Wine
                              • Natural Wonders
                              • Flora and Fauna
                              Cape Town, South Africa
                              Arrive in the most cosmopolitan city in Southern Africa, a place filled with cultural wonders and outstanding natural beauty. No visit to Cape Town is complete without an included half-day excursion to Table Mountain and a ride to the summit in its famous cable car.
                              overnight
                              8.00am
                              Mar 11
                              Mon
                              Cape Town
                              • Wine
                              • Natural Wonders
                              • Flora and Fauna
                              Cape Town, South Africa
                              Take an included excursion to the town of Paarl, followed by a wine-tasting at a local estate and a visit to the village of Franschhoek. After another wine tasting, at a different estate, enjoy a picnic lunch and a tour of Stellenbosch, the second oldest town in the nation.
                              overnight
                              Mar 12
                              Tue
                              Cape Town
                              • Wine
                              • Natural Wonders
                              • Flora and Fauna
                              Cape Town, South Africa
                              A free day to explore at leisure, giving you time to see some of Cape Town’s other sights or simply browse the shops and relax in one of the city’s world-class cafes and restaurants.
                              overnight
                              Mar 13
                              Wed
                              Cape Town
                              • Wine
                              • Natural Wonders
                              • Flora and Fauna
                              Cape Town, South Africa
                              Enjoy an included excursion to the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve, on your way to the most south-westerly tip of Africa, where a funicular railway will take you to the summit for breathtaking views.
                              overnight
                              Mar 14
                              Thu
                              Cape Town
                              • Wine
                              • Natural Wonders
                              • Flora and Fauna
                              Cape Town, South Africa
                              Visit the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, a natural World Heritage Site and one of the most famous public gardens in the country, with over 8,500 species of local plants and 36 hectares of cultivated terrain.
                              overnight
                              Mar 15
                              Fri
                              Cape Town
                              • Wine
                              • Natural Wonders
                              • Flora and Fauna
                              Cape Town, South Africa
                              An included trip to the wonderful Cheetah Outreach Project. The cats here are very friendly and you will have a chance to stroke an adult before continuing to the Morgenster Estate for a tasting of its Bordeaux-style red wine and award-winning Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
                              overnight
                              Mar 16
                              Sat
                              Cape Town
                              • Wine
                              • Natural Wonders
                              • Flora and Fauna
                              Cape Town, South Africa
                              Any spare time you have is easily filled in this vibrant and fascinating city, during another free day to roam at leisure before evening sailing.
                              6.00pm
                              Mar 17
                              Sun
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Cruising the South Atlantic Ocean, as the on-board speaker programme continues, Peter Mawby anticipates the sighting of wildlife on land and sea; Steve Ragnall investigates the legacy of Captain Cook in Cape Town. In the evening, celebrate St Patrick’s Day with some Irish-themed entertainment.
                              Mar 18
                              Mon
                              Luderitz
                              • Arts & culture
                              Luderitz, Namibia
                              Visit Namibia's most well-known ghost town, the unique Kolmanskop, situated a few kilometres inland from Lüderitz and used as a location in a number of films.
                              6.00pm
                              8.00am
                              Mar 19
                              Tue
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Stefan Buzacki explores the story of how Winston Churchill's time in Africa fitted into his early life, including his participation in the Battle of Omdurman, in which he was lucky to survive.
                              Mar 20
                              Wed
                              Walvis Bay
                              • Wildlife
                              • Arts & culture
                              • Natural Wonders
                              Walvis Bay, Namibia
                              A choice of included sightseeing is available today: discover Sandwich Harbour Lagoon, or visit the Namib Naukluft National Park, featuring part of the Namib desert.
                              overnight
                              8.00am
                              Mar 21
                              Thu
                              Walvis Bay
                              • Wildlife
                              • Arts & culture
                              • Natural Wonders
                              Walvis Bay, Namibia
                              A second day docked in the port of Walvis Bay affords some time to relax and explore the town at leisure, or enjoy an optional marine safari experience.
                              2.00pm
                              Mar 22
                              Fri
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Another day at sea to enjoy Aegean Odyssey’s facilities.
                              Mar 23
                              Sat
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Gareth George talks about the World’s most important fossil fuel, oil, and why it came to be known as ‘Black Gold’. Other lectures will also be available, followed by a special film screening and discussion in the evening.
                              Mar 24
                              Sun
                              Luanda
                              • Wildlife
                              • Arts & culture
                              • Less Visited
                              Luanda, Angola
                              Explore the changing faces of Luanda with an afternoon city tour including a visit to the Palacio de Ferro, designed by Gustav Eiffel, of tower fame.
                              8.00pm
                              2.00pm
                              Mar 25
                              Mon
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Our speaker programme promises to keep your mind engaged as we cruise the Indian Ocean, while our evening entertainment throughout the voyage is upbeat and there’s always something going on for those that seek it.
                              Mar 26
                              Tue
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Learn some sea shanties with Steve Ragnall today – and there’s also another chance to join your fellow passengers beside the pool for the “Crossing the Line Ceremony” as Aegean Odyssey re-crosses the equator.
                              Mar 27
                              Wed
                              Bom Bom Island
                              • Beach
                              • Island Life
                              Bom Bom Island, Sao Tome and Principe
                              A day at leisure on the tiny island of Bom Bom, a well-kept secret just off Príncipe. Your day here also includes a beach party so you can really let your hair down and have some fun in this beautiful paradise.
                              8.00pm
                              8.00am
                              Mar 28
                              Thu
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Voyaging north up the West African coast, Peter Mawby lectures on the millions of migrating birds also heading to their summer homes in the northern hemisphere.
                              Mar 29
                              Fri
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Stefan Buzacki looks at how the many exotic fruits, herbs and spices in our kitchens and shops often have very some unexpected beginnings, by exploring the places from which they originate.
                              Mar 30
                              Sat
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Steve Ragnall looks at the life and times of conservationist Charles Waterton (1782-1865), a true British eccentric.
                              Mar 31
                              Sun
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              As Aegean Odyssey continues her journey north-west around the Atlantic coast of Africa, the on-board book club reconvenes to talk about Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi’s “Let’s Tell This Story Properly.”
                              Apr 01
                              Mon
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Cruising the Atlantic Ocean, enjoy some entertainment curtesy of your cruise director, or among the many other things you can do, afternoon tea is always served while at sea – a truly magical experience.
                              Apr 02
                              Tue
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Among the lectures available today, Stefan Buzacki discusses what exactly islands are and where they come from, as well as how plants and animals have managed to colonise them, often despite their remoteness.
                              Apr 03
                              Wed
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              The Daily Journal on board Aegean Odyssey details a comprehensive list of activities, should you be undecided how to spend these laid-back days at sea.
                              Apr 04
                              Thu
                              Praia, Santiago Island
                              • Arts & culture
                              • Island Life
                              Praia, Santiago Island, Cape Verde
                              The capital of Cape Verde offers a great opportunity to learn more about the history of the nation and really “feel the flavour” of its many traditions. Alternatively, head out of town to discover the breathtaking natural scenery and unique cultural history of the inner island.
                              6.00pm
                              8.00am
                              Apr 05
                              Fri
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Today Sara Withers begins her on-board jewellery making classes, suitable for complete beginners, or for the more experienced, with themes ranging from traditional and contemporary knotting, to bracelets and earrings, beading wire necklaces, and resin pedants.
                              Apr 06
                              Sat
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              Barry Walsh examines how advances in medicine can be traced back via the physicians of the Royal Household to their relationships with the monarchs of the Stuart dynasty.
                              Apr 07
                              Sun
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              As Sara Withers’ classes continue, there’s also plenty of other things going on to keep you entertained, informed, relaxed and refreshed, across your home away from home, Aegean Odyssey, as there is every day while at sea.
                              Apr 08
                              Mon
                              Las Palmas, Gran Canaria
                              • Natural Wonders
                              Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Spain
                              Discover the breathtaking landscapes of Gran Canaria on today’s included tour, taking you from the extinct volcanic crater of Bandama to the village of Teror, nicknamed the “Village in the Air”.
                              10.00pm
                              8.00am
                              Apr 09
                              Tue
                              At sea
                              • Sea Days
                              At sea
                              A final day at sea as Aegean Odyssey cruises towards Morocco and a final chance to excel in a jewellery-making class. Themed quizzes continue in the Charleston Lounge and topical discussions happen in the Ambassador Lounge.
                              Apr 10
                              Wed
                              Agadir
                              • Soft adventure
                              • Arts & culture
                              Agadir, Morocco
                              Disembark Aegean Odyssey and sit back for a drive through the fertile Souss Valley to the old trading centre of Taroudant. After enjoying an included tour of the town’s highlights, you will then be driven to Marrakesh for an overnight hotel stay.
                              overnight hotel
                              8.00am
                              Apr 11
                              Thu
                              Marrakesh
                              • Soft adventure
                              • Arts & culture
                              Marrakesh, Morocco
                              With its snake charmers, market traders and almost psychedelic souks, Marrakesh is a showcase for exoticism. After touring the city you will be driven to Casablanca to rejoin Aegean Odyssey in time for dinner on board and a late evening sail.
                              10.00pm
                              Apr 12
                              Fri
                              Tangier
                              • Arts & culture
                              Tangier, Morocco
                              Situated only a short distance across the Strait of Gibraltar from the shores of Europe, Tangier is a gateway to a vastly different culture, a place where worlds collide in the most delightful way possible. Discover its wonders on an afternoon guided tour.
                              8.00pm
                              1.00pm
                              Apr 13
                              Sat
                              Malaga
                              • Arts & culture
                              • Signature Voyage
                              Malaga, Spain
                              Disembark Aegean Odyssey. Guests using VTA's air program will have a 1-night hotel stay post-cruise before transferring to the airport for the flight home.
                              6.00am
                              Athens and the Acropolis
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Athens and the Acropolis

                              7 Dec Athens, Greece
                              Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              Visit the sublime expression of Classical Greece, the Acropolis with its sweeping views of Athens. Commissioned by Pericles in the 5th-century BC, the site is dominated by the majestic Parthenon.

                              Visit the sublime expression of Classical Greece, the Acropolis with its sweeping views of Athens. Commissioned by Pericles in the 5th century BC, the site is dominated by the majestic Parthenon: a building that embodies the stunning achievements of the Athenian “Golden Age”.

                              Surrounding the great temple are the other architectural masterpieces of the citadel: the Propylaia (monumental gateway), the Erechtheion with its beautiful Karayatid Porch and the Temple of Athena Nike (Winged Victory).

                              Below the temple complex is the theatre of Dionysos where the dramas of Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides were first performed. Then explore another marvel: the longanticipated $200-million, 226,000-square-foot Acropolis Museum.

                              In the dramatic Gallery of the Slopes of the Acropolis, ascending floors of glass literally “float” you above the excavations for an extraordinary perspective of the layers of Greek history that lie below.

                              Read more
                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Byzantine Athens

                              Byzantine Athens

                              7 Dec Athens, Greece
                              Half Day Walking over cobblestones, uneven or slippery surfacesUphill Sections
                              Never in the history of Christianity has a school of artists infused such a high degree of spirituality into its work. Byzantine theologians insisted that painters and mosaicists reflect the image of God. This morning's sightseeing reveals the splendour of Byzantine art in a tour that combines visits to both the Byzantine Museum, home to the world's largest collection of icons, and also the Monastery of Kaisariani with its fine frescoes and elegant gardens.

                              Never in the history of Christianity has a school of artists infused such a high degree of spirituality into its work. Byzantine theologians insisted that painters and mosaicists reflect the image of God. This morning's sightseeing reveals the splendour of Byzantine art in a tour that combines visits to both the Byzantine Museum, home to the world's largest collection of icons, and also the Monastery of Kaisariani with its fine frescoes and elegant gardens.

                              Drive from the pier to Illissia Mansion, winter residence of the Duchess of Piacenza, and home to the Byzantine and Christian Museum. Founded in 1914, this renowned museum focuses exclusively on Byzantine art from the 4th to 19th centuries. In addition to its impressive icons, frescoes and tapestries, there are paintings, sculptures and illuminated manuscripts. Displays recreate Byzantine churches from the 5th to 11th centuries.

                              Continue next to the slopes of Mt. Hymettos, for a visit to the Monastery of Kaisariani, a beautiful example of Byzantine architecture. Inside its high walls discover the 11th-century catholicon, or main church, built in a Greek cross shape. The dome is supported by four columns from an earlier Roman temple and colourful frescoes from the 14th to 18th centuries enliven the interior walls. There is also an 11th-century bathhouse. Later additions include a refectory, the monks’ cells and a 19th-century bell tower. Savour the views of Athens and the serenity of this delightful spot before returning to your hotel.

                              Read more
                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Exploring Argolis: Mycenae and Epidaurus

                              Exploring Argolis: Mycenae and Epidaurus

                              8 Dec Athens, Greece
                              Full Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hoursLunch Included
                              Explore the scenic Argolis Peninsula in the eastern Peloponnesus and visit two UNESCO World Heritage sites: Epidaurus, a pure masterpiece of Greek architecture and Mycenae, one of the great cities of the Mycenaean civilisation.

                              Explore the scenic Argolis Peninsula in the eastern Peloponnesus and visit two UNESCO World Heritage sites: Epidaurus, a pure masterpiece of Greek architecture and Mycenae, one of the great cities of the Mycenaean civilisation.

                              Drive from lovely Nauplia, originally the port for the ancient city of Argos, to Epidaurus, set on the slopes of a beautiful wooded valley. In the 4th century BC, this area was a thriving medical centre sacred to the god of medicine, Asclepius. The site's baths, temples and hospital buildings include a sanctuary for psychology-based miracle cures. Epidaurus was renowned throughout the Hellenic world, and provides valuable insights into the healing treatments of the time. The jewel is the theatre designed by the architect Polycletus the Younger of Argos, which features a second tier added in Roman times to accommodate 14,000. Discover the incredible acoustics, so perfect it is said you can hear a pin drop from the top row. Once a stage for the great Greek dramatists, the theatre is still in use.

                              Next, we continue across the Argos Plain to Mycenae, one of the greatest cities of Mycenaean culture, which flourished in the Argolis region from 1600 to 1100 BC and laid the foundations for classical Greece. En route, pause for a delicious traditional lunch in a Greek restaurant. Then begin your explorations of Mycenae, a citadel set high above two boulder-strewn ravines and built, it is said, with the aid of the Cyclops. Walk through the Lion Gate, Europe's oldest piece of monumental statuary. At this gate, the returning Trojan war hero, Agamemnon, was greeted by his wife, Klytemnestra, only to be murdered later by her lover. Once inside the site, explore the Royal Palace, view the shaft graves and attend an archaeological briefing in the Treasury of Atreus, also known as the Tomb of Agamemnon.

                              Gain insights into the greatness of Mycenaean civilisation, as well as a glimpse into the haunting legends behind some of the world's greatest dramas.

                              Note: This tour involves substantial walking and stairs. Timeline may vary.

                              Read more
                              Included
                              Archaeological Museum of Athens

                              Archaeological Museum of Athens

                              9 Dec Piraeus, Greece
                              Half day
                              Founded at the end of the 19th century to house and protect antiquities from all over Greece, the National Archaeological Museum is one of the most important in the world devoted to ancient Greek art.

                              Founded at the end of the 19th century to house and protect antiquities from all over Greece, the National Archaeological Museum is one of the most important in the world devoted to ancient Greek art.

                              During your visit you will be able to see Cycladic, Minoan, Mycenaean and Classical Greek art, and you'll also view sculptures from the Archaic and Hellenistic periods, along with pottery from the Geometric period. A few of the museum's most important exhibits include the bronze statue of Poseidon, the head of Hygeia (Goddess of Health), the bronze statue of the "Jockey-Boy" of Artemision, the golden mask of Agamemnon and the brilliant Minoan frescoes from the site on Thira (Santorini).

                              Within the museum's walls more than 11,000 exhibits provide a panorama of Greek art from prehistory to late antiquity. Wander amid the royal tombs of Mycenae, dating from 1500BC. Marvel at sculpture from the 7th to 5th centuries BC, including the kouroi, nude male athletes, carved in Naxian marble. Admire a delicate bronze by Praxiteles and frescoes from Akrotiri, buried over 3,500 years ago in a volcanic eruption. Trace the evolution of Greek pottery from earliest times in collections including rare white clayware. This astonishing museum even includes Egyptian and Cypriot antiquities, as well as treasures from the sea. A shipwreck at Antikythera produced a scientific instrument used for astronomical calculations in the 1st century BC.

                              Please note: this optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

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                              Optional $ 35
                              Cairo Museum & the Treasures of Egypt

                              Cairo Museum & the Treasures of Egypt

                              13 Dec Cairo, Egypt
                              Half Day PM Lunch IncludedSignificant Steps
                              Imagine the feelings of British archaeologist Howard Carter on November 5 1922, the date he descended the hidden steps of King Tutankhamun’s tomb and first set eyes on its fabulous golden treasures. On this visit to the National Archaeological Museum of Egypt you will come as close as possible to recreating this magical moment.

                              Imagine the feelings of British archaeologist Howard Carter on November 5 1922, the date he descended the hidden steps of King Tutankhamun’s tomb and first set eyes on its fabulous golden treasures. On this visit to the National Archaeological Museum of Egypt you will come as close as possible to recreating this magical moment as you discover the magnificent artefacts unearthed by the archaeologist, as well as many other pharaonic artworks spanning a period of over 50 centuries, which constitute the largest and richest collection of Egyptian antiquities in the world.

                              Stepping from modern urban streets into a timeless world of golden burial masks, papyrus scrolls and artefacts representing every period of Egyptian history, the museum's crowning glory is of course its priceless collection from the tomb of Tutankhamun. Born during Egypt's Golden Age in 1347BC and only a teenager when he died, Tutankhamun was buried in the Valley of the Kings and lay undisturbed for over 3,000 years, until Howard Carter,  derided by his colleagues and on the brink of losing his funding, unearthed his tomb and its fabulous treasures, including a royal diadem, weapons used by the young king, a viscera coffin for Tutankhamun’s mummified liver, and a mask of solid gold weighing over 24 pounds, shaped in the image of the pharaoh's face.

                              Read more
                              Included
                              Evening Nile cruise

                              Evening Nile cruise

                              14 Dec Cairo, Egypt
                              Evening sail Lunch IncludedBoat Ride
                              From your hotel, drive to the banks of the River Nile where a luxurious cruise boat awaits to sail you on the same timeless waterway traversed by pharaohs, queens and nobles thousands of years ago.

                              From your hotel, drive to the banks of the River Nile where a luxurious cruise boat awaits to sail you on the same timeless waterway traversed by pharaohs, queens and nobles thousands of years ago. Sit back, relax and enjoy a sumptuous dinner in elaborate interiors as you glide past Cairo’s waterfront landmarks. For your entertainment, a folkloric presentation and belly dancing will take place during meal.

                              Read more
                              Included
                              Memphis and Sakkara
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Memphis and Sakkara

                              14 Dec Cairo, Egypt
                              Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              At its peak, Memphis must have staggered the out-of-town visitor. Egypt's first capital is situated at the apex of the Nile delta. For thousands of years this huge, cosmopolitan city was the capital of the Old Kingdom (2650-2134BC).

                              At its peak, Memphis must have staggered the out-of-town visitor. Egypt's first capital is situated at the apex of the Nile delta. For thousands of years this huge, cosmopolitan city was the capital of the Old Kingdom (2650-2134BC).

                              Arriving at Memphis, visit the remains of the temple of Ptah, the god of Memphis and mythical creator of the universe. See such breathtaking sights as the huge fallen statue of King Ramses II and the Alabaster Sphinx of King Amenhopis II. Continue a short drive from Memphis to Sakkara, a favorite necropolis of Old Kingdom pharaohs. View one of mankind's first monumental stone buildings, the Step Pyramid of King Zoser, built in 2750BC by the engineer Imhotep, a polymath who could arguably lay claim to being the world's first architect, first doctor, first priest, first poet, first dentist and first astrologer.

                              After visiting the complex, continue to one of the nearby mastabas (funerary chambers) such as Ptah-Hotep or Mereruca. These give important insights into the architectural origins of the pyramid and contain beautiful reliefs with depictions of daily life in ancient Egypt.

                               

                              Read more
                              Included
                              Pyramids of Giza
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Pyramids of Giza

                              15 Dec Cairo, Egypt
                              Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hoursLunch IncludedWalking over cobblestones, uneven or slippery surfaces
                              Stand in awe before the Pyramids at Giza, the only survivor of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Drive to the Giza Plateau and the pyramids built for the pharaohs of the fourth dynasty: Cheops, Chefren and Mycerinos. From the Western Plateau, take in majestic views of all three pyramids with Cairo sprawling at their feet.

                              Stand in awe before the Pyramids at Giza, the only survivor of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Drive to the Giza Plateau and the pyramids built for the pharaohs of the fourth dynasty: Cheops, Chefren and Mycerinos. From the Western Plateau, take in majestic views of all three pyramids with Cairo sprawling at their feet. The pyramid of Cheops alone required tens of thousands of workers over two decades. While it was once held that the workers who created this site were slaves, it is now thought they toiled for wages or to pay off taxes. Continue down the valley to contemplate the Sphinx, watching the passage of time and man in silence.

                              This colossal limestone monument with the haunches of a lion and the face of a king is held to represent the guardian deity of these royal burial grounds. So great were the Sphinx's mythical powers that 15th-century Egyptians thought it controlled the flood cycles of the Nile.

                              Note: This visit is to the exterior of the pyramids only. If you wish to go inside, there is an additional charge, but this is not recommended for those with claustrophobia or with breathing, knee or back problems. Photography is not allowed inside the pyramids.

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                              Included
                              St Anthony and St Paul's Monasteries

                              St Anthony and St Paul's Monasteries

                              16 Dec Suez Canal, Egypt
                              Full day Lunch IncludedSignificant StepsUphill Sections
                              Anthony the Great, the Father of All Monks, was born in 251AD to a wealthy family in Lower Egypt, but after answering the call of God he gave away all his worldly possessions and lived an ascetic life in the wilderness. Following his death in 356AD, his followers founded a Coptic monastery in his name at the foot of Al-Qalzam Mountain, not far from the tiny cave where Anthony had lived.

                              Anthony the Great, the Father of All Monks, was born in 251AD to a wealthy family in Lower Egypt, but after answering the call of God he gave away all his worldly possessions and lived an ascetic life in the wilderness. Following his death in 356AD, his followers founded a Coptic monastery in his name at the foot of Al-Qalzam Mountain, not far from the tiny cave where Anthony had lived.

                              Your guides for the day will be the monks themselves, making for a truly fascinating insight into the daily life of what is the oldest still active monastery in the world. Dotted around this self-contained little village are a mill and bakery, as well as four churches, the oldest of which has some exceptional wall paintings of the Holy Knights. Also on the site is a library containing the largest collection of Coptic manuscripts in Egypt, totalling nearly two thousand volumes.

                              St. Paul’s Monastery is another Coptic Christian retreat that relies on mountain spring water for its supply and still observes rituals that have barely changed for sixteen centuries. Founded in memory of Paul the Anchorite, one of Egypt’s greatest saints, it has a close association with St. Anthony’s as one of the other oldest monasteries in the country, dating from the 5th-century AD.

                              The site has three churches, one of which is underground in the cave where St. Paul is said to have lived for eighty years. During the Middle Ages it suffered repeated attacks by Bedouin tribes, which is why, until recently, the only way in was via a pulley and winch system.

                              Read more
                              Included
                              Walking Tour of Petra
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Walking Tour of Petra

                              18 Dec Aqaba, Jordan
                              Full Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hoursLunch IncludedWalking over cobblestones, uneven or slippery surfaces
                              One of the great moments in travel is when you emerge from the narrow winding Siq to encounter the extraordinary rose-red city of Petra. This guided tour is entirely on foot so you can more intimately interact with this UNESCO World Heritage Site, chosen as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.

                              One of the great moments in travel is when you emerge from the narrow winding Siq to encounter the extraordinary rose-red city of Petra. This guided tour is entirely on foot so you can more intimately interact with this UNESCO World Heritage Site, chosen as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.

                              Together with your guide, start your walk from the main gate to the obelisk tombs. Then continue to the Siq, the sole entrance to Petra, a long winding path between two overhanging cliffs that acts as the city's main gate.

                              As you proceed along this mile-long fissure, your guide will point out such details as Petra's ingenious water system where some of the original terracotta pipes are still in place. Your first sight will be the magnificent spectacle of Al Khazneh (The Treasury), carved out of the rock by Nabatean Arabs some 2,000 years ago. You may continue along the Street of Façades taking in such sights as the amphitheater and the Royal Court, where recent excavations have revealed a public pool and gardens.

                              The guides will take you to the Treasury area and from this point you will have the option of continuing on to the Street of Façades. Please note that there is an optional, one-way horse ride included in your ticket. Horse drawn carriages are available at the site entrance but passengers should be reminded that these are not recommended and are at the passenger’s own risk.

                              Read more
                              Included
                              Desert Safari to Wadi Rum
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Desert Safari to Wadi Rum

                              19 Dec Aqaba, Jordan
                              Half Day Walking over cobblestones, uneven or slippery surfacesSignificant Steps
                              Sometimes referred to as “the Valley of the Moon”, Wadi Rum is one of the most enchanting deserts in the world and will engulf you with its enigmatic lure. Surrounded by steep cliffs, narrow canyons and dramatic scenery, the Wadi has been inhabited by many cultures, including the Nabateans, since pre-historic times.

