A Tour in the Footsteps of St Paul to Greece

Led by Revd Andrew Corke & Canon Chris Tebbutt

Tuesday 17th - Wednesday 25th September 2024

We begin our journey with Paul on his Second Missionary Journey covering the period AD 48-51, a period of about two-and-a-half-years. Paul is joined by Silas and Timothy, having travelled to Southern Galatia through Asia Minor. They then moved on for their first visit to mainland Europe. On arriving at Macedonia, the apostles travel to Philippi, which we read about in Acts 16-18 and 1 Thessalonians 2, then on to Thessalonica and Berea, moving through mainland Greece to Athens and Corinth. After returning to Jerusalem, Paul once again travels to Asia Minor on his Third Missionary Journey, writing 1&2 Corinthians, before travelling to Corinth where he wrote the letter to the Romans.

Join us on this journey of discovery as we try to understand the mind of the Apostle Paul as he encounters European culture in the Greco-Roman world of his time.

Most evenings there will be an optional meeting to worship and reflect on the day.

Day 1 - Arrival / Thessaloniki
Depart from London Gatwick on our flight to Thessalonica. On arrival transfer to our hotel for dinner and overnight.

Day 2 – Philippi / Kavalla
We proceed to Philippi, the first city in Europe visited by Paul and the city where he and Silas were imprisoned (Acts 16:16-40) and where the Philippian jailer was converted.  Philippi was the leading city of the Roman Province of Macedonia. We visit the stream by the village of Lydia, where Lydia of Thyatira was baptized - the first recorded baptism in Europe (Acts 16:11-15). Here we will have the opportunity to renew our baptismal vows. The church of Philippi was perhaps the most supportive of all to Paul (Philippians 4). We drive on to Kavalla (Neopolis, where Paul landed from Troy on his way to Philippi) where we have the opportunity to enjoy lunch beside the harbour before driving back to Thessaloniki.

In the evening there will be a meeting to worship together and reflect on our day, on how the Gospel came to Europe and spread throughout the Western world.

Day 3 - Berea, Vergina / Kalambaka
We leave Thessalonica and travel to Veroia (Berea in the New Testament). On arrival we visit the Church of Christ, one of the finest examples of early brick churches. Founded in the 14th century, the church’s interior features beautiful frescoes portraying the life of Christ, the Virgin Mary, and the apostles. A modern shrine commemorates Paul’s visit. Then we drive southwards and stop at Vergina to visit the local museum to view the treasures unearthed from a tomb believed to be that of King Philip II of Macedonia, father of Alexander the Great. We continue on our journey that takes us close to Mount Olympus and onwards to Kalambaka for dinner and overnight.
In the evening there will be a Bible study on Acts 17:10-15 and time to pray.

Day 4 - Meteora Monasteries
We will visit the extraordinary Orthodox Meteora Monasteries perched high on gigantic rocks. The monastic history of Meteora dates back to the 11th century and the monasteries themselves to the 14th century. We will visit the monastery of Varlaam with its superb frescoes of the Last Judgement and the convent of Agios Stephanos with its museum and the church which is currently being decorated with frescoes. Early in the afternoon, we will depart for our drive towards Delphi. On the way we will make a short stop at Thermopylae, the famous site of the defeat of the 300 Spartans by the Persian in 480 BC. The three-day battle for the little rocky pass of Thermopylae is the stuff of legend, in which the Spartan King Leonidas died in trying to delay the vast army of Xerxes. The timeline of this incident occurs at the same time as the biblical book of Esther. The mound of the last stand was identified in 1939 and in 1955 King Paul of the Hellenes inaugurated the famous monument to Leonidas and his men. Dinner and overnight in Delphi.
This evening we will meet to worship and reflect on the Life of St Paul, the letters he wrote and how they influenced the early church and have shaped our New Testament Christian thinking.

Day 5 - Delphi / Athens
After our breakfast, we will be exploring thte area of Delphi which will give us a vivid picture of Greek religion in the First Century into which Paul was ministering.. We will visit the ancient site of the Apollonian Oracle, nestling in the mountains of Parnassus and with an unforgettable view across acres of olive trees as far as the Gulf of Corinth. It was here that individuals sought the advice of the supposedly infallible Oracle. We visit the ruins of the Sanctuary of Apollo, the Castalian Fountain and the Theatre. Next we will enter the Museum of Delphi where you will find Kourus Statues, Kleobis and Vitom. After some free time for lunch, we will start heading towards Athens. Dinner and overnight in Athens.
In the evening there will be an opportunity to worship and reflect on Acts 17:16-33, which is the account of Paul visiting Athens and addressing the Areopagus, which we will visit tomorrow.

Day 6 - Athens City tour /Acropolis /Acropolis museum / Athens
Our panoramic tour starts with a visit to the Panathenian Stadium, passing by the tomb of the Unknown soldier, the ruins of the Temple of Zeus and continue with our morning tour of Athens which includes visits to the legendary Acropolis and its New Museum. We begin with the ascent of the Acropolis where the full splendour of the 5th century BC Athens comes to life : the Propylaia (gateway), the Temple of Athena Nike (victory), the Parthenon, and the Erechteion. We will visit Mars Hill, where Paul’s famous sermon is inscribed on the rock at its foot, and the expansive Agora of Athens, where former philosophers counselled and taught. Time at leisure in the old part of Athens called Plaka. Dinner and overnight in our hotel in Athens. There will be a meeting this evening to allow us to dip into Acts 18 and consider Paul’s engagement with the Corinthian church.

