The staff was excellent in all respects, always attentive but not overbearing & genuinely friendly. Comparable to our experience at the Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman.
All arrangements were remarkably efficient: no waiting at any time; no more than 20 people on each day's luxury touring bus; tour guides who were engaging and informative with interesting side-stories.... We saw and learned a LOT!
Fellow passengers were very diverse in their backgrounds and generally easy to chat with.
Easy arrangements at ports of embarkation (water taxi in Venice after 3 days @ Ca' Sagredo Hotel on the Grand Canal) and disembarkation (touring bus in Athens from the port to the Acropolis followed by a drop-off for one night @ King George Palace Hotel).
Your first stop was the new Acropolis Museum that opened to the public on 21 June 2009. This beautiful new archaeological museum is dedicated to housing artifacts discovered from the Acropolis of Athens. It has nearly 4,000 artifacts being exhibited in 14,000 square meters, covering the Greek Bronze Age to Roman and Byzantine Greece periods. Our tour guide did an outstanding job of taking us quickly thru the museum's highlights and setting the stage for the Acropolis.
After the visit to the museum we enjoyed a somewhat steep, we walk in a drizzling rain on the pedestrian street to the Acropolis, a symbol of the glory of ancient Greece. We climbed its smooth marble steps as visitors have for centuries. History opened before us as we reached one of the masterpieces of classical architecture, the Propylaea, which serves as the entrance to the complex. We saw the Temple of Athena Nike, or Wingless Victory, and the Erechtheum with its classical Porch of Maidens, the Caryatids. We stood in awe of what is considered to be the most perfect example of classical architecture in the world, the Parthenon, designed as a shrine to Athena and at one time housing a massive gold and ivory statue of the warrior goddess. Looking down from the Acropolis, we saw the two ancient theaters in its shadow: the Greek theater of Dionysus where the masterpieces of Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides and Aristophanes debuted to delighted audiences, and the grand Roman theater of Herod Atticus, restored and used for concerts and classical plays during the summer Athens Festival.
After a delay caused by protesters at the Parliament building, we walked to the King George Palace Hotel, where our bus arrived with our luggage. The hotel and accommodations were magnificent. We had dinner on the 4th floor terrace of Kuzina, watching the lights of the Acropolis turn on in phases - magical! We then walked back to the hotel and left for the US the next morning after a splendid buffet breakfast on the 7th floor, also directly facing the Acropolis!
Delos (UNESCO Site) was the birthplace of Apollo and his twin sister Artemis - children of Zeus and Leto. The sacred island is uninhabited now, but its first settlements date to the 3rd millennium BC. The ruins on Delos are numerous and important to Greek history - the Sanctuary of Apollo complex, the area of the Sacred Lake (which dried up in 1926), the Terrace of Lions, the sanctuaries on Cynthus, the theater district, and the commercial harbor district. Absolutely fascinating!
After 3 hours we took the ferry back to Mykonos, returned to the Odyssey for lunch at the rail in the ship's open fantail restaurant (the Collonade) facing beautiful Mykonos in the afternoon sunshine, then went back to Mykonos for delightful sightseeing and window shopping.
The streets are narrow and they truly gave a feel of how life might have been in medieval days. We visited the main attraction in Trogir - the Cathedral of St. Lawrence. This 13th century building is probably the finest example of ancient architecture in Croatia.