                              Sometimes referred to as “the Valley of the Moon”, Wadi Rum is one of the most enchanting deserts in the world and will engulf you with its enigmatic lure. Surrounded by steep cliffs, narrow canyons and dramatic scenery, the Wadi has been inhabited by many cultures, including the Nabateans, since pre-historic times.

                              Still, Wadi Rum is perhaps best known to Westerners as the staging ground for Lawrence of Arabia’s attack on the port of Aqaba.

                              Our tour begins with an hour’s drive to the heart of the valley where you’ll transfer to Bedouin-driven jeeps for a two-hour desert tour including a visit to Khaz Ali canyon with its petroglyphs and the spring where legend has it that T.E. Lawrence washed; the Seven Pillars of Wisdom Mountain – this stunning formation is what T.E. Lawrence titled his philosophical memoir after; the Desert Jebels and Inscriptions – the awe-inspiring Jebels are amazing to look at, the sandstone rock formations rise from the Wadi floor all around.

                              Some even bear ancient inscriptions and rock art. After your tour you will continue on to Petra and check in to your hotel.

                              Please note that the desert safari takes place using various different models of Bedouin-driven jeeps. Some jeeps may be more difficult to climb into than others and are not suitable for passengers with mobility limitations.

                              This optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

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                              Optional $ 75
                              Karnak Temple
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Karnak Temple

                              20 Dec Safaga (Luxor), Egypt
                              Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              This afternoon you will head to Karnak to visit the great Temple of Amun, the greatest place of worship in history. The magnificent hypostyle hall is a veritable forest of 134 papyrus columns that once supported a massive roof. You can still see the remains of clerestory windows, designed to create the effect of a papyrus swamp.

                              This afternoon you will head to Karnak to visit the great Temple of Amun, the greatest place of worship in history. The magnificent hypostyle hall is a veritable forest of 134 papyrus columns that once supported a massive roof. You can still see the remains of clerestory windows, designed to create the effect of a papyrus swamp. This hall connected the outer court with the inner sanctuary, where only kings and priests were permitted. On special occasions, a statue of Amun would emerge, carried aloft on the shoulders of his priests.

                              The temple was completed by Ramses II (1290-1224BC), considered by some to be the pharaoh of the Exodus. The site also bears evidence of an even earlier temple, dating back another thousand years. Other highlights include the Avenue of the Sphinxes – creatures combining the body of a lion and the head of a ram. The main road linking the temples at Karnak and Luxor were once lined with these fantastic creatures, each holding a statue of Ramses II between their paws.

                              In addition, visit the open-air museum to view remains from other areas of Karnak, such as the white chapel of Sanusret I.

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                              Included
                              Sound & Light Show at the Karnak Temple
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Sound & Light Show at the Karnak Temple

                              21 Dec Safaga (Luxor), Egypt
                              Evening Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              In the evening, attend a Sound & Light show at the Karnak Temple. Here, under a star-studded sky, the magnificent history and achievements of the ancient Egyptians come to life as the temple complex is illuminated in a magical show, dominating the surrounding darkness.

                              In the evening, attend a Sound & Light show at the Karnak Temple. Here, under a star-studded sky, the magnificent history and achievements of the ancient Egyptians come to life as the temple complex is illuminated in a magical show, dominating the surrounding darkness.

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                              Included
                              West Bank & Valley of the Kings
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              West Bank & Valley of the Kings

                              21 Dec Safaga (Luxor), Egypt
                              Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              Thebes, the city of the god Amon, was the capital of Egypt during the Middle and New Kingdoms. Like Babylon and Ninevah it was considered one of the great cities of antiquity. On the opposite bank of the Nile is located the necropolis known as the Valley of the Kings, the burial place of the New Kingdom pharaohs.

                              Thebes, the city of the god Amon, was the capital of Egypt during the Middle and New Kingdoms. Like Babylon and Ninevah it was considered one of the great cities of antiquity. On the opposite bank of the Nile is located the necropolis known as the Valley of the Kings, the burial place of the New Kingdom pharaohs. These rulers were obsessed with the afterlife, and the magnificence of their tombs and temples has been a source of marvel to tourists since the time of the Greek historian, Herodotus.

                              Visit three of the royal tombs, including King Tutankhamun's, where one of archaeology's most dramatic discovery tales comes to life. Continue to Deir El Bahari to view the temple of Queen Hatshepsut, the masterwork of Senenmut, the commoner turned royal architect. Dramatically located at the foot of a cliff, the funerary temple befits a queen who once declared herself king, and is considered one of the finest buildings in all Egypt.

                              You will also see the Colossi of Memnon, a magnificent pair of gigantic (64 feet high) statues of Amenophis III that once graced the entrance to his immense temple. Although these two statues are all that remain of the temple, their vast scale is an indication of its magnitude and size. After an earthquake in 27 BC, the north colossus was said to sing at dawn, but once it was repaired in 199 AD, the sound disappeared.

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                              Included
                              Scenic Salalah

                              Scenic Salalah

                              28 Dec Salalah, Oman
                              Half day Respectful Dress
                              Beaches, blow holes and a biblical site form just a part of the fascinating mosaic in Oman's second largest city, where colorful souqs and marketplaces sit in the shadow of a grand Sultan's Palace. Start your sightseeing with a scenic drive that reveals the contrast between the city's lush vegetation and the serene landscapes of the desert.

                              Beaches, blow holes and a biblical site form just a part of the fascinating mosaic in Oman's second largest city, where colorful souqs and marketplaces sit in the shadow of a grand Sultan's Palace. Start your sightseeing with a scenic drive that reveals the contrast between the city's lush vegetation and the serene landscapes of the desert.

                              Then head to Mughsail Beach where white sand stretches for miles. If the tide is high, you may be lucky enough to see geysers spouting from the blow holes in the limestone cliffs. Legend holds that the prophet Job is buried outside Salalah, and the next site you visit is sacred to Muslims, Christians and Jews. Job's tomb itself is simple, but the surrounding scenery is breathtaking with panoramas of the Qara Mountains and the Jubriah Plain.

                              Al Husn Palace, the summer residence of His Majesty, the Sultan of Oman is an imposing landmark with towering stone walls and teak doors. Although not open to visitors, you will be able to take photos en route to Al Husn Souq. Stroll among the vendors and colorful stalls heaped with mounds of frankincense, myrrh and incense and you'll soon see why this city was called the perfume capital of Arabia. In addition to fragrant oils, there are a variety of local artifacts like the fearsome Omani khangar daggers.

                              *Please note that visitors are required to remove their shoes at Job's Tomb. Please dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders  and knees covered as a general rule. 

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                              Included
                              Sultanate Heritage

                              Sultanate Heritage

                              28 Dec Salalah, Oman
                              Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              From desert landscapes and lush oases to ancient forts and the capital of the frankincense trade, this tour from the port of Salalah gives you a fascinating insight into Oman.

                              From desert landscapes and lush oases to ancient forts and the capital of the frankincense trade, this tour from the port of Salalah gives you a fascinating insight into Oman.

                              At the Al Husn Souq you will have an opportunity to browse the colourful stalls selling everything from myrrh and frankincense to perfumed oils and pottery. Continue on to Al Balid and the remains of the city of Dhofar. The most important ancient port on the Arabian Sea (part of the Frankincense Trail) the history of Dhofar dates back to before 2000 BC and some archaeological research suggests that the city's prosperity dates back to the Iron Age. The city was a trade hub, being one of the largest ports on the Indian Ocean, making it a thriving commercial centre for the export of frankincense to China and Rome.

                              The city’s location was first discovered in 1930 and the site and the ruins, which cover an area of 64 hectares, are surrounded by high walls to the east and north. The whole site is currently undergoing extensive archaeological investigation.

                              Then pass through the fishing village of Taqa with its old town and fort on the way to the ruined city of Samhuram at Khor Rouri creek. Excavations here have uncovered evidence of an ancient city with sea trade links to the eastern Mediterranean and Greece. Up until the 1st century AD, the transport of frankincense had been the domain of the camel caravans. As a result of improved navigation techniques, the trade routes became increasingly maritime via the Red Sea.

                              At that time Dhofar was part of the Yemeni kingdom of Hadramaut. The King recognized the importance of having a safe storage place and a port for the export of frankincense in the vicinity of where the frankincense was harvested, and in the 2nd century AD he ordered the building of Samharam.

                              Please note: this optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

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                              Optional $ 75
                              Mystical Muscat

                              Mystical Muscat

                              31 Dec Muscat, Oman
                              Half Day Respectful Dress
                              Medieval forts, Moorish mosques and modern architecture mingle enchantingly in Muscat, the seaside capital of the Sultanate of Oman. The country's political, economic and commercial hub has a wealth of landmarks, as you'll soon see.

                              Medieval forts, Moorish mosques and modern architecture mingle enchantingly in Muscat, the seaside capital of the Sultanate of Oman. The country's political, economic and commercial hub has a wealth of landmarks, as you'll soon see.

                              Sightseeing highlights include a visit to the Grand Mosque, built by His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said. This striking example of Islamic architecture accommodates 20,000 worshippers and has an immense handmade Persian carpet in the prayer hall. Next, wander one of the oldest and most interesting markets in the Arab Gulf, the Muttrah Souq, where everything from copper bracelets to camel bone vases can be found. At the Bait al Zubair Museum, gain a richer knowledge of Omani heritage as you peruse exhibits including clothing, household items and weaponry.

                              Enjoy a lovely coastal drive past the charming fishing village of Sidab to the old city and Al Alam Palace, overlooking sparkling Muscat Bay. This is the official residence of Sultan Qaboos, built in 1970 on the site of an earlier palace. The modern design blends oriental and occidental styles in bright gold and blue. Nestled between two 16th-century Portuguese forts, Jalali and Mirani, the palace ensemble is the perfect expression of Oman's compelling contrasts.

                              *Please note you must dress appropriately for visiting religious sites. Women must wear modest clothing, which covers the body and the head, including the hair. Arms and legs must be covered to wrists and ankles.

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                              Included
                              Dhow Cruise

                              Dhow Cruise

                              31 Dec Muscat, Oman
                              Half day Boat Ride
                              Board a traditional sailing dhow, modified for comfort, on this afternoon odyssey along the Omani coast. The triangularsailed dhows that add such an exotic touch to these waters are a testament to centuries of seamanship.

                              Board a traditional sailing dhow, modified for comfort, on this afternoon odyssey along the Omani coast. The triangularsailed dhows that add such an exotic touch to these waters are a testament to centuries of seamanship. In the 8th century an Omani dhow sailed as far as Canton, China. These stalwarts of the sea are said to last from 60 to 100 years.

                              Your sailing adventure begins with a drive to the marina, where you step aboard the wooden dhow, Lubna, and set sail. The route has been thoughtfully designed to showcase old Muscat and such landmarks as the medieval Portuguese forts, as well as modern Al Alam Palace. Sinbad would feel at home aboard your dhow, which was built in the town of Sur, where the craft of dhow building is passed from generation to generation over the centuries.

                              Although modern comforts and safety features were added later in Muscat, this is a ship with a true Omani ambiance, featuring such Arabic touches as stained glass windows in the central stateroom and raised floor seating outside. Relax and enjoy the hour and a half cruise, during which assorted non-alcoholic beverages will be served. 

                              Please note: the Dhow cruise is subject to weather conditions.

                              This optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

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                              Optional $ 85
                              Porbandar by Tuk Tuk

                              Porbandar by Tuk Tuk

                              3 Jan Porbandar, India
                              Half day Respectful Dress
                              Visit the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi, India's "Great Soul" and gain insights into the simple lifestyle of this coastal heritage town, once a thriving Mughal port.

                              Visit the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi, India's "Great Soul" and gain insights into the simple lifestyle of this coastal heritage town, once a thriving Mughal port. Board your tuk ruk and ride through the heart of Porbandar to visit the only temple in India dedicated to Sudama, the childhood friend of Lord Krishna. Pilgrims walk the temple's giant maze to be absolved of all sins.

                              Next see the Kirti Mandir memorial, dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi. The temple stands 79 feet high, one foot for each year of Gandhi's life, and embraces six religions in its architecture. Tour the ancestral home where Gandhi was born on October 2, 1869 and lived with his wife. The adjoining building houses a prayer hall, a Gandhian library and an excellent museum.

                              After a visit to the lively local market, continue to Bharat Mandir Hall. Admire the lovely gardens, huge marble map of India and colourful pillars where bas reliefs tell the tales of Hindu heroes from this land of legends.

                              *Please note socks are recommended, as it is required to remove shoes at most sites. Comfortable footwear and hats are recommended. Please cover your shoulders and knees.

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                              Included
                              Mumbai City Highlights

                              Mumbai City Highlights

                              5 Jan Delhi, India
                              Half Day Respectful Dress
                              Immerse yourself in the swirling contrasts of India's economic powerhouse, home to nearly 20 million people, global corporations and the Bollywood film industry.

                              Immerse yourself in the swirling contrasts of India's economic powerhouse, home to nearly 20 million people, global corporations and the Bollywood film industry. View its colonial heritage as you drive past Victorian Gothic Revival landmarks like the Rajabhai Clock Tower, Mumbai University, High Court, Crawford Market and the marvellous Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus. Stop at Dhobi Ghat to watch men flogging clothes in the stone tubs of an immense open-air manual laundry.

                              Glimpse political India when you visit the charming residence of Mahatma Gandhi, Mani Bhawan, which is now a museum dedicated to the leader’s life and work. The father of the nation lived here from 1917 to 1934, when the city was still called Bombay. Then ascend Malabar Hill to the Hanging Gardens, for panoramic views over the entire city. Returning to Aegean Odyssey, enjoy a photo stop at the 262-foot-high Gateway of India overlooking the Arabian Sea, built to mark the 1911 visit of King George V.

                              *Please note you must dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule. Comfortable shoes and socks are advised, as you are required to remove shoes upon entering the temple. 

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                              Included
                              Agra & the Taj Mahal
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Agra & the Taj Mahal

                              6 Jan Delhi, India
                              Half day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              While in Agra, enjoy guided tours of Agra Fort and the spectacular Taj Mahal, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites that bear testimony to an extraordinary civilization.

                              While in Agra, enjoy guided tours of Agra Fort and the spectacular Taj Mahal, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites that bear testimony to an extraordinary civilisation. The Taj Mahal stands tribute to a great love story. One of India's great architect-rulers, Shah Jahan, lost his beloved queen, Mumtaz Mahal, giving birth to their 15th child. Although he had already built her palaces, his ultimate triumph would be this great, white marble mausoleum which took 22 years and 20,000 workmen to complete. Take in the graphic purity of the elevation, the grandeur of the bulbous dome and the perspective of the pool and gardens as you reach a landmark in every traveler's life.

                              Continue to the Red Fort of Agra, founded by Emperor Akbar in 1565. Behind its forbidding red sandstone battlements are fairytale palaces that tell the tale of the Mughal Empire in the 16th century when Agra was one of India's most important cities.

                              Highlights of your visit include two sites built by the luxury-loving Shah Jahan: the many-pillared Diwan-e-Am (Hall of Public Audience), where the emperor sat on his throne to dispense justice and the profuselydecorated Diwan-e-Khas where important guests were received and suitably awed.

                              Please note that there is a strict security check at the entrance to the Taj Mahal and no bags are allowed inside. 

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                              Included
                              Half day Delhi sightseeing

                              Half day Delhi sightseeing

                              7 Jan Mumbai, India
                              Half day Respectful Dress
                              Begin your sightseeing with a tour of the victory tower known as Qutub Minar, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Standing over 236 feet tall, this masterpiece of Islamic architecture was built in the early 13th century after the defeat of Delhi's last Hindu kingdom.

                              Begin your sightseeing with a tour of the victory tower known as Qutub Minar, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Standing over 236 feet tall, this masterpiece of Islamic architecture was built in the early 13th century after the defeat of Delhi's last Hindu kingdom. At the tower's foot is India's first mosque with an iron pillar in its courtyard that has not rusted in over 2,000 years, demonstrating the skill of ancient blacksmiths. En route, admire New Delhi's broad boulevards and monuments of Empire: the President's Palace, Parliament House and India Gate designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens.

                              Later, you will visit Raj Ghat or Royal Steps (a ghat means a flight of stairs leading to water). This tranquil site marked by a simple black marble slab is where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated following his 1948 assassination by a Hindu fanatic. The area is now a park and national shrine.

                              Please note that if you wish to go very close to the actual memorial stone at Raj Ghat, you will be required to remove your shoes.

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                              Included
                              Temples & Spices

                              Temples & Spices

                              9 Jan Marmagao, India
                              Half Day
                              The Goan port of Marmagoa was chosen to be the first capital of the Portuguese Empire in India and, in 1685, the construction of the fort started along with that of the main town. This tour takes you away from the city, through small towns and villages. Along the way you will see the large, elegant homes from the colonial period and pass numerous brilliant green rice paddies.

                              The Goan port of Marmagoa was chosen to be the first capital of the Portuguese Empire in India and, in 1685, the construction of the fort started along with that of the main town. This tour takes you away from the city, through small towns and villages. Along the way you will see the large, elegant homes from the colonial period and pass numerous brilliant green rice paddies. In the lush valleys and forests of Ponda are hidden a number of Hindu temples, built in the 17th and 18th centuries by those attempting to practice their traditional religion away from the prying eyes and persecution of the Portuguese.

                              The deities may be ancient, but the temples are fairly modern by Indian standards and are still used by the local population, as well as thousands of pilgrims who visit here from other parts of southern India. A particularly wonderful example is the Mangueshi Temple, set on a wooded hill surrounded by farmland and considered the most important Hindu temple in Goa. Here you will find a seven-story octagonal tower, full of niches where oil lamps are placed during festivals and important occasions. 

                              A visit to Sahakari Plantation will refresh both your body and soul. Here the fields centre on a large irrigation tank filled with lilies and watched over by bright kingfishers. The property’s varied terrain, which includes both flat wetlands and hillsides, allows for the cultivation of a wide variety of plants and trees. You will be provided with a guided walking tour by an expert through the spice world of black pepper, cinnamon, cardamom, clove, nutmeg, etc.

                              *Please note you must dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule.

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                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Old Goa & Latin Quarter Walk
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Old Goa & Latin Quarter Walk

                              9 Jan Marmagao, India
                              Half day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              Some of India's most architecturally beautiful places can be found in Old Goa, your first sightseeing destination on this tour that includes two magnificent churches, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and a walking tour of the capital’s atmospheric Latin Quarter. This walled historic precinct contains an archaeological reserve that was influential in spreading Manueline, Mannerist and Baroque art to Asia in the 16th to 18th centuries.

                              Some of India's most architecturally beautiful places can be found in Old Goa, your first sightseeing destination on this tour that includes two magnificent churches, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and a walking tour of the capital’s atmospheric Latin Quarter. This walled historic precinct contains an archaeological reserve that was influential in spreading Manueline, Mannerist and Baroque art to Asia in the 16th to 18th centuries.

                              Designed to awe the locals into conversion, the magnificent churches of Old Goa testify to the wealth of the city when it was the capital of the Eastern Portuguese Empire. St Cajetan Church is modelled after St Peter's in Rome and has a hidden crypt where in 1992 the bodies of former Portuguese governors were found in lead coffins, waiting to be sent back to Lisbon. Next, visit the 16th century Basilica of Bom Jesus, where St Francis Xavier, Goa’s patron saint, is entombed in a marble mausoleum.

                              Your sightseeing will continue with a short drive through the relaxed state capital of Panjim, followed by a walking tour through one of the city's most charming neighbourhoods, the Fontainhas Latin Quarter, which was built by the Portuguese. Strolling along narrow streets past wonderful old villas, you will really be able to savour the tranquil essence of Goa.

                              Note: Please dress respectfully for religious sites by covering shoulders and knees. 

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                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Cochin City Tour

                              Cochin City Tour

                              11 Jan Cochin, India
                              Half day Removal of Shoes
                              Centuries of invaders, traders and rulers have shaped the culture and architecture of Kerala’s premier city, where 15th and 16th century palaces, mosques, churches and even an active synagogue mark the myriad periods of Cochin's history.

                              Centuries of invaders, traders and rulers have shaped the culture and architecture of Kerala’s premier city, where 15th and 16th century palaces, mosques, churches and even an active synagogue mark the myriad periods of Cochin's history.

                              The intriguing Mattancherry area is where the old merchant houses were once home to a flourishing Jewish community and it’s here that you will visit the charming Dutch Palace, built by the Portuguese in 1555, renovated by the Dutch in 1663, and today flanked by shrines to Krishna and Shiva.

                              The city’s synagogue was built in 1568 and features hand-painted blue-and-white tiles from China as well as a sparkling oil-burning chandelier from Belgium. Strolling along the historic Jew Street, admire the spice and antique shops where the first wave of Jewish migration to Cochin arrived in the 1st century BC, long before it is said the ships of King Solomon traded here.

                              On this tour you will also visit Fort Cochin, located in the centre of the city, followed by the oldest European church in India, St Francis, where the explorer Vasco da Gama was once buried. Just outside the church are the bamboo and teak poles of the city’s often photographed Chinese fishing nets; then catch the lively action at the local Fish Market.

                              Please dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule. Shoes must be removed to enter the synagogue and no items (incuding cameras) can be taken inside but must be left on the excursion coach. There is no wheelchair access in the Dutch Palace.

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                              Included
                              Kumbalanghi Village Tour

                              Kumbalanghi Village Tour

                              11 Jan Cochin, India
                              Half day
                              Rub shoulders with the real India on an adventure combining a backwater boat trip with a taste of traditional Cochin life in the island-village of Kumbalanghi, which is ringed by Chinese fishing nets. Board an authentic local fishing boat for a short cruise through the region’s most serene backwaters, during which you will have a chance to try your hand at the local fishing techniques of veeshu vala (fishing with conical nets) and padalu (trapping fish in coconut palm cages).

                              Rub shoulders with the real India on an adventure combining a backwater boat trip with a taste of traditional Cochin life in the island-village of Kumbalanghi, which is ringed by Chinese fishing nets. Board an authentic local fishing boat for a short cruise through the region’s most serene backwaters, during which you will have a chance to try your hand at the local fishing techniques of veeshu vala (fishing with conical nets) and padalu (trapping fish in coconut palm cages).

                              Following your scenic boat trip, enjoy a walk through the village for a chance to see some of the locals demonstrating traditional skills ranging from crab catching to fish-flipping, clam-meat processing, coir-making, mat-making and net-making.

                              After some refreshments to the beautiful backdrop of scenic paddy fields and mangroves, a final experience awaits: a fabulous rickshaw ride in a local tuk-tuk through the village’s picturesque narrow lanes.

                              Please note that various modes of transport are used in this excursion. Life jackets will be provided on the boat ride during this excursion.

                              This optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

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                              Optional $ 75
                              Alleppey Backwater Cruise

                              Alleppey Backwater Cruise

                              11 Jan Cochin, India
                              Full day Lunch Included
                              Glide past sleepy backwater villages through a labyrinth of tropical waterways called kayals, in one of India’s most beautiful regions, Kerala. Alappuzha is your gateway to this idyllic world as you relax in shaded comfort and drift down narrow, foliage-choked canals that suddenly and thrillingly open up into expansive green paddy fields.

                              Glide past sleepy backwater villages through a labyrinth of tropical waterways called kayals, in one of India’s most beautiful regions, Kerala. Alappuzha is your gateway to this idyllic world as you relax in shaded comfort and drift down narrow, foliage-choked canals that suddenly and thrillingly open up into expansive green paddy fields.

                              See tropical life as you never would from the road, catching glimpses of villagers washing their clothes in the river, workers harvesting coconuts, or children playing beneath papaya, mango and jackfruit laden trees. For centuries this extensive network of rivers, lakes and lagoons has been a means of transporting goods and people from the heartland to the coast aboard traditional house boats known as Kettuvallam. These locally built crafts are still made from eco-friendly materials in much the same way as they have for centuries.

                              Following your backwater trip, transfer to Punnamada Resort for a buffet lunch. A brief orientation of Cochin concludes this delightful excursion.

                              Please note that the drive from the ship to Allapuzha is approximately 1.5 hours. Life jackets will be provided on the boat during this excursion. Sun protection is highly recommended.

                              This optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

                              *Includes subsidy for unused excursion.

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                              Optional $ 65*
                              A Trip to Galle
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              A Trip to Galle

                              15 Jan Colombo, Sri Lanka
                              Full Day Lunch Included
                              Galle is a colourful town that is shrouded in the scent of spices, littered with Dutch-colonial buildings and is a bustling hub for local trade and art.

                              Galle is a colourful town that is shrouded in the scent of spices and littered with decaying Dutch-colonial buildings. But most of all Galle is a city of trade and art. These two preoccupations meet at the Fort, which is crammed full of little boutique shops, cafes and hotels owned by local and foreign artists.

                              You will depart from the port to visit this famous Fort that was built by the Portuguese in 1588 and later modified by the Dutch during the 17th century. It is the best example of a fortified city built by Europeans in South and Southeast Asia, showing the interaction between European architectural styles and South Asian traditions.

                              The fort was one of the few structures that survived the infamous Boxing Day Tsunami that devastated Galle in December 2004. Today, after 400 years, the Fort still looks amazing thanks to reconstruction work done by the Archaeological Department of Sri Lanka. Entering through the old gates, you will drive around the Fort and visit the rampart, which offers up spectacular views of Galle.

                              After lunch at a local resort, you will then be driven to the delightful coastal town of Koggala for a chance to view local fishermen who stand on uncomfortable stilts planted in the coral reef for hours at time, in a tradition that has been passed down from father to son for generations.