Day 7 - Corinth
Today, we travel to the Peloponnesian Peninsula and the biblical town of Corinth -the city where Paul ministered for nearly two years. Passing the Corinth Canal which links the Aegean and Ionian Seas, you arrive in Corinth, the very town St. Paul visited for 18 months (51-52 A.D.). Visiting the excavations, the Agora is dominated by the columns of the Temple of Apollo; on the opposite side is the tribunal before which Paul was accused. See also the Bema Seat, and the Temple of Apollo. Corinth is remembered through Paul’s letter to a lively church in the midst of immorality and paganism. Here he recruited two valuable assistants, Priscilla and Aquila. We then continue on to Cenchreae, his departure point for Ephesus (Acts 18). We return to Athens and this evening we will enjoy a traditional Greek meal.
There will be no meeting this evening.

Day 8 - Cruise
A relaxing one-day Cruise from Piraeus Port To Hydra, Poros and Aegina. Dinner and overnight in Athens.
This will be our last evening together and we will have a meeting of worship and share Communion, celebrating our common faith in Christ and the highlights of the Tour.

Day 9 - Departure
Coach and English-speaking escort will pick you up from the hotel for your transfer to Athens airport for our return flight to London Gatwick.
Itinerary subject to change.

Price £2290 per person

What the price includes

  • Return flights from London Gatwick to Thessaloniki and Athens to London Gatwick (Details of flight numbers and times have not yet been finalised).
  • Accommodation in good quality hotels in twin bedded rooms with private facilities on half board basis
  • Transfer of passengers and baggage
  • Sightseeing as in itinerary
  • Day cruise to Aegina, Poros and Hydra, including lunch on board
  • Fully qualified English speaking guide
  • Travel by air-conditioned coaches
  • Entrance fees, gratuities, service charges and porterage
  • Airport taxes
  • ATOL Protection Contribution*

Not included in the price

  • Single supplement £440 per person
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Travel insurance Staysure

Please note that the cost of the tour may be subject to surcharges - please see the booking conditions. Currency exchange rates used £1 = € 1.1612 as published in the Financial Times on 11th January 2024. APC (ATOL Protection Contribution) provides passenger protection via the ATTF (Air Travel Trust Fund). For further information visit www.caa.co.uk

* APC (ATOL Protection Contribution) provides passenger protection via the ATTF (Air Travel Trust Fund). For further information visit www.caa.co.uk

HOW TO BOOK

Either click 'Book' at the top of this page or download, complete and return the booking form to:

Worldwide Christian Travel 36 Coldharbour Road, Bristol, BS6 7NA UK

Tel: 0117 973 1840

Worldwide Christian Travel has been organising Christian holidays and tours, mainly to the Holy Land, for over 50 years. We cover all aspects of travel and are one of the most comprehensive Christian travel organisers in the country. Worldwide Christian Travel is a trading name of Hadler Tours Limited.

General Information

Fitness
People of all ages are welcome, but, whatever your age, we must insist on a reasonable level of fitness. A number of sites involve rough walking.

Your Protection
Hadler Tours Limited is a member of ABTA with membership numbers 93522 & V2096. ABTA and ABTA Members help holidaymakers to get the most from their travel and assist them when things do not go according to plan. We are obliged to maintain a high standard of service to you by ABTA’s Code of Conduct. For further information about ABTA, the Code of Conduct and the arbitration scheme available to you or if you have a complaint, contact ABTA, 68-71 Newman Street London W1T 3AH Tel: 020 7637 2444 or visit www.abta.com.

All monies paid by you for the air holiday package shown are ATOL protected by the Civil Aviation Authority. Our ATOL number is ATOL 3078. For more information see our booking terms and conditions.

Passports, Visas and Vaccinations
Travellers are responsible for ensuring that they have a valid passport for travel to the relevant countries and that it is valid for at least 6 months after the date of travel. A visa is not required for British Passport holders visiting Greece and no inoculations are required for travel but you may wish to consult your own doctor for advice concerning this. If you have any queries regarding the above, we will be happy to help.

Travel Advice
For the latest travel advice please visit www.fco.gov.uk or call 0870 606 0290.

Further Information and Paying The Balance
Further information will be sent to you regarding any action that may be required approximately 12 weeks before departure. A final invoice will also be sent at this time and the balance for the tour must be paid at least 10 weeks before departure.

Travel Information
Full travel information, including details of meeting points, flight times, accommodation and travel information, will be sent to you approximately 2 weeks before departure. Normally, tickets are not issued but are handed to you at the airport or departure point by our representative who will be there to ensure that you depart without a hitch and to deal with any last minute difficulties.

Travel Insurance
It is compulsory to have travel insurance for your booking. Staysure have a range of policies available at very competitive prices. You can obtain a quote online by clicking here.

Gratuities
Our normal procedure is to deal with tips on a group basis and if these are included in the price the tour leader will distribute them to the guide, driver and hotels on your behalf. Individual tipping is not recommended unless the circumstances are exceptional.

Room Check In and Check Out Times
The standard international practice is to let rooms from midday to midday. However times do vary. Check-in times are usually between 2pm and 3pm, check-out times between 11am and 12 noon on the day of departure. Therefore, if you check-in immediately after a night flight this would normally count as one night’s accommodation. Similarly if your return flight is at night you will normally be required to vacate your room at 12 noon prior to leaving for the airport. Day rooms are subject to availability/cost and should be arranged locally with the accommodation management.

Page published January 2024



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