China Tours

ANCIENT EMPIRES
GREECE - ISRAEL - ROME. (Option to Egypt)
Fully escorted from Auckland
29 days/24 nights accommodated from just $11,990 ex Auckland
Business Class long haul travel option - very limited space left
22 days/19 nights accommodated from just $9,990 ex Auckland (excludes tour of Greece)

Please note: The beginning and end of this tour are flexible. Go earlier and stay longer in Shanghai, stay later and explore more of Italy and Europe or take a side trip to Egypt and/or Jordan. The choice is yours. We are flexible.

Featuring

** Shanghai: 1 day tour of this vibrant city
** Greece: 8 day tour including Thessaloniki, Philippi, Kavala (Neapolis), Meteora, Delphi, Olympia, Epidaurus, Nauplia, Mycenae, Corinth, Athens
** Cruise: 14 night “Prinsendam” cruise from Athens (Piraeus) to Rome (Civitavecchia) via Cyprus, Israel, Rhodes, Crete, Malta, Sicily, and Naples.
** Israel: 1 day tour to Galilee, 2 day tour to Jerusalem
** Rhodes: Full day tour of the Lindos Acroplis, and Rhodes town
** Rome 3 nights including 2 days sightseeing
ITINERARY

Day 1. Tuesday 10 October, 2017 AUCKLAND DEPART
8pm: Meet your tour host at Auckland airport and check in.
10pm: Depart Auckland with China Eastern Airlines

Day 2. Wednesday 11 October SHANGHAI ARRIVE (D)
05.45am Arrive Shanghai
Enjoy most of the day sightseeing in China's most vibrant city. Visit the Bund, Nanjing Road walking street and market, People's Square, Yu Gardens, Jade Buddha Temple, enjoy a cruise on the Huangpu River, and ascend the Oriental Pearl Tower for a panoramic view over Shanghai. Return to the airport early evening. Option to travel by Maglev train at over 400km per hour – extra expense. (China visa not required for New Zealand Passport holders).

Day 3. Thursday 12 October SHANGHAI – FRANKFURT - THESSALONICA. (D)
0005 Depart Shanghai with China Eastern Airlines
0605 Arrive Frankfurt and change planes
1105 Depart Frankfurt aboard Aegean Airlines
2.45pm Arrive Thessalonica
We will be met by our Greek guide and transfer to Hotel Tobacco.

Day 4. Friday 13 October. PHILIPPI – KAVALA (BD)
Enjoy a picturesque drive to Philippi where Paul established the first church in Europe. See the river where Lydia met Paul, and the ancient Forum, and jail where Paul and Silas were kept. On the return pass Kavala (Neapolis) with panoramic views of the harbour where Paul arrived over 1900 years ago.

Day 5. Saturday 14 October. THESSALONICA – BEREA - KALAMBAKA. (BD)
This morning tour Thessalonica and see the Egnation Road, Galerius Arch. Citadel, and Rotunda. Drive to Kalambaka with a brief stop in Berea. Accommodation at Hotel Meteora.

Day 6. Sunday. 15 October. METEORA – DELPHI. (BD)
Visit the spectacular Meteora Monasteries built in the 14th century. Drive to Delphi, centre of the ancient world. Overnight Delphi at Hotel Apollonia.

Day 7. Monday 16 October. DELPHI – OLYMPIA. (BD)
On the slopes of Mt Parnassus lies the archaeological site of Delphi. See the Sanctuary of Apollo, museum, theatre and stadium before driving along the Gulf of Corinth and over the spectacular new bridge to Olympia. Accommodation at Hotel Europa.

Day 8. Tuesday 17 October. OLYMPIA – EPIDAURUS – NAUPLIA. (BD)
Olympia was the original home of the Olympic Games, first held in 776 BC and was a sacred precinct of the god Zeus, whose temple once housed one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. We visit the ancient stadium and temples before crossing the Arcadia Mountains to the Argolis region and explore the amazing Epidaurus theatre, built to accommodate 14,000 spectators. Overnight in Nauplia at Hotel Rex.

Day 9. Wednesday 18 October. NAUPLIA – ATHENS. (BD)
Explore the imposing ruins of Mycenae, the ancient city Homer called 'a city rich in gold'. Enter the city by the Lions Gate and visit Agamemnons Royal Palace. We continue to ancient Corinth and the Corinth canal and arrive Athens. Accommodation at Hotel Parthenon.