                              A final visit is included to the Martin Wickramasinghe Folk Museum, which currently holds over a thousand artefacts of Sri Lankan rural life, providing a vast and unique storehouse of knowledge and items relating to local folk culture, religion and technology going back several centuries, including Buddhism the evolution of the Sinhala alphabet.

                              Note: this excursion is for guests visiting Colombo again on 10th – 12th February

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                              Included
                              Colombo City Tour

                              Colombo City Tour

                              16 Jan Colombo, Sri Lanka
                              Half Day PM Respectful DressRemoval of Shoes
                              Experience the astonishing blend of modern and exotic in Sri Lanka’s commercial capital, a city quite unlike any other, as you travel to the Kelaniya (Kalyana) Temple, built on the banks of the Kelani River. Kelaniya is mentioned in the Buddhist chronicle, the Mahawamsa, which states that the Gautama Buddha visited the place, after which the dagoba of the temple was built.

                              Experience the astonishing blend of modern and exotic in Sri Lanka’s commercial capital, a city quite unlike any other, as you travel to the Kelaniya (Kalyana) Temple, built on the banks of the Kelani River. Kelaniya is mentioned in the Buddhist chronicle, the Mahawamsa, which states that the Gautama Buddha visited the place, after which the dagoba of the temple was built.

                              Sri Lankan Buddhists believe that the Buddha visited Kelaniya in order to quell a quarrel between two warring Nāga leaders: Chulodara (literally meaning ‘the small-bellied one’) and Mahodara (‘the big-bellied one’).

                              From here you will then be taken to the Colombo National Museum, which is housed in a grand colonial building and is the custodian of Sri Lanka's cultural heritage. Among its exhibits are a vast collection of books, more than 4,000 archaic palm leaf manuscripts, rock sculptures from the ancient cities, royal weapons of Sri Lankan kings and an excellent collection of antique demon masks. The most interesting among the exhibits are the regalia of the Kandian Kings dating back to the 17th century.

                              A visit will then be made to Independence Square, where this former British colony of Ceylon was given self-rule in 1948. Winding past the cricket stadium, through affluent neighbourhoods like Horton Place and Kotte, the legislative capital, en-route to the pier, you will see the Nelum Pokuna Performing Art Centre, the Town Hall, President House and the Pettah Bazar.

                              Note: this excursion involves a visit to a temple and you will be asked to remove your shoes. Please dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule. A camera fee applies for the museum.

                              This excursion will operate in the afternoon as a relaxed option for those guests arriving late on the 11th February.

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                              Included
                              City Tour of Trincomalee

                              City Tour of Trincomalee

                              18 Jan Trincomalee, Sri Lanka
                              Half day
                              The natural deep-water harbour of Trincomalee has attracted many sea farers throughout the ages, from Marco Polo and Ptolemy to the traders of ancient China and East Asia; its strategic importance has always been immense.

                              The natural deep-water harbour of Trincomalee has attracted many sea farers throughout the ages, from Marco Polo and Ptolemy to the traders of ancient China and East Asia; its strategic importance has always been immense.

                              Your tour here begins with a visit to the remains of what was once the largest European fort in Sri Lanka, Fort Fredrick. Built by the Portuguese in 1623 the fortress was originally named Fort Triquillimale, until it was captured by the Dutch in 1639 and went through a phase of dismantling and reconstruction.

                              Inside the grounds, the classical-medieval Hindu Koneswaram temple can be reached by passing directly through the still intact fort entrance. The Thirukoneswaram Kovil temple, as it is also known, is the oldest Hindu temple in Sri Lanka, although the original shrine was demolished in 1622 by the Portuguese, who called it the Temple of a Thousand Columns.

                              Much of the art from the demolished temple was taken to the Lisbon Museum, including a stone inscription by the Chola King, Kulakottan, but the remaining building materials were subsequently used to enlarge the fort’s ramparts.

                              There will also be a chance to visit the Trincomalee War Cemetery, commemorating soldiers of the British Empire who lost their lives during World War II, followed by the tranquil remains of the Velgam Vihara temple, an historic place of worship for both Sinhala and Tamil Buddhists that is today one of Sri Lanka’s most important Archaeologically Protected Monuments.

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                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              UNESCO Polonnaruwa
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              UNESCO Polonnaruwa

                              18 Jan Trincomalee, Sri Lanka
                              Full day Archaeological Site
                              The magnificent World Heritage Site of Royal Polonnaruwa is the centrepiece of this full-day tour, which begins with a scenic drive across Sri Lanka to one of the best preserved archaeological cities on the island. During the 11th and 12th centuries Polonnaruwa was the capital of Sri Lanka’s second most ancient kingdom and became the seat of both Vijayabahu I, who founded the city, and Parakramabahu the Great, whose reign is considered the Golden Age of Polonnaruwa.

                              The magnificent World Heritage Site of Royal Polonnaruwa is the centrepiece of this full-day tour, which begins with a scenic drive across Sri Lanka to one of the best preserved archaeological cities on the island. During the 11th and 12th centuries Polonnaruwa was the capital of Sri Lanka’s second most ancient kingdom and became the seat of both Vijayabahu I, who founded the city, and Parakramabahu the Great, whose reign is considered the Golden Age of Polonnaruwa.

                              Among the site’s many impressive structures is the Polonnaruwa Vatadage, a circular stone shrine built to a design that is wholly unique to Sri Lanka. This reliquary is believed to have been commissioned to hold either the Relic of the Tooth or the alms bowl used by the Buddha. Only ten such structures remain in existence, but the virtually intact Vatadage of Polonnaruwa is widely considered the finest.

                              Also on display are the Royal Palace and Audience Hall, statues of Parakramabahu the Great, the Lotus Bath and the Gal-potha stone book, which recounts the achievements of King Nissanka Malla. Monuments of worship include the Shiva Temple, the Lankathilake, the Kiri Vehera stupa and the Gal Viharaya, where four enormous reliefs of the Buddha, consisting of an ‘Upright’, ‘Sedentary’ and two ‘Recumbent’ poses, have been carved into a single huge rock.

                              The Parakrama Samudraya reservoir, also known as The Sea of Parakrama, also offers a place for some peaceful reflection, before departing for a buffet lunch at the exclusive Cinnamon Lodge in Habarana, on your way back to Aegean Odyssey in Trincomalee.

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                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Port Blair City Tour

                              Port Blair City Tour

                              21 Jan Port Blair, Andaman Islands
                              Half Day
                              Established by the British as a penal colony in 1789, today Port Blair is the largest town on the Andaman Islands. Surrounded by lush forest and rugged coastline, Port Blair has a vibrant mix of inhabitants including Bengalis, Tamils and Burmese.

                              Established by the British as a penal colony in 1789, today Port Blair is the largest town on the Andaman Islands. Surrounded by lush forest and rugged coastline, Port Blair has a vibrant mix of inhabitants including Bengalis, Tamils and Burmese.

                              You will explore the small town, visiting the Naval Marine Museum, with its displays of tribal art, marine life and archaeology. The museum also has a sizable collection of shells and corals. Next, visit the Anthropological Museum, which illustrates the lives of local aboriginal tribes with miniature models of traditional tools, dresses and photographs of their lifestyle.

                              Your final stop is the Cellular Jail. The construction of this prison started in 1896 and was completed in 1906. The building had seven wings, at the centre of which a tower served as the fulcrum and was used by guards to keep watch on the inmates. The wings forked out of the tower in straight lines, much like the spokes of a bicycle wheel, and a large bell was kept in the tower to raise an alarm in the eventuality of an escape or disturbance. All the prisoners were kept in isolation and subjected to a brutal work regime, making the Cellular Jail one of the murkiest chapters in the history of colonial rule in India.

                              Before you return to the ship, there will be a brief stop at the local market Aberdeen Bazaar, where there is a good selection of local wood carvings and jewellery.

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                              Included
                              Phang Nga by Longtail Boat

                              Phang Nga by Longtail Boat

                              23 Jan Phuket, Thailand
                              Full day Lunch Included
                              Follow in the path of James Bond as you navigate Phang Nga National Park, where sheer limestone karsts thrust dramatically from the sea. After a briefing about this beautiful bay during the hour-and-a half drive from Phuket, step aboard a traditional Thai longtail boat and let the scenery speak for itself as you skim over some of the most magnificent waters in the world. Circle the island of Koh Tapu, known as James Bond Island since it appeared in The Man with The Golden Gun.

                              Follow in the path of James Bond as you navigate Phang Nga National Park, where sheer limestone karsts thrust dramatically from the sea. After a briefing about this beautiful bay during the hour-and-a half drive from Phuket, step aboard a traditional Thai longtail boat and let the scenery speak for itself as you skim over some of the most magnificent waters in the world. Circle the island of Koh Tapu, known as James Bond Island since it appeared in The Man with The Golden Gun.

                              Wind through mangroves and silent caves to Pan Yi Island, then stop at the Muslim Sea Gypsy Village, built entirely on stilts, where you can visit a school, wander the byways, shop for pearls and glimpse a fascinating way of life. During your time at Pan Yi Island you will enjoy a typical Asian buffet lunch at a local restaurant.

                              After lunch, cruise back to the mainland for a visit to the Suwan Khuha Temple, a cave temple filled with standing, reclining, and seated Buddha statues, before your return to Phuket Island.

                              Please note that the operation of this excursion is dependent upon weather and sea conditions. You will spend about 2.5 hours travelling by longtail boat and lifejackets will be provided on board.

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                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Phi Phi Islands

                              Phi Phi Islands

                              23 Jan Phuket, Thailand
                              Full day Lunch Included
                              With soaring cliffs, powdery sands and crystal-clear waters, it's no wonder Thailand declared the Phi Phi Islands a National Park: Hat Noppharat Thara-Mu Ko Phi Phi. Don your swimsuit, hop aboard a local speedboat and head for these tropical treasures of the Andaman Sea. Your adventure starts early with a transfer from the ship to Phuket Marina.

                              With soaring cliffs, powdery sands and crystal-clear waters, it's no wonder Thailand declared the Phi Phi Islands a National Park: Hat Noppharat Thara-Mu Ko Phi Phi. Don your swimsuit, hop aboard a local speedboat and head for these tropical treasures of the Andaman Sea. Your adventure starts early with a transfer from the ship to Phuket Marina.

                              From here, it's about an hour by water to Phi Phi Le, where a stop will be made at the beautiful Blue Lagoon. Swim or snorkel with colourful fish; explore fjord-like Pileh Cove, with its steep limestone walls; and see the Viking Cave, a source of birds’ nests for the famous Asian soup. Rock carvings inside date from 3,000 to 4,000 years ago and are thought to resemble Scandinavian longboats.

                              For lunch, your boat pulls up to a beachside restaurant. Splash ashore where a buffet lunch is waiting. Then surrender to an afternoon of pleasure on enchanting Bamboo Island, with free time to snorkel amid the coral beds and wonder if those Viking captains ever did drop anchor in these blissful waters.

                              *Please note that it is no longer possible to visit Maya Bay as part of this excursion, as Maya Bay is now closed to the public indefinitely.

                              This excursion is dependent upon weather and sea conditions.

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                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Kuala Lumpur

                              Kuala Lumpur

                              25 Jan Port Kelang, Malaysia
                              Half day
                              Explore a landscape of beautiful mosques, grand museums and historic memorials during this tour of Malaysia's capital. It's all a far cry from the city's 19th century start as a humble tin-mining settlement. Begin with a drive along the modern highway to the highlight of your sightseeing tour, the National Museum, where the superb displays include a life-size exhibit of a Malay wedding, a GoldRoom and a reconstructed village compound.

                              Explore a landscape of beautiful mosques, grand museums and historic memorials during this tour of Malaysia's capital. It's all a far cry from the city's 19th century start as a humble tin-mining settlement. Begin with a drive along the modern highway to the highlight of your sightseeing tour, the National Museum, where the superb displays include a life-size exhibit of a Malay wedding, a GoldRoom and a reconstructed village compound.

                              Pass the blue-domed National Mosque and the fantastical Edwardian Moorish-style Railway Station on your way to Independence Square, where British colonists once played cricket and the Malayan flag was first hoisted on August 31st, 1957.

                              The surrounding architectural ensemble includes the Tudor-style Royal Selangor Club, once a popular watering hole for high society during the tin boom. Across the way is St Mary's Cathedral, Kuala Lumpur's oldest Anglican Church. Be sure to have your cameras ready for your photo stop at the Petronas Towers – the tallest twin towers in the world and without a doubt the most memorable symbol of Kuala Lumpur.

                               

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                              Included
                              Spirit of Singapore
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Spirit of Singapore

                              26 Jan Singapore, Singapore
                              Half day
                              Discover the many facets of this dynamic city-state where centuries-old traditions continue in the shadow of skyscrapers. Delve into Singapore's past in Chinatown where soothsayers consult cards to predict the future and the scent of exotic soups blends with the sight of arcane medicinal treatments. Visit the oldest Chinese Temple in Singapore, the Thian Hock Kheng Temple, dedicated to the Goddess of the Sea. Marvel at the elaborate façade of the Sri Mariamman Hindu Temple, where sacred cow figurines crouch on the roof and an annual fire-walking contest is held.

                              Discover the many facets of this dynamic city-state where centuries-old traditions continue in the shadow of skyscrapers. Delve into Singapore's past in Chinatown where soothsayers consult cards to predict the future and the scent of exotic soups blends with the sight of arcane medicinal treatments. Visit the oldest Chinese Temple in Singapore, the Thian Hock Kheng Temple, dedicated to the Goddess of the Sea. Marvel at the elaborate façade of the Sri Mariamman Hindu Temple, where sacred cow figurines crouch on the roof and an annual fire-walking contest is held.

                              Stroll in the city's National Orchid Gardens, just inscribed onto the UNESCO World Heritage Site list, where terraces showcase the largest orchid display in the world: 60,000 plants, over 700 species and 2,100 hybrids including the National Flower of Singapore, Vanda Miss Joaquim. See the city's Colonial heritage in all its splendor as you drive past Parliament House, the Supreme Court, Raffles Hotel and City Hall. Wind up over 300 ft. to the top of Mt Faber for sweeping panoramas of the city, port and islands where offshore refineries make this an important petroleum center. Whether you view Singapore as a dining, shopping or cultural mecca, this overview reveals there's much to explore in the Lion City.

                              *Please note you must dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule.

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                              Included
                              Gardens by the Bay

                              Gardens by the Bay

                              26 Jan Singapore, Singapore
                              Half Day
                              Covering over 100 hectares and containing vast glasshouses replicating the planet’s various habitats, Gardens by the Bay are a true horticultural wonderland. One of the iconic buildings at the Gardens is the Flower Dome, a 1.2-hectare (3.0 acres) glasshouse that creates a mild, dry climate and features plants found in the Mediterranean and other semi-arid tropical regions (e.g. parts of Australia, South America, South Africa).

                              Covering over 100 hectares and containing vast glasshouses replicating the planet’s various habitats, Gardens by the Bay are a true horticultural wonderland. One of the iconic buildings at the Gardens is the Flower Dome, a 1.2-hectare (3.0 acres) glasshouse that creates a mild, dry climate and features plants found in the Mediterranean and other semi-arid tropical regions (e.g. parts of Australia, South America, South Africa). It is also home to a collection of plants from the world’s areas and showcases how plants have evolved to thrive in arid environments.

                              Enter the Cloud Forest, a mysterious world veiled in mist and see a 35-metre tall mountain covered in lush vegetation shrouding the world’s tallest indoor waterfall. Ascend to the mountaintop in comfort by lift before descending via two walkways in the clouds for an aerial view of the canopy and mountainside below. Learn about unique biodiversity and geology of cloud forests and the environmental threats they face within the nine unique zones in this cool-moist Conservatory.

                              Please note: this optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

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                              Optional $ 55
                              Malacca Heritage Tour
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              Malacca Heritage Tour

                              27 Jan Malacca, Malaysia
                              Half day Tender Archaeological Site
                              Discover the history of Malacca, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2008, as you visit a ruined Portuguese fort, picturesque Dutch Square and St Paul's Hill with its sweeping view of the straits that gave this city its name.

                              Discover the history of Malacca, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2008, as you visit a ruined Portuguese fort, picturesque Dutch Square and St Paul's Hill with its sweeping view of the straits that gave this city its name. Malay history is said to have begun with the founding of Malacca in 1403. This once-sleepy fishing village became a stopover for traders from Asia and then Europe. Centuries of colonization influenced the architecture and cultures.

                              Start your sightseeing with a drive to Dutch Square and a visit to either the 17th-century Stadthuys, once the former governor's residence that is now a History Museum, or the Istana Melaka Museum. Ascend the 120 steps up St Paul's Hill for spectacular views over the waters once plied by schooners laden with silks and spices.

                              Visit St Paul's Church, built to honour St Francis Xavier, who brought Christianity to Malacca. At Porto de Santiago, view the remains of a Portuguese fortress whose 9-foot-thick walls once encircled the entire hill. Continue to the oldest part of Malacca to visit the Nanking-style Cheng Hoong Teng Temple, one of the oldest Chinese temples in Southeast Asia. Afterwards, there'll be time to wander towards Jonker Street, an intriguing area dotted with antique shops, craft stores and colorful restaurants.

                              *Please note you must dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule. 

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                              Included
                              George Town Highlights
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              George Town Highlights

                              29 Jan Penang, Malaysia
                              Half Day Respectful Dress
                              This panoramic tour of Penang’s state capital begins with a drive along the ‘road of harmony’, which is lined with places of worship, including the Anglican St George’s Church, the Chinese Kuan Yin Temple and the Kapitan Keling Mosque.

                              This panoramic tour of Penang’s state capital begins with a drive along the ‘road of harmony’, which is lined with places of worship, including the Anglican St George’s Church, the Chinese Kuan Yin Temple and the Kapitan Keling Mosque.

                              The next stop will be the brightly painted Thai temple of Wat Chayamangkalaram, home to a 108-foot long figure of the Reclining Buddha. Just across the road from here is the Burmese Temple, before you are transported to one of the most popular destinations in Penang, Gurney Drive. Known as ‘The New Esplanade’, and also the Persiaran Gurney, this lively waterfront takes its name from Sir Henry Gurney, who served as Malayan High Commissioner from 1948 to 1951.

                              Heading out of town, your tour concludes with the tranquil surroundings of the Penang Botanic Gardens, also known as ‘Waterfall Gardens’, which are more than a century old and cover 72 hectares, featuring a spice garden, kitchen garden and orchidarium. Bound by tropical trees and cascading streams, nestled within a deep valley at the foot of jungle covered hills, the gardens are the perfect place to see wild monkeys roaming freely in their natural habitat. You will then be returned to Aegean Odyssey via the colonial grandeur of the Eastern & Oriental Hotel for a glimpse into the style and glamour of Old World Penang.

                              *Please note you must dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule. 

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                              Included
                              Sunset Visit to Schwedagon Pagoda

                              Sunset Visit to Schwedagon Pagoda

                              2 Feb Yangon, Burma
                              When Rudyard Kipling first saw the 99-metre high golden stupa of the Shwedagon Pagoda in 1889, he wrote: ‘Then, a golden mystery upheaved itself on the horizon, a beautiful winking wonder that blazed in the sun, of a shape that was neither Muslim dome nor Hindu temple-spire.’

                              When Rudyard Kipling first saw the 99-metre high golden stupa of the Shwedagon Pagoda in 1889, he wrote: ‘Then, a golden mystery upheaved itself on the horizon, a beautiful winking wonder that blazed in the sun, of a shape that was neither Muslim dome nor Hindu temple-spire.’

                              The Pagoda is situated on a hill overlooking the city of Yangon (formerly Rangoon) in Myanmar (Burma) where it dominates the skyline. According to legend, it was created by two brothers, Trapusa and Bahalika, who encountered Gautama Buddha shortly after his enlightenment. As a gift to them, Siddhārtha Gautama pulled eight hairs from his head, which the brothers brought back to Singuttara Hill to preserve in a magnificent reliquary.

                              As well as Siddhārtha, Buddhism recognises four other Enlightened Ones from the current aeon, or kalpa as it is known, including the predicted future Buddha, Maitreya. Alongside hairs from the current Buddha, Shwedagon is also said to contain the staff of Kakusandha, the water filter of Koṇāgamana and a piece of the robe of Kassapa.

                              The practise of covering the stupa in gold leaf began in the 15th-century when Queen Shin Sawbu gifted Shwedagon with her weight in the precious metal. The people of Myanmar have continued this tradition to this day, with plates of gold now riveted to the brickwork of the bell-shaped structure.

                              The spectacular effect created by these panels of gold is best experience at sunset, when their glow casts a spell over the entire city, so the tour will depart at around 4pm, giving you time to learn more about its incredible history as well as experiencing a truly unforgettable sunset.

                              Note: Voyages to Antiquity regrets to inform that since the time of launching our programme, we have been informed that renovation works are being carried out on the Shwedagon Pagoda and are expected to continue until March 2019. As such, the main stupa will be covered in scaffolding, giving visitors an obstructive view of its stupa and spire from all angles. According to a statement from pagoda officials, the official completion date of this gold plate offering ceremony of the Shwedagon Pagoda is said to be announced early in 2019. We are keeping close contact with the authorities for further information and will update on the status with your final documentation.

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                              Included
                              Scott's Market and National Museum

                              Scott's Market and National Museum

                              3 Feb Yangon, Burma
                              Half day
                               The National Museum of Myanmar (Burma) in the city of Yangon (formerly Rangoon) was founded in 1952 but only moved to its current five storey building in 1996, when the decision was made to provide even more space for this diverse collection dedicated to the indigenous people of Myanmar and its natural history.

                               The National Museum of Myanmar (Burma) in the city of Yangon (formerly Rangoon) was founded in 1952 but only moved to its current five storey building in 1996, when the decision was made to provide even more space for this diverse collection dedicated to the indigenous people of Myanmar and its natural history.

                              Artefacts are spread across fourteen galleries representing different areas of history, from royal regalia to musical instruments, various eras of art to epigraphy and calligraphy, traditional folk art, Buddhist iconography, natural history and prehistory. A highlight is the spectacular 26-feet high, jewel-encrusted Royal Lion Throne of King Thibaw, the last ruler of Myanmar, but there are plenty of other priceless and illuminating exhibits to see as well, ensuring you will leave with a greater knowledge and understanding of Myanmar and its people.

                              Not far from the museum is the indoor Bogyoke Market, formerly named Scott’s Market, after the Municipal Commissioner Gavin Scott who led the city under British rule during the early 20th-century. Following Burmese independence in 1948 the market was renamed in honour of the national leader Bogyoke (General) Aung San who had been assassinated the year before.

                              Housed inside this beautiful colonial building are 1,641 shops selling luxury items, handicrafts, food, clothing, jewellery, fashion and consumer goods. The market is square in shape and divided into four wings, but the stalls and shops are not categorized, making finding items more fun.

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                              Included
                              Mandalay by Air

                              Mandalay by Air

                              3 Feb Yangon, Burma
                              Full Day Lunch IncludedRespectful Dress
                              An hour’s flight north of Yangon, Mandalay is a cultural center, Burma’s second largest city and her last royal capital. It’s worth making the early start to enable a visit to the Mahagandayon Monastery at Amarapura, one of the largest in Burma and home to over 1,400 monks.

                              An hour’s flight north of Yangon, Mandalay is a cultural center, Burma’s second largest city and her last royal capital. It’s worth making the early start to enable a visit to the Mahagandayon Monastery at Amarapura, one of the largest in Burma and home to over 1,400 monks. Watch the monks line up to receive their last meal of the day, eaten in silence in the middle of the morning.

                              The nearby U Bein bridge spans the Taungthaman Lake and was built in the mid-19th century. Mandalay has been famed for centuries for silk production and a visit to a weaving workshop provides a fascinating glimpse into the art. Nimble-fingered young women use old-fashioned looms to produce intricate patterns for festive “longyi” or sarongs.

                              Time to enjoy a typical Burmese lunch, then make a stop at the gate of Mandalay’s city wall within its moat to photograph Mandalay Hill. In the afternoon, a visit will be made to the Shwenandaw “Golden Palace” former monastery to view its fabulous 19th-century woodcarvings of Buddhist myths.

                              If time permits, a short stop at the Mahamuni pagoda, one of the most revered religious monuments in Myanmar will complete today’s tour of Mandalay before a late-afternoon return flight to Yangon, reboarding Aegean Odyssey for dinner.

                              Please Note: This excursion involves a visit to a pagoda and you will be asked to remove your shoes and socks. Please dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule.

                              This optional excursion must be pre-booked and paid for prior to departure.

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                              Optional $ 495 (pre-booked)
                              Bagan by Air

                              Bagan by Air

                              3 Feb Yangon, Burma
                              Full Day Lunch IncludedRespectful Dress
                              Fly to one of the world's wonders, the vast archaeological site at Bagan, a magnificent ensemble of 11th and 12th-century temples. Your day begins with an early start and a hour's flight to the former capital of an ancient kingdom, the landscape still studded with over 2,200 temples.

                              Fly to one of the world's wonders, the vast archaeological site at Bagan, a magnificent ensemble of 11th and 12th-century temples. Your day begins with an early start and a hour's flight to the former capital of an ancient kingdom, the landscape still studded with over 2,200 temples.

                              We will visit the local market where seemingly little has changed over the centuries and vendors sit cross-legged selling the ingredients for euphoria-inducing betel quids.

