Seven Churches of the Revelation & the Greek Island Cruise
13 Day Trip to The Biblical Sites in Turkey & Greece
June 29- July 11, 2009
I would like to invite you to join me and others on an exciting tour that is being offered for the Summer of 2009. The purpose of this tour is to discover the full message of the letters to the Seven Churches in the book of Revelation as well as to explore sites that are also connected to the ministry of the Apostle Paul. Through touring the sites and studying the background behind each one, we will come to a better understanding of the background, context, and meaning of the book of Revelation and the New Testament world.
Western Turkey is the scene of much of early church history. On our tour we will visit Ephesus, Laodicea, Hieropolis, Smyrna, Sardis, Philadelphia, Thyatira, Pergamum, and Troas. These were important cities in the story of Revelation and in the ministry of the Apostle Paul. We will also visit the site of ancient Troy and be enchanted by the modern city of Istanbul. The tour will continue with a trip to the island of Patmos where the story of Revelation began, as well as to the beautiful islands of Santorini, Crete, and Rhodes. Our tour will conclude exploring ancient Athens and Corinth.
As we tour these cities, we will walk in the footsteps of John, Paul, and countless others who paved the way for the spread of the gospel. The historical and archaeological knowledge you will gain from this tour, as well as a deeper investigation of the biblical story, will enhance your understanding of the New Testament and the growth of the early church.
I hope you can join us on this journey!
Dr. Alan D. Hix, Tour Host
Associate Professor of Religion
Chair, Department of Religion and Philosophy
Associate Director of the Excavations at Kursi
315 Shorter Ave.
Rome , GA 30165
June 29 Monday: Depart From USA
June 30 Tuesday: Arrive Istanbul
Arrival at Istanbul Airport. Welcome and transfer to hotel with our representative. (D)
July 1 Wednesday: Istanbul
Whole-day tour of the Topkapi Palace with its harem and fabulous treasure chambers, the Sultan Ahmed (Blue) Mosque with its six minarets, and St. Sofia (church of the sacred wisdom), converted to a mosque from a Christian basilica after the fall of Constantinople in 1453. See also the Hippodrome and the Obelisk brought from Egypt and try out your bargaining abilities in the Grand (covered) Bazaar. (B,D)
July 2 Thursday: Istanbul - Izmir
Transfer to Istanbul Airport for departure flight to Izmir. Upon arrival in Izmir we commence our visit of St. Policarp which is the oldest church in ancient Smyrna and drive to Alexander the Great’s “ Velvet Castle” for a panoramic view of Izmir. Overnight Izmir. (B,D)
July 3 Friday: Izmir - Pergamum - Thyatira - Izmir
Whole-day tour to Pergamum (Bergama), also one of the Seven Churches of Asia [Rev. 1:11; 2:12] where we explore the impressive Acropolis, the Asklepieion, the Altar of Zeus, referred to as the ‘Throne of Satan’ in the book of Revelation, the marble columns of the Temple of Trajan and the former world-renowned library which was for a long time arch-rival of the equally famous Library of Alexandria in Egypt. We also visit the Red Basilica ( St. John’s Church), then continue on to Thyatira (now Akhisar), yet again one of the Seven Churches of Asia [Rev. 1:11; 2:18-24; Acts 16:14] and famous for purple dye. Return to Izmir for dinner and overnight at hotel. (B,D)
July 4 Saturday: Sardis - Philadelphia - Hierapolis
Depart to Sardis (Sart), one of the most picturesque sites of the Seven Churches of Asia [Rev. 1:11; 3:1-4] and the capital of the ancient Lydian Kingdom of the 6th century B.C. Visit the great Temple of Artemis, the Temple of Cybele, ancient Lydian houses, and the restored gymnasium and reconstructed synagogue. We will also see the remains of the royal Persian Road from Susa to Sardis and the ‘golden’ river Pactolos.