Day 10. Thursday 19 October. ATHENS DEPART. (D)
This morning we climb to the Acropolis and visit the Parthenon, nearby Mars Hill, and pass by the Tomb of the unknown soldier, Parliament House, Temple of Olympian Zeus, and Hadrian’s Arch.
Early afternoon we transfer to Piraeus and join Holland America Line charming smaller ship “Prinsendam” (38,100 tons. 835 guests).
Sail at 5pm.

Day 11.Friday 20 October. AT SEA. (BLD)
A free day to relax and enjoy the facilities of your ship. Optional introduction to 5,000 years of history we will be experiencing!

Day 12. Saturday 21 October. LIMASSOL, CYPRUS. (BLD)
Arrive 7am – Depart 5pm

Optional tours offered by Holland America – full details on their website.
Kopurion Theatre and Kolossi Castle........................ 4 hours USD 99.95* (Escorts choice!)
Kourion Theatre, Temple of Apollo, Omodos Village.......... 5 hours USD 79.95
Nicosia divided capital and Khirokita archaeological site.. 5 hours USD 74.95

Day 13. Sunday 22 October. HAIFA – GALILEE - HAIFA. (BLD)
Arrive Haifa 7am. We disembark after breakfast and drive across the Valley of Jezreel, past ancient Megiddo, to Nazareth passing the Church of the Annunciation and visiting the ancient Israel Village presenting life in Israel as it was at the time of Jesus Christ. Then on to Galilee to the Mt of Beatitudes where Jesus gave his Sermon on the Mount, Tabgha the traditional site where Jesus performed the miracle of the Loaves and Fishes, and Capernaum to visit the Synagogue where Jesus taught, and Peter's House. Lunch on the shores of the Sea of Galilee on fish from Galilee. .Also if there is time we will visit the 2,000 year old boat at Knof Ginnosar and the city of Tiberias.
Return to Haifa to rejoin “Prinsendam”. Sail at 11pm

Day 14. Monday 23 October. ASHDOD - JERUSALEM. (BLD)
Arrive Ashdod 7am. Drive to Jerusalem for a magnificent view over the city from the Mt of Olives including the Kidron Valley, Golden Gate, and Temple Mount. Walk through the Garden of Gethsemane and pause for reflection, and visit the Church of All Nations. We enter the old city through the Zion Gate through the Jewish Quarter to visit the 2nd century Cardo and remains of the walls of the 2nd Temple. We walk through the bazaar to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre for a visit and see the last 5 stations of the Via Dolorosa and continue our walk through the Christian Quarter to exit at the Jaffa Gate. Visit the Garden Tomb and Caiaphas Palace and check into our hotel for the night. A light lunch of Israeli delicacies will be provided in the old city and dinner at our hotel.

Day 15. Tuesday 24 October. JERUSALEM – BETHLEHEM - ASHDOD. (BLD)
This morning we take a sobering visit to Yad Vashem, Holocaust Museum, and the Israel Museum to see the model of Jerusalem as it was at the time of Jesus Christ and the Dead Sea Scrolls. Continue to Bethlehem for a light lunch at a cafe in Manger Square and visit to the Church of the Nativity and Shepherds Fields before returning to Haifa to reboard “Prinsendam”. Sail at 5pm.

Day 16. Wednesday 25 October. AT SEA (BLD)
A day to relax, reflect, recuperate, and enjoy the service on board Day 17. Thursday 26 October. RHODES. (BLD)
Arrive 8am – sail 6pm
Our included 8 hour tour today will take us some 50km along the coast to the town of Lindos to climb some 250 steps to the Acropolis (or hire a donkey to take you part way up – own expense) for a panoramic view including St Paul's Bay where the Apostle Paul arrived in AD51. See where the Colossus of Rhodes spanned the harbour and the 4th century BC Doric Temple of Athena. Stroll through the narrow streets and enjoy lunch in the old town before visiting the Palace of the Grand Masters for a visit. See the colourful marble and superb Mosaics and walk through the Street of the Knights, with its medieval Buildings, towers, and emblazoned facades. Some free time to explore on your own before returning to “Prinsendam”
(Today involves considerable walking on ancient uneven steps and streets. Comfortable walking shoes are a must)

Day 18. Friday 27 October. SOUDA (Chania) CRETE Greece. (BLD)
Arrive 8am - Sail 5pm. Free day to explore at your leisure.