                              Highlights of the day for those interested in Buddhism will be the visits to the golden Shwezigon Pagoda and the Ananda Temple with its four colossal standing Buddhas. The massive brick structure of the Dhammayangyi Temple is a source of fascination for today's architects, and the 13th-century Gu Byauk Gyi Temple contains remarkable frescoes showing scenes from Buddha's life.

                              After a Burmese lunch at a local restaurant. As Bagan is the center of the Burmese lacquerware industry and a visit will be made to one of the many familyrun workshops to observe the centuries-old art of lacquerware making. Board a late-afternoon flight to return to Yangon in time for dinner aboard Aegean Odyssey.

                              Please note: This excursion involves a visit to many pagodas and you will be asked to remove your shoes and socks each time. Slip-on shoes are highly recommended! Please dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule.

                              This optional excursion must be pre-booked and paid for prior to departure.

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                              Optional $ 495 (pre-booked)
                              Ross Island Boat Trip

                              Ross Island Boat Trip

                              6 Feb Port Blair, Andaman Islands
                              Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              Ross Island is about 2 km east of Port Blair and can be reached by a short boat ride from Phoenix Bay Jetty.

                              Ross Island is about 2 km east of Port Blair and can be reached by a short boat ride from Phoenix Bay Jetty. The island is controlled by the Indian navy, which requires every visitor to sign in on entering, and is home to a large and noisy population of peacocks.

                              This small island was the capital of Port Blair during the British regime and it presently houses the ruins of old colonial buildings like the Ballroom, Chief Commissioner’s House, Government House, the main Church, the Hospital, and Troop Barracks. All in a rather dilapidated condition, these buildings evoke the old British regime. You will also visit a small museum which houses old photographs of Ross during the colonial era.

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                              Included
                              Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, Spice Garden & Temple of the Tooth

                              Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, Spice Garden & Temple of the Tooth

                              10 Feb Kandy, Sri Lanka
                              Full Day Lunch IncludedRespectful DressLong Drive
                              Watch Asian Elephants as they bathe and play in the river, then journey to the sacred city of Kandy, a UNESCO World Heritage Site of unusual beauty and the location of the temple containing a tooth of Buddha.

                              Watch Asian Elephants as they bathe and play in the river, then journey to the sacred city of Kandy, a UNESCO World Heritage Site of unusual beauty and the location of the temple containing a tooth of Buddha.

                              A two and a half hour drive through the beautiful Sri Lankan countryside brings us to Pinnawala and this famous site, established by the Department of Wildlife Conservation to protect unweaned baby elephants found wandering in the forests. From a nucleus of five baby elephants in 1975, the sanctuary is now home to the world’s largest herd of captive elephants, many of which have been bred here and will stay for life. Your first stop will be at the Oya River to watch the elephants bathing and socializing, so be sure to bring a camera to capture the beauty and the antics of these majestic animals.

                              After a stop at a Spice Garden to learn about Sri Lanka’s ayurvedic tradition, continue on to Kandy, founded in the 14th century and the last capital of Sri Lanka’s kings. Lunch will be served in a colonial hotel overlooking the Kandy Lake. On the opposite side of the picturesque valley, take a guided tour of the monumental Temple of the Tooth where the sacred relic is enshrined.

                              This excursion involves a visit to a temple and you will be asked to remove your shoes. Please dress appropriately for visiting religious sites, with shoulders and knees covered as a general rule. A video fee applies for the temple.

                              Note: despite some negative press concerning the orphanage in recent years, VTA’s local ground partners are happy with the latest inspections of the organisation and their treatment of the animals. A detailed presentation will be given on board to provide more details on what to expect and the reasons behind the work being carried out in the orphanage.

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                              Included
                              Royal Botanical Gardens & Negombo

                              Royal Botanical Gardens & Negombo

                              11 Feb Negombo, Sri Lanka
                              Half Day Respectful DressLong DriveRemoval of Shoes
                              Begin with a leisurely drive past Lake Kandy to a bazaar that offers an array of locally made handicrafts. Your journey then continues to the Royal Botanic Gardens of Peradeniya, which date back to 1371 and are renowned for exquisite orchids, the avenue of royal palms and the gigantic Javan fig tree.

                              Begin with a leisurely drive past Lake Kandy to a bazaar that offers an array of locally made handicrafts. Your journey then continues to the Royal Botanic Gardens of Peradeniya, which date back to 1371 and are renowned for exquisite orchids, the avenue of royal palms and the gigantic Javan fig tree. A stop will be made at the Ambepussa Rest House for lunch, en route to the tropical beach resort of Negombo where dinner will be served at your second hotel, the Jetwing Sea, which is situated right on the waterfront.

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                              Included
                              The Wild South

                              The Wild South

                              19 Feb Mahe, Seychelles
                              Half Day
                              Mahé, measuring 28km long by 8km wide, is the largest island and cultural and economic hub of the Seychelles. It is home to the international airport and the nation’s capital, Victoria. The island is home to almost 90 per cent of the total population (or approximately 72,200 people) and reflects Seychelles' diverse ethnicity from African, Indian, Chinese and European populations.

                              Mahé, measuring 28km long by 8km wide, is the largest island and cultural and economic hub of the Seychelles. It is home to the international airport and the nation’s capital, Victoria. The island is home to almost 90 per cent of the total population (or approximately 72,200 people) and reflects Seychelles' diverse ethnicity from African, Indian, Chinese and European populations.

                              With a backdrop of towering 1000m granite peaks, Mahé is an extraordinary treasure trove of flora that has evolved over centuries of splendid isolation. Rare endemic plants found nowhere else in the world adorn Mahé’s mist forests in mountain strongholds, such as the Jellyfish Tree, the carnivorous Seychelles Pitcher Plant and the Seychelles Vanilla Orchid.

                              First visited by the British in 1609, Mahé was subsequently forgotten about until Lazare Picault's expedition of 1742, when the gradual process of settling the island began, first by the French, whose direct influence continued until 1814, and then as a British colony until Seychelles gained independence in 1976.

                              After transferring from the ship to Victoria you will start your guided tour of the capital, including the bustling market and a walk through the magical Botanical Garden. Drive to San Soucis Mountain and see the Mission Lodge, once the site of a school for liberated slave children that was built by the London Missionary Society in 1876. Today there are just ruins to be seen at the beginning of the path to the viewing lodge, but the views out over mountain slopes, the ocean and the west coast of Mahé are fantastic.

                              Note: This excursion will have AM and PM departures due to capacity limitations.

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                              Included
                              Coral Cruise

                              Coral Cruise

                              20 Feb Mahe, Seychelles
                              Half Day Boat RideSwimming costume
                              Arrive at the reef barrier and view the underwater world from a glass-bottomed boat drifting over the corals. As well as learning about the history of the Ste Anne Marine Park, you can enjoy some hand fish feeding and snorkelling within the marine park.

                              Arrive at the reef barrier and view the underwater world from a glass-bottomed boat drifting over the corals. As well as learning about the history of the Ste Anne Marine Park, you can enjoy feeding some fish by hand and snorkelling within the marine park. Disembark on Moyenne Island for a short exploration and encounter with the grand old inhabitants of the island, the 105 land tortoises, whom you will meet roaming freely.

                              Please note: this optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

                              This excursion will have AM and PM departures due to capacity limitations.

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                              Optional $ 125
                              Port Louis and Eureka Colonial House

                              Port Louis and Eureka Colonial House

                              24 Feb Port Louis, Mauritius
                              Half day Significant StepsInsect Repellent
                              The historic colonial house of Eureka was built in 1830 and is one of the oldest and largest Creole private residences on the island, boasting 109 doors and windows. In 1986 it was opened as a museum with rooms dedicated to music, art, antique maps, Chinese and Indian housewares and quirky contraptions like a colonial-era shower.

                              The historic colonial house of Eureka was built in 1830 and is one of the oldest and largest Creole private residences on the island, boasting 109 doors and windows. In 1986 it was opened as a museum with rooms dedicated to music, art, antique maps, Chinese and Indian housewares and quirky contraptions like a colonial-era shower. An array of photographs provide an intriguing glimpse into the lives of British and French aristocrats during the 19th century, while the gardens are equally as delightful, featuring four small waterfalls and rare plants that are endemic to the island.

                              After your guided tour you will be invited to relax in the shade of the veranda, for some light snacks and refreshments, before you are transported to the open hilltop church of Marie Reine de La Paix, where Pope John Paul II officiated his first Mass on the island during an historic visit in 1989. Returning to Port Louis, you will see the buildings of the historic Place d’Armes, Saint Louis Cathedral, the Supreme Court, the Municipal Theatre and Government House, then experience a colourful slice of authentic Mauritian life at the local market.

                              Returning to Aegean Odyssey, a stop will be made at Fort Adelaide, or La Citadelle, built by the British between 1834 and 1840 under the direction of King William IV. The fort is named in honour of his queen consort, Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen, who also inspired the moniker of Australia’s southern capital.

                              Note: This excursion will have AM and PM departures due to capacity limitations.

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                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Port Louis and Pamplemousses Gardens

                              Port Louis and Pamplemousses Gardens

                              24 Feb Port Louis, Mauritius
                              Half day Significant StepsInsect Repellent
                              In 1735 the French Governor François Mahé de Labourdonna broke ground in the district of Pamplemousses near Port-Louis to create a garden for his family. In 1988 the world-class botanical that evolved from his creation was renamed in honour of the island’s first prime minister, Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam, and remains one of the oldest, most prestigious gardens in the southern hemisphere.

                              In 1735 the French Governor François Mahé de Labourdonna broke ground in the district of Pamplemousses near Port-Louis to create a garden for his family. In 1988 the world-class botanical that evolved from his creation was renamed in honour of the island’s first prime minister, Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam, and remains one of the oldest, most prestigious gardens in the southern hemisphere.

                              More than 500 species of plants are on display, including some giant Victoria amazonica water lilies, which form the centrepiece of the garden’s splendid pond. At least eighty varieties of palms are scattered around the grounds, including Latanias, Verschaffeltia splendida and Talipots, which live for forty years and only flower once shortly before dying. Other unusual curios to keep an eye out for include the marmalade box tree, fish poison tree and sausage tree.

                              As an additional option, L’Aventure du Sucre (Sugar World) inside the former Beau Plan sugar factory offers a fascinating insight into this valuable commodity. The original factory was founded in 1797 but only ceased working in 1999. For this reason many of the guides are former workers who are able to provide a first-hand account of life on the production line and the historical impact of sugar upon Mauritius. After touring this fascinating museum there will then be a chance for some sugar and rhum tasting.

                              Free time will be available to take a walk along the cosmopolitan Caudan Waterfront, in the capital of Port Louis, which has a beautiful craft market selling traditional handmade goods such as sarongs, embroidered linen, stained glass objects, wooden sculptures and basketwork.

                              Note: This excursion will have staggered departures due to capacity limitations.

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                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Casela Nature Park

                              Casela Nature Park

                              25 Feb Port Louis, Mauritius
                              Half day
                              The most visited attraction in Mauritius and the Indian Ocean, Casela World of Adventures has been welcoming guests of all ages since 1979. Originally a bird sanctuary, the site was expanded to save the local forestation from being redeveloped. In 2015 it was redesigned to feature even more world-class facilities and 21st-century attractions.

                              The most visited attraction in Mauritius and the Indian Ocean, Casela World of Adventures has been welcoming guests of all ages since 1979. Originally a bird sanctuary, the site was expanded to save the local forestation from being redeveloped. In 2015 it was redesigned to feature even more world-class facilities and 21st-century attractions.

                              Spread over 250 hectares, the park is divided into four “Kingdoms” known as “Safari”, “Nature”, “Mountain” and “Discovery”. The Discovery Centre is a state of the art building adorned with pillars replicating giant baobab trees and imitation creepers stretching across the ceiling. It has an array of animal statues and boasts the island’s first 4D cinema, a scale 3D replica of Mauritius and interactive displays to help visitors discover more about the island.

                              The three animal kingdoms are home to a wide variety of birds, alongside giant tortoises, Bengal tigers, cheetahs, white lions, lynxes, servals, hyenas, dromedary camels, pygmy hippos, white rhinos and more. A range of optional activities are available to choose from at your own leisure, include a petting farm, “Segway Safari Trip”, horse and camel riding, as well as the chance to feed the park’s nine giraffes.

                              During a Big Cat Drive Thru, the park’s guides share information and interesting personal anecdotes about their time working with these amazing animals. Then for the more adventurous there’s also the chance to walk with lions, cross a high-wire “Nepalese Bridge”, try your hand at some dry tobogganing or take an exhilarating ride on a zip line above the forest.

                              Please note: this optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

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                              Optional $ 75
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Exploring Mauritius

                              Exploring Mauritius

                              25 Feb Port Louis, Mauritius
                              Full day Lunch IncludedSignificant StepsUphill SectionsInsect Repellent
                              Directly south of Port Louis lies the long dormant volcano of Trou-aux-Cerfs. This well-defined cone and crater has not been active for over 100,000 years and is covered with lush plants and flowers, offering spectacular views across the island in all directions as well as to the town of Curepipe below.

                              Directly south of Port Louis lies the long dormant volcano of Trou-aux-Cerfs. This well-defined cone and crater has not been active for over 100,000 years and is covered with lush plants and flowers, offering spectacular views across the island in all directions, as well as to the town of Curepipe below.

                              After spending some time at Trou-aux-Cerfs, the next stop on this panoramic tour will be to a factory specialising in the making of beautiful scale model ships and other nautical vessels. These intricately hand-crafted replicas are constructed from various kinds of wood and sold across the world.

                              The spiritual centre of the island is lake Ganga Talao, or Grand Bassin as it is more commonly known. The peaceful waters here are surrounded by Hindu temples dedicated to Shiva, Hanuman, Ganesh and Ganga, reflecting the site’s deep connection with the River Ganges.

                              Lunch will be at the idyllic Varangue sur Morne restaurant, located inside Black River Gorges. This picturesque national park is the largest protected forest on Mauritus and is home to some rare species of birds. Then for a sweet digestif, the Rhumerie de Chamarel distillery and museum offers a fascinating insight into how traditional island rhum is produced, followed by a tasting.

                              Chamarel is also home to a ninety-five metre waterfall and a unique geological formation known as the “Seven Coloured Earths”, a surreal landscape made up of multi-coloured layers of sand which seem to settle into stripes spontaneously.

                              Please note: this optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

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                              Optional $ 89
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Scenic Reunion

                              Scenic Reunion

                              26 Feb St. Denis, Reunion
                              Half day Winding road
                              This panoramic drive takes you close to what is still the highest point in the Indian Ocean, stopping at an escarpment some 7,000 feet up to enjoy some marvellous views across the caldera, where a scattering of isolated islanders still live an almost entirely self-sufficient rustic life.

                              Reunion is a rugged volcanic island with a mountainous centre that was formed over 20,000 years ago during a series of eruptions from the long extinct Piton des Neiges. The eruptions also led to the creation of the Cirque de Mafate caldera, a stunning natural amphitheatre that is entirely enclosed by steep mountains and cliffs known as ‘remparts’, making it impossible to reach without hiking in or being flown by helicopter.

                              This panoramic drive takes you close to what is still the highest point in the Indian Ocean, stopping at an escarpment some 7,000 feet up to enjoy some marvellous views across the caldera, where a scattering of isolated islanders still live an almost entirely self-sufficient rustic life.

                              Reunion is one of the world’s largest producers of geranium oil, which is used as a fixative for perfumes. At a small Geranium Oil Distillery in the quaint village of La Petite France, the delicate extraction process will be explained, after which you will have the opportunity to purchase some exquisitely scented essential oils and perfumes, produced by this traditional cottage industry.

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                              Included
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                              St Denis

                              St Denis

                              26 Feb St. Denis, Reunion
                              Half day Walking over cobblestones, uneven or slippery surfaces
                              The stretch of coastline between the Le Port and St Denis is a beautiful place to begin this tour of Réunion’s picturesque capital, which is surrounded by idyllic mountains on three sides and the Indian Ocean to the north.

                              The stretch of coastline between Le Port and St Denis is a beautiful place to begin this tour of Réunion’s picturesque capital, which is surrounded by idyllic mountains on three sides and the Indian Ocean to the north.

                              A warm and extremely welcoming town, Réunion is the largest of any in the French Colonies. Founded by Étienne Regnault in 1669, it started life around the small pier of Barachois and expanded gradually to become the capital in 1738, taking its name from a boat that ran aground in the nearby bay.

                              Passing the former East India Company building, the Rue de Paris has some splendid Creole-style houses with traditional colonial-white verandas. A short stop will be made at the Jardin de l'Etat, or State Garden, to see some impressive trees and other rare species of fauna, including the African baobab, fishtail palm tree and coconut tree. The tour will then reach the former palace of the General Consul, which is now the Natural History Museum.

                              The Hindu Temple and Christian Cathedral are symbolic reminders of how this remote island has managed to integrate differing religions, races and cultures so well. This is a city where everyone is united by the musical Creole language.

                              Returning to Le Port, there will be a brief stop at a handicraft market for the chance to browse some traditional Creole goods as well as local and Madagascan scents and spices, so don’t forget to haggle with the stall-owners for these excellent souvenirs.

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                              Included
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Hluhluwe Game Reserve

                              Hluhluwe Game Reserve

                              3 Mar Richards Bay, South Africa
                              Full day Bumpy roadsOpen Safari vehicles
                              Formerly known as Hluhluwe–Umfolozi, the Hluhluwe–Imfolozi wildlife park extends across 96,000 hectares of African bushland and is particularly well known for its small population of rare white rhino.

                              Formerly known as Hluhluwe–Umfolozi, the Hluhluwe–Imfolozi wildlife park extends across 96,000 hectares of African bushland and is particularly well known for its small population of rare white rhino. Proclaimed a game reserve in 1895, over the last century Hluhluwe has remained home to a spectacular variety of bird and animal life, including elephant, lion, leopard, buffalo, blue wildebeest, zebra, giraffe, cheetah, mountain reedbuck, kudu and warthog.

                              Located about a one and a half hour drive from Richards Bay in one of the most fascinating parts of Africa, Hluhluwe preserves not only the wildlife of Zululand, but also some of the indefinable charm and traditions of its natural surroundings. As part of your day exploring this amazing landscape, you will get to enjoy a buffet lunch at the Hilltop Restaurant to the backdrop of some stunning scenery, before departing on another exciting game drive in the afternoon.

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                              Included
                              Leopard Mountain Overland

                              Leopard Mountain Overland

                              3 Mar Richards Bay, South Africa
                              overnight Insect RepellentBumpy roadsOpen Safari vehicles
                              This multiple award-winning lodge is nestled in the clifftops within a low-risk malaria Endangered Species Protected Area, making it the perfect place for an unforgettable double drive safari in one of South Africa’s most biodiverse regions.

                              This multiple award-winning lodge is nestled in the clifftops within a low-risk malaria Endangered Species Protected Area, making it the perfect place for an unforgettable double drive safari in one of South Africa’s most biodiverse regions.

                              On arrival a light-lunch will be served, followed by a chance to unpack in one of nine well-appointed stone and thatch chalets overlooking the river. All accommodation has a private plunge pool on its own balcony with spectacular views across Zululand to the distant Lebombo Mountains, while inside you will find a mini-bar, tea and coffee facilities, mosquito nets and an en-suite bathroom.

                              After settling in, you will be transported into the bush by an expert ranger and tracker in an open 4X4, for a thrilling late afternoon and sunset big game drive. No-one can guarantee exactly what you will see, but among the species that roam these vast African plains are the Big Five (lion, elephant, rhino, buffalo and leopard), cheetahs, hyenas, jackals, lynx, zebras, giraffes, warthogs, impalas, wildebeest and blesbok, along with the shy Nyala, which are particularly endemic to the region.

                              After dusk falls, return to the lodge and enjoy a sumptuous South African dinner before unwinding beneath a pollution free night sky for some of the best stargazing on the continent. Awaken early to experience a sunrise big game drive as Maputaland comes to life, before enjoying a rewarding breakfast and returning to Aegean Odyssey with the safari memories of a lifetime.

                              Please note: this optional excursion must be pre-booked and paid for prior to departure.

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                              Optional $ 495pp (twin, pre-booked)
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Phinda Private Game Reserve

                              Phinda Private Game Reserve

                              3 Mar Richards Bay, South Africa
                              2 days/1 overnight Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hoursInsect RepellentBumpy roadsOpen Safari vehicles
                              Phinda Private Game Reserve is situated in the lush Maputaland region of northern KwaZulu-Natal and boasts 17,500 hectares of prime conservation land sheltering an abundance of wildlife, including, of course, Africa’s Big Five, as well as over 380 species of birds. The marine diversity in the nearby coastal waters of Sodwana is also said to rival the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.

                              Phinda Private Game Reserve is situated in the lush Maputaland region of northern KwaZulu-Natal and boasts 17,500 hectares of prime conservation land sheltering an abundance of wildlife, including, of course, Africa’s Big Five, as well as over 380 species of birds. The marine diversity in the nearby coastal waters of Sodwana is also said to rival the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. Phinda Forest Lodge, where you will spend the night, is set deep in the heart of a rare and beautiful dry sand forest, fusing architectural design with conservation.

                              Not a single tree was felled during the construction of this award-winning “Zulu Zen” style safari lodge. These stilted suites all use a combination of glass, wood, attractive fabrics and Zulu artefacts, with standard features including luxurious en-suite bathrooms and private viewing decks.

                              You can also unwind in the lodge's sparkling rim-flow swimming pool, or relax on the expansive viewing decks which afford panoramic views of the game-filled plains.

                              Please note: this optional excursion must be pre-booked and paid for prior to departure.

                              There is still very limited availability for this overnight experience. If interested, please contact your local booking office for prices and availability.

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                              Optional $ 950pp (twin, pre-booked)
                              St Lucia Wetland Park
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              St Lucia Wetland Park

                              4 Mar Richards Bay, South Africa
                              Extended Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hoursBoat Ride
                              The beautiful iSimangaliso Wetland Park World Heritage Site runs along the shore of the Indian Ocean for over 130 miles encompassing five distinct ecosystems that are filled with some of the most spectacular flora and fauna on the African continent.

                              The beautiful iSimangaliso Wetland Park World Heritage Site runs along the shore of the Indian Ocean for over 130 miles encompassing five distinct ecosystems that are filled with some of the most spectacular flora and fauna on the African continent.

                              Enjoy a relaxing trail-walk with the chance to see some antelope and birdlife, before boarding a covered boat for a leisurely two-hour cruise along the estuary shoreline to Lake St Lucia, where you are guaranteed a close-up encounter with some of its famous concentration of hippos. The lake has some eight hundred in total, the largest amount in South Africa, and is also home to over five hundred species of birds, including the popular African Fish Eagle and Mangrove Kingfisher, as well as approximately two thousand Nile crocodiles, the largest freshwater predator in Africa.

                              Throughout your trip the experienced captain will ensure you have plenty of opportunity to capture some stunning wildlife photographs, and explain more about the mangrove swamps and the various ecosystems that your route will take.

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                              Included
                              Pietermaritzburg & Museum

                              Pietermaritzburg & Museum

                              5 Mar Durban, South Africa
                              Half Day
                              A provincial capital nestled in the hills of KwaZulu-Natal, filled with old world charm and beautiful Victorian architecture, Pietermaritzburg is also a modern South African town that is home to over 600,000 people.

                              A provincial capital nestled in the hills of KwaZulu-Natal, filled with old world charm and beautiful Victorian architecture, Pietermaritzburg is also a modern South African town that is home to over 600,000 people.

                              Your guided tour begins at the Natal Museum, one of five national museums in South Africa, housing artefacts relating to indigenous wildlife, geology, palaeontology and ethnology, such as a replica of a bushman cave, alongside weaponry salvaged from a Portuguese shipwreck on the Wild Coast.

                              The historic city centre is Church Street, where Pietermaritzburg City Hall is believed to be the largest red brick building in the southern hemisphere. In 1893 Mahatma Ghandi was travelling to Pretoria when he was removed from a train in Pietermaritzburg following a complaint by a white man, despite having a first class ticket. The incident inspired the Mahatma to stay in South Africa for over twenty years in order to fight racial discrimination, during which he developed his technique of nonviolent resistance that became known as Satyagraha. Ghandi’s momentous achievements are celebrated today by a bronze statue of the “Great Soul”, located near the Assembly Building and Supreme Court.

                              Ghandi spent the night in the waiting room of Pietermaritzburg railway station and after visiting this historic building your panoramic tour continues past the Royal Agricultural Showgrounds and some quaint Victorian country shops. Then leave the city for the some magnificent views of the mountainous surrounds, which first captured the hearts of Voortrekkers and early settlers in the 19th century.

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                              Included
                              Sharks Board

                              Sharks Board

                              5 Mar Durban, South Africa
                              Half Day
                              The KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board was founded in 1962 to maintain coastal shark nets and drum lines on thirty-eight beaches along 320 km of coastline. Its central mandate is to protect bathers and surfers from shark attacks, but the Sharks Board is also a global leader in minimizing the environmental impact on the sharks themselves and their habitat, offering the perfect opportunity to learn more about these often misunderstood predators.

                              The KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board was founded in 1962 to maintain coastal shark nets and drum lines on thirty-eight beaches along 320 km of coastline. Its central mandate is to protect bathers and surfers from shark attacks, but the Sharks Board is also a global leader in minimizing the environmental impact on the sharks themselves and their habitat, offering the perfect opportunity to learn more about these often misunderstood predators.

