Experience the archeology cruise of your dreams: a harmonious balance between conventional cruising and private yachting, along with an exciting voyage of discovery, unravelling the wonders of Antiquity and Byzantium around the coast of the Peloponnese. Each day you will discover a new port of call, a leap back into ancient history to amaze you and rich cultural diversity to intrigue you.
With the guidance and knowledge of an experienced lecturer and guide you’ll get to know the famous ancient theatre of Epidaurus, the Tomb of Agamemnon, and the Mycenae burial complex, as well as Ancient Olympia and famous Delphi. Visit historic and picturesque cities, such as Nafplio and Monemvasia, Gytheio and Pylos, all waiting to be discovered the best way: by Small Ship.
NB: Excursion package is not included in the cruise fare but can be requested, or you can opt to go on individual excursions at ticket price.
4 UNESCO Heritage Sites Await
Enjoy guest lectures aboard and be part of small-group excursions to crowd-free sites, whilst in the company of like-minded travelers. Discover the wonders of Antiquity and the Byzantine Empire around the fascinating Peloponnese coast.
8 day cruise: March – April, 2023 | October – November 2023
Friday, Athens – Athens
|2023 Antiquity to Byzantium Cruise Dates|
Embarkation between 2-3 pm. Enjoy a welcome drink and meet your crew and fellow passengers. Sail for Palaia (old) Epidaurus. Evening arrival and dinner on board. (If time and weather conditions allow, it may be possible to cruise to the island of Aegina for a quick tour of the town after dinner, then nighttime departure for Epidaurus.)
We leave our ship early in the morning to drive to Ancient Epidaurus (optional excursion). Epidaurus was known throughout the Greek world as a healing sanctuary. It was reputed to be the birthplace of Apollo’s son Asclepius – and for its theater, which is once again in use today. The sanctuary was looted by the Roman general Sulla by pirates and later by Goths in 395 A.D. and very little remains of it today. The prosperity brought by the Asclepieion enabled the residents of Epidaurus to construct civic monuments, including a huge theater (approximately 300 B.C.) renowned for its symmetry and beauty. Lunch on ship and afternoon sailing to Nafplion. Overnight at port.
After a short walking tour of Nafplion, drive through the colorful city and the beautiful countryside of Argolis towards Mycenae (Optional Excursion). The importance of the city, which Homer calls “rich in gold” begins in 1650 B.C and ceases around 1100 B.C with the fall of the civilization to which it gives name. Visit the remains of the ancient glorious city including the Lion’s Gate, the Palace, the so called Agamemnon Tomb and the museum. Lunch on ship and afternoon sailing to the beautiful medieval island/fort peninsula of Monemvassia. Overnight sailing to Gythion.
Early morning arrival in Gythion. Optional Excursion to Mani peninsula and Cape Tenaro plus the spectacular Dirou Caves with their stalactites and stalagmites. Ancient Gythion was inhabited during prehistoric times and later the Spartans used as a port, enlarging the natural harbor they made Gythion their naval base. Leaving Gythion we will cross the scenic Mani Peninsula to reach Diros and visit the spectacular caves, discovered around the 60s, which are perhaps among the most important natural sites of Greece. After visiting the cave, we will drive to nearby Areopolis for a short stroll through the town. Mani is at the tip of the Peloponnese, a distinctive area unlike any other area in Greece. A desolate region of underground lakes and rivers, windswept landscapes and towers who is strangely beautiful. Overnight at sea.
Pylos is a picture-perfect seaside town on the southwest corner of the Peloponnese. In 1827 a fleet of Venetians and other city states defeated an Ottoman fleet in one of the most important naval battles in history. This defeat led to the independence of Greece, which occurred in 1829. During our optional excursion and after stopping to admire the scenery, we will continue up the road to Nestor’s Palace. The remains of the prehistoric Palace occupy a scenic hilltop setting north of Pylos. The palace at Pylos belonged to Nestor and was discovered in 1939 by the American archaeologist Carl Blegen. Highlights include the well-preserved royal apartments and a bathtub that archaeologists have speculated belonged to the old king himself. The palace, with its central courtyard, was originally two stories high and richly decorated with frescoes. Following our visit to the remains of the palace, we will make the short trip to the town of Hora where a superb archaeological museum holds thousands of artifacts recovered from the site. Overnight at sea.
Early morning arrival in port of Katakolon. We will disembark around 7:00 a.m. and an optional excursion takes us by bus to Olympia, one of the most famous and important sites in the ancient world. Olympia is revered as the birthplace of the Olympic Games and the greatest Pan-Hellenic sanctuary for the worship of Zeus. Olympia persisted well into Roman times until its demise in the 3rd century A.D. From 1875 onward excavation work revealed the fantastic treasures from antiquity that sit today in the marvelous archaeological museum. The most thrilling site at Olympia is the stadium, which looks much like it did more than 2,000 years ago. You will also explore the Temple of Hera, the magnificent temple of Zeus the Philippeion. We later visit the Olympia Museum, one of the most beautiful museums in the world. Following lunch in the town of Olympia, we will visit the museum of the History of the Olympic Games of Antiquity. Unlike the main archaeological museum, this building houses statuary and artifacts specifically related to the ancient Olympic Games. Time at leisure and travel overland to Patra. Re-board our ship and depart for Itea in the Gulf of Corinth. Overnight in port.
