Day 1 - Venice, Italy Discover la Serenissima by gondola and ride with someone special under the Bridge of Sighs; wonder at the opulence of Ducal palaces and try on a gaudy, feather-bedecked Carnival mask. Linger over cappuccino on the Ca d'Oro, and be sure to dodge the pigeons in the Piazza before you step into San Marco Cathedral for an eyeful of giltwork and divine frescoes.
Day 2 - Split In Croatia, the Old Town of Split wraps around the luxurious palace where the Roman emperor Diocletian lived out his last days after abdicating in AD 305. Today, this remarkable white limestone palace, a UNESCO Site, awaits your discovery. Part luxurious villa, part military camp, the palace is enclosed by imposing walls and connected by roads linking the eastern Silver Gate with the Iron Gate to the west. Within: an octagonal domed mausoleum, temples and a monumental court accessing the imperial apartments.
Day 3 - At Sea
Day 4 - Argostoli Greece's best-kept secret. Discover enticing beaches, tasty white wine, a superb museum, the fishing village of Fiskardo where you may while away the afternoon schmoozing with the locals.
Day 5 - Souda (Chania)
Day 6 - Rhodes Rhodes, set behind impregnable 14th-century walls, invites you to navigate through crooked streets to shop for sea sponges and visit the gorgeous Palace of the Grand Masters from where the Knights of St John set out on the Crusades. Tour to the village of Lindos and climb to the Acropolis. Look down and you'll see where St Paul landed, as well as the rocky peninsulas where many believe the Colossus of Rhodes once stood. This 110-foot-tall statue of Helios was destroyed by an earthquake, and its remains were melted down by the Arabs for scrap metal.
Day 7 - Kusadasi Ephesus, not far from the port at Kusadasi, is home to the one remaining pillar from the Temple of Artemis—an Ancient Wonder of the World. Marble streets lead past magnificent ruins of temples and baths, and the Celsus Library. Don't miss the amphitheater where St Paul preached to the Ephesians. Roman ruins are also on display at Pirea and Didyma.
Day 8 - At Sea
Day 9 - Valletta Thick sandstone walls fortify Valletta, holding within its stone streets and glorious architecture. It fees like a travesty, walking over the detailed inlaid marble floors of the the cathedrals, but they are there to be seen and appreciated. The Silent City is Mdina, on the far side of the island, where no cars are permitted to disrupt the serene streets. Keep an eye out for the legendary, aged yellow buses of Malta which appear to be on their last legs, but are in fact a revered and flawlessly maintained piece of Maltese heritage.
Day 10 - Valletta Thick sandstone walls fortify Valletta, holding within its stone streets and glorious architecture. It fees like a travesty, walking over the detailed inlaid marble floors of the the cathedrals, but they are there to be seen and appreciated. The Silent City is Mdina, on the far side of the island, where no cars are permitted to disrupt the serene streets. Keep an eye out for the legendary, aged yellow buses of Malta which appear to be on their last legs, but are in fact a revered and flawlessly maintained piece of Maltese heritage.
Day 10 - Mgarr (Victoria) Victoria is aptly known by the local Maltese as Rabat, an Arabic word meaning "suburb outside the fortress walls." The fortress in this case is the massive, hill top Citadel first fortified during the Bronze Age around 1500 BC. Walk the fortress walls for a 360° view of Gozo; visit the exquisite 17th century baroque Cathedral; stroll the gardens of Villa Rundle; and shop for fine weaving, lace and silver filigree. Sample shore excursions: Victoria's Secrets; Gozo Arts & Crafts; A Taste of Gozo.
Day 11 - Palermo, Sicily Territory of the legendary Godfather, Sicily has hosted many film crews, and Palermo in particular is home to the Opera House where Al Pacino's character met his Waterloo in the Godfather III. Also in Palermo are a Spanish church with a Moorish cloister and a cathedral whose electic facade speaks volumes about all those who came, saw and conquered. Enjoy it all as you would the caponata—sweet and tangy and, not surprisingly, delicious.
Day 12 - Naples (Pompeii)
Day 13 - Civitavecchia (Rome) In the footsteps of the Ceasar you will spend your time in the Eternal City. From the Roman Forum, it's a short walk to the Colosseum, the Arch of Constantine and Palatine Hill. Across the Tiber River, the Sovereign State of the Vatican holds the key to the Sistine Chapel and Bernini's awesome colonnade.
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