                              A panoramic drive along Durban’s beachfront promenade brings you to this unique maritime centre, where you will enjoy a specialist presentation and shark dissection, followed by a guided tour of the display hall which features a large variety of lifelike replicas of fish, rays and sharks, including a magnificent 892kg Great White. Some free time will then be available to browse the shop for sharkskin leather goods and other curios, before your return to Aegean Odyssey in Durban.

                              Please note: this optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

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                              Optional $ 48
                              Private Safari

                              Private Safari

                              7 Mar Port Elizabeth, South Africa
                              Full Day
                              Affectionately known as “The Friendly City”, Port Elizabeth is rich in ethnic culture and diversity. Its closeness to some of the finest bushveld in South Africa’s Eastern Cape also offers the chance for a unique wildlife safari experience at one of two stunning malaria-free private game reserves.

                              Affectionately known as “The Friendly City”, Port Elizabeth is rich in ethnic culture and diversity. Its closeness to some of the finest bushveld in South Africa’s Eastern Cape also offers the chance for a unique wildlife safari experience at one of two stunning malaria-free private game reserves.

                              Both Lalibela and Pumba span five ecosystems and offer the same huge range of flora and fauna to spot across thousands of acres of beautiful terrain. Upon arrival you will be greeted by an expert ranger and tracker, before being driven out into the bush in an open 4X4 for a thrilling big game drive.

                              No-one can guarantee exactly what you will see, but among the species that roam these vast African plains are the Big Five (lion, elephant, rhino, buffalo and leopard), hippos, cheetahs, hyenas, jackals, lynx, zebras, giraffes, warthogs, impalas, wildebeest and numerous antelope such as eland, kudu, bushbuck and wildebeest. There’s also the tiny blue duiker and rock hyrax to keep an eye out for, alongside a wide variety of birdlife.

                              Following the drive, a buffet lunch will be served before your return to Aegean Odyssey in Port Elizabeth.

                              Note: Due to capacity reasons and to avoid over-crowding, groups will be split between the two parks at the discretion of the on-board shore excursion team.

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                              Included
                              Pumba Private Game Reserve

                              Pumba Private Game Reserve

                              7 Mar Port Elizabeth, South Africa
                              1 night overland Insect RepellentBumpy roadsOpen Safari vehicles
                              Pumba is an eco-friendly destination in the malaria-free Eastern Cape of South Africa that provides an intimate safari experience within its 6,500 hectares of private property. The lodge has a range of 5-star air-conditioned chalets overlooking Lake Kariega, all of which have amazing views across the veld and water, giving visitors every opportunity to enjoy the ultimate in African luxury and style.

                              Pumba is an eco-friendly destination in the malaria-free Eastern Cape of South Africa that provides an intimate safari experience within its 6,500 hectares of private property. The lodge has a range of 5-star air-conditioned chalets overlooking Lake Kariega, all of which have amazing views across the veld and water, giving visitors every opportunity to enjoy the ultimate in African luxury and style.

                              On arrival, a welcome drink will be served, followed by a light-lunch and the chance to settle into your accommodation. “High tea” will also be available, before you are transported into the bush by expert rangers and trackers in an open 4X4, for a thrilling late afternoon and sunset big game drive.

                              No-one can guarantee exactly what you will see, but among the species that roam these vast African plains are the Big Five (lion, elephant, rhino, buffalo and leopard), cheetahs, hyenas, jackals, lynx, zebras, giraffes, warthogs, impalas, wildebeest, blesbok and other antelope endemic to the region.

                              After dusk falls, return to the lodge to enjoy a sumptuous South African dinner before unwinding beneath a pollution free night sky for some of the best stargazing on the continent. Awaken early to experience a sunrise big game drive as the veld comes to life, before enjoying a rewarding breakfast and returning to Aegean Odyssey with the safari memories of a lifetime.

                              Please note: this optional excursion must be pre-booked and paid for prior to departure.

                              There is still very limited availability for this overnight experience. If interested, please contact your local booking office for prices and availability.

                              Read more
                              Optional $ 650pp (twin, pre-booked)
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Lalibela Private Game Reserve

                              Lalibela Private Game Reserve

                              7 Mar Port Elizabeth, South Africa
                              Overnight Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hoursInsect RepellentBumpy roadsOpen Safari vehicles
                              Lalibela Game Reserve and Safari Lodge is located in the Eastern Cape of South Africa, close to Port Elizabeth and Addo, which means it is not only malaria free, but spans five ecosystems, resulting in a breath-taking diversity of flora and fauna.

                              Lalibela Game Reserve and Safari Lodge is located in the Eastern Cape of South Africa, close to Port Elizabeth and Addo, which means it is not only malaria free, but spans five ecosystems, resulting in a breath-taking diversity of flora and fauna.

                              Lentaba, the “Lodge on the Hillside”, has eight beautifully secluded thatched chalets overlooking magnificent indigenous gardens that seamlessly merge with the bush. Every en-suite unit has a private observation deck to make the most of the views over the valley. The main lodge is decorated in a traditional African safari style and boasts a large lounge, observation deck and swimming pool.

                              On arrival a welcome drink will be served, followed by a light-lunch and the chance to settle into your accommodation. “High tea” will also be available, before you are transported into the 18,500 acres of bush by expert rangers and trackers in an open 4X4, for a thrilling late afternoon and sunset big game drive.

                              No-one can guarantee exactly what you will see, but among the species that roam these vast African plains are the Big Five (lion, elephant, rhino, buffalo and leopard), hippos, cheetahs, hyenas, jackals, lynx, zebras, giraffes, warthogs, impalas, wildebeest, blesbok and other antelope.

                              After dusk falls, return to the lodge to enjoy a sumptuous South African dinner before unwinding beneath a pollution free night sky for some of the best stargazing on the continent. Awaken early to experience a sunrise big game drive as the bushveld comes to life, before enjoying a rewarding breakfast and returning to Aegean Odyssey with the safari memories of a lifetime.

                              Please note: this optional excursion must be pre-booked and paid for prior to departure.

                              There is still very limited availability for this overnight experience. If interested, please contact your local booking office for prices and availability.

                              Read more
                              Optional $ 769pp (twin, pre-booked)
                              Choice of Tours
                              Cultural Activity
                              Port Elizabeth City

                              Port Elizabeth City

                              8 Mar Port Elizabeth, South Africa
                              Half Day
                              Port Elizabeth is the third largest port and fifth largest city in South Africa. Even before disembarking Aegean Odyssey you will be able to see the fifty-two metre high Campanile at the entrance to the harbour, which was erected in 1923 to commemorate the first British settlers who landed here in 1820.

                              Port Elizabeth is the third largest port and fifth largest city in South Africa. Even before disembarking Aegean Odyssey you will be able to see the fifty-two metre high Campanile at the entrance to the harbour, which was erected in 1923 to commemorate the first British settlers who landed here in 1820.

                              Arriving at Shark Rock Pier, a stop will be made to admire the waterfront from a different perspective, before the tour continues through the popular beachfront area of Summerstrand and Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Campus, to the unique Bayworld Museum, which combines cultural history with a herpetological section and an Oceanarium filled with African penguins, Cape fur seals and other marine life.

                              The pyramidal Donkin Memorial was erected in memory of the city’s founder, Elizabeth. Then see the British built Fort Frederick, commissioned by the Duke of York in 1799 to protect the city during the Napoleonic Wars. Other notable buildings include Nelson Mandela Stadium, the Horse Memorial, St George’s Cricket Ground, the Feather Market, the Library, the Post Office and the City Hall, which was seriously damaged by fire in 1977 resulting in a major restoration.

                              Market Square is built on the site of the original landing beach and contains an exact replica of the last Diaz Cross planted by the Portuguese explorer Bartholomew Diaz in 1488, during his first rounding of the Cape of Good Hope by a European. The replica was donated to the city by the Portuguese government and is made from sandstone sourced in the same region as the original three crosses, the last of which was planted not far from Port Elizabeth.

                               

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                              Top of Table Mountain

                              Top of Table Mountain

                              10 Mar Cape Town, South Africa
                              Half Day Cable Car
                              No visit to Cape Town is complete without a trip up Table Mountain, the city’s most celebrated landmark, and a ride in the famous cable car. You will ascend from the Valley Station (363 m) up to the Mountain Station (1,060 m) in under four minutes and enjoy spectacular views of the Cape, as the floor of the car rotates 360 degrees during the ascent and descent.

                              No visit to Cape Town is complete without a trip up Table Mountain, the city’s most celebrated landmark, and a ride in the famous cable car. You will ascend from the Valley Station (363 m) up to the Mountain Station (1,060 m) in under four minutes and enjoy spectacular views of the Cape, as the floor of the car rotates 360 degrees during the ascent and descent. Table Mountain gets its name from the flat-topped central massif of the mountain, which viewed from the city, is surrounded by Devil’s Peak on the left, Lion’s Head on the right and Signal Hill in the foreground. They form a sort of amphitheatre that encloses the city centre and some of the older suburbs.

                              From the summit, the natural protected area stretching from Signal Hill to Cape Point has been managed under the custodianship of the South African National Parks Board. This area has one of the highest concentrations of endemic plant and animal species in any area of its size, containing a staggering 2,285 plant species – more than the entire UK.

                              On your way back to the ship you’ll enjoy a short orientation tour of the city of Cape Town, including the colourful and historic houses of the Bo-Kaap (Malay Quarter), the Convention Centre, Adderley Street with statues of Jan van Riebeeck and Bartholomeu Diaz, the Castle of Good Hope, City Hall in Darling Street, the Dutch Reformed Church, Slave Lodge, St George’s Cathedral and the Cape Provincial government buildings in Wale Street.

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                              Cape Winelands Discovery

                              Cape Winelands Discovery

                              11 Mar Cape Town, South Africa
                              Full day Lunch IncludedSignificant StepsWinding road
                              North-east of Cape Town is Paarl (or “Pearl”, as it translates) a romantic city with a picturesque main street of colonial buildings that are well shaded by oak trees and jacarandas. The influence of Dutch settlers is also boldly displayed by the huge, expressionistic Taal Monument, which represents the evolution of Afrikaans as a language and how it connects Western Europe with South Africa.

                              North-east of Cape Town is Paarl (or “Pearl”, as it translates) a romantic city with a picturesque main street of colonial buildings that are well shaded by oak trees and jacarandas. The influence of Dutch settlers is also boldly displayed by the huge, expressionistic Taal Monument, which represents the evolution of Afrikaans as a language and how it connects Western Europe with South Africa.

                              From here the tour continues to a local wine estate, where a stop will be made to taste some local vintages on the way to the village of Franschhoek, or “French Quarter”, where the rich tradition and history of viniculture dates back to 1688.

                              The Huguenot Monument, situated at the foot of the Franschhoek Pass, was completed in 1948 to commemorate the arrival of the Huguenots in South Africa. After which the adjoining Memorial Museum focuses on the genealogy of the first Huguenots families to arrive during the 17th and 18th-centuries.

                              A second wine tasting will be followed by a picnic lunch at a local wine estate, before the tour continues to Stellenbosch, a university town and the second oldest in South Africa after Cape Town.

                              Renowned as the “Town of Oaks”, many of Stellenbosch’s impressive trees have been proclaimed national monuments. The town is also highly regarded for its traditional Cape Dutch-style architecture, which can be seen along the main thoroughfare of Dorp Street.

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                              Cape Peninsula Tour

                              Cape Peninsula Tour

                              13 Mar Cape Town, South Africa
                              Full Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hoursLunch IncludedWinding road
                              This trip takes you on one of South Africa's most scenic routes to Cape Point, the most south-westerly tip of Africa. After driving through the suburbs of Green Point and Sea Point to Camps Bay, behind which are the impressive peaks of the Twelve Apostles, you travel along the Atlantic seaboard towards Hout Bay, a small fishing village with a charming harbour and the best fish and chips on the continent of Africa.

                              This trip takes you on one of South Africa's most scenic routes to Cape Point, the most south-westerly tip of Africa. After driving through the suburbs of Green Point and Sea Point to Camps Bay, behind which are the impressive peaks of the Twelve Apostles, you travel along the Atlantic seaboard towards Hout Bay, a small fishing village with a charming harbour and the best fish and chips on the continent of Africa.

                              From Hout Bay, continue via the scenic Chapman’s Peak drive (provided the road is open) passing through the seaside suburb of Scarborough en route to the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve where the Atlantic and Indian Oceans and their differing ecosystems meet. The reserve occupies 7,750 hectacres of indigenous flora and fauna, and Cape Point with its dramatic sea cliffs - among the highest in South Africa - is the main attraction in the reserve. A funicular railway takes you to the top of the point, from where you can enjoy the breathtaking views. From here, continue to a scenically situated restaurant for a seafood lunch.

                              In the afternoon, pay a visit to the African penguin colony at Boulders Beach, before travelling through the naval base of Simon’s Town to Fish Hoek. From here, continue to the colourful fishing harbour of Kalk Bay, and along Boyes Drive, which affords magnificent views of Muizenberg and False Bay. On the way back to the ship you’ll pass the University of Cape Town, Rhodes Memorial, Mostert's Mill and the famous Groote Schuur Hospital.

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                              Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens

                              Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens

                              14 Mar Cape Town, South Africa
                              Half day
                              It might not be the oldest in South Africa, but Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden on the slopes of Table Mountain was the first in the world to be directly founded in order to preserve the country’s indigenous flora. It was also the first to be included within a natural World Heritage Site.

                              It might not be the oldest in South Africa, but Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden on the slopes of Table Mountain was the first in the world to be directly founded in order to preserve the country’s indigenous flora. It was also the first to be included within a natural World Heritage Site. With over 8,500 species of local plants and 36 hectares of cultivated terrain within a huge protected reserve on the mountainside, this bona fide national treasure has earned its place as one of the most famous public gardens in the country.

                              The route from Cape Town to Kirstenbosch skirts the slopes of Devil’s Peak, allowing for some wonderful views over the city. Strolling around these beautiful surroundings, displays are carefully arranged, making it easy for visitors to find their favourite species. The “Fragrance Garden” is an olfactory marvel that is full of sweet and unusual scents, while the ‘Centenary Tree Canopy Walkway’ offers a magnificent bird’s-eye view across the garden. For art lovers, the Mambo Stone Sculpture Garden features locally crafted figures and there will also be some time available for browsing in the well-stocked curio shop.

                              After Kirstenbosch, the tour passes through the attractive suburb of Bishopscourt to reach Constantia, where South Africa’s wine industry began over three centuries ago, for some wine tasting at a local estate. The scenic drive then continues to Constantia Nek, Hout Bay, the Atlantic seaboard suburbs of Camps Bay, Clifton and Bantry Bay, before returning to Aegean Odyssey.

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                              Cheetah Outreach project and Olive Tasting

                              Cheetah Outreach project and Olive Tasting

                              15 Mar Cape Town, South Africa
                              Half day
                              The Cheetah Outreach Project was started eight years ago on a piece of land donated by the Spier estate outside Stellenbosch, but has since moved to the town of Somerset West, in the Western Cape. The project aims to provide a voice for free ranging cheetahs through education and awareness in urban and rural communities.

                              The Cheetah Outreach Project was started eight years ago on a piece of land donated by the Spier estate outside Stellenbosch, but has since moved to the town of Somerset West, in the Western Cape. The project aims to provide a voice for free ranging cheetahs through education and awareness in urban and rural communities.

                              Cheetahs have been man’s hunting partners and royal companions for centuries. Ancient Egyptians deified them and the pharaohs kept them as close personal companions, believing they had the power to carry human souls into the afterlife. Sadly, however, these nimble beasts are on the brink of extinction.

                              This guided tour takes you face to face with these majestic cats to learn more about their lives, habits and the dangers that face them. The project’s cheetahs are very friendly, so you will have a chance to stroke an adult, before meeting a pack of Turkish Anatolian Shepard dogs, which are bred on the premises. These brave dogs are sent to rural farms to protect livestock against predators, as well as the cheetahs from the farmers.

                              Not far from the Cheetah project is the Morgenster Estate, which produces Bordeaux-style red wine and Extra Virgin Olive Oil. In 2005 their oil was ranked one of the fifteen best in the world and has won a number of prizes, including the coveted L’Orciolo d'Oro. Visitors to the Estate’s stylish tasting room, designed by Revel Fox, will be able to enjoy a unique South African wine tasting experience, before returning to Aegean Odyssey in Cape Town.

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                              Kolmanskop Ghost Town

                              Kolmanskop Ghost Town

                              18 Mar Luderitz, Namibia
                              Half Day
                              Kolmanskop is Namibia's most well-known ghost town, situated in the Spergebiet or “forbidden territory”, just a few kilometers inland from Luderitz. In 1908, the railway worker Zacharias Lewala found a sparkling stone amongst the sand while he was working in a railway maintenance team near Kolmanskop. His supervisor, August Stauch, was convinced it was a diamond, and when this was confirmed, the news spread like wildfire, sparking a “Diamond Rush” which caused fortune hunters to converge on the town in droves.

                              Kolmanskop is Namibia's most well-known ghost town, situated in the Spergebiet or “forbidden territory”, just a few kilometers inland from Luderitz.

                              In 1908, the railway worker Zacharias Lewala found a sparkling stone amongst the sand while he was working in a railway maintenance team near Kolmanskop. His supervisor, August Stauch, was convinced it was a diamond, and when this was confirmed, the news spread like wildfire, sparking a “Diamond Rush” which caused fortune hunters to converge on the town in droves.

                              Kolmanskop soon became a bustling centre providing workers with shelter from the harsh environment of the Namib Desert. Large, elegant houses were built and it soon resembled a German town, complete with an impressive array of amenities including a hospital, ballroom, power station, school, 2-lane skittle alley, theatre, sports hall, casino, ice factory, butchery, bakery and the first x-ray station in the southern hemisphere.

                              The development of Kolmanskop reached its peak in the 1920s, with approximately 300 German adults, 40 children and 800 Ovambo contract workers living in the town. The drop in diamond sales after World War I, as well as the discovery of richer deposits further south at Oranjemund, resulted in the decline of Kolmanskop. Within a span of 40 years, the town lived, flourished and died.

                              Today the ghost town's crumbling ruins bear little resemblance to its former glory. The stately homes have been nearly demolished by the wind and are gradually becoming enveloped by encroaching sand dunes.

                              The area creates the perfect backdrop for good photographic opportunities, and film enthusiasts may be interested to know, that in 2000, the film The King Is Alive was filmed in Kolmanskop, with the town being utilized as the film's main setting. The town was also used as one of the locations in the 1993 film, Dust Devil.

                              During your tour, you will be given a short introduction covering the history of the town as well as the diamond industry today, and you’ll also visit some of the town’s more important buildings including the old hospital, post office and school. There will also be time to explore on your own.

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                              Moon Landscape and Swakopmund

                              Moon Landscape and Swakopmund

                              20 Mar Walvis Bay, Namibia
                              Half Day
                              Your destination is the Namib Naukluft National Park that encompasses part of the Namib desert (considered the world’s oldest) and the Naukluft mountain range. The park covers over 19,000 square miles and is the largest game reserve in Africa. On the way you’ll pass by endless waves of sand dunes, and when you think of Africa and the desert, this is the scene that comes to mind.

                              Your destination is the Namib Naukluft National Park that encompasses part of the Namib desert (considered the world’s oldest) and the Naukluft mountain range. The park covers over 19,000 square miles and is the largest game reserve in Africa. On the way you’ll pass by endless waves of sand dunes, and when you think of Africa and the desert, this is the scene that comes to mind.

                              As you enter the Namib Naukluft National Park, you’ll turn onto the Welwitschia Drive where the landscape becomes dotted with the extraordinary Welwitschia Mirablis plant. Unique to Namibia, these prehistoric plants have adapted to their harsh habitat. Resembling a large wilted lettuce, Welwitschias only produce two leaves in their lifetime and can live for over 500 years. The locals in this area have dubbed the plant “two-leaf can’t die”. After stopping to view and discuss these amazing and resilient desert plants in their dramatic landscape, this tour continues to the ‘lunar landscape’. In this vast area of eroded valleys you can almost imagine you’re on the moon. Different species of lichen grow here, thanks to the sea fog, which rolls up to 20 miles inland and provides moisture for these desert-dwelling plants.

                              Take in the breathtaking views of the “moon” landscape before arrival in Swakopmund. Known as Swakop in Namibia, Swakopmund is the country's biggest coastal town and a mecca for Namibians on holiday. The city's German origins are quite pronounced in the beautiful old German Colonial buildings throughout the city, making an even starker contrast for this town sitting at the edge of the Namib Desert. One artefact of the German colonisation includes an old museum/store, selling genuine artefacts from the 19th century. Enjoy an orientation tour of the town, with its many beautiful historical buildings dating back to the turn of the century and built in the Art Nouveau style.

                              You will also have the opportunity to browse through the “Brauhaus” Gallery, which is a small shopping arcade in the centre of town. Return to Walvis Bay via the coastal road, passing sand dunes on one side and the sea on the other

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                              Sandwich Harbour in 4x4s

                              Sandwich Harbour in 4x4s

                              20 Mar Walvis Bay, Namibia
                              Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              Sandwich Harbour is a part of the Namib-Naukluft Park that many have heard of but very few have ever visited. Giant sand dunes run straight into the ocean, creating breathtaking sceneries and a unique off-road driving experience. Land Rovers take you to beautiful lookouts where you can feel the isolation for which Namibia and the Skeleton Coast are so famous.

                              Sandwich Harbour is a part of the Namib-Naukluft Park that many have heard of but very few have ever visited. Giant sand dunes run straight into the ocean, creating breathtaking sceneries and a unique off-road driving experience. Land Rovers take you to beautiful lookouts where you can feel the isolation for which Namibia and the Skeleton Coast are so famous.

                              The Sandwich Harbour Lagoon is a highlight of the Sandwich Harbour area with its large natural tidal lagoon. The lagoon is completely surrounded by large sand dunes and is only accessible by 4x4s - even this relies largely on the tides. The lagoon area is fed with fresh water seeping through the sand dunes, and contributes to the beauty and natural diversity of the area. The water plays a fundamental role, as it feeds the plants on the shores of the lagoon, which in turn stabilize the dunes, preventing them from silting up the area.

                              If the lagoon is not accessible, you will get a chance to see the lagoon area from one of the lookout spots. Depending on the tides and the swell, we will try to reach the Sandwich Harbour Lagoon along the beach. Alternatively, you will take an exciting dune ride to the lookout dune to get an aerial view.

                              Stop along the way to enjoy refreshments and, depending on weather conditions (wind), this will either be on top of a high dune overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, on the beach, or amongst the dunes. The route homewards will test the power of the vehicles on the dunes, the highlight being the 65m high roaring dune and its amazing views, giving you exceptional viewpoints on the return to Walvis Bay.

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                              Dolphin & Seal cruise

                              Dolphin & Seal cruise

                              21 Mar Walvis Bay, Namibia
                              Half Day
                              Take a short drive from the harbour to the jetty, where you board an open ski boat for a three-hour cruise on the Walvis Bay Lagoon. The water here is usually very calm and abundant with bird and marine life.

                              Take a short drive from the harbour to the jetty, where you board an open ski boat for a three-hour cruise on the Walvis Bay Lagoon. The water here is usually very calm and abundant with bird and marine life.

                              The boats depart the jetty and cruise around the harbour area, from here they cut across the lagoon to the moored Russian trawlers, where “inquisitive” seals will swim up to the boats hoping for something to eat. For the more adventurous passenger, there is the opportunity to feed fish to these playful animals.

                              Continue to Pelican Point, where a large seal colony and schools of dolphins, which swim alongside the boats, provide entertainment. Dolphins sighted are the Heavy Side and Bottlenose.

                              For bird lovers, apart from seeing many pelicans and cormorants, there are also common sightings of the White Chinned Petrel, Wilson’s Storm Petrel, Cape Gannet, Black Oystercatcher and more. Back at the jetty, re-board the coaches, and head back to the quayside.

                              Please note: this optional excursion can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship (all prices for purchases on-board Aegean Odyssey are listed in US dollars).

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                              Optional $ TBC
                              Changing Face of Luanda

                              Changing Face of Luanda

                              24 Mar Luanda, Angola
                              Half Day
                              Located on the west coast of Southern Africa, Angola was under colonial rule until November 11, 1975, the date when it became an independent nation. The Angolan Civil War began after the end of the war for independence from Portugal in 1975. The war featured conflict between two primary Angolan factions, the communist MPLA and the anti-communist UNITA. The 27-year war was formally brought to an end in 2002, and since then Luanda has undergone a renaissance of epic proportions, driven by the natural resources that the country has in abundance – oil and diamonds. Its people are determined and committed to turn around its fortunes, and rebuild a strong and united Angola.

                              Located on the west coast of Southern Africa, Angola was under colonial rule until November 11, 1975, the date when it became an independent nation. The Angolan Civil War began after the end of the war for independence from Portugal in 1975. The war featured conflict between two primary Angolan factions, the communist MPLA and the anti-communist UNITA. The 27-year war was formally brought to an end in 2002, and since then Luanda has undergone a renaissance of epic proportions, driven by the natural resources that the country has in abundance – oil and diamonds. Its people are determined and committed to turn around its fortunes, and rebuild a strong and united Angola.

                              You will witness this transformation as you leave the quayside and drive along Marginal Bay, with the commercial part of the city on one side, and views across the bay on the other. Continue past the Igreje de Senhora de Nazare – a small, beautiful church famous for its beautiful altar made of Italian rose marble. Then visit the old Iron Palace “Palacio de Ferro” designed by the famous architect Gustav Eiffel, of Tower fame, whose work also features in other African cities.