On to Philadelphia, modern-day Alasehir, another of the Seven Churches of Asia [Rev. 1:11; 3:7]. There we see the remains of a Byzantine basilica and 11th century frescoes. Lastly on to the city of Hierapolis [Col. 4:13], now Pamukkale, the white ‘cotton fortress’ where ancient hot mineral springs said to have therapeutic qualities cascade over steep cliffs and form stalactites and pools. Here we also visit the Martyrium of the Apostle Philip where he was martyred during the persecutions ordered by Domitian and see the Gate of Domitian, the Arcadian Way, the 2nd century A.D. theater, the Nymphaion, the Temple of Apollo, the Plutonium and the Necropolis. Overnight in Pamukkale. (B,D)
July 5 Sunday: Laodicea - Aphrodisias - Kusadasi
Next stop Laodicea (Denizli), one of the Seven Churches of Asia Minor [Rev. 1:11; 3:14; Col. 2:1; 4:13-16]. Depart to Aphrodisias to visit the 30,000-capacity ancient stadium, the best-preserved ever excavated. We also see the Odeon, the Temple of Aphrodite, Hadrian’s Bath and the Bishop’s Palace. Overnight in Kusadasi. (B,D)
July 6 Monday: Ephesus - Kusadasi
Today we spend our whole day at the ancient city of Ephesus where the apostle Paul lived and preached for three years and to where he subsequently sent his letter to the Ephesians. Excavations are still being carried out in this once great city, famous for the Temple of Diana, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world and dating from the 10th century B.C. Here you can see the Baths of Scholastica, the Library of Celsus, the Temple of Hadrian and the theater. Visit the Archaeological Museum and the Basilica of St. John followed by free time for shopping in the bazaar. Dinner and overnight in Kusadasi. (B,D)
July 7 - Tuesday: Embark Greek Cruise - Patmos
At 09.00am, transfer from Hotel to the port of Kusadasi for embarkation on our cruise ship. Sail for Patmos, Greece at noon. (B,L,D)
July 8 - Wednesday: Greek Cruise - Rhodes
Sail to Rhodes. Free time in Rhodes from 7:00am to 6:00 pm. Optional Shore Excursion is available at extra cost. (B,L,D)
July 9 - Thursday: Greek Cruise - Heraklion & Santorini
Sail to Crete island. Free time in Crete from 7:00am to 11:30am. Then sail to Santorini. Free time in Santorini from 4:30pm to 9:00pm. Optional Shore Excursions are available at extra cost. (B,L,D)
July 10 - Friday: Disembark In Athens - Corinth & Athens
|Arrive Athens Pireus port at 6:00am. Leave the Cruise Ship and transfer to the hotel for check-in. Today, full day Corinth and Athens tour. At 08:00 am our excursion out of Athens takes us by the Saronic Gulf, where in 480 BC history’s root was changed! The small Grecian fleet managed to defeat the enormously powerful armada of the Persians. From here, via the historic Corinthian Canal, we arrive at ancient Corinth (Acts 18:1-18). Here, we see all of the sites associated with Paul’s ministry: the Agora, the Temple of Apollo, the Roman Odeon, the Bema and Gallio’s Seat. The small archaeological museum here is an absolute must!
We see the ruins of early Christian 5th century basilica in Cenchreae before returning to Athens. In the afternoon we enjoy our sightseeing tour of Athens (Acts 17:15). We climb up to the marble-capped Acropolis and visit the famous Parthenon and the Erechteion. Then, we go to nearby Mars’ Hill (or Areopagus) (Acts 17:22) where the Apostle Paul delivered his well-known sermon. Our tour continues with the highlights of modern Athens: we pass by the tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Parliament House, Presidential Palace, Panathenian Stadium, Temple of Olympian Zeus, the Academy, the University and the National Library. (B,D)
July 11 - Saturday: Departure Back
Transfer to Athens Airport for flight back to USA. End of our services. (B)
The total tour rate is:
$4,365 per person in Double Occupancy
$950 Single Supplement
- Roundtrip Air Fare between USA and Turkey
- 7 nights at good 4 star hotels in Turkey
- 3 Nights at Greek Cruise
- 1 Night at 4 star hotel in Athens
- Sightseeing as per the itinerary
- All escorted transfers
- Daily breakfast and dinners (B: Breakfast, D: Dinner)
- Lunches during the Greek Cruise
- Transportation by private A/C bus with driver throughout the tour (in Turkey and Greece)
- Bible oriented English speaking professional tour guide throughout the tour (in Turkey and Greece)
- Entry fees to the sites & museums
- Service charges & local taxes
- All drinks and all lunches
- Turkish Visa fee (to be paid upon arrival; by US and Canadian citizens)
- All personal expenses
Land Cancellation Penalty:
- 60-46 days prior to departure No Penalty
- 45-15 days prior to departure 10%
- 14-7 days prior to departure 25%
- 6-1 days prior to departure 50%
- After tour departure No refund
Air Cancellation Policy: We will be liable to Airlines standard rules.
Travel insurance may be given as a separate package at an extra cost. Travel Insurance agreement is contract between the traveler and the Insurance Company (American Express or other).
Download the trip brochure.
Download a registration form.
For further information and questions, please contact:
Vice-President of Institutional Advancement
315 Shorter Ave.
Rome , GA 30165