Morning optional excursion to Delphi, one of the most revered sites from the ancient world. We will disembark the ship early this morning and proceed to the ruins complex. Unlike other archaeological sites in Greece, Delphi is built on the side of a mountain. Stay awed as much for the stunning natural beauty that surround the ruins as for the ancient buildings themselves. In its prime, Delphi was revered for its wealth and reputation, attributes which grew from the site’s location as hosting the most important oracle in the classical world. The oracle had the ability to prophecy the future and give advice. Visitors from across the Greek world traveled here to consult with the oracle and responded by offering thanks to Apollo in the form of treasure. We will have a half day to walk around the ruins complex and visit the adjoining museum. Return to the ship and cross the Corinth Canal. Later in the evening Captain’s Farewell Dinner and sail to Marina Zea. Overnight in Marina Zea.
Disembarkation after breakfast. If you haven`t already, now is the time to explore some of the special sites in Athens, including the Parthenon / Acropolis, Acropolis museum, as well as the popular shopping disctricts of Plaka and Monastiraki.
The 48 meter “Galileo” is a classic steel Motor Sailer, with spacious and well appointed interiors renovated in 2020. At the main deck, a lounge area with an American bar leads into a warm and elegant dining room finished with wood and leather. Guests on the Galileo enjoy the most a shaded outdoor deck area with an outdoor bar and the ship`s sun deck. The M/S Galileo, built with the most stringent safety regulations, was launched in 1992.
Imagine your floating home on board the sleek, classic design Mega Yacht as she spreads her white sails through the seas under the name GALILEO, waving her Greek flag through the wind. Discover the world by sea at 11 knots per hour, in her un-rushed pace, one island or seashore at a time. Galileo loves to seduce her select 49 guests with her classic lines and wood paneled lounges redefining what yachting was meant to be. A spacious lounge with ample space, dining areas decorated with warm colors, rich library and two decks for sunbathing, shaded areas and outdoor bar and loungers are just some of the elements that define her essence. 360° views of unobstructed ocean are your eyes’ canvas painted with ocean blue and deep green mountains.
|CABIN CATEGORIES||Cabin||Euro rates low season||Euro rates high season||USD rates low season||USD rates high season|
|C Main deck||Double bed cabins||€1550.00||€2150.00||$1850.00||$2550.00|
|B Main deck||Double or Twin bed cabins||€2100.00||€2790.00||$2490.00||$3290.00|
|A Upper deck||Double or Twin bed cabins||€2750.00||€3300.00||$3250.00||$3890.00|
|Single supplement||+ 50%|
|3rd person discount||Valid for CAT A||– 30%|
|Port charges||per person||€310.00||$370.00|
USD prices for USA, JAPAN AND MEXICO countries. Euro prices for rest of the world.
Children policy/Family offer
Conditions & Restrictions for the Family offers:
Cruise fares are per person and week and include
The Variety Cruises passion remains unchanged since 1968: an alchemy that blends enriching oneself educationally and exploring the true identity of a destination, while enjoying the comforts and unique benefits of a small ship sailing the seas.
We look forward to welcoming you aboard one of our ships soon and discover the world the Variety Cruises way.
Variety Cruises is one of the leading yacht cruise lines worldwide, operating a fleet of 11 fully owned vessels offering travelers the ultimate Boutique Yacht Cruise experience. With capacities ranging from 5 to 36 cabins, Variety Cruises’ upscale yachts and experiential cruise itineraries embrace each destination by visiting much-loved and unfrequented ports of call in a private, intimate and relaxed environment.
THE VARIETY CRUISES DIFFERENCE
AWARDS & ACCOLADES:
Some of Variety Cruises’ industry nomination highlights:
With more than 400 bed capacity on board 11 vessels, Variety Cruises is the largest Mega Yachts operator in the Mediterranean and one of the top 3 worldwide in the Small Ship market.
“Our trip around the Peloponnese was filled with sights we had only read about in history books. The crowds at the temples and ruins were very minimal, in fact we often were the only visitors which made for a much more pleasant visit. I would highly recommend going on the off season trips for this reason. What made our visits even better were the very knowledgeable cruise director and even more knowledgeable tour guide…”
“We really enjoyed this cruise around the Peloponnese peninsula. Everyday we got to see a bit more of Greece`s classical antiquity: Epidaurus, Mycenae, Nafplion, Monemvassia, Sparta, ancient Olympia, Delphi… and much more. It`s perfect for off-season because it`s not too hot and not too crowded. We met some great people on board and the crew were amazing, as were the full-board meals. The boat was also something special and we found our cabin really comfortable.”
Tracy and Frances