                              There will be photo stop at the Gothic-style Church of Los Remedios that was built by the Portuguese in 1719 as a chapel. The church had to be restored in 1798 at the hands of Francis Xavier who managed to accomplish the work with donations from the faithful. Currently, Los Remedios is considered one of the most beautiful and best-preserved churches of San Luis. Then visit the Angolan National Museum of Anthropology, that features an array of traditional masks along with indigenous art, sculptures, tools, weapons, jewellery, clothing and musical instruments.

                              Next is the Fortaleza de Sao Miguel (San Miguel Fort) built in 1576 to guard the entrance to the bay from the marauding French, Spanish and Dutch forces. This it did successfully until 1641 when the Dutch finally seized the fort and Luanda. Arriving in Luanda, it is impossible to miss the towering obelisk-like structure rising above the city. This is the mausoleum dedicated to Augostinho Neto, the first president of Angola. Having very strong communist affiliations, Neto died in 1979, and it is said that this was erected as a gift from the Russian government.

                              Please note this tour is audio guides only.

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                              The Beauty of Santiago

                              The Beauty of Santiago

                              4 Apr Praia, Santiago Island, Cape Verde
                              Half day
                              Heading out of Santiago’s capital of Praia into the centre of the island, this scenic tour of the island’s most stunning scenery also showcases the flora and fauna of the Botanical Gardens at Sao Jorge dos Orgaos.

                              Heading out of Santiago’s capital of Praia into the centre of the island, this scenic tour of the island’s most stunning scenery also showcases the flora and fauna of the Botanical Gardens at Sao Jorge dos Orgaos.

                              The day begins first though with a visit to the village of Saint Domingos, home to a thriving arts and crafts cooperative in a nation famous for its pottery, weaving and embroidery, traditional crocheted blankets, batik dying and wood carvings. Here, you’ll have a chance to shop for some souvenirs and gifts before heading further inland to the small settlement of Sao Jorge dos Orgaos on the edge of the Orgaos Mountains, where the Jardim Botanico Nacional Grandvaux Barbosa is the only Botanical Garden in the country.

                              Created in 1986, the garden is named after the 20th-century Franco-Portuguese botanist Luis Augusto Grandvaux Barbosa, and features several different plants listed as endangered, as well as many ornamental species. After a tour here, we will take a scenic drive, stopping for photo opportunities along the way, to Santiago’s second largest city, Assomada, which plays an important commercial role in Cape Verde’s economy and is a pleasant combination of urbanity and nature.

                              The city centre of Assomada features many Portuguese-style colonial buildings, churches, banks and several town squares, while the market is one of the largest on the island, with a large variety of products to peruse before our return to the port of Praia and Aegean Odyssey.

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                              In and Around Praia
                              UNESCO World Heritage Site

                              In and Around Praia

                              4 Apr Praia, Santiago Island, Cape Verde
                              Half Day
                              With a name meaning “beach” in Portuguese, the capital of Cape Verde, located on the island of Santiago, offers a great opportunity to learn more about the history of the nation and “feel the flavour” of its many traditions.

                              With a name meaning “beach” in Portuguese, the capital of Cape Verde, located on the island of Santiago, offers a great opportunity to learn more about the history of the nation and “feel the flavour” of its many traditions.

                              A drive to the historic Plateau Quarter, in the centre of the city, leads to a guided walk to the neoclassical-style Catholic Cathedral, Nossa Senhora de Graca, or Our Lady of Grace, that was built in the early 20th century. We will also pay a visit to the city’s emblematic main square, Praca Alexandre Albuquerque; the Palace of the President; and the Statue of Diogo Gomes, who discovered the islands for Portugal in 1460.

                              We will then enjoy a stroll through the colourful Vegetable Market of Sucupira before being heading to the nearby town of Velha and the Fortress of S. Filipe, built by King Filipe I of Portugal and Spain in the 16th century. Velha is also home to the Ruinas da Se Catedral, one of the most impressive buildings of the colonial period, as well as the Pelourinho, or pillory, which is a sombre reminder of the slavery trade.

                              There will then be time to enjoy some refreshments in Velha’s main square before returning to Aegean Odyssey by way of Rua Banana to see some old stone houses and a traditional handicraft shop, with a drive along the Avenida Cidade de Lisboa in Praia affording more views across the city.

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                              Highlights of Gran Canaria

                              Highlights of Gran Canaria

                              8 Apr Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Spain
                              Half Day
                              The dramatic geological features of Gran Canaria are breathtaking as you start with a drive up to the volcanic crater of Bandama, an extinct volcano rising nearly 580 metres above sea level, where you will have the opportunity to enjoy the panoramic views over a unique landscape.

                              The dramatic geological features of Gran Canaria are breathtaking as you start with a drive up to the volcanic crater of Bandama, an extinct volcano rising nearly 580 metres above sea level, where you will have the opportunity to enjoy the panoramic views over a unique landscape.

                              After a short photostop, the drive continues to the village of Teror, whose striking site on a plateau 575 metres above sea level has earned it the name of "the village in the air". Here, your guide will show you the most interesting colonial-style buildings culminating with an outside view of the basilica dedicated to the Virgen del Pino (Virgin of the Pine), which attracts a ceaseless stream of pilgrims.

                              Our next stop is the town of Arucas, a district that offers important architectural and urban assets. The city centre, declared a site of historic-artistic interest, is a place that visitors must not fail to see.

                              The Parish Church of San Juan Bautista is the leading architectural and social monument in the city. Built entirely in Arucas stone by local master masons, it dates from 1909 and, as well as the wealth of carved stone columns, there are also some beautiful stained glass windows that are the work of Canary Island painter Cristobal Hernandez de Quintana.

                              The tour continues to the Casa y Jardín de la Marquesa -the Marquise’s Palace and Gardens. This is an interesting architectural and natural site that belongs to the Marquise of Arucas. The house was built in 1880 and the spacious Romantic-style gardens around the house can also be visited. You will also have the opportunity of taste the famous Banana liquor before returning to the pier.

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                              Taroudant

                              Taroudant

                              10 Apr Agadir, Morocco
                              Half Day Lunch IncludedCrowded StreetsLong Drive
                              Sometimes known as the “Little Marrakesh”, Taroudant is an old trading centre located in Morocco’s Souss Valley. Surrounded by citrus groves, protected by magnificent red-mud walls and with the snowcapped peaks of the High Atlas beckoning beyond, Taroudant’s situation is truly enchanting.

                              Sometimes known as the “Little Marrakesh”, Taroudant is an old trading centre located in Morocco’s Souss Valley. Surrounded by citrus groves, protected by magnificent red-mud walls and with the snowcapped peaks of the High Atlas beckoning beyond, Taroudant’s situation is truly enchanting.

                              Despite its medieval souks and squares, this is not simply a tourist destination, as Taroudant is a working market town where Berbers trade the produce of the rich and fertile Oued Souss plain. On your drive there from the port of Agadir, keep an eye out for the tree-climbing goats that call this part of the world home. Upon arrival, step inside this 11th-century citadel and prepare to be hurled back in time.

                              Resting peacefully within its ramparts, Taroudant has avoided time’s march, retaining its traditional look and feel. Four miles of chunky walls encircle the city, pierced by five impressive gateways. Within them lie Taroudant’s most famous attractions, the daily Berber market and the Arab souk.

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                              Marrakesh Sightseeing

                              Marrakesh Sightseeing

                              11 Apr Marrakesh, Morocco
                              Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hoursLunch IncludedCrowded StreetsLong Drive
                              With its grand square bustling with snake charmers and market traders and its almost psychedelic souks, Marrakesh is a showcase for exoticism. Surrounded by the sights, sounds and aromas of the medina you can truly appreciate the allure of this North African city. Our guided tour of the old medina of Marrakesh begins with a walk through one of the most interesting quarters of Marrakesh.

                              With its grand square bustling with snake charmers and market traders and its almost psychedelic souks, Marrakesh is a showcase for exoticism. Surrounded by the sights, sounds and aromas of the medina you can truly appreciate the allure of this North African city. Our guided tour of the old medina of Marrakesh begins with a walk through one of the most interesting quarters of Marrakesh.

                              Here we'll stroll along labyrinthine alleyways, catching glimpses of mosques, hammams, traditional public bakeries, fondouks (old lodging houses used by the caravans) and fountains carved in wood and decorated with kuffic inscriptions.

                              You’ll walk through the colourful souks which are organised according to goods sold and where craftsmen can be seen practicing their traditional trades. After this it is on to the aristocratic Bahia Palace where we see a lush Moorish-style garden in the courtyard of a large palace with beautifully painted residential rooms.

                              Then, after walking through a maze of shaded, narrow streets you will emerge into the famous Djemma el-Fna Square, where throughout the ages local people and African caravans have gathered for entertainment, celebrations, gossip and business. Here we stop at the foot of the famous Koutoubia Minaret, one of the masterpiece works of Islamic architecture.

                              Highlight of our tour is a visit to the Marjorelle Garden, a 12-acre botanical garden in the heart of Marrakesh which was designed in the 1920s and 30s, and was once owned by Yves Saint-Laurent whose ashes were scattered here. Within the gardens, be sure visit the Museum, housing North African textiles from Saint-Laurent’s personal collection, as well as ceramics, jewellery, and paintings by the founder, Jacques Marjorelle.

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                              Tangier Highlights

                              Tangier Highlights

                              12 Apr Tangier, Morocco
                              Half Day Extensive Walking 1 to 2 miles within a period of 2-3 hours
                              Situated only a short distance across the Strait of Gibraltar from the shores of Europe, Tangier is a gateway to a vastly different culture. This tour is perfect if you really want to discover more of Tangier, and explore the bustling Medina, with its tiny streets lined with shops filled with trinkets and treats.

                              Situated only a short distance across the Strait of Gibraltar from the shores of Europe, Tangier is a gateway to a vastly different culture. This tour is perfect if you really want to discover more of Tangier, and explore the bustling Medina, with its tiny streets lined with shops filled with trinkets and treats.

                              First head for a photostop at Cape Spartel Lighthouse – more than a century old it shines a warning beacon to ships sailing between the Atlantic and Mediterranean. Arriving back in Tangier, visit the Medina (old town) whose walls mark the line of the Roman defences. The grand Mosque rises on the foundations of a temple to Neptune, and the Petit Socco covers the area of what used to be the Forum. The bustling Kasbah is situated on the highest part of the Medina in an area that has been the preserve of palaces and castles for thousands of years.

                              Your guide will walk you through the Medina and the Kasbah, allowing you the opportunity to view the fruit and vegetable market and Mendoubia Park where you can explore at leisure, if you wish.

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                              Included
                              Larry Bray

                              Larry Bray

                              Larry Bray, Commercial Photographer
                              Larry is a commercial photographer and for over 30 years has been working nationally and internationally with a diverse range of clients such as BP, Cunard, NHS, McDonalds, American Express, ChildLine and National Grid amongst many others. He has been featured in, and written for, Professional Photography magazine, his stock photography is represented by Getty images and he is a member of the Association of Photographers.

                              Larry is a commercial photographer and for over 30 years has been working nationally and internationally with a diverse range of clients such as BP, Cunard, NHS, McDonalds, American Express, ChildLine and National Grid amongst many others. He has been featured in, and written for, Professional Photography magazine, his stock photography is represented by Getty images and he is a member of the Association of Photographers.

                              Larry has directed and taught photography weekends and classes, is self taught, still learning, and has a real passion for what he does. He loves to help others improve and enjoy their photography regardless of the device they’re using, whether its film or digital, a basic compact camera, a phone, an iPad, or the latest high end digital SLR.

                              Over his career he’s shot architecture and interiors, still life, reportage, sport, industrial, food, landscapes and much more. Larry has had two studios, the second, Brighton one, being the largest in the UK at the time, where he shot everything from cakes and desserts for Greens to room-sets for B&W loudspeakers. In recent years most of his work is on location and involves photographing people from all walks of life, in all sorts of situations, for corporate, advertising and editorial.

                              Having been involved in photography for so long, Larry started out using film cameras of various types and formats from 35mm to 5x4 and processing and printing in the traditional darkroom. He then moved to scanning the images from film and outputting them digitally. Larry’s first shoot using purely digital was a commission by Canon UK in 1998 to produce a calendar of photographs of London. For the last 15 years Larry has been shooting entirely with digital cameras and has an extensive knowledge of the digital workflow from camera to print. He was asked by Park Cameras, the UK’s largest independent photo retailer, to advise and teach at their School of Photography as well as offering one to one tuition.

                              Having worked with Cunard for several years, supplying photographs of their ships around the world for brochures, advertising and PR, along with commissions for Seabourn, Larry enjoys being on cruise ships. He particularly likes smaller ships and has given photography talks on Minerva and Voyager, so is very much looking forward to joining Aegean Odyssey.

                              Websites:

                              www.larrybray.com  -  people photography

                              www.larrybrayphotoart.com  - landscapes, seascapes and travel photographs

                               

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                              Rev Dr. Judith Brown

                              Rev Dr. Judith Brown

                              Rev Dr. Judith Brown, University of Oxford
                              Judith Brown is the recently retired Professor of Commonwealth History at the University of Oxford and an emeritus Professorial Fellow of Balliol College.  The main focus of her academic writing has been modern India, in particular the careers of M.K. Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru.  She has also written on the modern diaspora from South Asia.

                              Judith Brown is the recently retired Professor of Commonwealth History at the University of Oxford and an emeritus Professorial Fellow of Balliol College.  The main focus of her academic writing has been modern India, in particular the careers of M.K. Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru.  She has also written on the modern diaspora from South Asia.

                              She was born in India and then educated in the UK.  She returned to India to teach in her “gap” before going to Cambridge (Girton college) to read History as an undergraduate, and then to do her doctorate on the early Indian career of Gandhi.  Her teaching career started in her own college where she was a Fellow and Director of Studies in History.  She then moved to Manchester University’s Department of History, and finally in 1990 to Oxford.  As well as teaching and writing, she has travelled widely for research, to give lectures, and to do many of the tasks which accompany senior academic life.  She has been a governor of several UK universities, a Trustee of the Charles Wallace (India) Trust, and was a founder member of the Kluge Scholars’ Council at the Library of Congress.  In the 1990s she travelled regularly to South Africa to teach summer courses on India in the then University of Natal.

                              Judith is also an Anglican Priest, and now helps in Balliol Chapel and in the parish church of St. Mary Magdalen, Oxford.  In 2017 she was “lent” to Brasenose College as their interim chaplain.  She was married to her late husband, Peter Diggle for over 30 years.  Their son works in politics in London and their daughter-in-law is a rising young opera star.  Judith’s passion, apart from India, is gardening!

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                              Andy Bunten BSc, MSc, DIC

                              Andy Bunten

                              Andy Bunten BSc, MSc, DIC, Ecologist
                              Andy has been an obsessive enthusiast about wildlife ever since he can remember. Educated at Cambridge, Newcastle and Imperial College, he then embarked on a career in nature conservation.  He has worked for local government, wildlife trusts, and, for 26 years, the RSPB. 

                              Andy has been an obsessive enthusiast about wildlife ever since he can remember. Educated at Cambridge, Newcastle and Imperial College, he then embarked on a career in nature conservation.  He has worked for local government, wildlife trusts, and, for 26 years, the RSPB.

                              He initially worked in RSPB Scotland then headed south to be the Regional Director for the South East of England for 5 years before, in 1991, moving to the North of England to take up the reins of Director there. A highly experienced lecturer, Andy has cruised extensively completing over 20 trips ranging from Costa Rica to the Philippines and from Argentina to Svalbard

                              Now an Environmental Consultant, Andy is an enthusiastic traveller and has led wildlife groups to numerous places around the world including the Seychelles, France, Egypt, Brazil, Costa Rica, Panama, Borneo, Norway and Spitzbergen.
                               

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                              Major General Stephen Carr-Smith

                              Major General Stephen Carr-Smith

                              Major General Stephen Carr-Smith, British Army, Retired
                              Stephen Carr-Smith spent 33 years in the Army. During 1962-1982, he served 10 years in Germany at the height of the Cold War. From 1988-1995 he was serving in NATO, most of which was spent helping develop the “New NATO” after the demise of the Warsaw Pact and the USSR.

                              Stephen Carr-Smith spent 33 years in the Army. During 1962-1982, he served 10 years in Germany at the height of the Cold War. From 1988-1995 he was serving in NATO, most of which was spent helping develop the “New NATO” after the demise of the Warsaw Pact and the USSR.

                              His last appointment was as the Deputy Director General of the NATO Communications Agency in Brussels. On leaving the Army in 1995, he worked for a company providing security and mine clearance services in remote and hostile countries; was the Senior Military Advisor to an operational analysis company owned by British Aerospace; and was the Chairman of a company developing opportunities to marry-up Russian technology with western finance and production.

                              From 1999 to 2006, he was the Ombudsman for Estate Agents, a national appointment dealing with redress and financial compensation for buyers and sellers of residential property throughout the UK. Since 2009, he has been the Chairman of Help Moving Office, an internet company run by his second son that has now expanded into America.

                              He has had a number of other involvements, like being an Honorary Colonel of the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry (FANY) – an all women, uniformed volunteer body that has supported the British Army for 100 years. From 1997 to 2003, he was a Colonel Commandant of the Royal Signals. From 2003 to 2013, he was the President of the Stragglers of Asia Cricket Club, with its origins in the Punjab in the 1920s – and, accompanied by his wife, he led tours to Sri Lanka in 2004 and to India in 2007.

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                              Dr Peter Cattermole

                              Dr Peter Cattermole

                              Dr Peter Cattermole, Planetary Geologist/Volcanologist
                              Peter was born in Sussex, and by seven was showing a keen interest in climbing rocks and playing the piano. The former led eventually to his becoming a geologist, the latter left him with a lifelong interest in music.

                              Peter was born in Sussex, and by seven was showing a keen interest in climbing rocks and playing the piano. The former led eventually to his becoming a geologist, the latter left him with a lifelong interest in music. While in his teens he was fortunate to meet Sir Patrick Moore, the eccentric TV astronomer, with whom he shared a close friendship until Patrick’s death in 2012. His enthusiasm led to Peter developing a keen interest in observational astronomy, particularly of the Moon and Planets. A certain ineptness at maths prevented pursuit of an astronomy career, so Patrick encouraged him to study and apply for a degree course in geology which he duly did, graduating from the University of Wales, gaining a higher degree and becoming a lecturer in both the Universities of Wales and Sheffield. He specialised in planetary geology, remote sensing and hard rock petrology.

                              Prior to entering academia, he had been a draftsman, a forester, a rock climbing instructor and museum curator. In between university appointments has also spent a short period teaching at Gordonstoun School – an odd but interesting experience! For several years he was a Principal Investigator with NASA’s Planetary Geology and Geophysics Program, specialising in the study of the volcanoes of Mars and Venus. During this period he was based at Arizona State University. He also appeared regularly on BBC TV’s regular astronomy programme “Sky at Night”. In 1995 he delivered the 87th Kelvin Lecture to the Royal Society of Electrical Engineers.

                              Peter has written more than 20 books, several in collaboration with Patrick Moore, as well as a plethora of academic papers. Taking early retirement in the late 1990s during a period of university “rationalisation”, he struck out on his own, leading specialist trips around the world, predominantly to volcanic areas, but also to view total solar eclipses. This took him to India, Malaysia, Indonesia, Africa, the USA, Mexico, Southeast Asia, as well as Australia, Siberia and Europe. In the late 1980s he began lecturing on cruise ships, and has since enjoyed working for several different lines on many different oceans, endeavouring to enthuse people about the workings of the wonderful planet on which we live.

                              He has continued to play the piano, enjoy cooking and walking in the hills. Until recently he and his wife owned a rustic finca on the island of La Gomera, where they enjoyed good food, cheap wine, fantastic walking and views of the heavens almost unsurpassed. Their latest property acquisition is in rural Andalucia. He is hoping that Aegean Odyssey’s journey to India and Southeast Asia, is as wonderful as his previous trips.

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                              Clare Coventry

                              Clare Coventry

                              Clare Coventry, Craft Tutor
                              Clare was born and brought up in the small and historic town of Youghal, in Co. Cork, in Southern Ireland. She was educated at the Presentation of the Sacred Heart Convent, in Youghal. a traditional Catholic school for young ladies. Whilst receiving the full curriculum of subjects, including Gaelic, Clare’s heartfelt interests lay in other directions.

                              Clare was born and brought up in the small and historic town of Youghal, in Co. Cork, in Southern Ireland. She was educated at the Presentation of the Sacred Heart Convent, in Youghal. a traditional Catholic school for young ladies. Whilst receiving the full curriculum of subjects, including Gaelic, Clare’s heartfelt interests lay in other directions.

                              Her mother was a classically-trained pianist, and her father a fine tenor. Clare and her siblings were all musically inclined from a young age, and Clare formed herself and her three younger siblings (two sisters and a brother) into a harmony ensemble, with their ages ranging from sixteen to just eleven.

                              In 1967, they won a grand concours held in Cork City Opera House, and were brought over to the UK on a tour, from which they never returned to Ireland.

                              They settled in the United Kingdom, married and had families. Clare and her sisters resurrected their musical career in the 1980’s, culminating in national TV appearances and selection for the Golden Rose of Montreux international awards festival, in Switzerland.

                              Clare went on to become a very successful BBC radio presenter, working for BBC Radio Lancashire, and BBC Radio Merseyside, two of Britain’s largest local radio networks. She had her own magazine-type show, interviewing right across the board, from authors to explorers, and from politicians to pop stars.

                              As well as musical ability, Clare also inherited from her mother a lifelong love of crafting.

                              “With six children to look after, my mother saw it as a necessity rather than a hobby,” reflects Clare. “I’ve just taken what I learnt and absorbed from her, and turned it to another use...teaching”.</p>

                              Clare has spent a lifetime singing and crafting. In 2008, she gained her ‘Fascinator of Excellence’ qualification, and since then has appeared on ‘Crafty Beggars’, a TV show sponsored by Hobbycraft.’

                              Clare has been singing and teaching her crafts aboard cruise ships for the past seventeen years. Her craft workshops are informative, effective, and great fun.With a unique blend of skill, patience, and humour, she brings to life the adage, “People learn best when they’re enjoying themselves”.

                              Please note Clare will not be lecturing.

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                              John Coventry

                              John Coventry

                              John Coventry, Travel and Special Interests lecturer
                              John studied Modern Languages at Exeter and Salford Universities, majoring in French, German, and Spanish. A lifelong thirst for travel was partially assuaged by a stint in America, at the University of Texas, in Austin, followed by a year in the pipeline construction industry, working as a translator/interpreter, in Algeria.

                              John studied Modern Languages at Exeter and Salford Universities, majoring in French, German, and Spanish. A lifelong thirst for travel was partially assuaged by a stint in America, at the University of Texas, in Austin, followed by a year in the pipeline construction industry, working as a translator/interpreter, in Algeria.

                              John then embarked upon a working lifetime spent in some of the strangest corners of the travel industry.

                              At a time when the world was just starting to open up to leisure travel, he was in the vanguard of this revolution as a worldwide tour coordinator, accompanying groups of travellers on trips to a variety of exotic destinations and with a variety of diverse purposes.

                              From wildlife photo safaris to transatlantic flights aboard Concorde, from the slopes of Macchu Picchu to the outback of Australia, from the gates of Graceland to the Iron Gates of the Danube, John’s life was a kaleidoscope of people, places, and experiences, some exciting, some disquieting, but all memorable.

                              Smuggling a body across the Iron Curtain, being caught up in a revolution in South America, pinned down by sniper fire in San Francisco...these were just some of John’s experiences as he plied his trade around the globe. He went on to become general manager of one of the UK’s most prestigious independent tour operators.

                              John’s first experience of ocean cruising was in 1982, around the islands of Indonesia. Since that long-ago cruise baptism, he has sailed the seven seas, as cruise manager, charterer, port lecturer, destinations presenter, and special interests speaker.

                              A long time Mensa member and four time Brain of Mensa finalist, John&rsquo;s range of knowledge and interests is as intriguing as it is eclectic.

                              As a cruise lecturer, John brings to bear all his experience and expertise in a series of scintillating presentations on a- as you might expect - diverse range of fascinating subject matters.

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                              Nigel Cox

                              Nigel Cox

                              Nigel Cox, British Diplomat
                              Nigel Cox is a former British diplomat with extensive Asian expertise. A graduate of Trinity College Dublin (degrees in History & Politics and Law) he joined the British Diplomatic Service in 1975. The next year, just after the death of Chairman Mao, he started two years’ training in Mandarin Chinese, in Cambridge and Hong Kong.

                              Nigel Cox is a former British diplomat with extensive Asian expertise. A graduate of Trinity College Dublin (degrees in History & Politics and Law) he joined the British Diplomatic Service in 1975. The next year, just after the death of Chairman Mao, he started two years’ training in Mandarin Chinese, in Cambridge and Hong Kong. 

                              He spent a total of 8 years in three tours at the British Embassy in Peking/Beijing, including from 2000 to 2002 as deputy to the Ambassador, in the rank of Minister and Consul-General.  He was then appointed Director Asia-Pacific, responsible for UK relations with the whole region from Myanmar to Japan and from Mongolia to Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific islands – and for line-managing most of the British Ambassadors there. He had previously served as Head of the South East Asian Department. Earlier, he had spent six years in Paris, the first at the Ecole Nationale d’Administration and then as First Secretary in the British Embassy.  
                               
