Black Sea Explorer Cruise

Rome, Santorini, Istanbul, Odessa, Yalta, Kusadasi & Athens aboard the Holland america Rotterdam

This itinerary is for a past tour program.
Check out our current tour & cruise packages in Europe.

Overview

Itinerary at a Glance
Day Destination/Port of Call Arrive Depart
1 Depart USA    
2 Rome, Italy    
3 Rome, Italy 5 pm  
4 At sea    
5 Katakolon (Olympia), Greece 8 am 4 pm
6 Santorini, Greece 8 am 5 pm
7 Istanbul, Turkey 4 pm  
8 Istanbul, Turkey   5 pm
9 Varna, Bulgaria 8 am 3 pm
10 Odessa, Ukraine 8 am 5 pm
11 Yalta, Ukraine 8 am 5 pm
12 At sea    
13 Kusadasi, Turkey 8 am 5 pm
14 Piraeus (Athens), Greece 8 am  
15 Athens/USA    

We've scoured the world looking for the very best travel experiences for our growing clientele. When it comes to cruising, we've discovered that it takes a lot to find a great deal for our discerning travelers, and we're sure you'll agree that our new association with Holland america represents a real bonanza for our travelers, offering award-winning cruising at Friendly Planet's fantastic prices. If you are looking for some of the most spacious and comfortable ships at sea, award-winning service, five star dining, extensive activities and enrichment programs and compelling worldwide itinerarie to exotic destinations around the world, you've come to the right place.

Detailed Itinerary

Black Sea Explorer Cruise tour itinerary Day 1: Depart USA. Your journey begins as you depart from New York this evening on your overnight flight to Rome, Italy.

Day 2: Rome, Italy. Arrive in the eternal city of Rome. After arrival formalities, transfer to your centrally located hotel. Balance of the day at leisure. Massimo D'Azeglio

St. Peter's Square Day 3: Rome, Italy. This morning, enjoy a tour of ancient Rome, including the Vatican Musuems, and that most famous of religious and artistic treasures, the Sistine Chapel, with its unique ceiling painted by Michelangelo. Visit St. Peter's Square with its colonnade designed by Bernini, and St. Peter's Basilica to view Michelangelo's Pieta. Transfer to the port of Civitavecchia for embarkation, and 5pm sailing. MS Rotterdam Breakfast & dinner provided.

Day 4: At sea. Take advantage of all of the fantastic facilities that your ship has to offer. Work out in the fitness room, take a yoga class, pamper yourself with massage and spa treatments, play a game of tennis, or treat yourself to fabulous meals and entertainment. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Churches of Oia, Santorini Day 5: Katakolon (Olympia) Greece. This morning, arrive in Katakolon, the gateway to the ancient Olympia, the site of the original Olympic Stadium. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Day 6: Santorini, Greece. Arrive in Santorini, one of the most famous and picturesque of the Greek Islands. See the steep cliffs rise from sea level, where white houses built into the cliffs look down on the Caldera. Disembarkation is via tenders. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Day 7: Istanbul, Turkey. This afternoon, arrive in Istanbul. The city straddles Europe and Asia, with history from Byzantium to modern times. See the dramatic skylines formed by the Blue Mosque and the bridges across the Bosphoros. The ship will be in port from 4:00 p.m. for an extended stay overnight. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Blue Mosque at night, Istanbul Day 8: Istanbul, Turkey. Enjoy the day in this most exciting port of call. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Day 9: Varna, Bulgaria. This morning, arrive in Varna, the largest city on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast. See the breathtaking 19th century Cathedral or the 2nd century remains of an ancient Roman Bath. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Day 10: Odessa, Ukraine. This morning, arrive in Odessa, the "Pearl of the Black Sea". Walk the famous Potemkin Steps and visit the Pushkin Monument, a tribute to the Russian poet. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Aerial view of Kusadasi Day 11: Yalta, Ukraine. This morning, arrive in Yalta on the Crimean peninsula. Anton Chekov spent the last years of life here, and his charming white dacha is now a museum. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Day 12: At sea. Take advantage of all of the fantastic facilities that your ship has to offer. Work out in the fitness room, take a yoga class, pamper yourself with massage and spa treatments, play a game of tennis, or treat yourself to fabulous meals and entertainment. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Day 13: Kusadasi (Ephesus), Turkey. Arrive at Kusadasi in Turkey, the gateway to the ancient city of Ephesus, where you'll find an archaeological site that ranks among the wonders of the world. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Parthenon, Athens Day 14: Piraeus, (Athens) Greece. This morning arrive in Athens. Take the opportunity to visit the ancient Acropolis and Hadrian's Arch. Stroll the alleys of the Plaka while shopping or stopping for some Greek delicacies. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Day 15: Depart Greece. This morning, your exploration comes to end as you disembark and transfer to the airport for your departure flight, arriving in the USA later on today.

Cruise Ship

The Holland america MS Rotterdam

See specifications, deck plans & photos of the ship.

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