Optional tours organised by Holland America – full details on their website
British Commonwealth war Cemetary, on the shores of Souda Bay, Monastery of Agia Triada, and Chania Old Town. 4 hours USD54.95*
(This is of particular interest to New Zealanders as many soldiers lost their lives here in the battle for Crete in 1941)
A stroll through Chania..................... 4.5 hours $49.95
Arkadi Monastery and Rethymnon.............. 5 hours $59.95
If sufficient are interested we may be able to arrange a private tour to Heraklion and the Palace of Knossos – centre of the Minoan civilisation

Day 19. Saturday 28 October. AT SEA. (BLD)
Another day to relax, reflect, and enjoy the service on board.

Day 20. Sunday 29 October. VALETTA - MALTA. (BLD)
Arrive 8am. Overnight in port.

Optional tours arranged by Holland America – full details on their website.
LEGACY OF THE KNIGHTS. The Knights of St John arrived in Malta in 1530 and stayed for 268 years settling in Vittoriosa, across the harbour from Valetta. We walk through the ancient narrow streets among the age old buildings including Auberges of the Knights, armory, treasure, and palaces. Return to Valetta for a walking tour including Castille et Leon, Girolamo Cassar built in 1574 and headquarters of the British Army and now the residence of the Prime Minister. Visit the Barrakka Gardens for incomparable views of the Grand Harbour and Republic Street. It is very easy to explore Valetta on foot from your ship. 4 hours USD $89.95*

MALTA SCENIC DRIVE Enjoy the beautiful coastal scenery, pass Malta's old capital of Mdina, and see the island where St Paul was wrecked in AD60 3 hours USD 74.95

MALTA'S CAPITALS – old and new Mdina and Valetta 4 hours USD 74.95

Day 21. Monday 30 October. GOZO – MALTA. (BLD)
8am Sail from Valetta and arrive Mgarr (Victoria) on Gozo Island at 10am. Sail at 6pm

Optional tours organised by Holland America – full details on their website.
VICTORIAS SECRETS: Visit the Temples of Gganttja dating back to 3,600 BC, and Victoria, Gozo's capital town, End the tour with a visit to the natural Dwejera seascapes and Azure Window. 4.5 hours USD 54.95
A TASTE OF GOZO including a scenic drive to stop at an Agritourism estate to see and sample the produce including olives, sun dried tomatoes, and many other products. 3 hours USD 74.95

Day 22. Tuesday 31 October. MESSINA (Sicily, Italy). (BLD)
Arrive 8am – sail 5pm
Optional tours arranged by Holland America – full details on their website.
CASTELMOLA AND TAORMINA. Taormina was founded by the Greeks in the 6th century BC and subsequently occupied by the Romans. It is now one of Sicily's most impressive resorts with many of its old areas only availabe by foot. Stroll through the old city, see the Greco Roman theatre before visiting Castelmola where lunch is included. Uphill walking required 7.5 hours USD 199.95*

CLASSIC MESSINA Orientation drive through Messina. Visit the Cathedral treasury and square 4 hours USD 79.95.

Day 23. Wednesday 01 November. NAPLES , Italy. (BLD)
Arrive 8am – sail 6pm. Naples enjoys a magnificent setting under Mount Vesuvias and the day is free to explore it.
Optional tours arranged by Holland America – full details on their website.

INSIDERS POMPEII AND NAPLES ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM . Visit the amazing ruins of ancient Pompeii with a professional guide to explore the city that was frozen in time when Mt Vesuvias erupted in AD79. Visit some of the homes, baths, temples, and theatres. Also visit the Archaeological museum of Naples. 7 hours USD 149.95

SORRENTO AND POMPEII. Visit beautiful Sorrento,and lunch then explore the ruins of Pompeii 8 hours USD 159.95

CRUISE TO THE ISLAND OF CAPRI 8 hours USD 189.95

Day 24. Thursday 02 November. ROME. (BD)
Arrival in Civitavecchia is scheduled for 7am. Transfer to Rome to meet our guide and enjoy the rest of the day sightseeing including St Peters Square, Vatican City and Museum, Sistine Chapel, Tiber, and Trevi Fountain. Accommodation at Best Western President Hotel

Day 25. Friday 03 November. ROME. (BD)
Continue our sightseeing including the Coliseum, Forum, and San Calisto Catacombs.

Day26. Saturday 04 November. ROME. (BD)
Free day to explore Rome at your leisure or explore further to Venice, Florence, or Pisa.