                              After a year’s secondment to business (with the P&O Group, now part of DP World, focussed on their worldwide container ports, and with AstraZeneca on their Chinese pharmaceuticals business), Nigel left the Diplomatic Service and worked as a consultant to International Power plc (now part of Gaz de France) exploring investment openings in Vietnam.  He was also appointed as Asia specialist on the Advisory Panel of PriceWaterhouse Cooper LLP. 
                               
                              From 2009 to 2013 he was Clerk (Chief Executive) to one of the City of London’s ancient guilds, the Fishmongers’ Company.  He currently works part-time as a Sensitivity Reviewer of the Foreign & Commonwealth Archives, making recommendations on whether redactions are required before files are transferred to the National Archives at Kew or released earlier in response to Freedom of Information enquiries.  He also undertakes voluntary work with the Royal Parks Foundation on the Hyde Park Tree Survey and with English Heritage as a guide at Apsley House (The Wellington Museum) and Wellington Arch in London.

                              He has published articles and reviews, including in the quarterly “Asian Affairs”, and recently contributed five chapters to “Brave Lives”, an account of the members of the Travellers Club in London who were killed in the First World War.

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                              Olivia Cox

                              Olivia Cox

                              Olivia Cox, British Diplomat Retired
                              Olivia is a former British diplomat who has travelled extensively in Asia and Europe and speaks fluent French and Spanish and basic Chinese. She joined the Diplomatic Service after graduating with a degree in Hispanic Studies from Bristol University. After a first posting to Mexico City (1978-80) she was assigned to Paris where, among other distractions, she met her husband, Nigel, also a diplomat. Olivia then accompanied Nigel on two postings to Beijing, where she worked for the British Council as Arts Officer, and as Manager of the International English Language Testing System programme for Chinese students. She also produced the Embassy monthly newsletter and taught English to Chinese undergraduates. From 2000-2002 she chaired the finals of the China University English Speaking Association’s annual national debating competition.

                              Olivia is a former British diplomat who has travelled extensively in Asia and Europe and speaks fluent French and Spanish and basic Chinese. She joined the Diplomatic Service after graduating with a degree in Hispanic Studies from Bristol University. After a first posting to Mexico City (1978-80) she was assigned to Paris where, among other distractions, she met her husband, Nigel, also a diplomat. Olivia then accompanied Nigel on two postings to Beijing, where she worked for the British Council as Arts Officer, and as Manager of the International English Language Testing System programme for Chinese students. She also produced the Embassy monthly newsletter and taught English to Chinese undergraduates. From 2000-2002 she chaired the finals of the China University English Speaking Association’s annual national debating competition.

                              Since leaving the Diplomatic Service in 2012, Olivia has attended various courses at the Victoria and Albert Museum and Courtauld Institute but also inspired by her late father, Lt Col Sir Julian Paget, a distinguished military historian, has helped to organise a 2014 Battlefield Tour to mark the centenary of the outbreak of World War I, a 2015 Waterloo Bicentenary celebration in Brussels, and several events to commemorate the centenary of the 1918 Armistice.

                              Olivia also enjoys voluntary work with Riding for the Disabled (the Royal Mews group, who arrange weekly riding in the Hyde Park Barracks for children with special needs), the Knightsbridge Association and English Heritage (as a guide at Apsley House and Wellington Arch in London). She makes jewellery to sell for charity and is a keen consumer of the cultural opportunities of London.

                              Olivia and Nigel live in central London but (having no children, dogs or cats) travel frequently, both within Europe and further afield: trips since 2015 have included Peru, Ecuador (notably the Galapagos islands), South Africa, Qatar, Nepal, Southern India and the Azores.  

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                              Dr David Crilly

                              Dr David Crilly

                              Dr David Crilly, Theatre Director, Conductor & Composer
                              Dr David Crilly graduated from the Universities of Southampton and London, first in Music and then with a Masters in Drama and Theatre Studies before completing his doctorate in the philosophy of art at Magdalen College, Oxford.

                              Dr David Crilly graduated from the Universities of Southampton and London, first in Music and then with a Masters in Drama and Theatre Studies before completing his doctorate in the philosophy of art at Magdalen College, Oxford.

                              For the past thirty years he has been Artistic Director of the Cambridge Shakespeare Festival - an open-air festival presented annually in the gardens of the Cambridge University colleges. He is a conductor, composer and author and has given lectures all over the world, including universities as far flung as Buenos Aires, Tokyo, Montego Bay, Vienna, Chicago and Oxford.

                              He recently retired from academia having lectured in Cambridge for twenty years before taking on the role of Director of Creative and Performing Arts in Liverpool. He is also an arts practitioner and for eighteen years was Director-in-Residence for Anglia Opera, conducting and producing such classics as La bohème, Carmen, Peter Grimes, La Traviata and The Turn of the Screw.

                              For Voyages to Antiquity he has given talks on the music and cultures of India, Oman, Jordan, South Africa and Namibia – and this time will use his knowledge of Shakespeare's play as the basis of an exploration of the real Antony and Cleopatra. The talks will be supported by numerous recorded/video examples (and the occasional live demonstration), and Dr Crilly will place the music and characters within a cultural, political and historical framework in order to reveal how the region’s character is reflected in its art.

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                              Judy Ducker

                              Judy Ducker

                              Judy Ducker,
                              Chandeliers or live Cockroaches it’s all in a day’s work for Judy. At the top of her profession as a freelance Production Buyer in the Set Decorating Department of top television and major feature film productions, her credits include ‘Inspector Morse’ ‘Poirot’, ‘Foyle’s War’, ‘Wilde’, ‘Oliver Twist’, ‘Golden Compass’, ‘Hugo’, ‘Christopher Robin’ the feature film of ‘Downton Abbey’ and many more.

                              Chandeliers or live Cockroaches it’s all in a day’s work for Judy.  At the top of her profession as a freelance Production Buyer in the Set Decorating Department of top television and major feature film productions, her credits include ‘Inspector Morse’  ‘Poirot’,  ‘Foyle’s War’, ‘Wilde’, ‘Oliver Twist’, ‘Golden Compass’, ‘Hugo’, ‘Christopher Robin’ the feature film of ‘Downton Abbey’ and many more. Her stories both from ‘on set’ and backstage reveal the pleasures and pitfalls involved in bringing film and TV sets alive with ‘props’ of all kinds, ensuring accurate period detail to enhance the look, the style and the visual integrity of the productions she has worked on over the years.

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                              John Ducker

                              John Ducker

                              John Ducker, The Wine Education Service
                              Having been bestowed a number of interesting ‘lives’ which may be revealed as the cruise progresses, John’s principal activity has been as the actor ‘John Leeson’. He has celebrated over half a century’s visibility in theatre, film and television, and latterly as the unseen voice of Doctor Who’s iconic robot dog-companion K9.

                              Having been bestowed a number of interesting ‘lives’ which may be revealed as the cruise progresses, John’s principal activity has been as the  actor ‘John Leeson’. He has celebrated over half a century’s visibility in theatre, film and television, and latterly as the unseen voice of Doctor Who’s iconic robot dog-companion K9. Hardly less important has been his professional wine-teaching career, one which has additionally covered many sea and river miles as wine tutor for a number of top smaller-ship cruise lines. As a reputable (and published) family cook his quick-reference guide to food/wine matching, ‘Marriages Made in Heaven’, will be freely available on board.

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                              Professor Thomas G Fraser MBE

                              Professor Thomas G Fraser MBE

                              Professor Thomas G Fraser MBE, Emeritus Professor, Ulster University
                              Born and raised in Scotland, Professor Fraser gained his MA in Mediaeval and Modern History at the University of Glasgow before moving to the London School of Economics for his doctoral work in International History where his thesis was on the relationship between Germany and Indian revolutionaries during the First World War.

                              Born and raised in Scotland, Professor Fraser gained his MA in Mediaeval and Modern History at the University of Glasgow before moving to the London School of Economics for his doctoral work in International History where his thesis was on the relationship between Germany and Indian revolutionaries during the First World War. In 1969 he joined the New University of Ulster, now Ulster University, becoming in time Head of the School of History, Philosophy and Politics and finally Provost of its Magee campus. His teaching specialised in the modern history of the Middle East and India. He is now Emeritus Professor of History. In 1983-1984 he was Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence at Indiana University at South Bend. He is a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society.

                              He is widely published, mostly on the modern history of the Middle East and India, but also on American foreign policy and the Northern Ireland peace process. Amongst his recent books are a fourth edition of The Arab-Israeli Conflict (2015), which has also had Italian and Spanish editions, and an edited collection, The First World War andits Aftermath: The Shaping of the Modern Middle East (2015). He has travelled and lectured widely in the Middle East, India and Sri Lanka, but his academic work has also taken him to the United States, France, Russia, Italy, Germany, Austria, Croatia and South Africa.

                              His service as Chairman of the Northern Ireland Museum Council and a Trustee of the National Museums and Galleries of Northern Ireland reinforced an interest in ancient civilisations that he gained as a student on the Scottish Field School of Archaeology when he was an undergraduate.&nbsp; His wife Grace is a former university Research Fellow, specialising in aspects of the Northern Ireland Conflict, while his son Simon teaches Computing at university and his daughter Anna works in California.

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                              Peter Mawby

                              Peter Mawby

                              Peter Mawby, Wildlife lecturer, ornithologist and research ecologist
                              As an ornithologist and research ecologist Peter has travelled widely and is a regular and highly successful cruise ship lecturer. Peter’s interest in the environment and ornithology in particular was encouraged during his schooldays at Sedbergh. Whilst still at school he was part of one of the first expeditions to visit South-East Iceland to study the breeding distribution of the Great Skua.

                              As an ornithologist and research ecologist Peter has travelled widely and is a regular and highly successful cruise ship lecturer. Peter’s interest in the environment and ornithology in particular was encouraged during his schooldays at Sedbergh. Whilst still at school he was part of one of the first expeditions to visit South-East Iceland to study the breeding distribution of the Great Skua. Subsequently he went on to organise and lead his own expeditions to the Shetland and Faeroe Islands. Whilst an undergraduate at Cambridge University he was awarded a grant to extend his studies of Arctic Scandinavia. Such was his skill and expertise, he received his licence and has been ringing birds for well over fifty years.

                              He went on to teach, working in England (Marlborough, Shrewsbury and St John’s School, Leatherhead) and Scotland at The Edinburgh Academy, culminating with his final appointment as Headmaster of Lancaster Royal Grammar School, where he spent eighteen very happy and successful years. Peter is currently researching the environmental impact of changing patterns in agriculture on the birds of the Western Dales, working in conjunction with the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, the British Trust for Ornithology and the Environment Agency.

                              He is now in great demand to speak to enthusiasts from the RSPB, Scottish Ornithologists Club and regional Wildlife Trusts. In common with many teenagers, Peter was faced with choices and although he finally decided to follow a science route into teaching, his other love is music and playing the cello. He has pursued this from his schooldays to playing now with a number of orchestras in North West England.

                              In recent years Peter has enjoyed sharing his enthusiasm and knowledge with passengers on a range of cruises, vising places as far flung as Polynesia, the Amazon, Central America, New England, the Atlantic Islands, Iceland, Greenland, the White Sea, Baltic and Mediterranean, SE Asia East Africa and the Indian Ocean. His talks include top quality illustrations, sound and video clips, making them both entertaining and informative. When not lecturing Peter welcomes the opportunity to enhance passengers’ experiences of the wildlife around them out on deck, providing on-board commentaries and during tours away from the ship.

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                              Gill Mawby

                              Gill Mawby

                              Gill Mawby, University of Durham
                              Gillian Mawby read English at the University of Durham and subsequently an MA and PhD in Ruskin Studies at Lancaster University where she also held an honorary research fellowship. She was born in Devon and is a life member of The Devonshire Association for which she was Recorder of Dialect for twelve years. She was awarded the Voluntary Medical Service Medal in 1981, and has attended sittings in a South African court whilst serving as a Magistrate on the Lancaster Bench.

                              Gillian Mawby read English at the University of Durham and subsequently an MA and PhD in Ruskin Studies at Lancaster University where she also held an honorary research fellowship.  

                              She was born in Devon and is a life member of The Devonshire Association for which she was Recorder of Dialect for twelve years. She was awarded the Voluntary Medical Service Medal in 1981, and has attended sittings in a South African court whilst serving as a Magistrate on the Lancaster Bench.

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                              Alan O'Cain

                              Alan O'Cain

                              Alan O'Cain, Artist, Poet and freelance Lecturer
                              Alan studied History at Lancaster University specialising in the development of Western Science, Art and Philosophy and has an MA in Education. He now works as a professional artist and poet and delivers much loved public talks and performances. He has twice been a visiting fellow and artist-and-poet-in-residence at Durham University (2012-13 and 2015-16) and has given lectures in many prestigious venues and on cruise ships travelling the globe.

                              Alan studied History at Lancaster University specialising in the development of Western Science, Art and Philosophy and has an MA in Education. He now works as a professional artist and poet and delivers much loved public talks and performances. He has twice been a visiting fellow and artist-and-poet-in-residence at Durham University (2012-13 and 2015-16) and has given lectures in many prestigious venues and on cruise ships travelling the globe.

                              Alan has been involved in creative collaborations with Glyndebourne Opera and the Royal Shakespeare Company and produced art and poetry in-residence in a number of historical and international venues, including the preserved studio of Norwegian artist Edvard Munch (painter of “The Scream”) and the former prison cell of Austrian artist Egon Schiele. He has held solo exhibitions at the Hay Festival and at several diverse locations in the UK and abroad. In 2016-2017 he showed works in Manchester Cathedral from an on-going sixteen-year project based on letter exchanges with a prisoner in a US jail and created three sound/art/horticulture installations in the city of Durham in collaboration with students, composers, musicians and staff from Durham Botanic Garden. During our cruise from Athens to Mumbai Alan will be delivering entertaining talks exploring themes from Art History, Philosophy and the History of Science and running exciting art and poetry-writing workshops during days at sea.

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                              Dr Campbell Price

                              Dr Campbell Price

                              Dr Campbell Price, Curator of Egypt and Sudan at The Manchester Museum
                              Campbell Price is Curator of Egypt and Sudan at The Manchester Museum, one of the UK’s largest Egyptology collections. He first became interested in ancient Egypt when he visited Kelvingrove Museum in his native Glasgow as a child.

                              Campbell Price is Curator of Egypt and Sudan at The Manchester Museum, one of the UK’s largest Egyptology collections. He first became interested in ancient Egypt when he visited Kelvingrove Museum in his native Glasgow as a child.

                              He completed a BA, MA, and PhD in Egyptology at the University of Liverpool, where he is now an Honorary Research Fellow. Campbell has undertaken fieldwork in Egypt at the sites of Zawiyet Umm el-Rakham, Saqqara, and the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. He has published on ancient Egyptian material culture, most recently a co-edited volume Mummies, Magic and Medicine in Ancient Egypt (Manchester University Press, 2016) and Pocket Museum: Ancient Egypt (Thames and Hudson, 2018). Campbell has lectured widely throughout the UK, and internationally.

                              He is a regular contributor to Egyptological documentaries on TV and radio

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                              Dr David Price-Williams

                              Dr David Price-Williams

                              Dr David Price-Williams , University of London
                              David Price-Williams has a first degree from the University of Wales in Ancient Near Eastern languages (Aramaic, Hebrew, Arabic etc.), with a subsidiary in Attic and Koine Greek. His post-graduate work and his doctorate, from the University of London, is in Near Eastern archaeology. His first overseas archaeological field work in the eastern Mediterranean was in 1969 as a field surveyor at the classical site of Knidos in Turkey. He then worked for the Smithsonian Institution as an archaeological field surveyor on excavations in the Near East before directing his own field research in the same area through the early 1970’s.

                              David Price-Williams has a first degree from the University of Wales in Ancient Near Eastern languages (Aramaic, Hebrew, Arabic etc.), with a subsidiary in Attic and Koine Greek. His post-graduate work and his doctorate, from the University of London, is in Near Eastern archaeology. His first overseas archaeological field work in the eastern Mediterranean was in 1969 as a field surveyor at the classical site of Knidos in Turkey. He then worked for the Smithsonian Institution as an archaeological field surveyor on excavations in the Near East before directing his own field research in the same area through the early 1970’s.

                              David has spent many years working in the countries of Africa south of the Zambesi. From 1976 to 1989 he was the director of a multi-disciplinary team of up to twenty scientists from several universities researching the effects of climatic change on human evolution in Africa. He was based in Swaziland, during which time he also oversaw the building of the Swaziland National Museum and where he eventually became Director of Antiquities. 

                              David has been associated with the eastern Mediterranean – Greece, Turkey, Jordan and the Near East for more than 40 years. He is deeply involved with all aspects of Near Eastern culture, history and archaeology. 

                              David has just retired after thirty seven years lecturing on the Archaeology of Western Asia (Eastern Mediterranean) at the Institute of Archaeology for the University of London Extra Mural Department. He is the author and co-author of numerous academic papers on the area. David has designed and lectured on many tours to Greece, Turkey and the Near East and is very familiar with the archaeological sites in the area. David is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, an elected member of the Royal Society for Asian Affairs, and a life member of the Southern African Quaternary Research Association. He speaks Turkish and reads Classical Greek

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                              Prof Sandy Primrose MBE

                              Prof Sandy Primrose MBE

                              Prof Sandy Primrose MBE, Biotechnologist
                              Sandy Primrose is a biologist by training and has degrees from the University of Strathclyde and the University of California. After undertaking research in Australia he returned to the UK and took up lecturing positions at the universities of Edinburgh and Warwick.

                              Sandy Primrose is a biologist by training and has degrees from the University of Strathclyde and the University of California. After undertaking research in Australia he returned to the UK and took up lecturing positions at the universities of Edinburgh and Warwick.

                              In 1981 he made a career change by moving to industry where he held senior management positions, first in a pharmaceutical company and later in diagnostic, food and environmental companies. After 20 years in industry he made another career change and started working as a biotechnology consultant as well as being an adviser to various UK governmental organisations (Health Protection Agency, Food Standards Agency, and Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs). He was awarded an MBE in 2010 for services to the Food Standards Agency.

                              Sandy still consults widely as well as being Chairman of a number of small, high technology companies. He has written a number of very popular scientific textbooks but is particularly proud of his recent publication entitled Plants, Poisons and Personalities which is aimed at lay audiences. Sandy’s passion is gardening and the half-acre garden of his house between London and Oxford is filled with unusual trees and shrubs.

                              Over the years he has shown many groups round his garden and when he does so he tells them the stories behind the plants that he grows. These stories, and his experiences in industry, form the basis of his entertaining cruise lectures that cover topics in gardening, uses of plants, plant history and plant conservation. 

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                              Steve Ragnall

                              Steve Ragnall

                              Steve Ragnall, Maritime historian and author
                              Steve has first class presentation and outstanding graphics skills coupled with the enthusiasm and ability to entertain and inform.  He has a lifetime’s love of the sea and its history, is RYA Yachtmaster qualified, and has extensive sailing experience, including passages on tall ships, most notably the Bark Endeavour, replica of Captain Cook’s ship. He is proud to be an honorary member of the Merchant Navy Association.

                              Steve has first class presentation and outstanding graphics skills coupled with the enthusiasm and ability to entertain and inform.  He has a lifetime’s love of the sea and its history, is RYA Yachtmaster qualified, and has extensive sailing experience, including passages on tall ships, most notably the Bark Endeavour, replica of Captain Cook’s ship. He is proud to be an honorary member of the Merchant Navy Association.

                              Steve has lectured around the world and has been in demand as a cruise ship speaker for over 10 years, with a growing portfolio of over 60 talks. He also speaks regularly to U3A, NADFAS, Probus, National Trust Associations and many other organisations.

                              He has worked extensively in local and regional radio as musician, writer and presenter.

                              A member of the Society for Nautical Research, Navy Records Society and the Captain Cook Society and a regular contributor to its quarterly journal, Steve is continuing research, with members of the society and various museums, into Cook’s world and the characters associated with Britain’s greatest navigator. He has worked in Hawaii on the site of Cook’s 1779 shore base and created models of the site for museum display.

                              His recent book “Better Conceiv’d than Describ’d: The Life and Times of Captain James King, Captain Cook’s Friend and Colleague”, is a culmination of that work and has been very well received.

                              With a belief that everyone has a story within them, he worked with the BBC on their “Telling Lives” project in 2004/5, introducing short film making skills to the general public. In addition, he has supported his cruise-based colleagues in improving their own graphics presentation skills.

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                              Ernest Rea

                              Ernest Rea

                              Ernest Rea, Broadcaster
                              Ernie Rea is a celebrated broadcaster who specialises on the history of religions and the way that faith impacts on the contemporary world. His regular radio programme, Beyond Belief, was awarded the prestigious Sony Gold Award for the best Speech Programme on British Radio. He worked for the BBC for 22 years in a variety of production and editorial roles.

                              Ernie Rea is a celebrated broadcaster who specialises on the history of religions and the way that faith impacts on the contemporary world. His regular radio programme, Beyond Belief, was awarded the prestigious Sony Gold Award for the best Speech Programme on British Radio. He worked for the BBC for 22 years in a variety of production and editorial roles. From 1989 -2001 he was Head of Religious Broadcasting for the BBC responsible for all their television and radio programmes nationally and locally. During this time, he spent much time in the United States, brokering co-production television deals with leading American broadcasters. He was closely involved in a variety of key national events, including the Funeral Service for Diana, Princess of Wales. He is in wide demand as a speaker at a wide variety of events, including international inter faith conferences, literary festivals, and academic symposia. 

                              In 1997 he was personally awarded the Gold Medal of the International Council for Christians and Jews for his contribution to Inter Faith understanding. He has First Class Degrees in Theology and in History and Politics which helped fuel his passion for the study of world religions and the way in which they impact on the ancient and modern worlds. He was one time Visiting Lecturer at the Department of Education at Manchester University.

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                              Prof Chris Stringer

                              Prof Chris Stringer

                              Prof Chris Stringer, Paleoanthropologist & Research Leader in Human Origins, Natural History Museum London
                              Professor Chris Stringer has worked at The Natural History Museum London since 1973, and is now Research Leader in Human Origins and a Fellow of the Royal Society. His early research was on the relationship of Neanderthals and early modern humans in Europe, but through his work on the ‘Recent African Origin’ theory of modern human origins, he now collaborates with archaeologists, dating specialists, and geneticists in attempting to reconstruct the evolution of modern humans globally. He has excavated at sites in Britain and abroad, and he is currently co-directing the Pathways to Ancient Britain project, funded by the Calleva Foundation.

                              Professor Chris Stringer has worked at The Natural History Museum London since 1973, and is now Research Leader in Human Origins and a Fellow of the Royal Society. His early research was on the relationship of Neanderthals and early modern humans in Europe, but through his work on the ‘Recent African Origin’ theory of modern human origins, he now collaborates with archaeologists, dating specialists, and geneticists in attempting to reconstruct the evolution of modern humans globally. He has excavated at sites in Britain and abroad, and he is currently co-directing the Pathways to Ancient Britain project, funded by the Calleva Foundation.


                              He has published over 300 scientific papers and his recent books include The Complete World of Human Evolution (2011, with Peter Andrews)The Origin of our Species (UK 2011), published in the USA as Lone Survivors: how we came to be the only Humans on Earth (2012), and Britain: One Million Years of the Human Story (2014, with Rob Dinnis). He regularly lectures to University and public audiences, including cruises and tours for Fred Olsen, Scientific American and National Geographic.


                              Chris Stringer is a regular contributor to news items on human evolution for UK TV and Radio channels, national and international newspapers and websites, and he has made many appearances on documentaries for UK and international TV channels.

                              Click here to read more about Chris's work at The Natural History Museum >> http://www.nhm.ac.uk/our-science/departments-and-staff/staff-directory/chris-stringer.html

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                              Professor Robert H. Taylor

                              Professor Robert H. Taylor

                              Professor Robert H. Taylor, Author and Editor
                              Robert H. Taylor, born and educated in the United States, has taught South East Asian politics at universities in Sydney, Hong Kong, and London. He was Pro-Director of the School of Oriental and African Studies prior to his last fulltime academic post as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Buckingham. There he frequently interacted with Margaret Thatcher who held the honorary position as Chancellor.

                              Robert H. Taylor, born and educated in the United States, has taught South East Asian politics at universities in Sydney, Hong Kong, and London. He was Pro-Director of the School of Oriental and African Studies prior to his last fulltime academic post as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Buckingham. There he frequently interacted with Margaret Thatcher who held the honorary position as Chancellor.

                              Professor Taylor is the author and editor of several volumes on South East Asia.He most recent books were The State in Myanmar (2009) and General Ne Win: A Political Biography (2015), both of which have been translated into Burmese. Since leaving academia, he has worked as a lay immigration judge and a consultant to the oil and gas industry in the UK and USA.

                              In recent years he has been a frequent Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Yushok Ishak Institute ISEAS in Singapore. Professor Taylor is one of the very few Western social scientists to live in Myanmar, then Burma, in the 1970s and 1980s and has visited the country almost every year since 1975.

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                              Gaynor Vaughan-Jones

                              Gaynor Vaughan-Jones

                              Gaynor Vaughan-Jones, Radio & TV Producer
                              Gaynor is a freelance radio and television producer and consultant and trainer on presentation and the press and broadcast media.

                              Gaynor is a freelance radio and television producer and consultant and trainer on presentation and the press and broadcast media.

                              She spent 25 years working for the BBC as a Radio 4 presenter and as an award-winning producer of television and radio programmes. She was Head of BBC Radio Wales and was the first Managing Editor of BBC Radio 5, which is a national news and sports channel.

