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Antiquities of the Southern Mediterranean

Program Overview

Bask in sun-dappled islands at the crossroads of the Mediterranean and explore coastal cities that date back more than 7,000 years. This one-of-a-kind cruise itinerary takes you from the antiquities of Malta to the ancient sites of Agrigento, Tunisia, and Taormina on the Italian island of Sicily. Enjoy calls at Trapani and Palermo in Sicily before cruising to Syracuse. Enhance your journey with the Malta Pre-Program Option.

 

 

Program Details

May 10 to 18, 2023 (Le Bougainville)
From $4,995 plus air View Terms & Conditions
  • Uniquely designed seven-night cruise itinerary following Gohagan & Company’s tradition of innovative educational programming and luxury travel.
  • Exclusively chartered cruise aboard the five-star small ship Le Bougainville allows access to smaller ports.
  • Six UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including Sicily’s ancient Greco-Roman sites in Taormina, Siracusa and Agrigento and Carthage in Tunisia.
  • Cruise to centuries-old cities, medieval ports and scenic landscapes—once coveted by the world’s most powerful empires.
  • Enjoy views of Sicily’s imposing Mt. Etna, Europe’s highest volcano.
  • Cruise past the island of Stromboli, the “Lighthouse of the Mediterranean.”
  • Complimentary alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages throughout the cruise and complimentary Wi-Fi aboard ship (conditions permitting).
  • Malta Pre-Program Option.

Day 1 - Depart the U.S. or Canada

Day 2 - Valleta, Malta / Embark Le Bougainville

Day 3 - Porto Empedocle for Agrigento, Sicily

Day 4 - Tunis, Tunisia for Carthage

Day 5 - Trapani, Sicily

Day 6 - Palermo

Day 7 - Reggio Calabria / Naxos for Taormina

Day 8 - Syracuse

Day 9 - Valletta, Malta / Disembark ship / Return to the U.S. or Canada

View detailed program itinerary >

Le Bougainville

Exclusively Chartered, Five-Star Luxury Small Ship

Join us aboard the exclusively chartered, five-star Le Bougainville, where distinctive French sophistication meets innovative nautical design. All accommodations feature private balconies. The ship’s efficient electrical propulsion system and custom stabilizers provide an exceptionally smooth, quiet and comfortable  voyage. The small size of the ship allows for navigation into more remote locations than larger vessels.

Learn more about the Le Bougainville>

Timeless Malta Pre-Program Option

Enhance your Mediterranean cruise experience with a two-night immersion on the island of Malta, considered one of the most concentrated historic areas in the world. Walk the medieval streets of the beautifully preserved, UNESCO-inscribed town of Valetta, built by the Knights of the Order of St. John in the late 16th century. Visit the Lower Barrakka Gardens for a breathtaking panorama of the Grand Harbor and the Grandmaster’s Palace. Explore the stunning 16th century Casa Rocca Piccola, home of the Marquis De Piro family. This private visit will be led by one of the family members. Accommodations are in the five-star Grand Hotel Excelsior Malta.

The Pre-Program Option is available at additional cost. Details will be provided with your reservation confirmation.

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Program Itinerary

Day 1 and 2 Depart U.S. or Canada / Valleta, Malta

Your trip will begin by departing the U.S. or Canada.

Arrive in Malta and transfer to Valleta. Early arrivals can enjoy the use of hospitality rooms. In the afternoon, embark the five-star Le Bougainville.

Day 3 Porto Empedocle for Agrigento, Sicily

Visit Agrigento’s UNESCO World Heritage-designated Valley of the Temples. Here, see eight Doric shrines dating from the fifth century B.C. including the Temple of Juno, the Temple of Concordia, and the Sanctuary of the Chthonic Deities. This evening, enjoy the Captain’s Welcome Reception.

Day 4 Tunis, Tunisia for Carthage

Explore Tunis' Old Town, a labyrinth of narrow alleyways, small shops, majestic mosques, palaces, and colorful markets. Visit the Bardo Museum, home to a collection of Roman mosaics and ancient statues. Continue to the UNESCO World Heritage Roman Site of Carthage to visit the Baths of Antonino, the ancient theater, and the Punic ports where Carthaginian fleets once took shelter.

Day 5 Trapani, Sicily

Drive through the Sea Saltpans of Trapani to Segesta and see the ancient Doric Temple. Visit the medieval town of Erice, set atop a hill and accessible via cable car. Enjoy panoramic views and marvel at the Norman Venus Castle.

Day 6 Palermo

Visit Palermo’s traditional Sicilian Old Quarter, Quattro Canti, baroque square and twelfth-century Duomo. At the Capo market, see and taste famous Palermo street food and admire colorful stalls displaying an abundance of produce, seafood, and meats. This afternoon, drive up the hillside and visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site, the remarkable Cathedral of Monreale.

Day 7 Reggio Calabria, Italy / Naxos for Taormine

Cruise through the Strait of Messina before arriving in Reggio Calabria, to visit the National Archaeological Museum, which houses the Riace Bronzes, a pair of ancient, life-size Greek statues. After lunch, arrive in Giardini Naxos and then visit Taormina, an ancient village on the top of a cliff above the Ionic Sea. Visit the Greco-Roman Theater, the Corvaia Palace, Odeon, and the Corso Umberto. 

Day 8 Syracuse

In Syracuse, visit the Altar of Hieron II, a monument dedicated to Zeus; Dyonisios’ Ear; the Roman Amphitheater; and the Greek Theater. Transfer to the island of Ortygia, Syracuse’s maritime heart, where the Temple of Apollo stands in the remains of Piazza Pancali. See the city’s Baroque cathedral incorporating the ruins of a fifth-century B.C. temple dedicated to the goddess Athena. At the Piazza Archimede, view the Baroque-style Fountain of Diana. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure. Tonight see a folklore show on deck and attend the Captain's Farewell Reception and dinner.

Day 9 Valletta, Malta / Return to Home City

After breakfast, disembark in Valetta and transfer to the Malta International Airport for your return flight home.