VENICE BIENNIALE: The bi-annual art festival is being held in Venice including a New Zealand Pavilion. If enough are interested we can take an independent tour to Venice by fast train departing at 6.50am arriving Venice 10.35am departing again at 6.25 or 7.25pm arriving Rome at 10.10 or 11.10pm. Return train fares approximately NZ$65 second class or NZ$190 first class. Bienniale tickets approximately NZ$40. Plenty of time to explore St Mark's Square and enjoy a gondola ride if you wish – extra expense.

FLORENCE: a day tour by coach is available departing Rome 7.30am and returning about 9pm. Includes the Academy Museum with its magnificent David by Michelangelo, Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, Giotto's Bell Tower, Piazza della Signoria, and Piazza Santa Croce. Approximate cost NZ$260

Day 27 Sunday 05 November. ROME DEPART. (B)
Free day and transfer to the airport for departure. Check out time is 10am but we can leave bags at the hotel.
8.45pm Depart Rome aboard China Eastern Airlines

Day 28 Monday 06 November. EN ROUTE
2.35pm Arrive Shanghai. You are welcome to stayover if you wish to see more of China.

Day 29. Tuesday 07 November. AUCKLAND ARRIVE
00.05 Depart Shanghai with China Eastern Airlines
5.15pm Arrive Auckland

GRAND TOUR Tour cost per person share twin room/cabin
29 days full tour ex Auckland 10 October – 07 November
Business Class air Auckland/Frankfurt and Rome/Auckland (economy class Frankfurt/Thessalonica)
Oceanview cabin: $14,990
Verandah cabin $16,990

Economy class fares Auckland/Thessalonica, and Rome/Auckland
Oceanview cabin $11,990
Verandah cabin $13,990

THE 29 DAY GRAND TOUR INCLUDES:
** Air fares Auckland/Thessalonica and Rome/Auckland
(Long haul flights seats at grade chosen - Frankfurt/to Thessalonica economy class only)
** Shanghai: Day tour with Dim Sum lunch
** Greece: 7 night tour in 4 star hotels (Nauplia 3 star) with breakfast and dinner and comprehensive sightseeing with guide and including admissions
** Arrival and departure transfers in Shanghai, Thessalonica and Rome,
** 14 night cruise aboard " PRINSENDAM" from Athens (Piraeus) to Rome (Civitavecchia) including all meals and entertainment on board).
** 3 nights in Rome with 2 days sightseeing
** Sightseeing listed (except options) including admissions
** One day tour to Galilee and 2 day tour to Jerusalem
** One day tour in Rhodes with sightseeing
** Services of tour escort from Auckland.

THE BASICS 22 days. Depart Auckland October 16 – Return 07 November
Tour cost per person share twin room/cabin. Oceanview Cabin: $9,990
Balcony cabin: $11,990

Tour cost includes:
** Round trip economy class air fares from Auckland
** 2 nights Athens including Corinth and Athens sightseeing
** 14 night cruise aboard " PRINSENDAM" from Athens (Piraeus) to Rome (Civitivecchia) including all meals.
** 3 nights in Rome with 2 days sightseeing
** Sightseeing listed (except options) including admissions
** One day tour to Galilee and 2 days in Jerusalem
** One day tour in Rhodes
** Three nights in Rome with 2 days sightseeing


GREECE ONLY 8 days/7 nights Thessalonica to Athens 12-19 October, 2017. Just $2,400 per person share twin $2,750 single

All prices quoted are in New Zealand dollars and correct at 20 June, 2017 and are subject to exchange fluctuations and fuel surcharges should they be introduced.

Not included:
** Travel Insurance – essential
** Personal expenses
** Wines with meals

An option travelling Premium Economy Class with Cathay Pacific airlines departing 11 October for Frankfurt to join us is available as at 8th June. Return from Rome with Cathay Pacific
Tour cost per person twin room/cabin
Oceanview Cabin..... $13,990
Verandah cabin...... $15,990


DEPOSITS AND PAYMENTS
Deposit due within 7 days of booking - 75% of your total tour cost
(Cruise company is paid in full and air tickets issued immediately)
Balance of payment due by 31 August

Cancellation fees
Cancellations up to 15 August....... 25% of total cost
16 August – 31 August.............. 50% of total cost
01 September – 05 October........... 80% of total cost
06 - 10 October..................... 100% of total cost We strongly recommend cancellation insurance