                              While at the BBC Gaynor was sent to South Africa post-apartheid to train black presenters for SABC. Nowadays she works as a media consultant with Charities, and spends her spare time sailing the high seas or at home with her husband Ernie and beautiful dog, Bertie.

                              Whilst on board Aegean Odyssey, Gaynor will be on board to host a book club for passengers wishing to learn more about the fascinating sites visited.  Please note Gaynor will not be lecturing.

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                              Dr Barry Walsh MB (NUI) FRCPath, MSc (Lond)

                              Dr Barry Walsh MB (NUI) FRCPath, MSc (Lond)

                              Dr Barry Walsh MB (NUI) FRCPath, MSc (Lond), Art and Science Historian
                              Before his retirement in 2015 Barry Walsh was a Consultant in Communicable Disease Control (CCDC) and Director of the South West London Health Protection Team, part of Public Health England. For 24 years he worked years in public health in London.

                              Before his retirement in 2015 Barry Walsh was a Consultant in Communicable Disease Control (CCDC) and Director of the South West London Health Protection Team, part of Public Health England. For 24 years he worked years in public health in London.

                              Born in Co Mayo he qualified in medicine at the University of Cork Ireland in 1981. After House Officer roles in Cork he moved to England where he started training in pathology.

                              He specialised in medical microbiology at St Mary’s Hospital Paddington and then John Radcliffe Hospital Oxford. Barry got his Membership in medical microbiology (MRC Path) in 1991. He took a Master’s Degree in Public Health in 1994.

                              While specialising in medicine in London he managed to get a BA (2.1) in the History of Art at Birkbeck College in 1989. He focused on Italian Renaissance Art, Roman architecture, and Art of the 20th Century. In 1991 he got a Diploma in the History of Medicine at the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries and won the Osler Gold Medal for his lecture on Anatomy and Art in Renaissance Italy.

                              Barry qualified as a London Blue Badge Guide in 2000 and now works as a professional tour guide in London specialising in medical and art history tours as well as the Palace of Westminster. He guides at Tate Modern, Tate Britain, National Gallery and Courtauld Institute.

                              His broad interests and lectures also encompass Science Industry and Technology (Industrial Revolution), Royal Medicine, Art and Medicine, and The Body in the Car Park (the discovery of King Richard III).

                              Bringing his interest in Western Art together with Art of the East he recently gained a Postgraduate Diploma in Asian Art at the School of Oriental and African Art (SOAS) London in 2017. He lectures and guides on Islamic, Chinese, Japanese, Indian art and East meets West in the British Museum and Victoria and Albert Museums.

                               

                               

                               

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                              Christopher Walton

                              Christopher Walton

                              Christopher Walton, Author and Journalist
                              Chris has lived and worked in Cape Town and London, with stints in New York, Hong Kong, Europe and Australia. He worked as a journalist in Cape Town during the apartheid era before a moving to one of the world’s largest publishing companies in 1981, becoming South African Editor-in-Chief three years later. In 1997 he transferred with the company to London as International Editor General Books, responsible for editorial content worldwide.

                              Chris has lived and worked in Cape Town and London, with stints in New York, Hong Kong, Europe and Australia. He worked as a journalist in Cape Town during the apartheid era before a moving to one of the world’s largest publishing companies in 1981, becoming South African Editor-in-Chief three years later. In 1997 he transferred with the company to London as International Editor General Books, responsible for editorial content worldwide.

                              He has travelled to more than 140 countries, edited and published books on subjects as diverse as travel, law, medicine, history and cookery. He helped open new markets for books in Eastern Europe, and spearheaded the drive into teaching English as a foreign language.

                              Since his retirement, he has been a lecturer on board cruise ships, specialising in Italian and South African history, food and culture. To date he has given over 160 lectures on 80 different subjects and destinations - from South America and the Caribbean to the Mediterranean, Middle and Far East.

                              Chris’s very close knowledge of the Mediterranean area stems from his marriage in 1986 to his Italian-born wife, Daniela, and is fluent in Italian. He spends part of every year in Italy.

                              When not working, Chris is passionate about photography and music - and collects hand-made acoustic guitars. 

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                              Sara Withers

                              Sara Withers

                              Sara Withers, Jewellery Designer
                              Sara Withers has been designing and making jewellery for almost all of her working life. Her work concentrates on the use of beads, some self made, some sourced from interesting suppliers. She has taken part in numerous exhibitions and her work has sold in a selection of shops and galleries throughout the U.K., including the British Museum. She is the author of many books of bead jewellery projects. The most recent being ‘The Encyclopedia of Wire Jewellery Techniques’ and ‘A Compendium of Jewellery Techniques’.

                              Sara Withers has been designing and making jewellery for almost all of her working life. Her work concentrates on the use of beads, some self made, some sourced from interesting suppliers. She has taken part in numerous exhibitions and her work has sold in a selection of shops and galleries throughout the U.K., including the British Museum. She is the author of many books of bead jewellery projects. The most recent being ‘The Encyclopedia of Wire Jewellery Techniques’ and ‘A Compendium of Jewellery Techniques’.

                              Sara teaches bead making and jewellery making in several arts centres in Britain including West Dean College in Sussex and the Oxford Summer School. Four years ago a love of jewellery making and travelling was happily combined when she started to give classes on small cruise ships. Another of Sara’s bead related interests is the Arkell bead collection in the Pitt Rivers Museum, University of Oxford, which she has studied in order to communicate her enthusiasm to others. In 2007 she was one of the speakers at the International Bead and Beadwork Conference in Istanbul.

                              During your cruise Sara will be running jewellery making lessons suitable for complete beginners, or for those who have done some jewellery making, with themes ranging from traditional and contemporary knotting, to bracelets and earrings, beading wire necklaces, and resin pedants.

                              For more information on Sara’s work and to see more examples of her jewellery, her website can be found by visiting http://www.sarawithers.co.uk

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                              Mahavel Reach

                              Mahavel Reach

                              Kandy, Sri Lanka
                              1-night hotel stay in Kandy
                              Surrounded by the mysterious ancient kingdom of Kandy, Sri Lanka's longest river & the wondrous mountain ranges, stands the palatial Mahaweli Reach Hotel.

                              Surrounded by the mysterious ancient kingdom of Kandy, Sri Lanka's longest river & the wondrous mountain ranges, stands the palatial Mahaweli Reach Hotel. Mysteriously hidden behind the lush green tropical gardens on the plush banks of the Mahaweli river, this hotel offers guests a truly unforgettable experience. 

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                              Included
                              Sofitel Palais Imperial

                              Sofitel Palais Imperial

                              Marrakesh, Morocco
                              1-night hotel stay in Marrakesh
                              Balcony Class
                              Set in lush, fountained gardens of fragrant herbs, bougainvilleas and a palm-ringed pool, this 5-star palace is impressive in its majesty.

                              Set in lush, fountained gardens of fragrant herbs, bougainvilleas and a palm-ringed pool, this 5-star palace is impressive in its majesty. Marble columns soaring to sculpted ceilings, traditional zellige tiles and the deep reds and browns of oriental tapestries induce a sense of atmosphere.

                              The entire resort breathes relaxation and refinement, from outdoor sofas and loungers round the pool to sumptuous rooms, some with panoramic views of the snowcapped Atlas Mountains.

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                              Included
                              Steigenberger Nile Palace

                              Steigenberger Nile Palace

                              Luxor, Egypt
                              2-night hotel stay in Luxor
                              On the banks of the Nile, at the heart of the historical district of Luxor, the Steigenberger Nile Palace extends a warm welcome.

                              On the banks of the Nile, at the heart of the historical district of Luxor, the Steigenberger Nile Palace extends a warm welcome. A luxurious refuge from where one can easily explore some of the world’s greatest cultural treasures and enjoy times of peace and recuperation.

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                              Included
                              King George Hotel

                              King George Hotel

                              Athens, Greece
                              3-night hotel stay in Athens
                              Premium Class
                              As one of Athens’ finest hotels, the King George is situated right in the heart of the city. Dating back to 1930, its 102 rooms have hosted not only legendary personalities but also some of Athens’ most prestigious events.

                              As one of Athens’ finest hotels, the King George is situated right in the heart of the city. Dating back to 1930, its 102 rooms have hosted not only legendary personalities but also some of Athens’ most prestigious events. With panoramic views over the illuminated city and the Acropolis, the hotel transcends all expectations. The refined accommodation and the picturesque dining at the Tudor Hall Restaurant set the scene for a most memorable experience.

                              This pre- and post-cruise city hotel includes breakfast only. 

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                              Included
                              Hotel Grande Bretagne -

                              Hotel Grande Bretagne -

                              Athens, Greece
                              3-night hotel stay in Athens
                              Balcony Class
                              Hotel Grande Bretagne has 321 rooms with courtyard or city views and lavish public rooms decked with crystal, damask and tapestries, which make this a grand hotel in the finest tradition.

                              Hotel Grande Bretagne has 321 rooms with courtyard or city views and lavish public rooms decked with crystal, damask and tapestries, which make this a grand hotel in the finest tradition. Retreats and restaurants include the Winter Garden, Alexander's Bar, the Pool Bar (on the seventh floor!) and floodlit views of the Acropolis from the hotel's roof garden.

                              This pre- and post-cruise city hotels includes breakfast only. 

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                              Included
                              Cairo Marriott Hotel

                              Cairo Marriott Hotel

                              Cairo, Egypt
                              2-night hotel stay in Cairo
                              The Cairo Marriott Hotel is situated in the vibrant Zamalek district, set amidst six acres of verdant palace gardens. It is also near some of the city’s top attractions, including the Pyramids of Giza and the Cairo Opera House. The hotel has 1,060 beautifully appointed rooms and suites, which feature high-speed Internet access, 42-inch flat-screen TVs and plush pillowtop mattresses. 

                              The Cairo Marriott Hotel is situated in the vibrant Zamalek district, set amidst six acres of verdant palace gardens. It is also near some of the city’s top attractions, including the Pyramids of Giza and the Cairo Opera House.
                              The hotel has 1,060 beautifully appointed rooms and suites, which feature high-speed Internet access, 42-inch flat-screen TVs and plush pillowtop mattresses. 

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                              Included
                              The LaLiT Hotel

                              The LaLiT Hotel

                              Delhi, India
                              2-night hotel stay in Delhi
                              The LaLiT  is one of the finest luxury hotels in the city. The hotel is located just minutes away from government offices, cultural centres, and international trade fair grounds.

                              The LaLiT  is one of the finest luxury hotels in the city. The hotel is located just minutes away from government offices, cultural centres, and international trade fair grounds.

                              This five star property is surrounded by upscale shopping centres, heritage monuments, and neighbourhoods buzzing with cafés and bazaars. Naturally, it is the preferred choice for perfect gateway to India’s vibrant capital.

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                              Included
                              Grand Savoy

                              Grand Savoy

                              Marrakesh, Morocco
                              1-night hotel stay in Marrakesh
                              Premium Class
                              With its splendid public spaces, magnificent outdoor pools and top-class restaurants, the Grand Savoy is an excellent base in Marrakesh.

                              With its splendid public spaces, magnificent outdoor pools and top-class restaurants, the Grand Savoy is an excellent base in Marrakesh. The Grand Spa is the ideal place to relax after sightseeing and shopping. The centre includes giant indoor pools, a sauna, and a Turkish bath. Rooms are, of course, air-conditioned and come with free Wi-Fi connection.

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                              Included
                              Jetwings Sea hotel

                              Jetwings Sea hotel

                              Colombo, Sri Lanka
                              1-night hotel stay in Negombo
                              Situated on the coastline of Negombo, Jetwing Sea is a chic seaside resort that reflects a mixture of modern elegance and cozy ambience. Its excellent location makes it a popular destination.

                              Situated on the coastline of Negombo, Jetwing Sea is a chic seaside resort that reflects a mixture of modern elegance and cozy ambience. Its excellent location makes it a popular destination. 

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                              Included

                              Voyages to Antiquity is pleased to offer free Economy Class airfare*, available from a variety of US gateways for select cruise itineraries!

                              Free roundtrip airfare add-ons from select gateways

                              Voyages to Antiquity’s Economy Class airfare program uses the world's leading airlines and offers convenient routings and exceptional savings. Upgrade costs for Business Class may be available on request - please call for details.

                              Sample gateways for our free roundtrip economy airfare are listed below.

                              Please note: guests using Voyages to Antiquity's air program for voyages ending in Malaga will have an additional 1-night hotel stay post cruise before transferring to the airport for the flight home.

                              For more information, please contact your travel professional or call our office today.

                              Sample free economy airfare gateways*

                              AtlantaFREEBostonFREE
                              ChicagoFREEDallasFREE
                              DetroitFREEHoustonFREE
                              Los AngelesFREEMiamiFREE
                              New YorkFREEOrlandoFREE
                              PhiladelphiaFREEPhoenixFREE
                              Portland ORFREESan FranciscoFREE
                              SeattleFREEWashington DCFREE

                              *Free roundtrip airfare is economy class only, applies to select departures and gateways only, and includes all government taxes, fees and airline fuel surcharges, which may change at any time. Airline-imposed personal charges such as baggage fees may apply.

                              Some restrictions apply. You may not be able to change your confirmed flight arrangements without an additional charge. All air itineraries are subject to change and are not considered final until ticketed at 30 days prior to sailing. Some gateways may require departures 1 or 2 days prior to dates on pre-cruise land programs or 1 or 2 days later than dates on post-cruise programs shown on the website and in the brochure if applicable.

                              Customized air travel

                              You may wish to make changes to the flight itinerary provided by Voyages to Antiquity.

                              Your travel agent can make these flight requests on your behalf when you confirm your reservation. For example, you may wish to request travel on a specific carrier, or travel on different departure or return dates. A US$50 per person non-refundable administration fee will be charged for each request, plus any possible fare differential. Any additional costs associated with the change(s) will be added to your reservation once your new itinerary has been accepted. Deposit must be provided before custom requests can be made.

                              Seat Assignments

                              Voyages to Antiquity will request aisle and next seating when making your flight arrangements. Some airlines no longer allow specific seats to be requested for Economy Class travel. You or your travel agent may contact the carrier directly to request any special arrangements once air has been ticketed at 30 days prior to sailing.

                              Frequent Flyer Mileage

                              You will be able to accrue miles on most carriers we use, but will not be able to use miles for upgrades or any other amenities. Special requests and services should be arranged directly with the airline.

                              Included transfers

                              Transfers between airports and Aegean Odyssey while on your cruise-tour abroad are included. You'll be met on arrival at your destination airport and transferred in comfort to the ship. At the end of your cruise, you'll be transferred to the airport for your flight home. 

                              Note: Included transfers are provided only in conjunction with arrival and departure dates of cruise-tours as outlined on the website and our brochure. The included transfers are for guests purchasing Voyages to Antiquity air arrangements.

                              Owner's SuitesA
                              Owner's Suites
                              BALCONY
                              Owner's Suites, BALCONY
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              550 sq ft staterooms located on Lido Deck. Marble bathrooms, dressing area, separate sitting area and private balcony. Convertible twin beds.

                              Guests in Balcony Class will also enjoy a welcome bottle of champagne & Petit Fours, refrigerator stocked with soft drinks, complimentary bottled water, robe and slippers and Molton brown bathroom amenities.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $63,950*pp
                              $77,950*pp
                              Lido
                              Lido
                              Junior SuitesB
                              Junior Suites
                              BALCONY
                              Junior Suites, BALCONY
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              310 sq ft staterooms located on Lido Deck. Marble bathrooms, walk-in closet, sitting area and private balcony. Convertible twin beds.

                              Guests in Balcony Class will also enjoy a welcome bottle of champagne & Petit Fours, refrigerator stocked with soft drinks, complimentary bottled water, robe and slippers and Molton brown bathroom amenities.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $56,995*pp
                              $69,950*pp
                              Lido
                              Lido
                              Deluxe BalconyC
                              Deluxe Balcony
                              BALCONY
                              Deluxe Balcony, BALCONY
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              275 sq ft staterooms located on Lido & Bridge Decks. Bath/shower or walk-in shower, sitting area and private balcony. Fixed double bed, separate twins or convertible twins depending on cabin selected. Cabins 807, 808 on Lido Deck are smaller and do not have a sitting area.

                              Guests in Balcony Class will also enjoy a welcome bottle of champagne & Petit Fours, refrigerator stocked with soft drinks, complimentary bottled water, robe and slippers and Molton brown bathroom amenities.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $51,150*pp
                              $62,550*pp
                              Bridge
                              Bridge
                              Lido
                              Lido
                              Deluxe BalconyD
                              Deluxe Balcony
                              BALCONY
                              Deluxe Balcony, BALCONY
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              275 sq ft staterooms located on Belvedere Deck. Bath/shower or walk-in shower, sitting area and private balcony. Fixed double bed, separate twins or convertible twins depending on cabin selected.

                              Guests in Balcony Class will also enjoy a welcome bottle of champagne & Petit Fours, refrigerator stocked with soft drinks, complimentary bottled water, robe and slippers and Molton brown bathroom amenities.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $47,550*pp
                              $58,750*pp
                              Belvedere
                              Belvedere
                              Deluxe OutsideE
                              Deluxe Outside
                              PREMIUM
                              Deluxe Outside, PREMIUM
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              215 sq ft staterooms located on Belvedere Deck. Private bath/ shower or walk-in shower. Convertible twin beds. Cabins 556 and 563 are smaller but have a fixed double bed and a balcony.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $43,195*pp
                              $53,495*pp
                              Belvedere
                              Belvedere
                              Deluxe OutsideF
                              Deluxe Outside
                              PREMIUM
                              Deluxe Outside, PREMIUM
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              170-200sq ft staterooms located on Bridge and Belvedere Decks. Bath/Shower or walk-in shower.
                              Convertible twin beds or Fixed Double Bed. Cabins 535 and 536 have fixed twin beds only.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $40,750*pp
                              $50,950*pp
                              Belvedere
                              Belvedere
                              Bridge
                              Bridge
                              Lido
                              Lido
                              Premium OutsideG
                              Premium Outside
                              PREMIUM
                              Premium Outside, PREMIUM
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              130-150 sq ft staterooms located on Bridge & Lido Decks. Private shower, fixed twin beds, convertible twin beds or fixed double bed.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $37,750*pp
                              $46,950*pp
                              Bridge
                              Bridge
                              Lido
                              Lido
                              Premium OutsideH
                              Premium Outside
                              PREMIUM
                              Premium Outside, PREMIUM
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              Premium Outside 130 sq ft cabins located on Belvedere and Columbus Decks. Fixed twin beds with private shower.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $34,995*pp
                              $43,895*pp
                              Belvedere
                              Belvedere
                              Columbus
                              Columbus
                              Premium OutsideI*
                              Premium Outside
                              PREMIUM
                              Premium Outside, PREMIUM
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              130 sq ft cabins located on Bridge Deck. Private shower. Fixed twin beds or fixed double bed.
                              Views in some cabins partially obstructed by Life Boats.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $32,250*pp
                              $40,750*pp
                              Bridge
                              Bridge
                              Standard OutsideJ
                              Standard Outside
                              PREMIUM
                              Standard Outside, PREMIUM
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              130 sq ft cabins located on Columbus Deck. Fixed twin beds with private shower.
                              * Please note the photo shows a Category H premium outside cabin. Category J standard outside cabins feature portholes instead of windows.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $29,695*pp
                              $37,595*pp
                              Columbus
                              Columbus
                              Premium InsideK
                              Premium Inside
                              PREMIUM
                              Premium Inside, PREMIUM
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              130 sq ft cabins located on Belvedere Deck. Fixed twin beds with private shower.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $27,395*pp
                              $34,495*pp
                              Belvedere
                              Belvedere
                              Premium InsideL
                              Premium Inside
                              PREMIUM
                              Premium Inside, PREMIUM
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              130 sq ft cabins located on Columbus Decks. Fixed twin beds with private shower.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $24,750*pp
                              $31,650*pp
                              Columbus
                              Columbus
                              Standard InsideM
                              Standard Inside
                              PREMIUM
                              Standard Inside, PREMIUM
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              130 sq ft cabins located on Belvedere and Columbus Decks. Fixed twin beds with private shower.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $22,750*pp
                              $28,950*pp
                              Belvedere
                              Belvedere
                              Columbus
                              Columbus
                              Deluxe BalconyCC
                              Deluxe Balcony
                              SINGLE CABINS
                              Deluxe Balcony, SINGLE CABINS
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              135 sq ft single occupancy stateroom located on Lido Deck (Cabins 809, 810). Walk-in shower and private balcony. Fixed small double bed.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $59,995*pp
                              $71,395*pp
                              Lido
                              Lido
                              Deluxe OutsideEE
                              Deluxe Outside
                              SINGLE CABINS
                              Deluxe Outside, SINGLE CABINS
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              135 sq ft single occupancy Deluxe staterooms located on Belvedere Deck(554, 561). Shower, European full-size bed and a small balcony.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $51,450*pp
                              $61,750*pp
                              Belvedere
                              Belvedere
                              Premium OutsideGG*
                              Premium Outside
                              SINGLE CABINS
                              Premium Outside, SINGLE CABINS
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              Single occupancy Premium outside staterooms located on Bridge and Lido Deck. Private shower and a European full-size bed. Views in cabins 726, 724 on Belvedere deck are partially obstructed by lifeboats.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $45,250*pp
                              $54,450*pp
                              Bridge
                              Bridge
                              Lido
                              Lido
                              Premium OutsideHH*
                              Premium Outside
                              SINGLE CABINS
                              Premium Outside, SINGLE CABINS
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              Premium outside single occupancy staterooms located on Bridge & Belvedere decks, featuring a European full-size bed and a private shower.
                               * Please note the cabin plan and photo shows the Category H double occupancy stateroom. Category HH single staterooms are smaller and feature one European full-size bed. Views are partially obstructed by lifeboats in the cabins on Bridge deck.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              $41,995*pp
                              $50,895*pp
                              Belvedere
                              Belvedere
                              Bridge
                              Bridge
                              Premium OutsideII*
                              Premium Outside
                              SINGLE CABINS
                              Premium Outside, SINGLE CABINS
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              130 sq ft Premuim Outside staterooms located on Bridge Deck, featuring a double window and a European full-size bed with private shower. Views are partially obstructed by lifeboats.
                              *Please note the photo & cabin plan show a double occupancy I cabin. Cabins 710 and 712 (Category II, single occupancy) are smaller in size and feature a single European size bed.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $38,950*pp
                              $47,450*pp
                              Bridge
                              Bridge
                              Standard OutsideJJ
                              Standard Outside
                              SINGLE CABINS
                              Standard Outside, SINGLE CABINS
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              Single occupancy standard outside cabins located on Columbus Deck, featuring portholes in place of windows. A single European size bed with private shower.
                              *Please note the picture shows a standard outside double occupancy cabin. Single occupancy cabins are smaller and feature a single European size bed and portholes instead of windows.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $35,995*pp
                              $43,895*pp
                              Columbus
                              Columbus
                              Premium InsideKK
                              Premium Inside
                              SINGLE CABINS
                              Premium Inside, SINGLE CABINS
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $33,295*pp
                              $40,395*pp
                              Belvedere
                              Belvedere
                              Premium InsideLL
                              Premium Inside
                              SINGLE CABINS
                              Premium Inside, SINGLE CABINS
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $30,650*pp
                              $37,550*pp
                              Columbus
                              Columbus
                              Standard InsideMM
                              Standard Inside
                              SINGLE CABINS
                              Standard Inside, SINGLE CABINS
                              Layout
                              virtual

                              130 sq ft Standard inside single occupancy cabins located on Belvedere Decks. A small double bed with private shower.
                              *Please note the picture shows a double occupancy inside cabin. Cabins MM are smaller and feature a small double bed.

                              Select from the menu to view different areas of the ship (Takes up to 10 seconds to load)

                              There is not currently a virtual tour of this cabin. Why not take a look at other areas of ship.

                              $28,550*pp
                              $34,750*pp
                              Belvedere
                              Belvedere
                              Third/fourth person sharing
                              $0
                              $15,695
                              $20,595
                              Cruise Only Credit (no air or land included)
                              $0
                              $0
                              $500
                              Port Fees & Service Charges (included in the fares above)
                              $0
                              $0
                              $4,375

                              MV AEGEAN ODYSSEY

                              There is a particular pleasure that comes with cruising aboard a smaller ship. Hosting an average of just 350 passengers, Aegean Odyssey is no ‘floating city’. She is small enough to sail rivers and put into the more characterful ports inaccessible to the ‘mega-ships’, the service is more personal and you get plenty of time to interact with the onboard experts.

                              Yet on the other hand, she is large enough to offer a superb selection of amenities, including two dining venues, several comfortable lounges and bars, a relaxing spa centre and well-stocked library. Cabins are spacious, modern and intelligently designed, and 39 cabins across a range of categories (including balcony) are set aside for solo travellers at low supplement.  

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                              Our website does not display live availability. All prices and availability be will confirmed at time of enquiry. The single supplement offers only apply to our single cabin categories. Special Offers are strictly capacity controlled, subject to availability, may be withdrawn at any time and are not always combinable. Please note – while we will do our best to adhere to this full itinerary, there may be changes at the discretion of the captain, due to weather advisories, port traffic and other unforeseeable circumstances. Shore excursions are subject to change. We reserve the right to alter, cancel or substitute an included excursion at any time. Unless otherwise specified, optional shore excursions are priced in US dollars and can be booked using the signup sheet and paid for on-board the ship. Optional shore excursions that are shown in local currency (or where specified for US passengers) must be pre-booked and paid for prior to departure.